66 | Write a letter to Mr. Preston | Few people have influenced my career as much as Mr. Preston. I hope this note lets him know how grateful I am for his mentorship and guidance throughout the years. 8/19/18

64 | Write three Yelp reviews | In this world of customer reviews, I wanted to do my part to help the small businesses I support: Love Salon, Johnny Destructo's Hero Complex, and Authorized Camera Repair. 8/19/18

B25 | Morris Museum | So disappointing. The museum is touted for having the largest collection of automata—but none of them were moving. 7/21/18

21 | Storm King Art Center | We weren't prepared to do as much hiking as was required to see the whole park but we still had a good time exploring the Southern Fields. 7/21/18

B24 | See a human cannonball | At a minor league baseball game, no less! Surprisingly exciting to watch. 7/20/18

11 | Go on a distillery tour | Unexpectedly fun! The cocktails were delicious and the tour was informative. 7/1/18

88 | Go to a cardiologist | Finally checking in on my SVT. EKG and echocardiogram were normal. We'll see what two weeks wearing a heart monitor (complete with its own Samsung phone) turns up. 6/28/18

B23 | Become a VP | First it was Director, Creative Services. And then it was Senior Director, Creative Services. And then it was VP. Three promotions in one! Here's a picture of me from "The Boardroom" at FFXXIII. Seemed appropriate. 6/18/18

B22 | Chautauqua Park | We spent a lovely morning in Boulder hiking the Flatirons and taking in the spectacular views of the city. 6/11/18

B21 | Pawnee Buttes | An hour-long drive on unpaved roads through the national grasslands brought us to a dramatic cow traffic jam and finally to the Pawnee Buttes trailhead. We endured the 98 degree heat with no shade for 4 miles and it. was. awesome. 6/10/18

B20 | See a moose | This was on the first list that I ever made back in the early 2000s and now I've finally accomplished it! A majestic creature indeed. 6/9/18

36 | Visit 40 national parks | I set my mind on hitting 40 parks in 2018 and I did it! A long time coming. Super gratifying. 6/8/18

B19 | Rocky Mountain | We spent two nights camping in Estes Park right outside of Rocky Mountain. Our time in the park was filled with wildlife sightings and beautiful hikes and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches by the river. 6/8/18

B18 | Black Canyon of the Gunnison | A small park with a massive canyon. In my younger days, I may have hiked to the bottom but on this day, I appreciated the view from the rim. 6/7/18

B17 | Mesa Verde (again) | I always felt a little guilty that I counted Mesa Verde on my list of parks, considering it was mostly under repair the last time I was there. Not anymore! 6/6/18

B16 | Great Sand Dunes | The first stop on the solo portion of my trip to Colorado. Meh. Not the most impressive of parks. 6/6/18

B15 | Barnes Arboretum | A lovely afternoon with Arden complete with breakfast tacos and lilacs galore. So romantic! 5/5/18

54 | Send a care package | Tastykakes, peanut chews, La Colombe coffee. What could better ease the pain for Karen as she bid farewell to her dear Ernesta. 5/3/18

B14 | Congaree | 10.5 miles of hiking through the bald cypress knee-filled floodplain. No skinks though. :( 4/8/18

33 | Go to the Philadelphia Flower Show | The theme was Wonders of Water but I spent most of the time looking at the desert cacti. Typical. 3/10/18

B13 | Silverball Museum | For our Fükfas XXIII outing, we drove down to Asbury Park to check out the Silverball Museum and played vintage pinball and arcade games for hours. 2/17/18

B12 | Walk down Broad Street after the Super Bowl | I know, I know. This is super specific. But it was such a memorable and emotional night in this city that I love so much that it felt worthy of a bonus item. #goeagles 2/3/18

32 | Drink out of a coconut/pineapple | Or both! The Taco Spot on the Hollywood, FL boardwalk delivered these two deliciously overpriced drinks. 2/3/18

B11 | Biscayne | Too windy to kayak but just enough sunshine for a walk along the water. 2/3/18

14 | Swim with dolphins and/or pigs | How 'bout sea lions instead! Our mid-winter trip to Florida brought with it hugs and kisses from Bella and Malibu, two of the rescued sea lions at Theater of the Sea. 2/3/18

B10 | Dry Tortugas | The weather didn't cooperate but it was a memorable adventure nonetheless, complete with fort exploring and ferry riding. 2/2/18

46 | Go to Cape May with friends | Karen came up for a visit and I gave her the full Cape May experience: puzzle shopping on Washington Street, wine tasting at Willow Creek, and dinner at The Blue Pig. No better way to spend time with my best friend. 1/28/18

37 | Go to a gallery opening in NYC | It's like someone took all of my favorite exhibits from any museum I've ever been to and put them all into one huge room. I can't wait to go back next year. 1/21/18

24 | High Line | We enjoyed a leisurely stroll in the January sunshine along a small part of the High Line. 1/21/18

B9 | Eat a po' boy in New Orleans | The shrimp po' boy was delicious. The atmosphere was perfect. Mothers delivered. 1/19/18

6 | New Orleans (again) | 24 hours in New Orleans. National World War II Museum. Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans. Po' boys. Beignets. Mardi Gras Museum of Costumes and Culture. Drinking beers on Bourbon Street. New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum. Live music on Frenchmen Street. What a blast. 1/19/18

43 | Go to Vedge | So delicious! Completely lived up to the hype. A delightful way to celebrate my 37th birthday. 1/9/18

50 | Make soft pretzels from scratch | Holy shit, what a pain in the ass. But at least they turned out tasting somewhat okay? 12/30/17

B8 | The Lodge at Winterfest | In the winter, the Penns Landing waterfront turns into a winter wonderland complete with ice skating rink, a cozy lodge selling mulled wine and hot chocolate, and an array of fire pits surrounded by Adirondack chairs. We sat outside on one of the coldest nights of year and warmed ourselves by the fire listening to a nostalgic 90s soundtrack. 12/29/17

B7 | The Center for Art in Wood | Their permanent collection was full of fun little pieces of woody art. 12/29/17

B6 | The Athenaeum of Philadelphia | Over the holiday break, we decided to squeeze in another mini Philly Adventure Day. First stop: The Athenaeum of Philadelphia where we perused an exhibit of old photographs of Philadelphia from the early 1900s. The handwriting on the postcards reminded me of my nana. She's been on my mind a lot lately. 12/29/17

61 | Participate in Postcrossing | On December 17th, Lothar from Wolfenbüttel, Germany got my postcard and wrote me a sweet little note in return. 12/17/17

27 | The Wagner Free Institute of Science | An astounding collection of taxidermy and bugs and shells and rocks and all sorts of things that you could explore for hours. If we weren't distracted by our drive home on snowy treacherous roads, we definitely would have stayed longer. 12/15/17

B5 | Philadelphia Art Alliance | We caught a cool exhibit from Vaughn Stubbs, a really remarkable artist who lived in West Philly and dedicated his life to making art. It was light-hearted and colorful and full of funny little gems. 12/15/17

26 | Observation deck at City Hall | We rode in a teeny tiny elevator up through the vacant tower of City Hall and exited onto the observation deck where we could see Philadelphia far and wide. 12/15/17

93 | Write a will | What a fun way to kick off our second Philly Adventure Day! Wills are officially written. 12/15/17

B4 | Go to a medium | What a strange bonding experience for me and mom. She knew obscure things, like how my pop-pop died from asbestosis and how my mom makes my nana's Christmas tree cookies with red and green sprinkles. I can't explain it. It was magical. 12/9/17

25 | Chestnut Hill Skyspace | I can't believe we've lived in Mt. Airy for 6.5 years and this was our first time going to Skyspace. It was a truly magical experience that made me giddy. (No photography allowed so I swiped this from someone else.) 12/3/17

35 | Start a new tradition | For the last few years, mom, Joelle, Aunt June, Peg, and I have met up for lunch at the Riddle Ale House on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Olivia, June Marie, Megan, and her kids joined us this year. It's always fun sharing memories and laughing over drinks with a bunch of women whom I'm grateful to have in my life. 11/24/17

55 | Win another design award | I won two more awards from the Rx Club for my work on Bausch + Lomb. 11/15/17

59 | Host a drawing night | A lovely night with Martha, drawing annoying neighbors and chatting by the fire. I also discovered my love of puffy paint! 11/11/17

9 | Shoot skeet | Where do I even begin with this one... We willingly walked into the woods at Shamrock Stables with our instructors, Diane and Sandy, past an assortment of sheds and turkeys followed by an ATV filled with rifles and handguns, and prayed to escape unharmed. I'll never forget laughing uncontrollably on the car ride home with Mar, Bowen, Josh, and Bob. Another Fükfas adventure in the books! 10/28/17

