Seasonal Bucket Lists

Not quite a new year’s post, but this is a look back – look forward post. I’ve been using seasonal bucket lists this past year instead of “action plans” and enjoyed the slight modification in thinking.  My first seasonal plans were very detailed to-do lists.  This autumn, I took a different approach with only 10 broad items. So let’s see how that worked out:

  • Be spontaneous & open to new activities. I’ve learned that I still need to work on spontaneity! But as far as new things – took a fun foodie tour in St Petersburg and then another tapas dinner evening with some folks we met on the tour. And I did a couple of spontaneous fall leaf-viewing walks. I’ve decided that I need planned spontaneity (blog post link) and created a values-based list to help.
  • Roast something. Does buying roasted-frozen-veggies count? OK, there was an acorn squash (one) and some sweet potatoes. I need to continue to work on more at-home cooking!
  • Pumpkins & mums fall house decoration. No mums, but hubby did buy me 2 big pumpkins for the front porch.  Does it count if I didn’t do it myself?
  • Soup. The cooking class was a bust (worst cooking class I’ve ever taken), so I have not followed up with planning a soup gathering. I did look up soup recipes and made a wonderful turkey-leftover soup.
  • Hike to look at fall colors. Nope. Just a few walks around the neighborhood. Fall felt like it was 2 weeks long this year.
  • Complete motorcycle class & get license. Yes. And posted a blog about it.
  • Iceland trip.   We went in December and unfortunately had really bad weather and never saw the Northern Lights – the primary reason for the trip. You do not go someplace with 4 hours of daylight unless the darkness is key. But rain and clouds every night prevented us from seeing the sky. Very disappointing.
  • Continue girlfriend activities. Continued my walk & talks, cooking classes, and even did a mid-day movie date and pedicure date.
  • Regular life continued with yoga, zumba, theater date night, dinners with friends, fall yard cleanup, physical therapy, and blogging.
  • Completed book editing. And connected with a publisher. More to come here.

The planning list-maker inside me feels a need to go back to the longer, more detailed seasonal bucket list, even if I don’t accomplish all the items. But as we plan on being snowbirds this winter, I’m still doing my winter bucket list broad and focused on creating new routines and habits in a new place. Being snowbirds is a new experience for us and I’m a bit unsure what to expect.

  • Continue regular self-care with morning journaling, beach yoga, regular beach walks, and staying connected to my blogging buddies.
  • Work on local friendship creation.
  • Do fun foodie things – new restaurants, food tour in St Pete, cook new recipes, shop at farmers market.
  • Take some mini-adventures – Sarasota day trip, Dali Museum, Flea Market.
  • Continue with my play with words & addiction to lists: Crossword puzzles. Create a bullet journal. Begin 2019 New Things List. Finalize book publication. Continue blogging weekly.
  • Enjoy our space. Set up table for jigsaw puzzle; rearrange the back room for more regular usage.
  • Be spontaneous & open to new activities. This is a new experience for us, so I want to be open to whatever happens! With my word of the year being “Journey”, I want to really be mindful of this new experience.

Do you find specificity or broad ideas on your seasonal bucket lists more helpful?

34 thoughts on “Seasonal Bucket Lists

  1. I get a kick out of “roast something”. If I was your cat, I’d be looking over my shoulder. 😂😂

    Here’s a “recipe” for you to try:

    Cut potatoes, carrots, onions and a fennel bulb into chunks a little smaller than an inch in size. (Don’t worry if the onion and fennel come apart into segments.) Toss them with a few tablespoons of oil (avocado oil is our favorite, but olive oil is good too) until evenly coated. Spread out in a single layer on a sheet pan and salt and pepper to taste. Roast at 385 F for about 35-40 minutes until fork tender. Use a spatula to turn them about halfway through. This particular mixture is a great accompaniment to a juicy roast chicken.

