Leaving the 20's Behind

Jan 7, 2015

I am 30 years old today.

I have to admit, I'm sad to leave 29 behind. It was one of the best years of my life: we bought our first home, I gave birth to our fourth son, and I saw the other side of the world. It's going to be a hard year to beat, that's for sure.

However, since most of my friends are already in their 30's, I feel like I've been waiting a long time to get here, so there's a part of me that's excited to finally join the club. I guess I just always thought I'd feel more like an adult by the time I hit 30. I still feel like something of an imposter.

We just got back from Colorado last night, so I told Mike we should hold off celebrating for a few days, just so we have a chance to catch up with all our work and settle back into a routine. It is actually very freeing to have zero expectations for the day.

A year ago, I had grand hopes of doing a "30 things before 30" countdown, but it never materialized. So in place of that, here are 30 things about me that you may or may not know:

1. If I could only choose one dessert for the next 30 years, it wouldn't even be a difficult choice: chocolate chip cookies.

2. I know open-floor plans are all the rage these days, but I prefer our closed-in kitchen. I like it that if friends drop by unexpectedly, they can only see into the living, which usually is not too much of a disaster.

3. Aside from the three months we were house-sitting, we've never owned a dishwasher during our ten years of marriage. I think washing dishes is one of the most relaxing, therapeutic things I can do (and it's great for listening to audiobooks!).

4. I always make my bed. Even when the rest of my bedroom is an eye-sore, at least my bed it made.

5. If you see me with mascara on, you know it's Sunday or a special occasion.

6. One of my favorite possessions is my portable heater.

7. I'm hesitant to admit it, but I dogear books.

8. My favorite number is seven, and my favorite color is red.

9. My bachelor's degree is in organ performance (a major I absolutely loved), but if I ever go back to school for my master's, it won't be in music.

10. I don't like animals, but I don't resent you if you do.

11. My favorite season is spring because it closes the door on winter.

12. I am afraid of heights.

13. I don't like making (or going to) dental, eye, or hair appointments.

14. I think January is the dreariest month, and I'm disappointed every year that my birthday is in it.

15. I don't remember getting in trouble too often when I was a child, but one time when we were on vacation, I was being a sassy little brat, so my parents told me I could either have a spanking or not go swimming. (I took the spanking.)

16. I was homeschooled from third grade through high school.

17. One of the hardest things for me about winter is the dark.

18. I've wanted to learn to knit for 20 years.

19. One of my favorite ways to spend an evening is to go on a walk around the neighborhood and run into lots of friends.

20. I don't like filling up the car with gas and only do it if I'm actually worried I'll run out before Mike can fill it up.

21. When I was a teenager, I went to my piano lesson one time with long, purple nails. My piano teach told me I could either be a manicurist or a pianist. I chose pianist.

22. I am rather obsessed with making sure the doors are locked. And with washing my hands.

23. I wish I was better at decorating, cooking, baking, cleaning, gardening, and organizing.

24. I think falling snow is one of the prettiest things in this world. And week-old snow is one of the ugliest.

25. When I have to give an "interesting" fact about myself, I tell people that I played the bell tower at BYU.

26. I look much more like my dad than my mom.

27. Almost nothing makes me more content than a clean house.

28. I watch very little TV--maybe an hour a week.

29. I would wear flip-flops every day if I could. I've never worn more than a 2-inch heel. I think ankle boots are ugly (but especially when worn with a dress).

30. I love porches and porch swings, and now I have both.

One of the things I love the most about blogging is connecting with the people who read my posts. So in light of that, it would make me so happy to hear from you today. Leave a comment, or, if it's easier, send a quick email: sunlitpages [at] gmail [dot] com. It doesn't have to be anything long or witty or fancy. Just "hey, I read your blog" would be lovely. In fact, it would make this 30-year-old super extra happy.

60 comments:

  1. Happy birthday, Amy! I think you'll enjoy your 30s - I found it to be the most energetic and productive time of my life!

    (ps: I've only kept one fortune from a fortune cookie. It says, "Read in order to live.")

    Kristal Shepherd

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    1. That's great to hear! (And what a perfect fortune; I would have kept it too!)

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  2. Happy Birthday! I've enjoyed following your blog the past few months after a shout out from Melthoughts. I hope you have a wonderful day (even being a weekday in January!) and receive warm chocolate chip cookies and something new to read. And as a gift to you, how about a few book recs since there's no limit to Goodreads to-read lists? Ha!

    Global Mom by Melissa Dalton-Bradford (might be my favorite read of 2014--definitely in the top 5--non-fiction memoir from LDS mom about living abroad but also about home and the people we love, lyrical writing, heartbreaking final third that had me in tears but also want to have better family relationships)

    One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp (beautifully written non-fiction about author's work on cultivating gratitude while counting everyday gifts/blessings)

    Still Alice by Lisa Genova (fiction about Harvard professor in her 50's who is diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's...fascinating and heartbreaking)

    I saw the Gene Stratton Porter recs on your goals post; her book Laddie is a family favorite. We homeschooled our boys for 5 years and would have loved Laddie regardless but the views about education and learning at home were a bonus.