18 | Woodmere Art Museum | My favorite exhibit was created by elementary school students. I've been dealing with some creative angst recently and I found their sculptures and masks to be very powerful. 7/21/17

68 | Update map with all the places I've been | Escondido, CA. Radium Hot Springs, BC. Mt. Jewett, PA. Lots of adventures around this vast country of ours; memories marked with green, yellow, and red pins. 7/21/17

38 | Go to a concert at the Mann Center | We packed up our beach chairs and a cooler full of beers and headed to the Mann to listen to the Philadelphia Orchestra perform Tchaikovsky. A lovely summer evening with my lovely husband in our lovely city. 7/18/17

91 | Find out my blood type | Thank you, Amazon, for my $5 blood test kit. A-negative it is! 7/18/17

19 | Morris Arboretum | Redwood trees! There are redwood trees 10 minutes from my house! And I had no idea until now. I also learned about the existence of hummingbird moths. A magical place filled with magical creatures. 7/16/17

29 | Visit Chris and Margaret | Board games in the backyard, cider tasting in an art gallery, and a cheeseball at a winery in the mountains. Couldn't have asked for a better visit with these wonderful friends. 5/26/17

96 | Run a 10k | The weather report looked bad—real bad—and I thought for sure it'd be canceled. But it wasn't. Bill and I ran 6.2 miles in a Cape May n'oreaster with downpouring rain and 40 mph wind gusts off of the ocean in 50 degree temperatures. And we were only a minute or two off of our target times! Very proud of myself and my amazing brother for this accomplishment. 5/13/17

16 | Bartrams Gardens | The walkway was slightly underwhelming but I loved strolling past all of the gardens and learning more about the food they produce and the neighborhoods they impact. 5/7/17

79 | Renovate kitchen | Two months of cooking on a hot plate and washing dishes in the bathroom sink was well worth it. A truly life-changing investment. 5/6/17

28 | Visit Steve and Nikki | After three years, we finally got our asses out to Eugene to visit two of our most favorite people. It was a perfect trip filled with lots of laughter. Really miss these guys. 4/21/17

57 | Animate one of Mar's drawings | On March 27th, we launched npsmap.com, a site dedicated to Mar's latest endeavor of selling his national parks map and donating a portion of the proceeds to charity. I made a fun little demo reel to promote the map and I'm extremely pleased with how it turned out. 3/26/17

34 | Take Tony and Olivia somewhere fun | We did it. Mar and I successfully packed up a diaper bag and hit the road with the kiddos. We spent the morning playing arcade games and ski ball at iPlay America and it wasn't so bad—probably because Olivia slept almost the entire time. 3/11/17

70 | Convert home movies to DVDs | This is another item that's been on my list from the very beginning and feels so good to have finally accomplished. There was a brief time when we were transitioning between Pittsburgh and Philly when I thought these tapes were gone, accidentally given to Goodwill in a purge. I cried tears of relief when I found them in our basement. And now I have them on DVD and as raw files for editing. I'm so happy. 2/17/17

89 | Become an organ donor | The thought of saving someone's life has finally trumped the unsettling thought of someone harvesting my organs. 1/13/17

B3 | Blue Lagoon | We floated around in 100 degree water, rubbed our faces with gooey silica mud, drank beer and wine from the swim-up bar, and took cover from the falling hail under bridges. 12/28/16

B2 | The Lebowski Bar | 24 different White Russian flavors to choose from at this Big Lebowski-themed bar in downtown Reykjavic. 12/27/16

1 | Iceland | Iceland has been my #1 destination for as long as I can remember. It was rainy and snowy and windy and wild. Can't wait to go back in the summer and explore even more of its otherworldly landscape. 12/27/16

99 | Join a soccer league | This is another huge accomplishment for me! So far I've only played one game but a) I didn't die, b) I didn't even have a sub and I didn't die, and c) it was a lot of fun. Hopefully the anxiety lessens the more I play. 11/22/16

97 | Take another yoga class | I'm grateful to have finally discovered Blue Banyan Yoga, right here in Mt. Airy. This has been a carry-over item since my first list in 2009 and it feels really good to finally cross it off. 10/20/16

12 | Play laser tag | Running around and shooting each other with lasers was a good way to work off the angst we were feeling from being racially profiled by our crazy redneck neighbor. "Muslims or hispanics." 10/15/16

71 | Back-up everything to the cloud | I thought I knew what peace-of-mind felt like with two external hard-drives, but it hardly compares to this. Worth every penny. 10/8/16

92 | Buy new glasses | How could I resist Warby Parker's at-home try-on? After a couple of rounds, I was ready to commit to the Chilton. 9/10/16

10 | Go paddleboarding | After a couple of laps around a small portion of the lake, our new best friend, Stewart, gave us a free paddleboarding lesson. We floated around and chatted about road trips and watercolor painting. 8/27/16

31 | Visit Lauren (again) | It was 5 years in between visits but it felt like no time had passed since I last hung out with Lauren and David in Independence. We ate cheese and nachos (Rotel!), drank wine and margaritas, and watched lots and lots of TV. It was perfect. 8/26/16

39 | Go to Han Dynasty | Setting my mouth on fire was a small price to pay for the deliciousness of the notorious Spicy Dan Dan Noodles. 8/19/16

44 | Go to The Bok | Stunning views. Perfect weather. Ample people-watching. Afterwards, we used Nikki's visit as an excuse to scarf down cheesesteaks...and were instantly filled with regret. 8/5/16

47 | Take friends to Penns Woods Winery | So much laughter, wine, and cheese. And so many creepy Snapchats. 7/31/16

B1 | Hi Spot Lanes | This magical BYO bowling alley in Roxborough is trapped in time. We drank and laughed and bowled under the unwavering gaze of the two Italian owners. 7/30/16

20 | Escape the Room | I had way too much fun doing this. And we got out with 5 minutes to spare! Can't wait to explore all of the escape rooms in Philly. 7/16/16


Starting July 1, 2016. Ending March 28, 2019.

B = Bonus: Not on my official list but worthy of mention.

55 out of 100 items completed on June 15, 2016.

100 | Save $20 for each completed item | Saving is not my strong suit but I somehow managed to cross this off my list. This money will likely go towards a down payment on our future Poconos house. 6/15/16

13 | Magic Gardens | Reminded me so much of Watts Tower in Los Angeles. A truly stunning array of junk. 6/12/16

51 | Learn After Effects | My first official After Effects project for work was a 79 ft. tall digital billboard at the entrance of the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. 6/1/16

34 | Fly in a helicopter | We floated in the clouds high above Hilton Head Island and wondered if we could ever get a helicopter of our very own. 5/13/16

87 | Go to the dentist | I dodged a bullet with this one! It was at least 8 years since I was at the dentist and I escaped with only two fillings. 4/8/16

B59 | Rehoboth Beach | A beautiful spring evening, strolling along the beach in the golden hour. 3/11/16

B58 | Dogfish Head Brewery | We tasted yummy beers and bought a set of quirky coasters. 3/11/16

B57 | Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum | Creepy. So very creepy. The presidents were more convincing than the movie stars. 2/6/16

65 | Make massaman curry | I did it and it tasted pretty okay—but it's so much easier to order it from Phu Pha. 1/23/16

67 | Make crepes | Snow fell outside while Mar and I sat in the dining room and stuffed our faces with crepes. I think I like pancakes better. 1/23/16

B56 | Albright-Knox Art Gallery | I don't remember much about this gallery, but I remember it was a highlight of our Buffalo trip (probably because it was one of the only things I did besides watch "Making a Murderer" back at the hotel). 12/27/15

B55 | Buffalo | This was our first research trip for Mar's next city map. It was dreary and rainy and I spent a lot of time in the hotel watching Netflix and recovering from a hectic Zucca Christmas. 12/26/15

98 | Pay off my student loan | Holy shit. I did it. 11/16/15

37 | Go to the orchestra | Thanks to Travelzoo's discounted tickets, we enjoyed a delicious dinner on the back patio at Little Nonna's (best eggplant parm ever) followed by listening to the orchestra at the Kimmel Center. It was a lovely night. 11/5/15

32 | Ride a zipline | The Fükfas crew had a blast climbing through the trees, sliding down ziplines ("CLEAR!"), and stumbling through obstacles high in the sky. 10/16/15

B54 | Smithsonian’s National Zoo | While visiting Karen in DC for the first time, we took a lovely stroll through the FREE zoo. 10/11/15

B53 | Peace Valley Park | It's always fun to discover a new and beautiful park so close to home. 9/26/15

B52 | Diggerland | Front-end loaders and bulldozers and monster trucks galore. Diggerland had it all! Well, at least everything a 2.5 year old boy could ever want. 7/25/15

