December 20, 2010

Four Zero

40. That's what I am today. It doesn't feel the way I thought it would. I'm not even slightly sad about it. I have a little secret. I'm actually kind of excited. You see I'm a girl that loves fresh starts and somehow a new decade feels sort of, well... big to me, like a great opportunity. A chance to really embrace who I am and make some of my dreams come true. I have this feeling deep inside that my 30's were just the wind up and my 40's will be the grand slam. There is so much to embrace about getting older. Don't get me wrong, there are a few things I could do without.

I have many hopes and dreams for this next decade. I look forward to watching my life unfold and become what it is meant to be. Here are 40 things, in no particular order, that I want to accomplish this year.

1. Worry less.
2. Dream big.
3. Open an Etsy store.
4. Live in the moment.
5. See the beauty in small moments.
6. Make sure the people I love know it.
7. Nag less or maybe even...not at all.
8. Find ways to be creative in every day life.
9. Take classes, lessons and workshops.
10. Eat healthier.
11. Be more playful.
12. Be less serious.
13. Buy a house.
14. Master making scones.
15. Master making cinnamon rolls.
16. If I don't love it or need it, get rid of it.
17. Don't use credit cards.
18. Pay off Sweet Hubby's car.
19. Don't compare myself to others.
20. Don't feel bad about the things I can't change.
21. Be an attentive Mom.
22. Have more date nights.
23. Be a good friend.
24. Put myself first more often.
25. Take tennis lessons.
26. Yoga classes.
27. Buy a good camera.
28. Let go of past hurts.
29. Read more books.
30. Choose joy.
31. Be more patient.
32. Go white water rafting
33. Exercise more.
34. Help others.
35. Love without reservation.
36. Go see a musical.
37. Listen.
38. Save more money.
39. Find more studio time.
40. Embrace the real me.


  1. i love your 40
    have a wonderful fantastic happy birthday sweet girl

  2. Happy Birthday Jen! I love you dear friend. You are an inspiration to all of us.... no matter our age. Make it a GREAT ONE!

  3. Well a great big Happy Birthday to you! That's quite a list you've got there and they are all great things to aspire to do.

  4. That truly is an awesome list. Mind if I borrow most of it for me? Really I like it. You seem like the kind of woman who will accomplish it ALL!! Best wishes. Hope we meet soon...I can't wait to visit your village!!

    Merry Christmas!

  5. Happy Birthday! Sounds like you have a wonderful plan. Enjoy your special day!

  6. Happy Birthday sweet Jen! Looks like you are going to be a busy gal! I love your list, very similar to one I would make! Enjoy your special day...

  7. love your list...40 is wonderful except my grey hairs multiplied quickly. i'm actually enjoying them for a while...i earned everyone of them! happy birthday.

  8. happy birthday to you!!!!

    You are going to love your 40's!! Welcome.

  9. Happy Birthday Jen Jen... I'm just going to utilize every modern electronic means of communication to tell you that today since I can't tell you in person. Have a blast of a day!

  10. Happy Birthday!!! Love your list which is a good one for anyone to aspire to!

  11. happy day, jen!
    blessing to
    you as you begin
    the adventure!

  12. Happy Birthday. What a wonderful list...I think I'll borrow the idea as I turn the big five-0 in 2011...I'll just add ten more. YIKES!!!! You are right, certainly not all things are wonderful about getting older but the sense of self, sense of freedom from comparison, sense of what truly matters...priceless!

  13. Happy Birthday! I hope that you have a wonderful day.

  14. happy birthday !

    something tells me you will accomplish many things on your list!

    I hope you have a beautiful day!



  15. Happy 40th! Embrace it! It only gets better.....looking at turning 60 in March..........amazing...where did the time go? It was an encouragement to me to read your list!

  16. Happy Birthday! I hope you have a great day full of celebration!

  17. Happy Birthday!!!
    What a great idea with your 40 things you want to accomplish.
    Thank you for sharing
    Happy Holidays!


  18. Happy 40th Jen! You are a determined young (yep, young...I'm 52 so you are young!)woman & I'm sure you will be checking things off on your list quickly & with great satisfaction! Have a wonderful day!!

  19. Oh Happy Day!!! I love your list of 40!
    happy birthday,

  20. Happy Birthday! Hope all your birthday wishes come true!


  21. Happy Birthday! It's my little girl's birthday too! Forty is going to be the start of a great decade for you -- I can tell by that great list!


  22. Happy Birthday! I love your list--what wonderful goals to have for yourself!

  23. Happiest Birthday to you!!! Love your list of 40!

  24. Happy birthday! Today is my sister's 40th birthday, too. Your goals sound great and I hope you achieve them all.

  25. Happy Day, JJ!
    Oh, and #41....visit Montana.
    Does your Etsy store take special orders, because I have an order I'd like to place and I would love nothing more than to have the honor of being your first customer.
    Convo me. (I don't really know what that means, but I see it on Etsy all the time. Just trying to talk the talk, ya know.)
    Love you to pieces!

