30 before 30 – a look back

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So. That’s it. I’ve hit 30. My life is over!

Only kidding.

It does mean that my “30-before-30” is over. So this is a quick recap of what I’ve managed to get done…and what I didn’t quite manage.


1. Get healthy – STARTED! I’d like to say I’ve done this, but I think this is an ongoing “stay healthy”. My weight has fluctuated a lot over the last 15 months. I think I’m in a better place now – I’m better with portion controls, better with knowing what to put in my mouth (even if I don’t always follow it!) and better about exercise. I’m not sure I should’ve put this up here as something to “get done”. It’s more of a “this is what I’ll be doing for the rest of my life”. Don’t want to cross it off because I haven’t reached my “goal” weight, but I’m certainly healthier than I was 15 months ago.

2. Finish my degree – COMPLETED! Holy shit, it’s actually done. I honestly didn’t think I’d do it. But I did. I made it out the other side. As of 4th July, 2014 I completed all course work for my degree. Graduated on 23rd July, even went to the fancy ceremony! I also ended up with a Microsoft certification (my final 12 credit points) along with my degree. After nearly 10 years of hard slog, I can say I now have a Bachelor of Information Technology, and not a scrap of debt for it either.

3. Get my motorcycle license – STARTED! I’ve got my learners. I’ve been pillioning on the back of husband’s bike for a few months now. I am still keen to get my license (perhaps even this year) but putting a deadline on it isn’t a good idea. I want to be comfortable and, most of all, I want to be safe on a motorcycle. So this sadly didn’t get done – but I’m still working towards it!

4. Visit Europe – COMPLETED! This was fantastic. Probably the most amazing thing I’ve ever done in my life, to date. We had such an amazing time, created so many awesome memories. I still miss the place. We still want to go back. If you want more details on our trip, go read the 10+ blog posts I did on my ‘Scandinavian Awesomeness’!

5. Complete a decent size knitting project – STARTED! I’m *SO* close. I’m in the process of making an extremely long and beautiful shawl/scarf/wrap. It’s black (of course) and made from a milk fibre. It’s 100 stitches wide and I’m aiming to have it as long as my body, so it’s a very long ongoing project. I didn’t get it down in the time frame I wanted, because I really enjoy doing it – and rushing it would feel like cheating (also leave me open to making mistakes). So I’m going to keep going, keep slogging at it and maybe it’ll be done for winter this year!

6. Have a go at Roller Derby – NOT DONE 🙁 This is something I didn’t do that I do regret. But it’s something I’m still keen to try. I now have some amazing skates (even if they aren’t derby skates) to give it a go on 😛

7. Go camping at least once – NOT DONE 🙁 Another one we didn’t do. More because neither of us are the “camping” type. So I’m scrapping this. We’re not campers. We’re cabin people. We like electricity and running water and furniture…and high-speed internet!

8. Go on a long-ass road trip – COMPLETED! Based on the fact that we did over 5500km’s while we were trekking all around Scandinavia, I’m calling this one as well. It was amazing, it was fun and it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Don’t think we’ll get a chance to do it again! Sure, we’ll probably go for a trek through North Queensland (now that we have a decent car!) but we probably won’t get the chance to do a 5500km journey ever again.

9. Volunteer for something – COMPLETED! I’ve been told this is done, by many people. Volunteered for SAGE-AU for the better part of 7 years on their national committee, under various different roles. Highly recommend others volunteer for organisations like this, it does make you a better person! I’m hoping to be able to put my hand up to volunteer for something else in the future – possibly be a mentor to other girls who are interested in IT!

10. Learn how to surf – NOT DONE 🙁 This just plain didn’t get done. I’d seriously love to, but it’s hard to get time at the beach when your other half hates the sun!

11. Become a better cook – COMPLETED! I think I have managed this one…sort of. I do still have my staples that I rely on (bolognaise, anyone?) but I have been able to experiment with dishes, try some new curries and Asian dishes, spice up my roasts, try new vegetables and new ways of cooking everything in general. I should say that most of my experiments and trying this out has come in the form of new deserts and sweets (nutella croissants are amazingly simple!).

12. Start (& finish!) a craft project – STARTED! I’ve started it! I really have. I’ve never done a big craft project before, and this one is important and sentimental, so I don’t want to rush it. It’s the scrap book of our holiday, including photos and momentos from our trip. I’m working away at it (very slowly) so that it will be something we can look at and remember the times we had!

13. Keep my blog updated with a new post at least once every two weeks – COMPLETED! I actually did this. Looking back, I’ve managed 44 blog posts in that time, exceeding the “once every two weeks” limit. I’m planning on continuing in this trend, simply because I enjoy writing and I enjoy adding information to this blog for others to read!

14. Convince my brother and (soon to be) sister-in-law to let me help plan their wedding – NOT DONE 🙁 Not much to say here. This was called off. Sad really. Think my brother will be better off for it though. I’m hoping to publish my Wedding To-Do list at some point to help others, so maybe that counts.

15. Read “The Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit” – COMPLETED! I’ve read them, they were good, but as someone who likes fast paced Tolkien certainly isn’t. I can also see why some sections were removed from the movies, though it’s sad certain scenes were cut! Have to say, did fall asleep while reading a few times – he does know how to drag things out. And my speed reading meant that skimming pages became…common.

