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  • 30 by 30 check-in

    Well, it would seem that the calendar year is quickly coming to a close. And with that, it seems like a good time to check in on the good, ol’ 30 by 30 list. A little over 4 months in–over a third of the year gone–so how far along am I? Well, let’s see …

    1. Complete the Nashville Rock and Roll ½ Marathon – The training was going well. Then not well. Thankfully I have 5 more months before the race. 🙂
    2. Write 2 novels – Umm … let’s skip this one right now …
    3. Read all of Jane Austen’s Books – I read Pride and Prejudice and am afraid the rest will be as painful. But I’ll keep it at it.
    4. Go to an NFL game – Well, I had a ticket to go to see the Titans and Colts play last week. And then I remembered I’d be out of town for work! Whoops! Not sure if I’ll get to do this one.
    5. Save $1500 toward a trip to Scotland/Ireland – Hmm … I should get started on this.
    6. Finish Caleb’s fire truck cross stitch – About half way there. Gotta keep working on it.
    7. Visit 3 Civil War battlefields – So far, I’ve visited the Carnton Plantation and the Carter House. Both key locations in the Battle of Franklin, November 30, 1864 I was supposed to go see Shiloh with another author friend, but that may have to wait until the weather warms up a little bit.
    8. See Brandon Heath in concertDone and done. LOVED him at the Bluebird!
    9. Visit Boone Hall in South Carolina (Mount Royal Plantation) – Haven’t made my plans yet, but I think I can get a cheap plane ticket out that direction and will likely do it in the spring.
    10. Donate $1000 to World Vision for Micro-loans – Working on it. Penny by penny. Nickel by nickel.
    11. Get a contract for a 3-book deal – I’ve talked to my editor about my 3-book series idea. She said she likes the idea and can’t wait to see the proposal. That makes two of us. 🙂 Guess I better get on that.
    12. Find a place to serve at my new church – This is always so hard. Well, I’m just trusting that the new year will bring new opportunities.
    13. Take a cooking class at Whole Foods – My sweet friend Katie Bond is on board for this one. Looking for just the right opportunity.
    14. Give away 20 of the books on my shelvesDone! I gave away 12 books in my Great October Book Giveaway (congrats to all you winners), and another 10 to a friend who LOVES to read. Feels great to share the love.
    15. Buy flowers for a friend for no reason – Not yet.
    16. Eat something with mushrooms – Someone suggested pizza because it masks the taste. Good idea!
    17. See a show at TPAC – Planning to buy my tickets this week to see Les Miserables in May. Can. Not. Wait.
    18. Read the Bible in a Year – Working my way through. Among other books have thoroughly appreciated the lessons in the book of Ruth.
    19. Take an adult beginner dance class – Next summer, methinks.
    20. Visit the Harry Potter theme park at Universal Studios in Orlando – Jess Lacy and I are making plans even now.
    21. Catch up on the TV show Chuck – Not doing so well with this one yet. But I’m optimistic. Captain Awesome needs some company.
    22. Volunteer at least 10 hours at a local food bank/shelter – Not yet.
    23. Read a #1 New York Times Bestseller when it’s #1 – Well, I thought that I was reading Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins at the right time. But I think I was wrong. Will have to try again.
    24. Go a week without eating outI did this back in August without even thinking about it. I just looked up one day and realized that I hadn’t eaten out in 8 days. Funny how something that you think might be hard actually ends up being no test at all.
    25. Host a dinner party for at least 4 friendsYup! Katie helped me host a very fun, very yummy pajama party in honor of Heather Cadenhead’s book Inventory of Sleeping Things. Get it? Sleeping things … pajamas. So fun!
    26. Write a Christmas short story – Well, considering that I’m on contract for one now, I best have it done by February 1.
    27. Drop 2 dress sizes – Working on it. Right along with that 1/2 marathon.
    28. Sing karaoke in public – Not yet.
    29. Drink only water for 2 weeks straight – I keep forgetting about this, but it seems a wonderful idea. Note to self. Get on this.
    30. Vacation on Prince Edward IslandIt was AWE. SOME. So much fun! If you missed the pictures, go here.

