Tuesday, 1 May 2012

40 before 40 (36 before 36 wasn't as catchy)

Thirty-five is a very attractive age. London society is full of women of the very highest birth who have, of their own free choice, remained thirty-five for years
Oscar Wilde: The Importance of being Earnest

I am 35. Really. This is a non-exhaustive list of stuff I'd like to get done, or do again. Preferably before I hit 40, but it's mainly just a list I can refer to when I think "what shall we go this Summer?" or "what could we do this weekend?". I'll add to it as I think of things - if this seems too easy, and I'm actually ticking things off, I may progress it to the Day Zero project

1.Visit New York and San Francisco

2. Own a piano again (and play it!)

3. Make some money from my writing

4. Ride a sled pulled by huskies. Also want to stay in an ice hotel

5. Stay at Hotel Pelirocco in Brighton

6. Holiday in a gypsy caravan

7. Crochet a blanket. I may need to give myself longer than 5 years. (I can have it on my lap in the nursing home)

8. Go to a massive antiques fair

9. Actually meet some of my favourite bloggers

10. Take the kids to a festival

11. Proper British beach holiday in Devon or Cornwall (Mr FHCS is mooting Pembrokeshire too)

12. Go to the circus

13. Go to an auction

14. Do tourist things in London I don't do because I live here. eg, Tower of London, Thames boat ride
 Also take the boys to the ones I have done - London Eye, Monument

15. See the Northern Lights

16. Go to Marrakesh and get lost in a souk

17. Find make-up which doesn't bring me out in spots if worn for more than two days in a row

18. Be able to do something with my hair other than than putting it in a ponytail.

19. Learn to make proper jewellery - earrings for example.

20. Take archery lessons

21. See 'The Woman in Black' at the theatre

22. Be familiar with all the London museums (am shamefully bad at regular visiting)

23. Go on more weekends away, some with kids, some just as a couple. (Whitby, Hebden Bridge)

24. Finally have conquered the sewing machine - get lessons?

25. Stop being rubbish about long drives / motorway driving in the car

26. Own a cat (sorry, allergic brother in law)

27. Have moved house. Somewhere I really love.

28.  Go to the dogs (as in greyhound racing, not rack and ruin)

29. Get to Portobello market again. Early. Perhaps I should combine this with a hotel stay.

30. Colombia Road Flower market

31. Have a go on a potter's wheel.

32. Either relearn my appalling French (I have an A level in this language? Really?) or ditch it and learn Spanish instead.

33. Own a cocktail cabinet and make cocktails of an evening to the strains of the gramophone. Wearing a fabulous vintage frock and waving a cigarette holder around. (And have morphed into someone living in 1929, apparently. Who smokes. Hmm)

34. Have my fortune told by various methods and see whether any similarities occur.

35. Go ghost hunting

36. Be proficient at a card game other than 'Shithead'. Sorry, but that's what it's called. And I am the mistress. (Abby, if you're reading, you still owe me your first born child).

37. Keep up with music - do not become person who only recognises songs because they've been in a Building Society advert.

38. Buy fewer boots, and more actual clothes. Preferably ones which I love.

39. Replace my second hand Mulberry shoulder bag (which is ancient and used for gigs etc, and will probably have reached a sad demise in the next 5 years) with a healthier model befitting a grown-up. And do not sit it in a puddle of beer.

40. Make sure we all own bikes, and go on wholesome rides through the country in style of Centre Parcs family.


  1. Cool list! A husky sled ride sounds ace i have to add that to my list! Should we ever meet i could teach you some new card games but i have to warn you i am shit hot at shit head! So which one do you think you will do first?

  2. Aw what a great list :) Dermalogica do a really good "treatment foundation", it's quite expensive but really good for skin thats a bit temperamental x

  3. Interesting list. I have seen The Woman In Black at the theatre 3 times. It's amazing - you won't be disappointed. Make sure you listen to The Righteous Brothers when you use the potter's wheel. It's just got to be done! :)x

  4. What a spectacularly wonderful list! I have done 17 of your 40. Seeing the Northern lights is number one on my list! Let's go together - that way you can do 9 and 15 with one fell swoop (i may not be one of your favourites, but you are definitely one of mine!)

    Sarah xxx

    (A sop box moment: I do implore you to consider replacing going to the dogs with something that is not a horrendously cruel industry that breeds, tortures and kills dogs for human entertainment. Sorry to be a downer, but somebody has to be speak for them.

  5. what a great list! I've only done 11 and they were the less adventurous stuff! I'd love to learn "shit head"!

  6. A lovely list! PLEASE buy piano soon - all the family will benefit and it is such a good stress buster, even when its not going well! Also YES to proper British holiay - because my parents-in-law gave us lovely Med holidays as presents (for which we were v. grateful) we've realised our (now 21 year old) daughter has never made a sandcastle, or gone to the beach in a sweater! We have failed as parents!

    35 is a wonderful age - so much still to come, but you are at the top of your game and family is still young. Enjoy every minute! xxx

  7. Its a great list, ive done a few of your things - the woman in black one ive done twice, its brill. San fran was part of my honeymoon but i am desperate to go back! I look forward to seeing you check off your list :o) Scarlett x

  8. Wow, I want a list too! Hmm, I'm 40 though so mine will be significantly longer :-)

  9. Well I have to say, that all sounds fabulous, especially the bits about Whitby and the cocktail cabinet.

  10. Great list! No34 made me laugh, might try that out, would be very interesting. Make sure you visit the Victoria and Albert Museum, it's such a fantastic place to visit and revisit.

    Barrina x

    1. I've been there quite a few times, I keep going back at the expense of others! And I've been to the Natural History museum rather more times than any person needs too (dino mad son)

  11. Such a lot to do in 5 years! I could never do one of these lists, I hate the thought of having so much to!

  12. I hope you manage to get a load of that done! I might make a plan, but I'm so afraid I'll never do any of it. I'm 30 but still feel like a teenager! xx

  13. Great list! I share many, for the 'before 50' list now, having already passed the 40 milestone some years ago! I agree with Lucy, the Woman in Black experience is just fab!

  14. You read my mind with #33!!
    Great list!

  15. That is a great list! I need to make a list like that too. =)

  16. Im a firm believer in being able to do whatever you set your mind to. I think your list is very do-able! I have a problem though putting my things into action. But Im trying. Fewer boots? Boot collection post, please!

  17. I have been thinking of giving one of these a shot, I am always saying I would like to be able to do this, but never quite find the time/reason/excuse to do it, so a list may just be what I need. I certainly would love to meet some bloggers one day xxx


Thanks for your comment - it's no fun unless I know what you think!

If you ask a question others might want answering too I'll reply here in the comments - if it's personal, I'll reply directly by email if you're set up.