Last year I created and failed pretty miserably at a 19 in 2019: A list of 19 things to do in the year 2019. Since I only did a few of them – far less than I ever imagined – I’d like to pick it up again this year and try to complete some of those things I had wanted to do then. The things I did accomplish this past year were: attend a wine tasting, put down new floors, paint and renovate the laundry room, and bake a fancy cake. That’s 4 out of 19; I told you I failed miserably. For this year, I’ll include the ones I didn’t do plus 6 more and they can serve as my New Year’s resolutions.

So, in no particular order, here are my 20 things to do in 2020:

1. Read at least 12 books. This comes out to about one book per month which feels pretty doable. This year I read 9, which came close but not quite. I think I can actually reach and surpass my goal this year!

2. Complete one big house project. I’d like to repaint both the interior and exterior walls but we have vaulted ceilings in our house so it will be a lot of work. Maybe we won’t get to both but if we could do some walls, that would be great.

3. Go camping. My family went camping a lot when I was kid and I have very fond memories of toasting marshmallows on campfires. I also love being outdoors, especially at night when you can hear the tree frogs and crickets playing their beautiful songs. I’d like to pass this love on to my own family.


4. Volunteer. I’d like to do more volunteer work in my community and include Sebastian, especially as he gets older.

5. Read a classic. There are a lot of classic novels out there that I’ve missed out on so I want to read at least one now that I’m an adult.

6. Complete a landscaping project. Namely, our back yard. We need to clean it up and put in better drainage. The back yard is one of the features that sold us on our house but a lot has happened over the years to destroy it so we need to take care of it. This is the year we do it.

7. Host a small, fancy dinner party. I just think dinner parties are fun. And I want to host one where we can all dress up, because I feel like I never get to dress up anymore!


8. Konmari my closet and house. If it sparks joy, I keep it. If it doesn’t, I thank it for its service and move on. I still have a desire to move toward minimalism so I will work on that goal more this year to make it a reality.

9. Cook a meal from scratch. This means doing something I’ve never done before like roasting a whole chicken, baking homemade bread, making mozzarella cheese, etc. Something that advanced cooks do all the time. It’s time to elevate my skills past making my own salad dressings and pickling some veggies!


10. Do at least 3 new things. It’s time to get out of my comfort zone.

11. Create a new family tradition. Because we’re a family of three now and it just feels right. Also, this is one we *kind of* did this year; on Thanksgiving day we took Sebastian to the cinema to see his first movie and it was a lot of fun. We plan to make seeing a movie at the cinema every year on Thanksgiving a new tradition. But there’s always room for more!

12. Take a photography/Photoshop class. I’ve had a nice camera for a while but I need some guidance on taking (and editing) truly awesome photos.

13. Catch up on my scrapbooking. I love scrapbooking and have several of them, but after Sebastian came along, I didn’t have much time to devote to them. I have a ton of photos and things to put in my scrapbooks, so I’m going to intentionally carve out some time to spend with my glue sticks and books.


14. Plan a weekend away/staycation. How fun it is to be a tourist in your own town? Or even to visit the next town over that you hear good things about but you’ve never actually been. For example, I’ve heard lovely things about Hillsborough, NC but I’ve never been there. It’s only 20 minutes away, so a weekend get-away there is a perfect way to have a vacation on the cheap.

15. Send a hand-written letter/card to one person each month. There’s nothing better than receiving a hand-written letter or card in the mail, and I find writing and sending them to be just as fun.


16. Write a short story. I want to be a writer. I have lots of ideas. But I have a lot of confidence issues that keep me from writing. So this year, I want to write a short story. I don’t care if it’s good or bad, I just want to write one.

17. Start working toward a yoga instructor certification. I love yoga. It makes me feel strong and healthy, and I’m actually really good at it. For the past few years I’ve floated around the idea of attending a training to become an instructor – I think it’s something that I would really enjoy and find fulfilling – but I haven’t been able to commit to the practice as much as I’ve wanted. In researching the requirements for the certification, one suggestion I read was to practice yoga regularly for at least a year before attempting a training, so that’s what I’m going to do in 2020: commit to regular yoga practice – at least three times per week – to get myself  on the road to certification. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be formal practice; it can be following YouTube videos at home, just something to make sure you’re familiar with and have a handle on it all. Wish me luck!

18. Find a Spanish tutor. I’m fluent in Spanish but VERY rusty. I’ve forgotten a lot of vocabulary and conjugations so I would like to find someone that will speak to me in Spanish  A LOT to help me build my fluency back to the level it was at when I finished undergrad and was translating at a health clinic more than 10 years ago.

19. Focus on our finances. This year, we’re really going to focus on our finances by spending money more responsibly and saving as much as possible. That means we’ll be cooking at home more and buying less of the stuff we don’t really need. We already set a budget every month/year, so all we really need to do is trim it down a little and stick to it better. It’ll be difficult for me in the beginning because I love dining out and shopping, but I’m ready to commit. I can do this!

20. Take care of the planet. We’re going to cut our our use of single-use plastics (like straws and plastic sandwich bags), start composting, and do more yard work. We throw out so many things that can break down and enrich the soil instead of rotting in a landfill so I’m going to look into easy ways to compost. We’ve already started building our collection of glass leftover containers, reusable water bottles, and metal straws so hopefully this one will be a breeze.


202 is going to be my year, I can just feel it. I’m looking forward to doing all of these things to make this the best year ever!

Are you looking forward to 2020?