    Well, by my count that’s 5 completed. Only 1/6 of the way done. Guess I should get rocking and rolling. How are you doing on the goals you set for yourself this year?

    10 thoughts on “30 by 30 check-in

    1. you have made a lot of progress. Jane Austen is divine! please read more of her stuff! Without her there would be no chickflicks or romantic comedies. She established the formula to the degree which is most recognizable today!

      I was one of the winners of the book giveaway contest so I CERTAINLY appreciated it!

    2. Hey, Liz! I am your friend, and you have NO reason to send me flowers! (wink, wink…)

      When’s your birthday? My daughter will be 30 in October and she’s working on a 30 by 30 list, too. I was FAR too lazy to do a 50 by 50. I think one number should go down when the other goes up.

    3. Jess

      I’m still sad you found P&P painful. Mansfield Park, yes. But P&P? It’s so delightful!

    4. #3: Skip reading the books. Watch the movies instead:

      Pride & Prejudice (1995 w/Colin Firth & Jennifer Ehle)

      Sense & Sensibility (2008 PBS/BBC version)

      Mansfield Park (1983 version)

      Northanger Abbey (2008 PBS/BBC version)

      Emma (2008 PBS/BBC version)

      Persuasion (1995 version w/Ciaran Hinds & Amanda Root—my absosmurfinglutely favorite book/film of all of these)

    5. Beth

      i will TOTALLY Karaoke with you!

    6. I cannot agree with Kaye on this. Austen’s brilliant prose is completely lost in the films. Sure, the films are excellent adaptations and capture the essence of the novels ( Recently, I really liked the BBC Emma) and sure, I own and re-watch them all; but there is a spirited nature to her dialogue that you just can’t translate to another medium.

      As a writer I am sure you understand.

      moreover, how else will you be able to conjure up your perfect, imaginative vision of your favourite Austen heroes if only subjected to the BBC’s (although wonderful) casting?

      try try again! Jane Austen will grow on you!

    7. @Rachel–
      I majored in Jane Austen . . . well, almost. I wrote my senior thesis on Jane Austen and used my favorite of her six novels, Persuasion, as the inspiration behind my own historical series. But her prose style isn’t for everyone. If Liz didn’t enjoy P&P, why should she force herself to read the other books, most of which are harder to get through?

      For me, it was falling in love with the 1980 BBC/Masterpiece version of P&P that led me to read the actual novel. And as a teenager, I hated it. But when I came back to it as an English major many years later–after studying the English language as it developed from Old to Middle to Modern through the works of Chaucer, Shakespeare, and other early modern English writers—I was better able to appreciate the way in which Austen wrote.

      As a lover of Austen (just search my blog for “Jane Austen” if you don’t believe me), I would like nothing more than for everyone to love her books as much as I do. But life is too short to force yourself to read authors whose work you don’t enjoy just because you “should.” I went through more years of that than I wish to remember in high school and college. Why put Liz through that?

      1. Haha! Kaye and Rachel, you guys crack me up! 🙂
        I totally appreciate your desire to acquaint me with all things Austen. I’m happy to report that I’ve seen (and own most) nearly all of the versions of the movies. And I LOVE them! I think that Austen was brilliant, and her stories are so romantic! But I just don’t speak/read her language.

        But not to fear! I won’t give up. I’ll keep at it. It’s on my list, and it’s doable. But like every other work of literature, it’s all subjective! 🙂 Let’s face it. Though I can’t believe it, not everyone loves The Witch of Blackbird Pond as much as I do. 🙂

    8. stef

      wait…you don’t like mushrooms?? they’re so delicious!

    9. Ashley

      BTW I’m going to start training for the 1/2. How would you feel about having me as a house guest again?!


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