    Emily

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    1. Yay! Book recommendations! One of my favorite gifts! :-)

      Someone in my education group mentioned Global Mom a few months ago, and it sounds fascinating!

      I read Still Alice several years ago (before I started this blog), and it is just as you described. I was convinced I had Alzheimer's after reading it. :-)

      I can't wait to look into One Thousand Gifts and Laddie. Thanks so much for the thoughtful comment!

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    2. Ooh! I bought Laddie 2 years ago but haven't gotten around to it because I have such a hard time making it through print books these days. So I decided to check and it's free on the kindle. Bumping it to the top of my to read list! Thanks.

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  3. Happy birthday, Amy! I always thought I would feel more grown up by now, too. If it makes you feel any better, I always think of January as a new $20 bill- cool and crisp and full of possibilities. :)

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    1. I definitely need to adopt your perspective, Sybil!

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  4. Happy Birthday! Other than the doing dishes part (which I wish I could love) I see why we are kindred spirits. Welcome to the 30s club! We've been waiting for your arrival! Hope it is relaxing and fun and a bit warmer outside today in honor of you! :)

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    1. Thanks so much, Kathy! It was a pretty nice day (aside from the yucky air)--I was even outside without a coat on!!!

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  5. I read you blog! Love it! Happy birthday Amy! I want to learn to knit too. It would be another good way to listen to audio books. :-)

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  6. Long purple nails! I don’t remember that. And how in the world did I ever let you go with long, purple nails?

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    1. They weren't obnoxiously long, but long enough to click on the keys. I don't know why I even wanted to try and play with them that long.

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  7. I knew I liked you. It's fun to read the 30 facts about you and see how much we have in common. Hope you have a very happy birthday! I think we need to get together and eat chocolate chip cookies somewhere warm and light, while we wear sandals or flip flops and dream of Spring :)

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    1. Yes, that sounds heavenly! Thanks again for the warm chocolate chip cookies. What a delightful way to end the day!

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  8. Love portable heaters and your blog! Happy Birthday!

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  9. Happy b-day, Amy! Love the post. I've enjoyed getting to know you through your blog this past year or so. I have no advice for your 30s other than "Be yourself. Everyone else is taken."--Oscar Wilde (or as Gretchen Rubin would say, "Be Gretchen."). I wish someone had given me that quote when I turned 30!!

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    1. Haha, great advice! (I also loved Gretchen's thoughts about embracing who you are.)

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  10. Well, I recently (in the last month or so?) started reading your blog and I really do like it. :) I loved reading this post. "I guess I just always thought I'd feel more like an adult by the time I hit 30. I still feel like something of an imposter." <---DITTO! I'll be 35 this year and I still feel 22...ish. ;) I think part of the reason is that my husband and I met when we were both very young (18 and 19 - I'm older) so because we were young *together* I still feel young? Does that make sense? In my head it does. :P

    I'm a little jealous that you're only 30 and have 4 kids. :) I wish we would've started sooner with marriage and a family. (it took a while to get our heads on straight :/ ) The Lord worked it all out though!

    I would LOVE a portable heater. I hate the cold. And guess where I live? WISCONSIN. The high for this week is, like, 14 degrees. Yuck. I do have a rice bag that I heat up every night that I bring to be with me to keep my toes warm, so I guess that sort of counts.

    Nothing makes *me* more content but a clean house, but I gotta tell ya--I can't remember when that last was! HA!

    It was nice getting to know you a little better--this list is fun!

    I should tell you, we received I Am Sam from the library and I'm looking forward to reading it to my girls.

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    1. Hmmm, I also met my husband when I was 19 (he was 21), so maybe that's why I can't quite grasp the reality that I'm now 30! :-)

      A portable heater will change your life!

      And yes, although I love a clean house, it's a very rare occurrence, so I usually settle for one room--that way, I at least have one place I can go that makes me feel peaceful. :-)

      I hope you enjoy the book about Sam!

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  11. I'm so glad it's a beautiful sunny day on your January birthday! Hope it's a happy one!

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  12. I love your blog!! Happy Birthday!! I wish you a wonderful year! I hope you do learn to knit. I enjoy it and hope to do it more.
    Cherie Maxfield

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  13. Happy Birthday, Amy! I I am especially with you on #s 10, 13, and 28 :-). Wishing you a year full of joy.

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  14. Happy birthday!!! I hope it is a good one!

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  15. Happy Birthday Amy - it was fun to read this list.

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  16. Happy Birthday!!! This was a fun list. I totally want a porch swing, although I might settle for an actual porch. Also, the 40s are good too. :)

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    1. Glad to know there are good things to come!

