30 Things to do Before 30

30 Things to do Before I’m 30

30 Things to do Before 30

My 30th birthday is about 21 months away (September 4, 2016) and it may seem crazy to some to already be thinking about it.  I’ve always been a bit over-dramatic about age – 30 seems like such a big deal to me.  Partly due to the fact I haven’t accomplished everything I thought I would by now, I didn’t experience everything I think people in their 20s should and so on.  On the other hand, I’ve done things others only dream of or are too terrified of doing.  For that, I’m beyond grateful.  But, there are still plenty of things I’d like to do before my 30s and let’s face it…I love making lists and goals.

I’ve put together a 30 things to do before I’m 30 list – one I fully intend to fulfill completely.  I spent a long time making this list – not putting things on the list that I knew were impossible (I’m not made of money) but not taking the easy way out on any of the items either.

1. Go Skydiving

Skydiving has been on my list for a long time and I’m always saying I’m going to do it soon, but it never happens.  Not out of fear (I’m pretty stoked!), but just out of life getting in the way.  Well, I’ve got 21 months to make it happen – if I can’t manage it in that amount of time, then so be it.

2. Visit Las Vegas

I’m 28 and have never been to Vegas.  Yes, it’s true.  I will make it before 30 though.  I’m not even the big party time and I’m an introvert at heart, but Vegas is just something I feel like everyone should experience.

3. Become Fluent in Two Languages

I know what you’re thinking.  Two languages?  Why two?  Well, I’ve taken about 5 years of Spanish – the only problem is that was almost 10 years ago and while I knew a decent amount, I wasn’t even fluent then.  I’d really like to become fluent in Spanish since I started.  But, Spanish isn’t the language that really gets me all excited and so that’s why I’m choosing two.  Kaleb and I have decided to learn Norwegian – we have a fascination with Scandinavian culture and languages.  It’s a great stepping stone to the top language I want to learn too – Icelandic.

4. Get in Shape

Isn’t this always on everyone’s list for anything?  Resolution lists, goal lists, birthday lists, wedding date lists and so on.  You’ll be sure to always find  get in shape or lose weight on those lists.  And, it’s probably been on every list I’ve always made too.  I WILL be in shape by my 30th birthday though.  Not just decent shape – but what I’ve been dreaming of for a long time.

5. Publish an e-book

I’ve got a few ideas here and I hope to narrow down which one soon.  Writing and publishing an actual book is on my list as well, but an e-book is more likely by 30.

6. Take a Dance Class

I get disturbingly angry and envious when I see someone dancing well.  I’ve always wanted to dance but I’m the classic definition of “two left feet.”  My boyfriend thinks I’m fully capable and I just have to get over self-esteem issues first.  Maybe he’s right.  I vow to take dance classes though – what kind do you suggest?

7. Learn to Sew

First I need a sewing machine.  Then, I’ll learn to sew.  I also want to make hoop art – is that conisdered sewing?

8. Learn Photoshop

Not necessarily in the way people typically think of photoshop, but in the photo editing sense.  I’ve never used it though and really want to expand that side of my photography.

9. Youtube

Video blogging scares the absolute hell out of me.  I hate hearing my own voice and seeing my own face (that sounded very harsh – oops!) but I really want to tap into Youtube – it’s the last major social media I know pretty much nothing about.  Tips for me?

10. Decorate/Create a Home that Makes me Proud

I’ve had only my own places but it wasn’t until recently that I really found my own decorating style but it’s a slow process – you know, budget constraints and all.  Plus, I’ve realized I much rather thrifting and antiquing and obviously finding the perfect things takes time.

11. Plant a Garden

If I ever get out of apartment living, I want an outside garden.  Otherwise, I really want to start my own herb garden as well as have lots and lots of succulents.  Like lots.

12. Travel Route 66

I became obsessed with this road trip early this year – it runs from Chicago to Los Angeles.

13. Move Somewhere New

I love change.  Plus, we aren’t really happy with our choice in moving to Michigan – just doesn’t seem like us for some reason.