14 | Longwood (again) | We drank beers in the garden and walked around the unbelievable Nightscapes installation, listening to Jon's soundtrack. 7/10/15

9 | Teddy Roosevelt | I'll never forget waking up to the sound of a bison's heavy footsteps within mere inches of our tent. I was paralyzed with fear and so glad that Karen was there with me to experience something so terrifying and bizarre. 6/25/15

6 | Glacier | Bears! Bears! So many bears! Not really, but we were prepared as we departed on our hike into grizzly country. We were afraid Glacier wouldn't be able to live up to the beauty of Banff, but it certainly did not disappoint. 6/23/15

B51 | Home of a Thousand Faces | Rolf's home is filled with paintings, wood carvings, sculptures, drawings, taxidermy, anything you can imagine. 6/21/15

B50 | Swim in a hot spring | The water was warm and relaxing but I wished it didn't feel so much like a public swimming pool. 6/21/15

B49 | Canoeing on a glacial lake | Hell yeah! This was one of the coolest, most spontaneous things we did in Banff. We floated around on the milky turquoise water beneath stunning views of the glacier. 6/20/15

B48 | Lake Agnes Tea House | Our fingers were frozen by the time we reached the tea house, but a warm cup of hot chocolate rejuvenated us for the hike back down. 6/20/15

7 | Banff | My memories of Banff are filled with spectacular views everywhere we looked, smiling and giggling with joy at exploring such a magical place, and feeling so grateful to be there with my best friend. 6/19/15

31 | Play Bingo | This wasn't the most exciting Füklympics event we've ever played, but it was a nice mellow way to end the evening. 5/24/15

94 | A week of no TV | Who has time for TV when there's a gigantic alpaca head to construct?! 5/19/15

80 | Run a half marathon | My solo winter runs did little to prepare me for the adrenaline of race day. I ran way too fast and was exhausted halfway through, but I pushed myself to the end and I'm so proud I did. Seeing Mar near the finish line brought me to tears. 5/17/15

43 | Donate blood | This one is a little bit of a stretch but I'm counting it. It's not my fault they didn't want my blood. Who needs iron anyway? 5/13/15

29 | Pet a sloth | To celebrate one year of wedded bliss, Mario took me to pet a sloth at the Lehigh Valley Zoo. They wheeled him around in a cooler. We fed him carrots and he ate them upside down. 5/10/15

B47 | Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago | Another art museum where the pieces I remember most were in the gift shop. 4/14/15

B46 | Wrigley Field | I'm pretty sure this would have been a Mar list item if he kept a list. Much more exciting for him than me, but I still had fun. 4/13/15

17 | Chicago (again) | God, I love this city. Even though I was here for work, Mar and I had plenty of time to explore. I even got to run 10 miles along the lakefront because I was in the thick of half-marathon training. 4/11/15

33 | Fly first class | I gave myself away as a first-class newbie when I couldn't figure out how to work the tray table. But I figured it out eventually and LOOK AT THAT MEAL! 4/11/15

B45 | Cape May | I never would have guessed that this impromptu day trip to Cape May would be so life-changing. We discovered our favorite winery and dreamt of someday owning affordable property at the shore. 4/4/15

44 | Organize earrings | Too bad I don't like most of these earrings anymore. But, hey, they're organized! 3/22/15

57 | Barnes Foundation | I've never been to a museum quite like the Barnes. The walls are packed with paintings and organized in such a unique and impactful way. That ol' Barnes sure knew what he was doing. 3/21/15

69 | Make hummus | Who knew it was so easy?! 3/21/15

B44 | Whispering Bench | To conclude our Philly Adventure Valentine's Day, we visited the Whispering Bench and spoke to each other from opposite sides of the park. 2/14/15

B43 | Visit Harry Kalas’s grave | A special grave for a special man. 2/14/15

B42 | See the Love Letter for You murals | We kept our eyes peeled for all of the Love Letter murals we could spot through the snow. 2/14/15

B41 | Eat a Termini Brother’s cannoli | No better way to follow a DiNic's roast pork sandwich than with a Termini Brother's cannoli. We ate it on the El as we embarked on the next part of adventure day. 2/14/15

B40 | Eat a DiNic’s roast pork sandwich | We were lucky enough to find our own little table in the bustling Reading Terminal Market where we could sit and stuff our faces with this world-famous sandwich. 2/14/15

B39 | Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art | What a wonderful museum! Unlike most other galleries, I liked (and remember) most of the art I saw here. 2/14/15

B38 | Benjamin Franklin Museum | Next, we made our way over to the Benjamin Franklin Museum. It was a little disappointing that it was recently renovated so we didn't get to witness weird animatronic displays from the 70s, but we still had a ton of fun learning about ol' Benny. 2/14/15

B37 | Dream Garden | Rather than do nothing like usual, Mar and I decided to have a Philly Adventure Valentine's Day. First stop: the Dream Garden—a stunning mosaic located in the Curtis Building. 2/14/15

59 | See a show in NYC | Watching a group of half-naked adults writhing around on a platform for 1.5 hours isn't necessarily what I had in mind for this item, but it counts. 1/10/15

B36 | Whispering Arch | We looked a little silly talking into this famous wall in Grand Central Station until we saw other people doing it too. And it worked! Jen spoke to us from the other side of the room and it sounded like she was right behind us. 1/10/15

56 | MoMA (again) | We embarked on a NYC Adventure Day to complete my birthday weekend. Saturday started with a return trip to the MoMA. 1/10/15

B35 | Brooklyn Museum | We spent my 34th birthday hanging out with friends in NYC. First stop: the Brooklyn Museum. Next stop: the bar where a Brooklyn-based DJ told me his life story and I unintentionally made him cry. 1/9/15

B34 | Stone Brewing | We drank beer and played bocce under the clear blue San Diego sky. 4/27/14

B33 | Temecula | Some of my fondest memories of San Diego are of my wine-tasting trips to Temecula with Karen. We would sit in the sun and drink almond champagne and on the way home we'd stop and eat delicious garlic brie bread until our bellies ached. 4/25/14

B32 | San Diego Natural History Museum | I don't remember much about this place but I remember there were a lot of skulls which, of course, I loved. 4/24/14

B31 | Pep Bowl | We had the lanes all to ourselves in this basement BYO alley in Center City. 9/13/13

B30 | Museum of Moving Image | We got to see all sorts of cool behind-the-scenes movie paraphernalia in this museum. 8/31/13

B29 | Outsider Art show at Philadelphia Museum of Art | I enjoyed this unique collection of art more than I've enjoyed most gallery shows. Bonus: we bought two of our most favorite mugs in the gift shop. 6/5/13

B28 | Go to a Philadelphia Union game | We ate hoagies and drank beer in the parking lot with Steve and Nikki before heading into PPL Park for the game. 4/13/13

B27 | Concrete City | Exhausted from paintball, a group of us stopped off at Concrete City to explore the abandoned compound and take photos amongst the graffiti and bugs. 10/18/14

B26 | Go tidepooling | So many starfish and other blobby sea creatures in all different colors. 7/18/14

5 | Olympic | Because we arrived in Olympic during a bizarre heat wave, we were hot and sweaty as we explored the park. Not the lush green rainforest experience we were hoping for, but still beautiful.  7/17/14

B25 | Stay on a houseboat | We spent one night on the houseboat in downtown Seattle, sweating profusely, listening to the boat traffic chug by throughout the night, and knew we couldn't spend a second night there. 7/16/14

B24 | Victoria | An adorable little city. We walked through the streets, explored the waterfront, bought a souvenir sweatshirt, and ate a delicious dinner by candlelight at a charming farm-to-table restaurant. 7/15/14

B23 | Juan de Fuca Provincial Park | The wildlife was the most memorable part of this park. We saw a sea otter in the ocean and bald eagles flying high above. Mario attempted to lure the eagles out of the trees via serenade, but was without luck. 7/15/14

B22 | Stay in a yurt | Much fancier than what we expected! We drank wine and ate cheese and drew in our sketchbooks and relaxed by the fire. A lovely break after a day on the road. 7/14/14

B21 | Vancouver Island | We arrived via ferry under beautiful blue skies. 7/14/14

B20 | Sea to Sky Gondola | This gondola ride was my first introduction to the splendor of the British Columbia Rocky Mountains. We were giddy with excitement as the gondola climbed to the top. 7/14/14

B19 | Richmond Night Market | Words can hardly describe this surreal experience. There were Asian opera singers, kids encased in plastic balls floating around in pools, deep friend squid and tofu pudding food stands, and so. many. people. 7/13/14

4 | Vancouver | Vancouver is a stunning city, unlike any other that I've visited before. We checked into our downtown Airbnb apartment and explored the waterfront, taking pictures of boats and buildings and enjoying the beautiful day. We even got to see an Emmett lookalike! 7/13/14