    You can roast virtually any root vegetable and many others such as Brussels sprouts and cauliflower that you like. It is not difficult and it is, by far, the best way to enjoy these gems in my opinion. The only vegetable I don’t enjoy roasted is broccoli. The florets tend to get too brown and dry for me.

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    1. Bob, LOL – No cat in the household. I just bought some Brussel sprouts today! I’ve not used fennel that much, so will try that at some point as well – sounds yummy with carrots and onion. I like cauliflower roasted also (have done that!).

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  2. Came over here from Kathy Gottberg’s blog. I like your approach and even though nothing works out perfectly (like Iceland) — (and also, I am philosophically opposed to motorcycles) — I think I can learn a lot from your blog. Your book project sounds intriguing as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tom, thanks for stopping over. I definitely will be letting folks know when the book is published – including blatantly advertising it on my own blog. The topic is Retirement Transition and some of my blog posts are in it and some of the content is in my blog posts!

      I understand why folks are against motorcycles…. it was quite terrifying to learn how to ride one. I’m still not sure I’m buying that scooter.

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  3. So sad that your Iceland trip was a bust. But your plans to winter in Florida sound promising, Pat! I haven’t done a seasonal or any other kind of bucket list, but I do plan to work on some goals for 2019. I’ve enjoyed some time off from blogging and it did me a world of good. I’m still working on my retirement transition – I’ve got two full months under my belt! So far, so good, but it’s quite an adjustment (as you know!)

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    1. Molly, just for perspective, it took me almost 3 years to feel like I had a good handle on my retirement lifestyle. And even now I still think I’m in some later stage of the transition. This is our first snow birding adventure….and it’s a big part of the vision. I like the seasonal lists… they give me a chance to recall the things I love to do each season (from fall’s apple cider to spring flower shows). There’s a link-up for seasonal bucket lists … Leslie (http://www.onceuponatimehappilyeverafter.com) is my way in to them usually. I like looking at other lists as well for ideas!

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      1. Your perspective is reassuring, Pat. I expect too much from myself for sure during this time of transition. I don’t formally do a seasonal list, but I’m sure I have an informal one. There is something to look forward to in each season. I’ll check out the seasonal bucket list post.

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  4. Hi Pat! Happy New Year! I am so sorry to hear your trip to Iceland turned out to be a bummer….I do try to be flexible myself when I travel but missing those lights would have really disappointed me too! Glad to hear you have plans and intentions to move forward in a positive way. And where are you “snow-birding” it? You may have said before but I can’t recall. I live in the desert southwest and lots of people snowbird here. It would be great if you were coming in this direction. If not this year? Maybe next? As for me, I’m a sun-bird. We leave the desert in the summer and go somewhere cool. Isn’t it nice to have that flexibility? ~Kathy

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    1. Kathy, we are snow birding in Redington Shores, near St Petersburg (gulf coast). We have a cottage here – 2 bed, 2 bath, 2 blocks to the beach. While we increased time spent here since retirement, this is the longest single visit. I’m working on getting routines in place here… we are at the one week mark and it’s been an OK start, considering I had no plans in place when we drove down!

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  5. I’m a bit of a listaholic & will get back into the seasonal lists this year I think. I converted to a bullet journal midway through 2017 and absolutely love it. I keep mine simple but it goes everywhere with me. Happy New Year to you.

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    1. Jo, I have not started the bullet journal yet as my daily journal from last year still has so many pages in it. But I’m trying on some of the tools from bullet journaling. And I’m not sure I’ll be doing pretty doodling you see on line….but lists are definitely happening! Any tips you have as I start into bullet journaling?

