Thirty Things before Thirty Years


In two short months, I turn 30.

I turn 30.  I turn 30.  I turn 30.  I turn 30!

If you’re curious; no, I’m not freaking out.  There’s nothing to freak out about.  I killed it in my twenties.  I did college.  I made myself a baker.  I started a business.  I dated a generous handful of darling gentlemen.  I did numerous cartwheels.  I enjoyed my fair share of bourbon.  I learned how to make homemade ranch dressing.  I fell in love with a kitten.  I ate plenty of raw cookie dough.  And!  I’ve got a whole two months to fill with the reckless shenanigans of a 20-something.

The only sad things about turning 30 is that I might feel too old watching The Real World… I won’t be able to relate to to anyone on The Jersey Shore… Teen Mom will infuriate me, and I’ll have missed my opportunity to do a keg stand (but really, who wants to drink beer upside down anyway!?  not cute).  It looks like MTV will be completely out of the question.  I’ll probably come to embrace shows like Hoarders, I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant and, Toddlers and Tiaras.   Sigh.  Whatevs.

Can I still say ‘Whatevs’ when I turn 30?  Prob not.

Listen… I’m going on and on and on about 30-ness because I have a project to complete in my last two months of 29.  I need your help.

I want to complete 30 things before I turn 30.  I’ve got a list working, but I’m a little stumped.  That’s where you come in.  Help me fill this list.  I’m counting on you… I got a lot of work to do!


Thirty Things before Thirty Years

Eat 1 giant birthday hot dog with sauerkraut, spicy mustard, and beer.

Send flowers to 2 friends.

Buy 3 strangers their morning coffee.

Take 4 new people to church on Sunday.

Make 5 new friends.

Mail 6 hand-written letters.

Compliment 7 strangers.

Leave 8 lucky quarters on the ground.

Send 9 of my favorite books to 9 of my favorite people.

10?  11?


Give away 12 fresh cupcakes.

Send 13 postcards to 13 blog readers.

Tip my waitress $14 above average.

Leave 15 nice comments on 15 other blogs.

Make (at least) 16 coffee ice cream cream puffs.


Enjoy 17 beach sunsets.

18,19,20,21,22,23… whatcha got for me?

Take and develop 24 pictures… with film .


Take 26 yoga classes.

Clean my closet and give away 27 things.


You see the pattern here, right?  I need, for example, to find 18 things to do.  I need to think of 19 gifts to give… I need to make 20 of something.  Are you picking up what I’m putting down?

I need your ideas.  Lay em on me!

Ps.  I heart you.  Major.

664 thoughts on “Thirty Things before Thirty Years

  1. I turned 30 two weeks ago and started making a list last year, but only got to 7… and I feel ashamed as yours are so altruistic rather than self centred! One of my 30 by 30 is to read 30 books in the year I am 30… and a list of wonderful things I dreamt about eating all my life.

    Also, how about learn something new this year? Dance? I started muay thai classes.

    Would love to see your list, I hope I get to complete my as I go along!

  2. I’m turning 30 in July. Now you’re putting a lot of preassure on me, I hadn’t thought of doing anything special!!! Well, except for buying myself a KA with an extra bowl, the pasta accessory and the ice-cream bowl. And a Le Creuset purple skillet. And, and, and… I know these things are big and expensive but… why don’t you give to yourself 30 nice little presents? Or 25. Or maybe 15. But I still think 30 would rock. You deserve it! Start buying them from now, some little things you see here and there, wrap them all nicely, put them in a bag and open them all on your birthday. I may actually do that for myself :)

  3. Free hugs, random acts of kindness? pretend you’re a tourist in your own city for X hours. defuse X number of arguments. Forgive yourself for X things that you’ve done in the past that you’re not proud of. Write X poems (including a limerick!). Turn off your TV and your computer for X hours. Volunteer for X hours. Throw X seed bombs (website here: Make X people smile directly at me in one day.

    This is fun! do you still need more?

  4. 28 postcards to 28 people that you wish you were closer with. Perfect because postcard stamps are 28 cents each!

    Good luck, Joy. You’re my favorite!

  5. Cool take on the 30 before 30 Joy!
    What about something to do with reading. Maybe not whole books necessarily (but you could!), but something like news articles or poems?
    Maybe in the spirit of Camels & Chocolate’s suggestion to go places you could keep it local and go to places you haven’t been before such as local attractions, restaurants, shops, whatever!

  6. Hi! I recently found your blog, and love everything about it (writing, photos, style). It’s too bad that 12 and 24 are already taken or I would have suggested buying someone a dozen or two dozen roses. How about you pick a number and buy someone a bouquet of that many flowers?

  7. Ride 30 miles – of COURSE! GEEZ! And then tell me all about it. Biking. Bikes. BIKE. Just do it. Go ride your bike and 30 will be a tailwind. May you always have a tail wind.

  8. Ooh this is a hard one. I was going to say “Visit 18 new cities/states/countries,” but you hardly have enough time for that!

    How about “Try 18 new ice cream flavors?” That also might be tough (though doable!).

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