41 | Go on a honeymoon | I flew out to Portland to meet Mar at ICON for a couple of days and we hit the road for our Pacific Northwest Honeymoon Adventure. First stop: donuts! 7/13/14

83 | Get air conditioning | Personally, I don't think there are many home improvements that can be labeled as "life-changing." But this is one of them. 6/26/14

66 | Make pesto | Scape pesto? Why not! 6/25/14

64 | Join a farm share | I remember loving the farm share that Justin and I joined back in the day so Mar and I signed up for the Lancaster Farm Fresh Co-op. 6/18/14

B18 | Throw a surprise wedding | Also one of my most cherished memories. I'll never forget the looks on our friends' faces when they realized what was happening. I'll never forget Justin in his pope outfit feeding us Nutterbutters. And I'll never forget the overwhelming love and gratitude that I felt all weekend long as I ran around in the dirt and made arts and crafts and played Ultimate Frisbee in my wedding dress. Pure joy. 5/24/14

97 | Get Emmett's teeth cleaned | We hoped a good cleaning would lessen the intensity of Emmett's garbage mouth. It did...a little bit. 5/12/14

40 | Get married | One of the most special memories of my entire life. We gathered our immediate families together for an all-expense paid weekend in Philadelphia and met in John F. Collins park for our wedding ceremony. The ceremony was short and sweet, and even though everyone got drenched in the rain (and we left the umbrellas in the Über on the way over to the park) we still had a lovely time afterwards at Giorgio on Pine for dinner and dessert, followed by drinks and an impromptu dance party with Pitbull back at the hotel. It was perfect. 5/10/14

54 | Win a design award | The first of many design awards that I won while working at MediMedia Managed Markets (of all places). 5/2/14

89 | Go to a dermatologist | The doctor cut my skin off! And the sound of the doctor cutting my skin off made me pass out. And then the thought of the sound of the doctor cutting my skin off almost made me pass out again on my drive home. 3/31/14

45 | Bobsledding | We headed to the old Olympic bobsled course in Lake Placid for our Fükfas XI adventure day. I piled into a bobsled with Mar, JD, and Justin and off we went! It was bumpy and intense and a ton of fun. After that, we hit up the toboggan chute where we stood in long lines in the freezing cold and waited for our turn to be shot out onto Mirror Lake on a rickety old toboggan. A very special snow-filled memory with some of my favorite people. 2/8/14

B17 | Green Ribbon Trail | We returned to explore the other half of the Green Ribbon Trail (sans-snowshoes) and ended up at Valley Green Inn for a delicious lunch and spiked hot cider. 2/1/14

B16 | Neversink Mountains | The season of Grubstep continued with another wintery hike through the Neversink Mountains. 1/19/14

39 | Snowshoeing | This momentous day marked the birth of the Grubstep™. We snowshoed for 8 miles on the Green Ribbon Trail and ended up back in Ambler for burgers at KC's Alley. 1/4/14

B15 | French Creek State Park | As we hiked around the lake, we were struck with the inspiration to go for a hike every weekend in January. 12/28/13

36 | Foamhenge | An impromptu trip to this roadside attraction did not disappoint. 10/28/13

B14 | Craggy Gardens | We ascended the mountains into cold and windy weather and hiked through landscapes that lived up to their rugged name. 10/27/13

B13 | Asheville | Mar, Emmett, and I hit the road for a long weekend in Asheville, NC. We strolled through the city, sampled beers at a few of the many breweries, and ended the weekend with a spectacular Caribbean meal at Nine Mile. That restaurant alone would give us enough reason to return to Asheville. So good. 10/26/13

B12 | The Getty | The Getty is a stunning piece of architecture. We took pictures of the smoggy LA skyline and wandered through the indoor and outdoor exhibits. Eventually we made our way back to the hotel where we laughed and chatted until late into the night (like usual). 10/13/13

B11 | La Brea Tarpits | Next, we headed over to the La Brea tarpits and spent most of our time confused about what we were actually looking at. 10/13/13

B10 | Six Feet Under house | Second stop: the Six Feet Under house! We pulled up, took a picture, and drove a way. 10/13/13

B9 | Watts Tower | First stop on LA Adventure Day: Watts Tower—a sky-high pile of beautiful junk. 10/13/13

96 | Take multivitamin regularly | An easy (and healthy) habit to form. 8/25/13

82 | Buy a piece of exercise equipment | I'm a terrible bike rider out in the world, but I'm pretty okay when the bike doesn't move. 8/11/13

24 | Volunteer at an animal shelter | I felt exhilarated after my orientation at the Philly Animal Care and Control Team. I volunteered a couple of times and walked the dogs around the yard. Here's the first dog I ever walked. She was a sweetie. I hope she found a good home. 8/7/13

B8 | Plant a tree | We had no idea when we planted these trees how quickly they would grow. 8/4/13

15 | Grounds for Sculpture (again) | Such a unique place. I love wandering around the grounds, discovering new sculptures, and marveling at the impeccable landscape around every corner. 8/2/13

20 | Visit Karen in San Diego | 70 degrees and sunny all the time? How about 90 degrees and humid...just like Philly! We still had fun even though the weather was brutal. I also got to add "Accidentally go to a nude beach" to my list! 6/29/13

B7 | Muir Woods | Nothing like tacking some outdoor adventure time onto the end of a tedious work trip. 6/28/13

42 | Offer to babysit for Bill and Joelle | All I remember about this day is sweating profusely, getting covered in green bean mush, and watching Tony's little feet bounce, bounce, bounce on the living room rug. 6/1/13

38 | Go to Cirque du Soleil | Nikki and I marveled at the acrobatic wonderland that is Cirque and then we hustled through the streets of Camden, desperately trying to find our train station. 5/31/13

93 | 100 consecutive days of gratitude | Living in a constant state of appreciation is something that I try to practice every day even though I'm not always disciplined enough to write down my thoughts. 5/11/13

90 | 100 consecutive days of flossing | A new healthy habit was formed! (I'm writing this 3.5 years later and I still floss every day.) 5/11/13

99 | Eliminate all debt to my family | Nothing can beat the feeling of handing my mom an envelope full of cold, hard cash. She helped me so much during my post-California return to Pennsylvania and I am eternally grateful. I wish I could give her and dad all of the money in the world. 5/5/13

B6 | Pacifica | Terri and I drove out to Pacifica to see the ocean and ended up enjoying a romantic dinner at the Moonraker Restaurant with front row seats for the sunset over the water. 3/28/13

B5 | Pier 39 | The sea lions at Pier 39 were too funny—a bunch of fat furry sausages plopped together into one big barking pile. 3/26/13

B4 | Catalina State Park | So many cacti and lovely views of the canyons. 3/17/13

B3 | Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum | The wild bird show was amazing! I stood out in the desert and watched owls and hawks swoop down from the trees and land on the instructor's arm. 3/16/13

B2 | Lost Dutchman State Park | It didn't take long for me to get used to the familiar feeling of hiking solo through the Arizona desert. After a couple of years in a relationship, it was nice to know that the independent traveler part of me was still there. I hope she always will be. 3/15/13

86 | Fix fireplace | Even though the chimney guy quoted us $5000 to get the fireplace workin', we've been enjoying toasty fires ever since birthwarming night. 1/11/13

46 | Host a housewarming bash | We worked our asses off all week and it paid off on party night. Our house looked even better filled with all of our wonderful friends. 1/11/13

48 | Build a piece of furniture | "This isn't going to work. This isn't going to work. This isn't going to work....Wait....I think it worked!" 1/6/13

63 | Go to the Melting Pot | We stuffed ourselves silly on delicious fondue. 1/4/13

52 | Buy antler chandelier | Holy crap! Mario bought it, hid it, installed it, and surprised me with an early birthday gift. Unreal! I love it so much. Now if only we could turn it off... 1/4/13

B1 | Korean BBQ | This was...weird, to say the least, but a fun adventure with awesome adventure buddies. 1/3/13

Starting January 1, 2013. Ending September 28, 2015. Extended to June 15, 2016.

B = Bonus: Not on my official list but worthy of mention.


82 out of 100 items completed on December 31, 2012.