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      1. I keep mine really simple. I have a double page for each week with the days on the left-hand side and space on the right-hand side for any to-dos, birthdays etc. I rule up a month at a time & keep 4 pages at the end of each month for sentence a day – which I update daily too. I go through it at the end of each month and highlight anything I jot down for novel writing, recipes or quotes for the corporate newsletter in different highlighters. The index at the front is what is life-changing. I have lists of blog post ideas, travel bookings etc…

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  6. I need specificities or else it’s too easy not to get something accomplished so my goals are very detailed.
    I look forward to hearing about your snowbird experiences. We are a couple of years away from that but it’s in the plan. And it sounds like we will be in the same area. Love the island from St Pete Beach to Clearwater Beach, especially Indian Shores.
    Happy New Year!! 🍾🥂

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    1. Oh my – We are in Redington Shores…. less than a mile to Indian Shores! We are day 4 of our snowbird adventure and crashed a NYE party last night. OK, it was a neighbor who invited us to join them to another friend’s house and we had actually met the hosts once (not too bad of a crash). I’m still feeling a bit untethered with minimal plans in place, but trying to take it as it comes! I am sure my blogging this next 2 months will relate to this new experience!

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      1. I’m curious to hear how you found a place to stay. I can find weekly rentals but it’s tougher to locate places that rent monthly. Did you work with a realtor? Maybe you’ll blog about that part of your experience!! Hope the weather is good for you. We’re pretty cold today!!

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    2. Linda – We actually own a place here. It’s a cottage – 2 bedroom, 2 bath, 2 blocks to the beach. Landlocked but I make friends with folks who have water views. 🙂

      In this area, the realtors do a lot of rentals. We rented for a few years before buying – only 2 weeks then, but we rented condos and I’m sure they’d rent longer! Try PlumLee – https://www.plumleegulfbeachrealty.com/ That’s who we rented via years ago and I still see their signs around all over!

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      1. How nice to own something and it sounds perfect in terms of size and location. I don’t need to be right on the beach, just close.

        We are actually renting through Plumlee this year. It’s the first time; they had the condo we wanted. I’ve worked with Florida Lifestyles for years and even had a good experience with VRBO. I also know a couple of realtors in the South Pasadena area, so I hope I’ll be able to find some help when we’re ready!!

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  7. Jigsaw puzzles seem to be a theme – I guess it is attractive in winter months. I’ve just completed one this week. Love your list – and that you can share when you don’t meet your goals. I think general goals are great for offering intention and helping us ‘be spontaneous’. Happy New Year!

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    1. Janet, It does seem that we all often hit certain things simultaneously doesn’t it. Jigsaw puzzles right now. LOL.

      I am learning that my lists are not “must do”, but more reminders of things that I’d like to do. A mind-shift on “goals” so that I do not feel too bad if I don’t meet them. I like this place a bit better.

      Happy New Year!

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  8. Congratulations on your accomplishments, Pat. I had a similar disappointing experience when we went to see the Northern Lights in Fairbanks, Alaska. It was cloudy the whole time we were there. We had a lovely time with friends, but I was seriously disappointed that I didn’t get to see the lights. As far as your question about broad versus specific goals, I do like to set broad intentions, but I get more accomplished when I set specific goals, or maybe it’s just that I like being able to say definitively that I can check something off the list. Happy winter!

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    1. So, did you keep Northern Lights on your bucket list? Where you live, you might even see them “naturally”!
      I am keeping things a bit broader this winter as I’m very unsure how to snowbird. I have lists of specific possibilities though… so it will be interesting to see how much I do.

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  9. Happy New Year, Pat! I love your lists and if you don’t mind I think I might steal a few ideas to try in 2019. I don’t make resolutions and this year I will be concentrating more on evolving and growing. I look forward to our continuing blogging friendship and reading more of your thoughts which are always inspiring to me. Have a fabulous 2019 and hopefully see you at #MLSTL when it starts back up on January 9. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sue, Stealing is a sincere form of flattery! I steal ideas all the time. I do like your thoughts on evolving! I considered Becoming as a word of the year, but after Michelle Obama’s book titled that, I get it was too overused this year. I do think however that I am evolving on my Journey and becoming the me I want to be. And yes, I’ve decided I am a list-aholic, too. LOL. Happy New Year to you!

