Friday, May 21, 2010

My "NEW" Five Year Plan (revised from 10-year plan)

So I have been thinking a lot lately about my “10 Year Plan”, I have decided that revisions must be made. I have been reading a lot lately about how people who have goals written down and are more likely to be actively working towards them, but that you should revisit and revise your goals at least twice a year. Plus, I have decided that 10 years is just too long, I am anxious to do these things now, so I have made this into “My 5-Year Plan”. Once a few things are done and crossed off my list I will figure out what I want to put on the list so that it is always sitting between 10 - 15 things.

So I have been asking myself – what is it that I really want to do? What is important to me verses just what I would like to do? I would love to travel the whole world, but is there one or two places that I just NEED to see? What are some of the experiences that I just really want to have? Life long learning is important to me, so what do I really want to learn?

I have been working on my 10-Year Plan since I made it, but to be honest, I have been working more towards some goals then others – for example, a smart monkey could still beat me at chess, but on the other hand, I have read 5 classic books.

So I have re-looked at my goals with these questions in mind and have chosen 15 things that I really want to do.

1. Read 20 classics – I have picked out 25 that I am choosing between, I have already finished the first 5

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
Emma by Jane Austen
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Jane Ere by Charlotte Bronte
Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
Persuasion by Jane Austen
Villette by Charlotte Brontë
Shirley by Charlotte Bronte
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee
Dracula by Bram Stoker
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Montgomery

2. Learn another language

I have decided that knowing more than English is important to me. I took French from Grades 4 to 10 in school, but I hated it and have retained very little. I still have not decided if I want to learn French or Spanish, but I am leaning towards Spanish first, and then maybe trying to pick up some French again. I want to be able to speak it well enough that if in a country that is French/Spanish speaking I could do basic things like order dinner, find a bathroom, get basic directions…that sort of thing.

3. Learn Sign language

This is something that I have wanted for several years now, so I don’t know why I haven’t done it before now! I have started this and can count to 20, sign the alphabet, sign 25 or so words consistently (but am familiar with 50 or so more words), but I can sign only a few phrases consistently. I am going to be practicing all summer.

4. Learn my geography

This is still on the list and it is important to me – I feel foolish and somewhat ignorant when I do not know where things are. I will be honest, most of the time I couldn’t even guess where places approximately are. I am bad, very, very bad!

5. Learn to play chess – or should I say learn to play chess well! This is still on the list.

6. Run a marathon

Still on the list - I don’t have any dreams of becoming a “marathon runner”, that is beyond me and doesn’t really interest me, but I want to be able to say that I have “run a marathon”. I just think it is kind of cool and something that not everyone does. I am still running and plan on making running one of my life long habits and hope to never give it up again.

I am trying to get my kids and husband to join me, but with no real success. My son Jesse fractured his knee this spring and it still bothers him when he runs for any distance, my other son Justin is only interested if Jesse is involved, Tia is a bad runner (she really is!) and my husband just laughs at me and says “NO”. I didn’t even bother to ask Brandon!

7. Learn to golf

I have always wanted to know how to golf; I have only gone a few times in my life, but have really loved it each time. Plus, my husband and three of my kids (Jesse, Justin and Tia) all enjoy golfing, so it is something we could all do together!

8. Learn to ski

This too is still on the list. I am still a bit afraid of it though, going down an icy hill with two long sticks strapped to my feet seems a bit silly and very dangerous with respect to my lack of coordination.

9. See every province in Canada - Drive across Canada

I have combined my goal of seeing the Maritimes (Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island) and driving across Canada. Other than the Maritimes, Saskatchewan and Manitoba are the only provinces I have never been to – and although I have no burning desire to spend any amount of time in either of these two provinces, I would like to drive through them so I can say I have been there.

10. Learn how to drive a motorcycle – This is still on the list!

11. Go sailing

I do still kind of want to buy a boat, but I have realized that what I really want to do is go sailing, and not is some silly little lake, but in the ocean. In the romantic, unrealistic part of my heart I would really like is to go sailing around the world - like a pirate - but the realistic part of me will accept sailing for an afternoon.

12. Canoe across Gull Lake

I don’t know how many times I have stood at my parent’s patio window and thought about that! Too many that is for sure! So why not? It can’t be that far can it?

13. Go somewhere tropical on vacation

I really don’t know where I would go, maybe Hawaii, but I don’t think it really matters to be honest. I just want to be able to sit on a tropical beach, someplace hot, that serves drinks with little umbrellas in it.

14. Start planning/Go on an oversees trip – either to England, France or Italy

I really want to see all of them – plus Ireland, Scotland, Greece, Israel, I could go on…but I will be happy if I can just plan and do one in the next 10 years.

15. Go to Vegas

Who hasn’t gone to Vegas??? Me. Really I don’t think I know anyone who hasn’t gone, most people more then once! I am not a gambler, but I want to roll some dice and pull on that machine that has the cherries on it. Plus, I have heard lots about the buffets, shows, lights – all of which I think would be fun and exciting to see and experience.

So there it is. I could add about 100 things onto this list of things I want to do, see and learn, but I have tried to keep it realistic and within reason. But, I am tired of just sitting back and thinking that someday I will do all the things I dream about doing, someday I will find the time/money/etc. Some of these things I can start now, or at least start planning for now.



  1. Just so you know - I've never gone to Vegas. Have to admit, don't want to either - but at least you can say you know someone else who's never gone.

    Haven't seen you in ages. Luv you.


  2. I heartily approve of your amended list!

    1. The classics: As reading 100 books in 24 months is on my list, with an appropriate smattering of classics, I hope to have read about half of the ones on your list as well (you’ve picked some that I have always wanted to read!) I strongly recommend To Kill a Mockingbird; I read it a few weeks ago in two days!

    2. Another language: I always told myself that I had to learn Italian if I was going to visit there and decide never to come back, and instead spend the rest of my life eating pasta, drinking wine, and admiring great works of art.

    3. Sign Language: I am fascinated whenever I see some one sign. I would be so proud of you if you learned!

    4. Geography: In support of this goal I have been scouring the city for a puzzle of the world to purchase for you. I think I will end up buying you a wall map instead.

    5. Chess: Good for you!

    6. Run a marathon: I had planned to try to train for a 1/2 marathon, after I learned that there was no such thing as a 1/16th marathon. I think I should be realistic about my limitations though.

    7. If we lived in the same city as you, I would totally do this goal with you. I already love driving golf carts; I think I would enjoy golfing.

    8. Drive across Canada: Done that. I haven’t gotten past Quebec though, so I still need to do the Maritimes.

    9. Motorcycle: You totally poached this one from me!! I have always been the one fascinated with motorcycles...

    10. Go sailing: If it takes me the rest of my life, I will learn how to sail. It has been a dream of mine forever. How is it that we were raised land-locked in Alberta??

    People sometimes forget how alike we are. And I would like to help you achieve your goals, because it is true that writing them down helps people focus on their goals, but so does support!

    Love you Blondie,

  3. I did a really fun thing online a while ago to help learn some Geography stuff... - all sorts of geography challenges, pinpointing things on a map... and as it gives you scores etc it is fun fun fun as you try to beat your previous best.

    It is also available on Facebook - called "traveler iq"

  4. Very ambitious of you! Very impressive list!

  5. I love your list with my whole heart! Can I do some of those things with you? Like the tropical vacation thing, NOT the marathon thing...