99 | Save $10 for each completed item on list | 82 items = $820 in savings. 12/30/12

71 | Drive through all 48 contiguous states | From my first trek out to Utah in the spring of 2000 to crossing over the snowy Canadian border into Michigan almost 13 years later and all of the thousands of miles in between. 12/21/12

45 | Niagara Falls (again) | Thank you, Travelzoo, for our hotel room overlooking the falls, a tour of a chocolate factory, a 3-course dinner for 2, $50 to spend at the casino, tastings at 4 wineries, and breakfast for 2 in the morning. 12/21/12

40 | Stargazing at Cherry Springs | It was cold and cloudy in a field filled with astronomer pods. At least we got to see some stars from the parking lot of the hotel. 12/19/12

83 | Run a 5K | Woohoo! I survived. 9:39 minute miles. Not too shabby. 12/15/12

58 | Buy a piece of taxidermy | I spotted him at Philly Salvage and I had to have him. He was a buck in a bucket and now he's all mine. 11/25/12

84 | Batting cages | Holy crap, this was a fun day. Brunch, pig races, batting cages, mini golf, homemade ice cream, tasty beers, and terrible live music. A great day with great friends. 10/14/12

38 | Buy a house | It's so hard to believe that this is MY house. I'm beyond thrilled. 10/3/12

46 | White water rafting | We bundled up in our wetsuits and set out in the rain on the Hudson River for a day of white water fun. Got to do lots of leaf peeping from the raft, too. 9/29/12

41 | Leafpeeping in New England | We all met up at Justin's family's cabin in the Adirondacks for Fükfas VII and enjoyed a few days of leaf peeping, hot cider-drinking, and game-playing. I only wish the weather had been a little nicer for optimal peeping. 9/28/12

60 | Make a Flash animation | Not what I had originally intended but my interest in Flash has diminished quite a bit over the last 2 years. This is a snippet from an animated presentation I created in InDesign. Kinda like Flash, but easier. 9/24/12

89 | Take my entire family out to dinner | FINALLY! Not only did we get to spend time together at the Princeton on our Avalon vacation, but I got to treat my family to a [rather underwhelming, over-priced] meal. 9/10/12

B34 | Cape Cod | Admittedly, this is a stretch. We went to a wedding in Plymouth, MA and spent the next morning driving in Cape Cod...for about 15 minutes. 9/2/12

35 | Go to a hot spring | When I initially wrote this list, I intended to swim in a hot spring. But since I didn't word it that way, Prismatic Spring counts! 8/17/12

7 | Yellowstone | So crowded! So many Asians! So many buffalo! And the landscape was other-worldly and bubbling and colorful. 8/17/12

8 | Grand Tetons | Goddamn you, Idaho, and your stupid haze! Still impressive but I can only imagine how mind-blowing they would be in better weather. 8/17/12

B33 | Jackson Hole | What a blast! Beers and pretzels at Snake River Brewing. Super cool dog-themed art and free wine at most of the local galleries. Beers sitting on saddles at the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar. Unexpectedly delicious Thai food at Thai Me Up. 8/16/12

53 | Fill up a sketchbook with drawings | Drawing doesn't come naturally to me so filling up a sketchbook felt forced. This, however, was one of my favorite creations inspired by one of Emmett's favorite toys. 7/29/12

12 | World's End | Probably the most disappointing list item yet. Drove 3.5 hrs, stood by the creek for 5 minutes in the pouring rain, drove 3.5 hours home. I'm still counting it though. 7/27/12

34 | Horse race | I'll never forget the overwhelming joy of Riveting's victory and the utter disappointment of Dynamite Lonnie D's loss. "Run, motherfucker! RUN!!!" 7/15/12

B32 | Grounds for Sculpture | Whoa! This place is so fun! Can't wait to return with a picnic, more friends, and more sunlight. 7/13/12

79 | Go to a story slam | Some were good and some were bad but the night was fun. Good times at the World Cafe Live catching up with an old friend. 7/9/12

59 | Make a stop motion animation | Fun with Sculpey on a lazy Sunday afternoon. 6/24/12

23 | Winchester Mystery House | Winchester Mystery House? More like Winchester Awkward Teenage Tour Guide Who Is Clearly Uncomfortable and Therefore Making Me Extremely Uncomfortable. Disappointing. 6/16/12

B31 | San Gregorio State Beach | Holy shit, this place was gorgeous. At first I enjoyed the scenery from ground level but then I ventured up into the cliffs and realized the full extent of its beauty. 6/14/12

B30 | Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve | A coyote, a bobcat, bunnies, deer, mountain bikers, and (unfortunately) many ticks. 6/13/12

11 | Big Sur | After finding out I'd be spending a week working in San Bruno, I knew Big Sur would be my first destination. And although I was exhausted, it was a beautiful destination indeed. 6/10/12

94 | Eliminate all credit card debt | Out of all of the accomplished items on my list, I find this one the most difficult to believe. I never thought this glorious day would come. 5/31/12

67 | Get a massage | A tingly shoulder blade led me to discover the exquisite pain of a professional massage. Thanks, Lucinda! 4/23/12

50 | Ride in a hot air balloon | We soared in the sunrise above farmland filled with mooing cows and running horses and waving Amish. A magical way to spend Easter morning. 4/8/12

70 | Ride on a motorcycle | Technically, this was a scooter but I'm counting it as a motorcycle because a) a motorcycle license was required to drive it and b) we got up to 65 mph at one point. Good enough for me! 4/7/12

51 | Walk across the Ben Franklin Bridge | Who would have guessed that we'd almost get run over by a jeep in the pedestrian walkway! 3/20/12

21 | American Museum of Natural History | "Feeding or eating?" Caption © 2012 Karen Onorato. Tweet it. 3/17/12

15 | Coney Island | We strolled in the sunshine and listened to people speaking in Russian and took pictures of old ladies with colorful umbrellas. 3/17/12

30 | Finger Lakes | Beautiful winter scenery and yummy tastings at Finger Lakes Distillery made up for our teeny tiny hotel room. 1/29/12

44 | Dog sledding | So happy I can actually cross this off my list! The dogs were sweet, the lake was serene, and the sled driver was from Havertown. Small world. 1/29/12

B29 | Lake Placid | Looking forward to checking this place out in the summer or fall. Reminded me of Moab, UT. 1/29/12

98 | Buy a new car | With a bit of sadness and hesitation, I handed over Lou Maxima and headed home with John Mazda—and promptly had an emotional meltdown! Turns out, I'm not so good at making big commitments. 1/25/12

68 | Shoot a gun | Mario surprised me with a trip to the shooting range to celebrate my 31st birthday. It was equal parts terrifying and fun and we learned that Mario is a natural born killer. (Noted.) 1/7/12

16 | Fallingwater | Even on this cold and rainy December day, the tour was packed. Also, Frank Lloyd Wright was kind of a dick. Who knew! 12/27/11

B28 | Kentuck Knob | We oohed and ahhed over the Andy Goldsworthy pieces in the sculpture garden in the pouring rain. 12/27/11

B27 | Mt. Rushmore | I learned my lesson from Crazy Horse and didn't pay to get into Mt. Rushmore. This shot was taken from the road. That's all I really needed to see anyway. 11/15/11

B26 | Crazy Horse National Monument | I got suckered into paying for this. Checking out the Native American museum was cool but not worth it in the end. 11/15/11

B25 | Devil's Tower | This was one of the most memorable highlights from my midwestern excursion. Spotting it through the rolling hills for the first time was a definite thrill. 11/15/11

B24 | Wall Drug | A whole lot of billboards for a whole lot of tourist trap. 11/14/11

9 | Badlands | I'll never forget my encounter with this ram—the sound of his feet, the suspicious look in his eyes, and the sudden realization that I should probably get back in my car. 11/14/11

B23 Corn Palace | A couple of sweet old ladies embraced my arrival at this glorified high school gym. 11/14/11

B22 Leila's Hair Museum | There's a museum in Independence, MO and it's filled with HAIR! Followed by thrift shopping and frozen custard to round out our KCMO weekend. 11/12/11

31 | Baltimore Aquarium (again) | Aquariums are fun but, in all honesty, this was kind of a letdown. Not worth the $25/person admission fee. Cool jellyfish though. 9/3/11

32 | AVAM (again) | A delightfully entertaining and playful museum full of outsider art. Highlight: Chris Roberts Antieau. But since I wasn't able to take a photo of her work I shall post this absurd anteater instead. 9/3/11

22 | Groundhog Zoo | Phil and his pal slept peacefully while Mario snapped an unwarranted number of photos of me by the window. A momentous occasion in my life indeed. 8/26/11

B21 | Gobbler's Knob | We even got to sneak a peak inside Phil's stump. And a strange vehicle that used to be used as a torture chamber (that was Mario's hypothesis). 8/26/11

52 | Cook a 3 course meal for someone | Italian Meatball Soup, Ravioli Skillet, and Nutty Carrot Cake Cheesecake Bars, all for my love. 8/23/11

B20 | Pine Barrens | Discovering the home of the Jersey Devil, kayaking through snaking rivers, and Heath bar s'mores. 8/13/11