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  10. Great choice of word for the new year…journey. I am not very good at judging myself so not sure how spontaneous I am. Certainly love to plan things and make lists to keep me organized and to jog my memory but I think I can be spontaneous, too.

    I have a jigsaw puzzle laid out on the dining room table but I think I need to trade it in for a smaller puzzle with fewer pieces. Was so proud that I completed a puzzle this fall. With kitties, working puzzles can be tricky. I have lots of help.

    Appreciate your interest in developing new friendships. Have you recently moved or has retirement changed the nature of your friendships? Most of my friends are still working and I was never big on doing things with friends when I worked because being at work and seeing them there was sufficient. Now I am lonely a lot of the time. Would love to have the ‘right’ buddy to work out with, shop with, craft with.

    Thank you for linking up with us. Always happy to see how my retired friends spend their time and the dreams and plans they make for the future. Happy new year!

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    1. Yes, retirement definitely changed “friendships”. Most of the people I interacted with before retirement were work people… friends in a sense but the friendship was based on work-commonality and most did not survive that going away. Only a couple survived that shift and have since morphed to more real friendships – we walk or dine out (2 favs of mine). So to fill the empty void, I’ve been trying to create new friendships. It’s a work in progress, but I do have a yoga-buddy, a buddy who is up for anything (we just discussed doing an axe-throwing experience together), and am working on some compatible couples for dining out here in Florida. For me it’s about planning things I like to do and then seeing who might join me – I find some folks are often very happy to join a pre-made plan. I also do reach out when I meet someone new and feel like we might click (has worked at yoga class!) – inviting them to do something I’ve planned. I have not tried MeetUp but know it would be a good way to find folks of common interest (crafters for you perhaps). I did try some local classes and workshops – nothing panned out, but I’d try again.

      I need to get the jigsaw table set up….it’s on my to-do list. We have a 1000 piece puzzle ready to go…hubby will help too. I’ll let you know how it goes!
      Happy New Year!

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  11. Your questions crack me up, particularly the one on roasting. I say yes. There, solved. Big broad goals are healthy, I think. And I share the need for local friends. It does get harder to make them as you get older, at least that’s my experience. But it’s always worthwhile to try. Happy New Year, Pat! – Marty

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    1. Marty – So wonderful to have a decisive answer to life’s important questions…the fact that those frozen root veggies are still in the freezer (in Ohio!) is perhaps a minor issue. Definitely working on those friendship connections…takes time and effort and sometimes they just do not pan out…but I’m going to keep working on it. Happy New Year to you!

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    1. Natalie – We are also away for January & February, hence the shortened list as well. I’m really trying to be more spontaneous or at least some short term planning. Yesterday a neighbor invited us to crash a NYE party they were going to…. and we did. Met a whole bunch of people…perhaps this is part of my friendship creation? Happy New Year to you!

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  12. Hi Pat – like your list, and also like the broad ideas for a bucket list. Broad ideas, to me, give you some flex room to change over the course of the year – as one does…as I believe we are constantly changing course as we grow. What was a great idea in January may become unrealistic or even undesired in May. Having broader ideas of what you want to achieve lets those course corrections happen without triggering (my) inner perfectionist, who is quick to say: well, here’s another failure – might as well give up altogether! Jeez, what a pill she is. 😉

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    1. Ahh, that inner perfectionist. Mine right now is screaming about missing the Northern Lights as a failure. Luckily hubby is often saying to me “it is what it is”. I was not meant to see them this year; it does not mean the year was a failure. I am getting better with being OK with not achieving everything on the list…but I am keeping roasted veggies on my to-do. Winter time is still root veggie time! Happy New Year!

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    1. Happy New Year to you Donna!

      Not every one needs lists… I’ve discovered I’m a list-aholic! As long as I don’t let them control me, I think I’m OK. (Hubby might disagree.)

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