14. More Hiking Trips – Day and Multi Day

More and more hiking is going to be in my future.  I don’t really know how to put a particular number on this so I’ll just say 21 hiking trips (1 per month) whether they be day or overnight trips.  It’ll be hard for me to do any during the Michigan winter but I’ll definitely be jumping on this one as soon as spring rolls around.

15. Volunteer with Animal Rescues

I really want to get more involved with more animal rescues.  I’ve been playing around with some ideas I can contribute besides just donating food and so on.  I hope to narrow down some of those ideas in the near future.

16. Master Hand-Lettering

I have so many great ideas in my head for designs.  Now, I just need to literally put pen to paper.

17. Attend San Diego Comic Con in Full Cosplay

This won’t happen next summer so it’ll have to be 2016.  I’ve got a few ideas for costumes in my head – more to come later!

18. Create and Complete a Year Long Awesome Sauce Jar

The idea is to have a jar.  Every day you write down something great or awesome that happened.  On New Year’s Eve at the end of the year, you take out all 365 pieces and reflect back on all the awesome stuff that happened.

19. Learn to Pole Dance

No, I’m not taking up a new career.  Pole dancing is actually quite beautiful when not done in the trashy way we all expect and is a fantastic form of exercise.  Maybe I can’t dance on the floor, but maybe I can on a pole?

20. Have an Epic Vikings Photo Shoot in Iceland

Not on the typical 30 before 30 list, huh?  Just the way I like it.  We’re planning on making our own traditional Viking clothing and traveling to Iceland and shooting photos.  It’s going to be the best thing ever.

21. Do 30 Random Acts of Kindness

Nothing like celebrating my birthday by helping others.  I love random acts of kindness – now to figure out what I want to do.

22. Complete 365 Photo Challenge

I’m starting this at the beginning of the year – watch for a post next week on the details!

23.  Complete the Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge

This might be the most insane thing I’m doing yet.  I love reading and I read, a lot.  I read fast.  But, 339 books in 21 months is a lot.  I wanted to do something different than just a specific number of books.  Gilmore Girls is one of my favorite shows ever and always will be for many reasons.  The literary references being one of them.  Rory is seen reading 339 books over the course of 7 seasons – and they aren’t just simple books either.  Take a peak at the list here.

24. Watch IMDB’s 250 Top Movies

I’ve always claimed to be a film fanatic.  I know a great deal about movies and lots of people come to me with questions.  But, I realized just how many films I have not seen.  It’s sad and pathetic.  I figure IMDB’s 250 Top Movies list is a great place to start.

25. Make and Bury a Timecapsule

I haven’t decided if I want to make it something I will open later in life or leave it for some random person to find.  What do you think?

26. Research My Genealogy

I know a lot about my Mom’s side mainly from my Mom and Grandma taking the initiative and researching but I don’t know much about my Dad’s side.  I’d love to do the full research on my own genealogy and then plan future travels based around them!

27.  Find my Own Style 

I’ve never had a consistent fashion style.  I finally feel like I have my own style (in my head), now my head and my wallet need to get on the same level.

28.  Master Time Management

I’m a perfectionist procrastinator with a touch of ADHD.  This means I get distracted a lot.  Like right now, this isn’t even my writing time I’ve allotted myself.  I’m supposed to be doing something else right now.  Get my point?

29.  Have my Photography Published

Somewhere, anywhere.  This is the one I was most terrified to put on the list.  The one I’m most scared of not accomplishing.

30.  Attend Burning Man

Last, but not least.  Burning Man 2016 actually falls ON MY 30TH BIRTHDAY.  If that’s not a sign, I don’t know what is.  The perfect end to my 20s and the perfect beginning to my 30s.

So, what do y’all think of my list?  Think it’s possibly or crazy?  What would you add?

D E B U T  S I N G L E



Lover of photography, abandoned buildings, books, my bearded boyfriend and puppies. Obsessed with hippos, velociraptors and thrift stores. Pure hate for mustard and pickles.

'30 Things to do Before I’m 30' have 18 comments

  1. December 14, 2014 @ 7:42 PM aimee fauci

    Oh wow that is a serious list! I think I’ve only done 2 or 3 of these and I’m between 30 and 40. I’m just glad I survived.