24 | Museum of Bad Art | "Lady with Big Pants: Reclining on a daybed...the faceless Reubenesque model proudly displays her very large and perfectly aligned feet." 7/23/11

4 | Boston | Where the streets run like cobwebs. 7/23/11

B19 | Savannah | Wandering the streets of Savannah, drunk off of pina colada at 1 in the afternoon. A fun daytime excursion to Georgia. 4/26/11

B18 | Hilton Head Island | A week of beach-sitting, bike-riding, sunrise-watching, and fun-having in an oceanfront VRBO. 4/23/11

96 | Buy a second external hard drive | All of my music and pictures have been successfully backed up. 500GB of peace of mind. 2/10/11

B17 | Safari Bar | Almost every inch of wall space in this bar was covered with taxidermy, including a full-size polar bear and elephant head. So cool. 2/5/11

13 | Conneaut Lake | What a strange, deserted place. The snow really accentuated its creepiness. 2/5/11

86 | Watch "The Wizard of Oz" | Totally fucked. 2/4/11

87 | Watch "The Graduate" | Enjoyable. I even managed to stay awake the whole time! 1/30/11

B16 | Moundsville | There was a mound. And it looked like a hill. 1/30/11

B15 | Go to a Wheeling Nailers game | My favorite part of the evening was playing the "Try to Find an Attractive Person in Wheeling" game which Mario and I both lost. The hockey was pretty fun too. 1/29/11

B14 | Prabhupada's Palace of Gold | Off to West Virginia we went for a short winter weekend adventure. I don't know if it was the intricate stained glass, the excessive gold leafing, or the ginormous white swan frozen in the river, but The Palace of Gold far exceeded our expectations. 1/29/11

43 | Paintballing | To celebrate my 30th birthday, a huge group of Philly and Pittsburgh friends alike ran around in the freezing cold and shot one another with paintball guns. It was perfect. 1/8/11

62 | Create my own side business | On January 3rd, Perfect Cursive was featured on the Etsy blog in their "Fresh Shops" series. After this, we began to see a steady rise in sales and started to view Perfect Cursive as a business, not just a hobby. 1/3/11

64 | Subscribe to Juxtapoz (again) | A gift for Mario for his birthday (which just so happened to double as a list item for me). 11/29/10

27 | Skydeck in Sears Tower | Lots of waiting around in long winding lines, but the view from the top was worth the wait. 11/7/10

B13 | Museum of Science and Industry | Not only was the Jim Henson's Fantastic World exhibit one of the best things I've ever seen, the museum itself was completely over the top and spectacular. 11/6/10

3 | Chicago | I've been dreaming of visiting this city for years and it far exceeded all of my expectations. Perhaps a move to Chicago is in my future? 11/6/10

B12 | Eat mussels | We got a bowl of free mussels at Mike's Seafood Shack in Sea Isle City and they were delicious. Happy one year anniversary to us! 9/13/10

47 Kayaking | High tide in the Avalon bay surrounded by egrets and cormorants and some of the most extravagant houses you've ever seen. Can't wait to kayak again. 9/13/10

B11 Kennywood | The lines for the rides were too long because it was Labor Day weekend but we ate bacon cheese fries and played skee-ball and took a stuffed toy home to Emmett. 9/4/10

36 | Drive-in movie | On my way home from Kinzua, I stopped at the Moonlight Theatre in Brookville. I watched half of "Vampires Suck" and half of "The Other Guys." Combine the two and that counts as one whole [terrible] movie. 8/28/10

14 | Kinzua Bridge State Park | I went in with low expectations and ended up being pleasantly surprised. Not much to do but it was still cool to look at the broken bridge. 8/28/10

29 | Warhol Museum | A lovely afternoon at the Warhol with two of my favorite people, followed by tasty beers and operatic singing at Church Brew Works. A truly wonderful day. 8/15/10

74 | Eat Moroccan food | I had my first taste of pastilla at a little tapas restaurant in Shadyside and, good lord, was it delicious. The coconut sangria wasn't bad either. 8/10/10

97 | Buy a new iMac | I guess I shouldn't cross this off since technically Mario bought the new computer for me. But I'll pay him back...someday. 7/12/10

80 | Vacation with friends | Camp Fükfas I was a wild success. We went to the Terrace Mountain Chalet in Raystown Lake, and spent a couple of glorious days throwing cornhole, playing croquet, eating tasty BBQ, and shooting cans of PBR with a bb gun. Looking forward to Camp Fükfas II! 6/5/10

92 | Go to the eye doctor and get new contacts | Exciting, I know. 6/2/10

37 | Picnic | After grabbing a bottle of Stella at Narcisi, we headed to Hartwood Acres for a picnic. Best ham and cheese sandwich I've ever had. 5/16/10

42 | Wine tasting | The patio area of Narcisi Winery looked like some kind of weird middle-aged Republican jazz club but the inside was delightful. As was the wine. 5/16/10

B10 PPG Zoo | I admit, a slightly lame bonus item since the aquarium and zoo are connected. But I really liked this elephant photo so it's going on the list. 5/15/10

26 | PPG Aquarium | Too many children. Not enough room. But sea otter snacktime made up for the crowds. 5/15/10

63 | Buy a piece of artwork | Mario and I bought "Bears on Planes" at Art All Night. I love it. It's hanging above the fireplace in the living room. 4/25/10

55 | Submit a piece of artwork for a show/contest | Art All Night is an amazing event in Pittsburgh where anyone, absolutely anyone, is allowed to submit a piece of artwork to exhibit. The 'gallery' is then open from 6 pm on Saturday until 2 pm on Sunday. I submitted my Tom Waits sculptograph...and it sold! A really great experience overall. 4/24/10

17 | Gravity Hill | Who knew defying the laws of gravity could be so mundane? That's a lie. It was thrilling. 4/15/10

54 | Sell a piece of artwork | Phew! I sold 5 pieces yesterday. Not great, but not horrible. This little coffee man was the first to go. Looking forward to vending at more festivals in the future. 4/10/10

61 | Sell at an arts and crafts show | On April 10th, I will be attempting to sell my Sculptographs at the I Made It! Market in Pittsburgh's South Side Works. I've never done anything like this before and have no idea what to expect. Hopefully I'll be back next week to cross off number 54. 4/10/10

88 | Watch "The Godfather" | Not bad, not bad. 4/4/10

B9 | Ohiopyle State Park | Hiking was necessary on this 85 degree day in April. Today also marks my one month anniversary since moving to Pittsburgh. 4/3/10

95 | Buy a printer/scanner | I wasn't expecting to cross this off my list so soon. But then I tried to run a paper bag through Mario's printer. And it broke. I love the new printer. It's wireless. 4/1/10

B8 Pinball and game room festival | Who knew I would be so good at PGA roller-ball arcade golf! And Buck Hunter. But definitely not pinball. 3/27/10

18 | Cuyahoga Valley | A national park in Ohio? It was about as exciting as we were expecting. Still a great day with two of my favorite adventuring partners. 3/27/10

B7 | Drag show | In West Virginia, no less. 3/20/10

49 | Live alone | This is something I've wanted to do for years and now I've finally done it. Feels great to cross this off my list. 3/5/10

B6 | Eat Primanti Brothers | I've been slightly terrified of Primanti Brothers since I started spending time in Pittsburgh. Now I realize there was nothing to fear. A tasty, albeit enormous, sandwich. 3/4/10

B5 | National Aviary | Birds are crazy. 3/4/10

66 | Move to another city | On March 3rd, I bid a teary farewell to Philadelphia and headed to Pittsburgh to start over fresh. I'm very excited to begin this new phase of my life. 3/3/10

B4 | Build a volcano | Josh gave me a volcano for my birthday and we turned it into something much more epic than I ever imagined. 2/27/10

56 | Give artwork to 15 friends | All of the sculptographs have finally been distributed. It's been an interesting experience but, overall, I'd say the reaction was positive and people seemed to appreciate their gifts. From my point of view, surprising people with handmade gifts was thoroughly enjoyable and I hope to continue making art for friends in the future. 2/26/10

57 | Collaborate with someone on an art project | Mario gave me a drawing of my grandfather for my birthday. I turned it into a sculptograph for my mom for her birthday. (Mario and I also collaborated on redesigning his website but that didn't feel like an art project. That felt like work.) 2/19/10

75 Eat Ethiopian food | Pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this. My birthday treat to Karen to make up for the fact that I missed her party. 2/16/10

48 Ride the incline | We managed to go for a ride right before Snowpocalypse 2010 hit the Pittsburgh area. By the time we rode back up, heavy snow had already started falling. 2/5/10

85 | Watch "Say Anything" | Meh. Romantic comedies aren't my thing. 1/31/10

72 | Make homemade pasta | We took a leaky slop hole and turned it into delicious homemade ravioli with spinach-ricotta filling. (Crossing a lot of foodstuffs off my list recently. Guess that's what happens when it's too cold to go outside.) 1/30/10

B3 Make a Monte Cristo | The ingredients were there so a Monte Cristo was born. It was tasty, especially with syrup and a glass of Chimay. 1/25/10

77 Make a Tres Leches cake | Not nearly as good as Las Cazuelas in Northern Liberties but a successful first attempt nonetheless. 1/24/10

25 | Carnegie Museum | Taxidermy, taxidermy, and more taxidermy! And fancy tea cup collections. 1/23/10

B1 | Tiny World | A roadside attraction in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, complete with tiny courthouse, tiny auto dealer, and tiny elementary school. It was cold and rainy and hilarious and wonderful. 1/17/10

19 | Island Beach | A beautiful fox-filled day of adventuring with my best friend. 1/16/10

76 Eat pho | Fun experience, but I managed to choose the one kind of pho that came with inedible mystery meat chunks. 1/12/10

100 Finish this list | I get way too much satisfaction from physically crossing stuff off of lists so I'm sticking with that, hence the jpeg. 12/30/09

Starting December 30, 2009. Ending September 25, 2012. Extending to December 31, 2012.