  26. Have a great birthday!! Your list is fantastic!

  27. Happy Birthday!

    Great list....except #4. I think nagging comes with the uterus and ovary package. ha.

    I loved my 40's! Welcome to a wonderful decade. Notice the past tense. Already flew through them...xoxo, Julia

  28. I meant #7! I couldn't even remember which number was nagging!

    It's fun to be 50 something...haha.


  29. Your list is inspiring! Happy Birthday, Jen! I remember 40 - it was a long while ago - but I always had trouble with the big decade markers. 30, 40, 50...but on the other side? Freedom and exciting new beginnings.


  30. Happy Birthday!! We only get better with age!

  31. happiest of birthdays to YOU!
    love, love, LOVE your list..

  32. Happy 40th Birthday!!! What an awesome list!! (Except that #32....I would soooooo never do that cuz I am a chicken when it comes to water and big rocks. :) But, you are a brave girl and I hope you get #32 done ASAP. :) Have a lovely year!!

  33. Happy Birthday! Hope you felt extra special today! I love your list and hope you accomplish each and every one this year!

  34. Happy Birthday! That is a great list. You've inspired me to do a 'belated' list for my last b'day. Many happy returns!

  35. Great list. Hope our day was great. It was my granddaughter's (5th) too. We had quite a celebration!

  36. Happy Birthday! Great list and a great idea. Hope you had a wonderful day and enjoy your first holidays in a new decade of life!

  37. Have a beautiful birthday! Hope the next decade holds all sorts of fun lists and wonderful memories as you check them off!

  38. Happy Birthday! I'm loving reading about your village adventures!

  39. happy birthday, sweetie!

    your list is wonderful. 40 big, warms hugs to you!


  40. Happy Birthday! Your list is a good one!

  41. Happy Belated Birthday! I like your attitude! Your 40s are gonna' rock!

  42. Well Happy Birthday.. and I love all your wishes or Goals as I should adapt to some myself..
    Thanks for All Your Inspiration...
    Merry Christmas Karryann

  43. Happy,happy,Joy,JOY !

    Wishing you all the desires of your heart. The best is yet to be,take it from someone that's been there ;)(+11). Thank you Jen for your friendship and generous spirit. May you have everything Merry and Bright!
    Elise x

  44. Happy Birthday Jen! That is a great to do list. I can relate to a lot on your list :) I hope you can cross each one off this year!

  45. Enjoy your 40s---like the rest of time, they go by far too fast! Here's some help for #14 on your list...I was making these for teacher gifts on my bday # 47 on Dec 22...and have been told by English natives that they are "spot on". The recipe is from my (French Canadian) grandmothers 1941 Women's Home Companion Cookbook...

    Scotch Scones
    2 cups flour
    3 tsp baking soda
    1/2 tsp salt
    2 Tblsp sugar
    1/3 cup shortening
    2 eggs
    about 1/2 cup milk

    Sift flour, measure, add baking powder, salt and sugar, sift again.

    Cut in shortening with a pastry blender, blending it until the mixture resembles coarse corn meal.

    To slightly beaten eggs add enough milk to make 3/4 cup. Add enough of this mixture tot he flour-fat mixture to make a soft dough, stirring it in with a fork: continue stirring until all of the flour disappears.

    Turn out on lightly floured board: knead lightly for about 1/2 minute. Pat or roll our about 1/2 inch thick; cut into 4 inch squares: cut each diagonally in half to make triangles.

    Brush with milk, cream, lightly beaten egg white or egg yolk diluted with 2 tablespoons water: sprinkle with sugar. Place on a greased baking sheet and bake in a hot oven (425'F) for 12-15 minutes. Makes 10-12 scones.

    Notes from me:
    I have used white whole wheat flour for these and they have turned out fine (but not as tender and yummy as all white flour, of course.)
    For brushing the scones, I always have some of the egg-milk mixture left and just use that.
    Unless you love scrubbing baking sheets, I recommmend using parchment paper.
    If you have any experience making biscuits (or even using playdough!) judging the correct texture for the dough should be easy.

    Hope these work out for you...enjoy your 40's!

    Happy New Year and Happy December Birthday!

  46. Happy belated birthday, Jen!!
    I turned thirty last year, and I felt the same way as you do about turning 40. I love starting a new decade and want to strive to make my thirties even better than my twenties!
    I loved your list of the forty things you want to accomplish this year. I can't wait to see what the new year has in store for you and your family. :)

  47. somehow I MISSED this post! I have NO idea how! I think I wished you happy b-day on facebook and forgot to check here! Anyway, I seriously thought you were 39 this year, I thought we were a year apart! Anyway, Happy Birthday!!!
    And if you perfect 14 adn 15, I'm moving in with you, LOLOL!!! I love your list, it rocks, like YOU DO! :)


Thank you for taking the time to say hello today! I always love to hear what you have to say.