52 adventures, 1 year… How did I do?

Last year while frolicking up Elephant Mountain in Taipei with one of my lovely friends, we decided to compile a list of adventures and goals that we’d like to achieve in 2014. We settled on 52- one for each week of the year. When I wrote my list I was convinced I’d be able to tick all 52 off no problem. Clearly I forgot to fathom in those little obstacles such as lack of cash, lack of holidays from work and lack of motivation. But hey, I think I did quite well in completing more than half the things I wanted to do! Some of the things I really had to push to make work, such as going to Japan. It turned out to be one of the highlights of my year even though I am still dirt poor from how expensive it was, even more so because of the missed flight fiasco. I loved having this list, especially because it sometimes took me out of my comfort zone, a.k.a hiking Ben Nevis! I actually can’t wait to do this again for 2015. I guess I should carry over some of the adventures that I didn’t complete this year, and I should probably start saving now because if anything, my wanderlust is just getting more wanderlusty. I need to be a bit more realistic though…I mean according to this year’s list I still have to go to Shanghai, Xiamen, Xi’an, Chiang Mai and Taiwan…and well, I have about two days to do all of that and about -$1,000. Yeah, that’s a minus…cheers Japan.

Anyway, I highly recommend creating a little bucket list for yourself, even if it’s just simple things such as places to visit in the city you live in, or recipes you want to try. It’s always really fun to do something and then realise it’s on your list and you can tick it off with a sense of achievement. For months now we’ve been planking in the office every afternoon and I actually have noticed a significant change in my core strength and so I absolutely ticked off the ‘Get toned’ one on my list…It counts, right…? Kinda. And some of them I will still do, such as ‘Read The Luminaries’ and ‘Organise all my music’. I just need some time and a sofa…hello Christmas in Scotland.

Here is my list from the year:

1. Read ‘The Luminaries’ (Will do it next week!)

2. Hike Ben Nevis (The UK’s highest mountain) Did this in June. It was so beautiful!

3. Spend Christmas with my family Flying home on Saturday for this.

4. Cycle around Xi’an and take silly photos with the Terracotta Warriors Will do this in 2015 when I have money again.

5. Write one letter every month in Chinese! I guess I kind of did this if an essay for my Chinese class counts?

6. Host a dinner party for old and new friends Oh, I failed at this. We never managed to find a free weekend. But friends in Shenzhen- this is happening in January!

7. Ride the new High Speed Rail to Xiamen They NEVER had tickets. Will need to book well in advance next year.

8. Make my Mum a birthday book I did this, and delivered it to her by hand in Bangkok, where I also happened to surprise my Dad at the same time. He had no idea I was popping down for a visit. I also made my sister and friend a book too.

9. Give my family the most awesome surprise Oh, I most definitely did this. Back in January I rocked up in Scotland without anyone but my sister knowing. 

10. Buy vintage dresses in Bangkok I bought 4.

11. Grow my hair long, but get a neat trim every 6 weeks OK, so it’s not quite at my bum yet, but it’s getting there. I believe I’m due a trim soon.

12. Do a Spa weekend with my sister We did this in Scotland. Amazing massages, rooftop jacuzzi etc. Might put that on the list every year…

13. Blogging continuity, launch a cool blog design and organise my blog content I did blog more, and I did organise the content, and I even changed the design a bit, but this is something I need to work on more. Or should I say, this is something my computer whizz kid friends need to help me with next year. Pretty please!

14. Write down 3 little things every day that make me smile and feel grateful I love doing this.

15. Collect every issue of Little Thing magazine I realised this is a bit materialistic. I don’t need EVERY issue. Even though it is the prettiest magazine…

16. Host a Lomo event in Shenzhen I promise to do this in 2015. I wrote a message to spark interest and a few people responded, so now I just need to get the ball rolling.

17. Take Chinese classes with my old Teacher Grace Every Wednesday night!

18. Do yoga 3 times a week Lately I’ve been a bit too busy for this, but I even went 4 times a week a couple months ago.

19. Write 52 Luna’s Letters and record and document them all OK, I didn’t write 52…maybe half of that, but I did take photos of them all and I even got a few replies. I’ll blog about this soon.

20. Learn how to make red bean buns I still want to do this.

21. Shoot x1 roll of film a week and update my LomoHome Oh, I’m embarrassed at how little I shot in film this year…

22. Go to Yeliu Geo Park and Smangus in Taiwan I went to Taiwan in June but I didn’t have time to visit these 2 places. Next year!

23. Visit Japan YES!!!! BEST PLACE EVER!

24. Trace my family history Still working on this one. Family, can you help?

25. Have an arty weekend in Shanghai with Leora This didn’t manage to happen, but we are meeting in the Philippines for Chinese New Year in 2015 so yay!

26. Write 1 whole story with Chuan’s illustrations Not yet 🙁

27. Record details of my dreams in a journal I didn’t do this for every dream because I dream ALL the time, but I did record a few.

28. Buy a juicer and do healthy veggie detoxes I bought a blender, does that count?

29. See Cara somewhere in Asia Hong Kong in July baby! So fun!

30. Watch Alt-J live No, because they weren’t playing anywhere near me, but I am going to see them in Singapore in May 2015, yay! 

31. Get toned, aka get a hard stomach (haha) I’m getting there. Haha.

32. Have a pamper day once a week at home Yes! I am getting old so this is needed.

33. Revisit Guangzhou Just last week actually, and it was so fun! I missed that city!

34. A weekend in Kaiping Yup! That was some adventure.

35. Write for eChinacities and That’s P.R.D magazine Contacted them both and neither replied…so you can’t say I didn’t try.

36. Work on my own cartoon idea I did brainstorm a few ideas, but never got round to writing them properly. Procrastination…

37. Hike Dragon’s Back This was the first hike I did this year in Hong Kong. It was stunning!

38. Go on a junk boat and laugh all day I did this for my birthday and it was so much fun! Thank you friends!

39. Write a love letter Sort of, haha. 

40. Send at least 1 postcard from every place I visit I sure did! Unfortunately the ones I sent from Thailand never made it to my friends…silly mail!

41. Hang out with Jan in Chiang Mai Next year!

42. Take a ballet class Next year! I was too nervous to attend the Chinese ballet class near my house.

43. Play the metro game for a whole weekend- randomly go to as many places as possible Will do this in January for sure!

44. Buy myself a tea set and hold a tea ceremony Next year!

45. Decorate my room: bunting, fairy lights, photos, candles etc I love my room!

46. Write and publish a piece on Be You Media Group Not yet…maybe there’s still time?

47. Organise all my music I’ll be doing this next week.

48. Wear red lipstick Everyday now actually. Pinky-red.

49. Grow my own herbs Basil, mint…check. The lavender never made it 🙁

50. Buy fresh flowers every so often Every Sunday!

51. Get a new bicycle and cycle whenever I can I didn’t buy my own bicycle but I signed up for the rental bike system in my area, so every time I leave the house I can just scan my card and the bike is mine for the day. It’s great and means I don’t have to worry about my pretty bike being stolen.

52. Master the art of baking Well if Chinese kitchens had ovens, this one would be a lot easier. Maybe when I’m home…or maybe I could just eat ALL the baking instead…

OK, wow, now I need to work on my list for next year! Have you ever written a list of similar things you’d like to do? What was on your list?




One Comment on “52 adventures, 1 year… How did I do?

  • grace
    January 9, 2015 at 7:33 pm


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