B = Bonus: Not on my official list but worthy of mention.


I've been keeping lists for years. Here are some of the other things I accomplished before starting my 100 list.

Punkin' Chunkin' | We had no idea what kind of redneck craziness we were about to experience. BYOCouch. 11/8/09

Hang gliding | With a bit of hesitation, I strapped myself to a giant winged contraption and flew through the air, followed by a scrumptious BBQ and adrenaline-junkie celebration in the valley of the mountain. 10/10/09

Blobfest | After checking out the vintage cars and foil hat competition, Josh and I enjoyed a screening of "The Blob" in the original movie theater where it was filmed. 7/11/09

Learn to use chopsticks | Not surprisingly, I do not have a photo documenting this occasion. I was, however, sitting on Chris Novak's roof eating Vietnamese the first time I completed an entire meal using chopsticks. So here's a picture of Chris. 5/6/09

Lucy the Elephant | A day filled with elephant-gazing and boardwalk skee-ball followed by an impromptu BBQ with friends. 4/18/09

Speed dating | Chris, Jen, Josh, and I decided to give speed dating a try. Many drinks at Tattooed Mom's before and after made for a ridiculous evening. Here's a picture of Jen attacking Chris (not at speed dating). 4/13/09

Fly a kite | Even though I don't have a photo of this, the image of Chris Novak running full speed ahead into a picnic table will stay with me forever. 4/4/09

Valley Forge | A nice little hike through the woods at Valley Forge with Matt and Emmett. 3/22/09

Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania | Stopped here on the way up to Rochester with Chris Novak. It was pretty but I'd say "grand canyon" is a bit of an overstatement. 3/25/09

Cape Hatteras | Alone on the beach in January, finally feeling peace. 1/13/09

Outer Banks | After a few difficult months transitioning back to life on the east coast, I packed up my car and spent several days alone in North Carolina. It was the best decision I could have made at the time. 1/12/09

Centralia | The snow on the ground really emphasized the steam rising up from the cracks in the concrete. Chris Novak and I also stopped at Roadside America, the world's largest miniature indoor village, and enjoyed dinner at Stoudt's Brewery. 1/18/09

Create my own website | My return to reality also brought along the burden of finding a job in the recession. First step in promoting myself: building a website. It was a frustrating, time-consuming experience but I fought my way through and designed it all on my own. 11/16/08

Sailing | A friend of a friend of some guy who was friends with my wonderful friend Margaret's friend invited me to go sailing. Obviously I said yes. 10/19/08

Antelope Canyon | Before heading to the Nightmare Ranch in Phoenix, I stopped off in northern Arizona to check out Antelope Canyon. The canyon was stunning but I learned that guided tours aren't really my thing. 10/1/08

Great Basin | Low expectations allowed me to be completely blown away by this park. The fall foliage was spectacular. I was lucky to have caught the turning leaves when I did. 9/29/08

Seattle | A truly authentic Seattle experience: it rained the whole day! 9/24/08

Mt. Rainier | Low-lying fog put a slight damper on my Mt. Rainier experience (i.e. it completely blocked my view of the top of the mountain). 9/24/08

Multnomah Falls | Eric and I traveled just minutes outside of downtown Portland and ended up at the bottom of this massive waterfall. 9/22/08

Portland | Although I enjoyed my time in Portland, its lack of diversity would prevent me from ever relocating there permanently. 9/20/08

Crater Lake | Staring out at Crater Lake was surreal. Watching the old couple next to me find great delight in hand-feeding a chipmunk brought me back to an amusing reality. 9/19/08

Redwoods | Although I only passed through this national park on my way up to Portland, I count it as a list item. I also cut through groves of redwoods while traveling back and forth from Mendocino throughout my time on the farm. 9/19/08

Pick up hitchhikers | Kelli: "You wanna?" Me: "Sure, why not?" Unfortunately, the hitchhikers experience was less than thrilling considering we were living in the heart of transient America. 8/08

Start a fire on my own | Throughout all of my solo camping experiences, I never once built a fire. Until Lassen Volcanic. 8/17/08

Lassen Volcanic | For my next solo trip, I headed inland to Lassen Volcanic National Park where I saw bubbling mud pots and inhaled eggy sulfur. 8/17/08

Point Reyes | I took many solo trips while working on Emandal Farm in Willits, CA. On this particular one, I headed out to the coast to take photos of the cliffs and lighthouses at Point Reyes National Seashore. 8/4/08

New Orleans | Hoo boy. New Orleans. My memories of this trip are wild...and shall not be shared here. 3/22/08

Snowboarding | I barely left the bunny slope and I barely stayed on my feet but I had a lot of fun doing it. Here's a picture of the two old friends who were with me on the mountain. 2/08

Adopt a dog | On this fateful day in November, I brought Emmett Otter Onorato home from the pound. Best decision I ever made. 11/30/07

Gamble in Las Vegas | Putting a few bucks into the airport slot machine wasn't what I originally had in mind but it counts. 10/20/07

Horseback riding | Riding a horse through the canyons in Zion National Park. What a wonderful memory. 10/19/07

Capitol Reef | I'm pretty sure our time in Capitol Reef began with us sleeping in our car in the freezing cold, eating tuna salad from a can. 10/18/07

Canyonlands | Another spectacular national park in southeastern Utah. I'd like to explore it more in the future. 10/18/07

Mesa Verde | This is probably the stretchiest of stretch items on all of my lists: it was closed for renovations but we made it all the way to the parking lot. Still counts! 10/17/07

Four Corners | We stood in all four states at once and it was thrilling. 10/17/07

Backpacking | Not only did I hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and back, I did it with a 25 lb. pack on my back. (I'm writing this 9 years later and this is still the only time I've gone on a serious backpacking trip. I wish I had done more when I was still in my 20s.) 10/15/07

Hike the Grand Canyon | The entire way down, all I thought was, "I'm never doing this again." The entire way up, all I thought was, "I'm never doing this again." As soon as I reached the top and collapsed on the ground in the parking lot, all I could think was, "I need to do that again!" I'll never forget the feeling of hiking the homestretch, shoving my face with trail mix, and feeling my body burn the calories right then and there. It was so hard. And so gratifying. And such a surreal accomplishment. 10/15/07

Jetboating | Did we decide to go on a jetboat tour in the freezing cold and sit in the front where we were guaranteed to get pummeled with waves over and over and over again? Of course we did! It's times like this when I'm so grateful to have an adventure buddy like Josh. 10/7/07

Niagara Falls | After a terrible night of camping in a leaky tent in a thunderstorm ("JOSH! JOOOOSH!!! ARE YOU IN THERE?!") we made our way to Niagara Falls. Our rain-obscured view was slightly less than impressive but we still had a blast taking silly souvenir photos with a giant moose. 10/7/07

Visit one of the Great Lakes | We strolled along the Lake Erie beach, taking photos and enjoying the sunny fall day. 10/6/07

Chippewa Lake Amusement Park | Josh and I broke into this abandoned amusement part outside of Akron, OH and took photos of the forgotten machinery being overtaken by nature. 10/6/07

White water rafting | We gathered a group of new friends for a camping trip at Hickory Run State Park in the Poconos. White water rafting was a blast...but we should have never made Doogie captain. 9/1/07

Hike part of the Appalachian Trail | In preparation for our backpacking trip through the Grand Canyon, Jesse and I trained on a number of local trails. We made our way up to Hawk Mountain and hiked along a portion of the incredibly rocky Appalachian Trail. 9/8/07

