30 before 30: A Few Goals That Need To Happen By My 30th Birthday / by Erin Baynham

I love reading 30 before 30 lists. It’s a list of things that people want to do before they turn 30 years old. It really gives you a deeper look into what interests people, many of which are a total surprise! Know that that means? This list was loads of fun to compile, but it’s a lot of pressure, too. I’ve got to get all of this stuff done in the next two and a half years! This post will be up in my menu bar, so feel free to check in from time to time to see what I’ve accomplished. The Deadline for this project is May 11th, 2015!1. Be comfortable in front of the camera (COMPLETE)– This is a behind the scenes look at photo shoot last year. While it’s nothing for me to snap images of myself for my blog, working with a photographer is quite the intimidating task for me! People are always surprised at how nervous I get when I’m in front of the camera. But after this shoot, I want to own the camera. 2. Speak at a national conference about Blogging or Social Media- I was determined to do this back when all of this was a hobby for me, but now that it’s my job, I’m crazy excited to make it happen. I was lucky enough to speak at Blogging While Brown, and I’d like to speak at BlogHer or New Media Expo next.

3. Make delectable pasta – From scratch.

4. Walk on a beach in a bikini – My body is in no way ready to strut my stuff almost nude. However, the terror of being laughed at in public is enough to make me workout. I guess.

5. Visit the San Francisco farmers market – I’m totally a freak for farmers market. I like the farm to table feel, and I can’t wait to see this world renowned market!

6. Meet Kerry Washington – I was head over heels for her back in ’03, and Scandal made my girl crush intensify 213%.

7. Hold a five minute conversation in another language with a native speaker. Hopefully it would be Italian, but after several years of taking Spanish (and a slight obsession with several Marc Anthony’s salsa albums), I’m thinking that might be easier.

8. Put a deposit on my trip to Italy – This is the first place that I could think of where I really wanted to see several cities. I’ve got my eye on a 10 day trip that I saw in the paper last week.

9. Go inside one of my dream homes in Maple Lawn – There’s this community in Howard County that I’m absolutely obsessed with. I think it’s beautiful. I always sit outside and hang out, and vision myself pulling into my driveway.

10. Start a small cupcake business – Even If I only have one customer, I’d like to sell my cupcakes for an event. A wedding, retirement, holiday bonanza. Whatever.

11. Have a couple thousand in the bank (COMPLETE) – Over the past week, I’ve spent a lot of time working on my debt reduction plan so I can save up. I plan to knock out my debt and have a party in my bank account.

12. Create my own makeup bag – I was SO excited to get my sewing machine, and two years later, I don’t know how to put in the thread. But I’ve always wanted to make a bag for my makeup.

13. Go Salsa dancing – It’s been years since I’ve hit the dance floor at a salsa club. All of the practice in my bedroom should make me comfy when I get back there.

14. Become a better food photographer – No offense to the many food bloggers out there, but it sure is tacky looking at dark, un-propped non-appetizing food. I want to take pictures that make people run to the store and buy ingredients.

15. Run five miles– I can’t run half a block without gasping for air. I mean, I seriously feel like I’m on the brink of death after a couple minutes. The heart is a muscle that needs exercise!

16. Attend a jazz festival – I’ve been to several concerts already, but I want to sit in a lawn chair and enjoy great live music all day for a few days.

17. Take a yoga class (COMPLETE)– I’ve wanted to take a yoga class forever, but I’m so nervous that I can’t make my body move the right way. I’m not flexible at all.

18. Bake a cake for a shelter – I volunteered at a shelter a few years ago, and there was a girl that came in every week and baked for the women and children. I’d love to do this.

19. Try Indian food – It’s so pungent that it makes me nauseus. But I’ve had a bite or two, and it’s not bad. How the heck can I call myself a foodie, but I’ve never had Indian food? I’m fired.

20. See a part of the ungerground railroad – I’ll probably do air punches to the sky, but I think it would be interesting to see. Hopefully no one will have to carry me out.

21. Shoot an image and make it a piece of my home – I learned to mount artwork years ago, and I’d like to see what it’s like to have it hanging on my wall. My DSLR is mostly used for capturing blog images, but I’d love to be able to show something off to people who come to myself.

22. Visit a wine vineyard – I want the tour, the tasting, the laughs, the drunk confusion, the whole shebang.

23. Complete 50 Barefoot Contessa recipes – I live for my girl Ina Garten, and I’d like to make a bunch of her recipes. When I started my food blog, Bread Butter Wine, one of the major tasks was to create the 50 recipes. I did around 8 or so before my old blog was hacked. Grr.

24. Create my own signature cocktail – I love a good drink! Blood orange + tequila + 2 secret ingredients should do the trick.

25. Take the Sex and The City tour in NYC – Everyone who knows me well knows that I am an absolute fanatic for Sex and the City. There’s no episode I haven’t seen. In fact, there’s no episode I can’t recite verbatim. The Sex and the City tour takes you to several locations found in the show and movie, and I want to see them all!

26. Play a song on the piano – It’s collecting dust, and you can learn anything on Youtube! I’m going to go out on a limb and play two songs: Mary Had A Little Lamb and Set Fire to The Rain by Adele. Eh.

27. Watch 20 Meryl Streep movies – The woman is a goddess and I intend to see most of her body of filmwork. It’s Complicated, Death Becomes Her, Doubt, The Devil Wears Prada, Kramer Vs. Kramer and Julie & Julia are already done.

28. Read the Harry Potter series – I’ve already watched all of the movies, but there’s a lot that I still don’t fully understand. I need to read the books and get a deeper understanding of all the characters, the locations and the story.

29. Learn to efficiently eat with chopsticks -  Two of my best friends are Korean, and they’ve shown me on several occasions. Year after year we try, and I’m a failure every time. Even my American friends tried to teach me. Why the heck can’t I figure this out?

30. Graduate (COMPLETE)- I’ve been going to school on and off for far longer than I’d like to admit. I’ve got my dream job, and love where my life is at this point. But I’m in more debt than I can imagine, I need that piece of paper to show for it! So what about you? What are some things that you want to do before your next milestone birthday?

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