16. Run a 5K fun-run – NOT DONE 🙁 Didn’t get to that this year. Maybe this year will be the year I go and do it. Considering we walk nearly 5km every night, this shouldn’t really be an issue!

17. Grow plants…and keep them alive! – COMPLETED! I can confidently say I’ve done this. My herb garden is going *beautifully*. I have some of the finest mint ever. Summer had me with fresh mint and basil, as well as thyme, sage and coriander (until it went to seed). I’m also looking after a number of gorgeous gerberas. My brown thumb has finally been broken!

18. Research my family – NOT DONE 🙁 This was a bit of a wishlist item, because our families are somewhat confusing and (it turns out) while there is some information on parts of our family, trying to track it down can be a bit tricky. Still want to do this, but think it’ll require a bit more time than just 12 months!

19. Make and decorate a cake for someone – COMPLETED! So chuffed. Only managed to scrape this one in by the skin of my damn teeth! Mum’s birthday is three days before mine, and for her birthday this year, I baked a beautiful double layer chocolate sponge, filled with and topped with chocolate buttercream, then decorated with KitKat’s & Maltesers. It looked AMAZING! Don’t believe me? Check it out in all it’s glory here!

20. Get a tattoo – NOT DONE 🙁 But still on the cards! Rather than rushing into it, I’ve been mulling over what I want to get done. I do have an idea, and I am comfortable with it. Thinking of getting it done as a semi-permanent, just to see how I go to start with! But this *will* happen!

21. Get professional photos taken – NOT DONE 🙁 Don’t think either Alex or I are in a place to get these done yet. I’m hoping that once we’re both “happier” with how we look (HA!), we’ll look at getting this done so that we’ve got some lovely photos of us!

22. Do a proper clean out of our house – COMPLETED! This is finally done. Easter extra-long weekend 2014, we did this. Threw out about 30% of our stuff and did 6 trips to our local waste facility to shift it all. Felt AMAZING! After the storms we got in early 2015 though, looks like we’ll be doing another “mini” clean out, just to get rid of things that were damaged.

23. Learn how to apply make-up properly – STARTED! So I think this is going to be ongoing…because make-up isn’t something I’m good at normally (I prefer none, to be honest) so I’m still learning and will keep learning. I’m now comfortable with putting on my daily make-up for work, based off videos and tutorials I’ve watched. I’ve also splurged on some slightly expensive make-up which has made a HUGE difference – surprisingly cost does equal better quality. Who knew?! Next step will be going out make-up.

24. Learn how to meditate – COMPLETED! Got myself an app called HeadSpace. I don’t know where I’d be without this thing. Take 10 minutes out of your day, every day, and give it a try. You’ll thank me!

25. Visit Australia Zoo – COMPLETED! Visited for my birthday in 2014 🙂

26. Visit the library and check-out some books from authors I’ve never read – NOT DONE 🙁 Haven’t managed to do this yet, even though the library is so damn close. Maybe when I take some leave later this year, I’ll make the time! There’s also the fact that I now read almost all my books on my Kobo – so maybe this needs to be changed to “Download some books from some unknown authors” instead 😛

27. Go and watch fireworks – COMPLETED! This was actually SURPRISE fireworks. I got flashy fireworks UP CLOSE as part of Avenged Sevenfold’s Soundwave Set! Way *WAY* more fun to be that close to fireworks than simply watching it from afar!

28. Wake up early enough and watch the sun rise – COMPLETED! Got to sit on my veranda before heading for a run early on 11th March, 2014. Was beautiful!

29. Submit a paper to a technical conference – NOT DONE 🙁 This is a bit sad. This is a bit to do with my own head and not feeling like I have anything to contribute (anything I’d want to contribute has already been said!) so I’m not sure what I’d want to talk about…or if anyone would even want to hear *me* talk. So this got shelved. Maybe when I’ve finally defeated my imposter-syndrome-demon I’ll be able to move ahead with this.

30. Organise my life – COMPLETED! This is done. I’m kind of chuffed about it really. Our finances are in order (and we’re making steps to improve them), our house is organised (well, I can find most things, and that’s a start) and I feel like I’m on-top of things for the first time in a very long time. Should give a shout-out to Todoist for that, as it’s helped me keep on top of everything I’ve needed to do!

So of my 30 – 15 completed, 5 started & 10 not done.  So two-thirds either completed or started – ’tis better than having done nothing 🙂


I’m not sure I’d do another one of these, to be honest (unless it was a bucketlist). I feel that putting a timeline on some of these things was a bit silly – getting my motorcycle license for example. Putting extra pressure on something that (for me) is already pretty stressy just makes it worse.

In the flip side, I enjoyed certain tasks – the blog posting thing spurred me to write more and I’ve really enjoyed it. I’m not going to stop, just because the 30-before-30 is over. Aim is to keep going at the current rate of roughly one post every 2 weeks.

I’m not going to give up on those things that I didn’t get done – I still want to do them…just don’t think I’ll put a timeframe on them!

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