Parasailing | What a great memory, floating above the Atlantic with my future sister-in-law. 9/23/07

Play craps in Atlantic City | I put some money on the table, Bill coached me on what to do, and I played craps in Atlantic City! I have no idea what we did and I didn't win any money but, hey, I can cross it off the list. 9/19/07

Bike riding | Avalon in September is the best place to ride a bike. The streets are flat and empty and there are plenty of beautiful photo ops along the way. 9/17/07

Rock climbing | I was unbelievably terrible at this. No upper arm strength whatsoever. None. 8/28/07

Fanboat ride through Everglades National Park | We stuffed cotton in our ears and embarked on a fanboat ride through the Everglades. Even got to see a couple of gators along the way. 5/1/07

Swimming with manatees | Because it wasn't peak manatee season, we only saw a couple on our tour but we befriended "little" baby Hugh and had the best time floating around with him for a couple of hours. 4/30/07

Florida | Justin and I hopped in his old boat-of-a-car and embarked on a road trip to Florida for some much needed manatee-swimming and beach-hanging. 4/29/07

Adirondacks | I tagged along with Justin and his coworkers for an impromptu trip to his family's lodge in North Creek, NY. The views were spectacular and the fireplace was massive. 2/2/07

Tubing | We floated down the Delaware in our inner tubes and pulled off on the bank for lunch with the Hot Dog Man. 9/10/06

Channel Islands | On the ferry ride out to the Channel Islands, I had to explain to a group of middle school kids that I was traveling alone. It boggled their minds and that made me chuckle. I hiked through fields and sat on the edge of cliffs and gazed out over the Pacific until late in the afternoon. 5/14/06

Joshua Tree | I remember climbing around on the bulbous rocks at sunset and marveling at all of the oddly shaped trees. I also remember being awoken in my tent at 6 am by the sound of children screaming in a neighboring campsite. Fun. 5/13/06

Valley of Fire | I wasn't planning on exploring this park but how could I turn down the opportunity to visit a place with such a cool name. 5/13/06

Death Valley | So hot and sparse and beautiful all at the same time. 5/11/06

Yosemite | I visited Yosemite at the perfect time of year. The waterfalls were roaring from the spring thaw but the skies were bright blue and the weather was warm. I felt fortunate to beat most of the crowds. 5/8/06

Sequoia/Kings Canyon | For my second solo road trip, I flew out to LA and drove and camped around southern California and Nevada. I didn't spend much time at Sequoia/Kings Canyon but I remember appreciating its vast size and beauty. 5/7/06

Big Bend | My most vivid memory from Big Bend is our encounter with the tarantula. I'll never forget Matt slamming on the brakes and leaning out the window to see the ENORMOUS spider sitting on the side of the road. When we honked the horn, the tarantula started running towards the car and I started screaming bloody murder. Even after we drove away, I was convinced the tarantula was hooked onto the car's back bumper, Terminator 2-style. 11/2/05

Guadalupe Mountains | I remember the sunrise over the mountains, surrounded by the warmth of orange and pink light everywhere I turned. 11/1/05

White Sands | We climbed up and down and all around the pristine mountains of white sand. 11/1/05

Saguaro | On this trip out to the southwest, I met Matt in Las Vegas and we drove back to Pennsylvania. Our first stop was Saguaro, a dream destination of mine. Oh, how I love saguaro cacti. So many different shapes and personalities. The roadrunners were fun too! 10/31/05

Assateague Island | I camped on the beach and listened to sounds of waves crashing and wild horses neighing late into the night. 9/17/05

Great Smokey Mountains | I remember being slightly horrified at Gatlinburg's tackiness and proximity to the national park gates, but once I was safe inside the park it was serene and beautiful. 9/12/05

Camp by myself | People sure do look at you funny when you're a single woman in your 20s camping alone. I remember encountering a woman in the bathroom who said she noticed me earlier and asked if I was by myself. With pride, I said, "Yes!" And with pity, she squinched her eyes, tilted her head, and said, "Aw." 9/10/05

Shenandoah | I drove along Skyline Drive and marveled at the beauty of a) the landscape and b) traveling alone! No one to confer with. No unnecessary rest stops to make. Completely spontaneous and based on whatever I felt like doing. I've never felt so free. 9/10/05

Solo road trips | My old art director unintentionally gave me the best piece of advice. I remember telling her about how I couldn't go anywhere over winter break because my boyfriend couldn't get off from work. She responded by saying, "You can't go by yourself?" I remember thinking, well, no. I can't travel by myself. But the more I thought about it, I realized how silly that sounded. I can do whatever I want whenever I want! And so I did...eventually. 9/10/05

Ringing Rocks | Chris Novak and I drove up to Ringing Rocks on our first adventure together. We arrived at night, tried to find a place to camp on the side of a very rocky and treacherous mountain side, decided to sleep in our car at a park and ride instead, woke up in the morning and drove to Ringing Rocks, detoured over to the Crayola Factory for some afternoon arts and crafts, stopped off for a swim in the Delaware, and concluded our adventure by enjoying some homemade ice cream from a local creamery. It was weird and exhausting and I'll never forget it. 9/1/05

Spain | My trip to Spain was my gateway to traveling alone. My solo day-trip into the countryside to visit a castle was scary but I felt proud and fulfilled after I successfully returned to the city. 3/13/05

Whale watching | Did you know that pilot whales are actually members of the dolphin family? Neither did we until we got on the boat and found out those were the "whales" we would be seeing on our tour. 7/5/04

Nova Scotia | We hopped on a car ferry from Bar Harbor, ME and arrived in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. We drove the perimeter of the island, stopping in small fishing villages and national parks to hike and camp. Such a quaint, peaceful place. 7/3/04

Acadia | The sky and ocean were clear and blue. The cliffs were rocky and wild. 7/2/04

Montreal | We tacked on an overnight trip to Montreal. I don't remember much about it except for a couple of bars and gift stores. 11/15/03

Vermont | Jesse and I drove up to visit Colleen for a weekend in Burlington, Vermont. A quaint little college town with a couple of college friends. 11/13/03

Skydiving | Nothing like strapping someone to your excruciatingly sunburned back, piling into a teeny tiny plane, taking flight with the door still open at your toes, and jumping out over the rainforest. An experience I will never forget. 10/20/03

Snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef | The captain of the boat took a fancy to us and showed his affection by forcing us to get lap dances from a ginormous fish and squirting sea cucumbers in our faces underwater. This is also when I got the worst sunburn of my life on my back. Should've rented the sunsuit! 10/19/03

Australia | When I found out Lauren Derlin was going to be in Australia for four weeks, I decided to visit her for two of them. We met up in Brisbane, spent time along the coast, and eventually headed up north to Cairns. I remember the weather was warm and bright and the cities were clean and colorful. 10/15/03

Zion | The last stop on our southwest adventure. I vividly remember hiking The Narrows, a dirt path that transforms into a river in between two towering canyon walls. 9/02

Bryce Canyon | This was a quick stop on our trip but we still found time to snap photos of the landscape and admire the many spires from afar. 9/02

Grand Canyon | Even though we didn't venture deep into the canyon, I was moved by its enormity, gazing out from the south rim. 9/02

Canyon de Chelly | I had never heard of this place but once we saw it in the atlas and realized how close we were, we decided to swing by. Another spectacular red rock formation. 9/02

Petrified Forest | I remember being fascinated by all of the colors in the ancient wood and rocks. Another type of landscape I could have never imagined. 9/11/02

Sedona | A beautiful town full of red rock and endless blue skies. 9/10/02

Organ Pipe | We camped in this national monument near the Mexico border and posed for pictures with towering Saguaro in the golden hour. 9/9/02

Ricketts Glen | We strapped Eric's canoe to the roof of his car and headed off to Ricketts Glen for a weekend camping trip. I remember the fog over the lake in the morning, the vibrant autumn foliage, and the neighboring boy scout troop. 9/01

Arches | When I think of Arches, I think of the awe I felt traveling through the southwest for the first time, the exhausting and exhilarating hike out to Delicate Arch, and the sunset over the red rock landscape. This is the place where I realized my life can—and should—be filled with unending adventure. 3/01

Carlsbad Caverns | My first national park! I remember the cave being massive and cold and unlike anything I’d ever seen. I also remember the site where we camped the night before, just outside of the park—my first time camping as an adult. I don't have a picture of Carlsbad but I've always loved this photo of Aaron and Eric. We stopped on the side of the road somewhere in New Mexico to admire the sunset. I remember feeling so grateful for new friends and new adventures. 3/01

Drive across country | Four college sophomores hopped in an old Jeep Cherokee and drove to Utah and back in one week. The experience was magical and completely changed my life forever. 3/01