36 Things Before 36

It’s my birthday, y’all!

You know how some people are all depressive about it and hope someone mentions it’s their birthday?

Not me! It’s my birthday!


I am 35 today.

As I figure it, I’m roughly one third of the way finished. (Seriously – I’ve had three close relatives live to be over 100 years old, and they died back in the 1980s. Given today’s medical technology, 105 should be a piece of cake.)

Last year, I posted a list of 35 Things to Do Before I Turned 35. I think I did roughly… one and a half of them.

Regardless, I’m making a new list. It’s like New Year’s Resolutions, but specifically for me. After all, this is MY New Year. These are all things I want to accomplish before I turn 36.

1. Get down to 350 pounds.
2. Get down to 340 pounds.
3. Get down to 330 pounds.
4. Get down to 320 pounds
5. Get down to 310 pounds.
6. Get down to 300 pounds.
7. Get down to 290 pounds.
8. Get down to 280 pounds.
9. Get down to 270 pounds.
10. Get down to 260 pounds.
11. Get down to 250 pounds.

I initially thought about making this one goal (get down to 250), which IS achievable in a year. However, I’d rather have small milestones to celebrate all year, and ten pounds at a time is a GREAT way to do it!

12. Read 36 books to help make me a better person.

I’m a literacy teacher. I read all the time; I want to read books specifically to help me become a better person. Self-help, weight loss issues, personal success, personal finance, et cetera.

13. Read the entire New Testament.


I’ve read the Bible before. It was a powerful experience. I am a Christian, and I think every Christian should regularly read our most holy book. I’m ashamed to say I’ve only read it once. I think the Old Testament is important as history, but I want to read the New Testament this year. This is very doable. Part of the reason I want to read the Bible is because it brings me closer to the Lord, but not necessarily in the way that most people would suspect. The Bible is a shocking book, and I’m often amazed by how little people who quote it truly understand it. I don’t thump the Bible at people, ever, but I’d certainly like to understand it more.

14. Find a church to join.

My wife and I still haven’t found a church home. I want us to make more of an effort to make this a priority this year.

15. Finish my second Master’s degree.

I work in academia, so I get free tuition. (Greatest job perk ever.) I’m finishing up my 2nd Master’s Degree. The first is in Secondary Ed (funny, because I teach college, not high school). This one is in Educational Technology.

16. Start my doctorate.

See free tuition referenced above. I’m graduating in December, and I want to start my Ed.D. (assuming I am accepted) in post-secondary leadership in Spring 2014.

17. Finish my novel AND look for an agent.


I claim I want to be a writer, but I don’t write as much as I’d like to. I’m going to remedy that.

18. Cross another state off of my Visit All 50 States List.
19. Cross another national park off of my Visit All 58 National Parks List.
20. Take Moon Pie to the beach.


These three are kind of gimmes, but I need those. We’re going to South Carolina, and two of our stops will be Congaree National Park and the beach. I’ve never been to SC (last state on the Atlantic coast I haven’t visited).

21. Walk a 5K.
22. Run a 5K.
23. Complete the Glow in the Night 5K.

These two will nicely align with my desire to live a healthier lifestyle to be a good influence for Moon Pie. The running one will be a while, as I’m not even going to try running until I am below 300 pounds. Oh, and #23 is sort of a gimme as well. We’re already registered for it in a few weeks. We just need to GO.

24. Research our family tree.
25. Attend the Highland Games.


These two are sort-of aligned. My family is primarily Cherokee and Irish, with a few other ethnicities thrown in for good measure. My wife is largely Scottish and, in her own words, country bumpkin. We’d like to know more, especially know that we have a child of our own. And since she has so much Scottish heritage, we want to discover her family’s tartan. (You are supposed to wear a tartan you have a genetic link to. The Logsdons are Irish and Cherokee, but I’m hoping a little digging may reveal some Scottish ancestry, because I’d love to have my own! Regardless, I’ve already promised her that I’ll wear our tartan as a kilt to a black tie event after I’ve reached goal weight.)

She grew up in Glasgow, Kentucky, and every year, they host the Highland Games, a celebration of everything Scottish. We are going this year. They always have booths where you can look up your family’s tartan

26. Maintain a dream journal.

I’ve always wanted to be a lucid dreamer. Step one is journal your dreams. I need to do this.

27. Get my 501(c)(3) established.

I’ve always wanted to establish a charity. Thanks to a class I am taking this semester, the process is already underway!

28. Visit one touristy-place in Kentucky (that I have never been to) for a day trip.

Vacations don’t have to be big, expensive events. I want to visit somewhere near me that I’ve never been to before for a little one-day vacation!

29. Send out Christmas cards again.

We actually did this last year! I want to do it again this year.

30. Watch every episode of Power Rangers from Mighty Morphin to Lost Galaxy.

"Put on your helmet, Kat! You suck at keeping your identity secret!"

I have a reason for this one; I’ll explain it in the upcoming days.

31. Regularly record vlogs about my weight loss journey.

I’m not going to define regularly, so as to not set myself up for failure, but I want to vlog more. Not necessarily the funny versions I try to do periodically, but just a video record of me and my journey.

32. Donate blood four times.

I used to donate blood regularly. I got out of the habit. I’m not bothered by needles, so why not?

33. Pay off one of our student loans entirely.

Even though tuition is now free, it wasn’t always. We have some pretty substantial student loans. I want to get at least one of them knocked out.

34. Establish a nice little Plant Nanny garden.

This one should be easy, but I do want to drink more water, too!

35. Beat Super Mario Galaxy 2.

I got it for Christmas last year. I haven’t even opened it. Nice easy goal, right?

36. Write a hand-written letter to ten authors who have impacted me.

I love words; I love writing. I want to be an author, and this is in no small part due to a number of authors who have inspired me. I want to send them a thank you letter, of sorts. (I would write to Harper Lee, but she doesn’t ever want to talk about To Kill a Mockingbird, so I can’t imagine her letter would be well-received, assuming I even knew where to send it.)

So, that’s what I am proposing to do for the next year!

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  • http://www.facebook.com/hanlie.blewett Hanlie van der Merwe

    A very belated happy birthday to you!

    I like your goals! I don’t understand all of them – not being a SF geek – but I like that you’re whimsical that way.

    I can recommend Tony Robinson’s Awaken the Giant Within. I’m working my way slowly through it and it’s phenomenal.


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12-31-13 - 412.0
1-3-14 - 407.0 (-5.0 pounds total)