  2. December 14, 2014 @ 8:04 PM Lara

    WOW! Ashley we are so alike! I’m 27 right now and I have a mental list of things I want to do before 30 and a lot of them are on your list. I have done a few things on your list. Vegas @ 22, I grew up sewing, crocheting, knitting etc (mom and grandma are crafters), my dad has a garden nursery for a business so I naturally have a garden lol, #28 sums me up. 26, 19, 15, I’m doing 10 right now, working on number 5 (protein bars), and number 4-I will be hosting a kick start challenge of sort (I’m a dietitian and personal trainer) at the beginning of the year so if it is something you are interested check out my blog closer to NYE 🙂

  3. December 15, 2014 @ 12:14 AM Natalie

    Sweet I made a 30 things before 30 post too!! Except you have longer time frame than me, I waited too long to post mine. I’ll be 30 on Jan 30 2016! However I was able to knock one thing off the list, so I guess that’s a good thing. I’m pretty good with photoshop, if you ever need help with something. Just let me know.. As well as working out.. a great place to start even, if you can’ t make it to a gym. YouTube videos.. There’s TON of workout videos, dances, etc etc.. I like to do my cardio that way..

  4. December 15, 2014 @ 5:01 AM Sarah

    I love this list! Not generic at all! I’m almost 27, so I thought the big 30 before 30 list was cutting it close for me, but maybe not!

    You’ll definitely need to be in shape for the pole dancing class! (I’ve heard they’re difficult!) Id love to try Vegas before I’m 30, too.

  5. December 15, 2014 @ 5:05 AM Kimberly Bolden

    This looks like a great list. I turned 30 this past July and I would tell you the it creeps up on you so make the most of the next 2 years.

  6. December 15, 2014 @ 7:37 AM Ashley ~ 3 Little Greenwoods

    Love this list! #6, 7 and 28 are at the top of my must do list!
    ~ Ashley

  7. December 15, 2014 @ 9:13 AM Jennifer Corter

    I love this list! Definitely the last one! Burning Man would definitely be a kickass way to kick off your 30’s!

  8. December 15, 2014 @ 9:27 AM Susan Mahlburg

    Love this list! I turn 30 on Sept 14, 2016 – pretty close to you!

  9. December 15, 2014 @ 11:23 AM Devon

    I love your list! I would love to complete some of the items on your list as well. However, 30 has passed for me 🙁

  10. December 15, 2014 @ 12:19 PM Earl-Leigh

    This is a great list! I would love to learn how to hand letter!

  11. December 15, 2014 @ 8:12 PM Lacey White

    I love this idea, i have 5 years till I am 30 ( i better start now!) I love it, youre super creative.

    love reading your blog!

  12. December 15, 2014 @ 9:37 PM Lauren

    This list is awesome! I need to do all of these things! Only 5 more years to go!

  13. December 16, 2014 @ 7:11 AM Jennifer

    Or when in your 40’s! 🙂

  14. December 18, 2014 @ 12:15 PM sas0327@gmail.com

    You’ve inspired me! I’m writing this on my post Ideas (with a credit link of course 😉 ) ! Because I too will soon be approaching 30. Great post!

  15. January 1, 2015 @ 10:04 AM Kate

    #18 is something I’ve been wanting to do for several years. Maybe this will be the year I do it!

  16. January 13, 2015 @ 2:42 PM Kathryn Macaluso

    What an inspiring list!

  17. October 1, 2016 @ 6:41 AM McGregory

    Before 30 is time to learn, learn just about everthing and enjoy what life has to offer.

  18. July 13, 2017 @ 8:06 AM Anne-Marie B.

    Where was this list when I was creating mine? We’ve got a lot of the same ideas, but you have some I should have put down… My 30th birthday is now about a month away, and I’ve barely done half the things on my list, which is pretty disappointing. I should have known I was being too ambitious. Did you end up crossing everything off your list before your 30th?

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©The Dauntless Dreamer 2014