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  17. Happy birthday. I still remember the first day we chatted in the park and I realized you were almost a decade younger than me. I felt a little old at first but mostly it reinforced my belief that age is just a number and shared experience and thoughtful intelligence are far better predictors of friendship than a number could ever be. Grateful to be the recipient of your wisdom, well-earned as it is by your engagement with life regardless of how long you have been doing it! Hope you had a wonderful day full of things you love even if you weren't officially "celebrating".

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    1. Oh Jen, that is such a good way to put it! And I'm grateful that you have always treated me like we are the same age instead of like the naive, inexperienced person I often feel like! So grateful for your friendship!

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  18. I just came across your blog from your guest post. I am impressed with the 64 books, because last year my goal was 32 books and I read 11!!!! That is abysmal! So this year, instead of scaling back, I INCREASED my goal to 40 and am carving out more time for reading in my day. With a 2 year old (currently reading "Moosey Moose") and a 5 year old (currently having me read to her a 1/2 dozen Rainbow Fairy books), it is challenging to say the least. But I am committed!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by and commenting! Good luck with your goal--I know it can be so hard to find the time with kiddos. I hope you have a great year of reading!

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  19. Happy entry to the 30s! So far they are treating me well, and I think you'll like them. I hate January too and feel the same way about my birthday :) Out of all the months I could have been born...

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    1. I know! That's exactly what I always think--any month but January!!!

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  20. Happy Birthday, Amy! Your blog post notifications always show up in my inbox one day late, so I apologize for missing the actual day. I hope it was wonderful! I really enjoyed reading your list of 30 things about you - and I especially liked the one about wishing you were better at decorating, cooking, baking, cleaning, gardening, and organizing because I'm right there with you! And I have always wanted a porch swing! I know how you feel about January - it's not my favorite month either - but it's often very beautiful in its bright, fierce coldness, and at least you can look at it as a new beginning in more ways than one. Unlike November which doesn't have too many saving graces :) I'm very lucky - I have a spring birthday :) Hope your day was happy and the coming year is filled with all good things!

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    1. Thank you so much, Susanna! Very jealous of your spring birthday. My husband's birthday is in April, and I'm always envious of him as well. :-)

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  21. Happy Birthday! I hope that your thirties are wonderful and full of clean houses, chocolate chip cookies, great books, and wonderful friends! I look forward to reading more of your posts and Congratulations!! on also writing for What Do We Do All Day? That's exciting! I love your blog and I am sending you lots of good wishes!

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    1. Thanks so much for your very kind thoughts!

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  22. Happy Birthday (a day late)! Hope you had a wonderful day. This list was fun, I enjoyed getting to know you better. I must admit, I hate flip-flops and wear 3-inch heels and ankle boots with dresses every Sunday to church. I hope we can still be friends :) Although, I'm right there with you on the chocolate chip cookies.

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    1. Haha, yes of course we can still be friends. But seriously--how can you not like flip-flops?! :-)

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  23. Happy Birthday! You don't like going to hair appointments? I always think of it as something of a spa hour (which helped me stomach the super high prices in DC). That's really cool that you got to play the bells in the bell tower!

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    1. It's a combination of the cost, not having a place/stylist I love, and the inevitable small talk that's forced upon me. :-)

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  24. I hate hair appointments too. Happy birthday!

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  25. I enjoyed reading this! And for #20, I think I've filled my car with gas about 5 times in my life. To be fair, you can't pump your own gas in our state, but I will beg my husband to do it when we drive out of state--and I don't always win that argument!

    Happy birthday!

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  26. Happy Birthday! I have enjoyed getting to know you over the past several months that I've been reading your blog. I feel like we could be friends in real life, if we lived close. :)

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    1. Linnae - I definitely think we would be friends. I've really enjoyed your thoughtful comments and great recommendations over the last few months. If you ever visit Utah, let's meet!

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  27. Glad you got home save. Have you read the book about the miners in Chile. I have not but I have heard it is goodl

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    1. I haven't! Do you remember the title of it?

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  28. I'm not sure if my previous comment posted, so I'll try again. :) I'm a week late adding to your birthday wishes, but I still wanted to tell you Happy Birthday! I am the blog fan that talked with you (er, accosted you) one night at the Millcreek Library a few months ago. It was fun to read these facts about you. I'm with you on numbers 23 and 27. Keep up the reading! (And if this comment is showing up twice, please delete one!)

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    1. Kim - sorry that your first comment was eaten! Thanks for trying again! Of course I remember you - it was so fun to meet you at the library, and I'm so glad you stopped and introduced yourself. Thanks for the birthday wishes, and hopefully we'll bump into each other again sometime soon!

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  29. Happy belated birthday! I just turned 30 a few months ago and it's wonderful so far! I hate eye and dental appts, but I love hair appointments. For some reason they are so relaxing! Enjoy your 30s, I hope they are even better than your 20s!

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