Monday, August 27, 2012

389 - 400 Fun Things to Do!

389 - Go to an exciting, challenging, fun, and awesome workshop.  When I saw that Mike Dooley from would be making a stop in Cleveland on his World Tour III, "Playing the Matrix".  I pulled every string I could think of to get there. Luckily, my friend Jean was just as enthusiastic as I was about the potential of this experience.  It turned out to be an amazing day I will never forget, with the most dynamic presentation I have ever witnessed.  When it was over, I felt full of yes!  In the photo with me -- Mike and Jean.

I get daily emails from the Universe sent out by  They are short, fun, and quirky bits of wisdom that help me start off my day in just the right frame of mind.  One time I was getting some presentations ready for a conference, and I was so busy I thought my head would spin off my shoulders and go into outer space.  Then I read an email from the Universe that said, "It's not that you worry Carol, it's that you care so much!"  Worry implies that maybe things haven't gone well in the past, that you might fail, and you might let people down.  Caring means that you are doing the best you can, you believe that things will go well, and that you are capable of doing a good job that people will most likely appreciate.  That one sentence from the Universe (written by Mike Dooley) set me free from the times of worry that have plagued me since I was a child.  I still worry now and then, but when I remember that message from the Universe, and I calm right down and keep moving forward.  You can see why I made a big effort to attend this workshop!

390 - Take an outdoor fairy garden class.  I recently took a wonderful fairy gardening class at Graf Growers in Akron, Ohio.   It's my favorite garden store, and being a fairy gardener, I was excited to participate in this fun class.  It was extra happy to be with children, parents, grandparents, and other participants and to watch as everyone created their own amazing fairy gardens.  I put a little rose bush, ferns, thyme, hens and chicks,  a bench, fairy gazing ball, a clay piece with "love", a tiny lantern, a polka dot pinwheel,  and pebbles in a cobalt blue bowl.  It is the most delightful fairy garden I have ever made, and I have made a lot for myself and other people!  I put it where I can see it as I'm coming in the side door.  Now I have three fairy gardens in my yard.  Hooray!

 391 - Go to see three movies in one weekend!

I went to see "The Odd Life of Timothy Green" one Friday night with my daughter Maribeth.  It was a very different movie, and I liked it a lot.  Jennifer Garner did an excellent job acting, and so did the little boy who played her son.

Then Saturday night, I went to see "Hope Springs", with Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones.   The acting was incredible -- not just the delivery of the words, but the facial expressions, and body language. A five star rating for sure!  I went with my husband of almost 42 years, Tom who really appreciated it, too.  "Hope Springs" is for people who have been married for a long time, for those who are new to the marriage game, and for anyone in a romantic relationship, or wanting to be in one.  I guess that covers a lot of people!

Even though I love to go to the movies, and it is one of my very best stress relievers, sometimes I don't get there as often as I would like.  So when I noticed that I seemed to be involved in a very exciting movie weekend, I couldn't help but go to the movies by myself on Sunday afternoon!

 I went to see "Step Up Revolution", which is a movie about
street dancing and flash mobs.  Since I love dancing, music, and flash mobs, this was a terrific movie for me.  I want to see it again.  The energy was amazing, the love story a little predictable, and the entertainment value very high!

392 - Go to the movies by yourself!  Many years ago, I decided that I needed to learn to go to the movies by myself.  I picked "On Golden Pond" with Henry Fonda, Katharine Hepburn, and Jane Fonda because I knew it would be so wonderful that I wouldn't mind being alone so much.  It was a spectacular movie and kept me totally engaged.  When I left that movie I had changed from a person who was shy about going to the movies by herself to a liberated movie-goer who can go to any movie on the spur of the moment without having to find a friend or family member to agree to go.  When you go by yourself, you don't have to worry about anyone else's movie experience, you get to choose the movie, and you get to lose yourself in the movie theater experience!

393 - Order a wild pizza for yourself.  These days most pizza parlors have an exciting array of toppings so you can order a nontraditional pizza very easily.  I love a white pizza, which can be made with an "alfredo" style of sauce with artichokes, onions, and mushrooms.  I was stuck in the traditional pizza world for years, now it is fun to experiment and surprise myself with unusual combinations.

394.  Rent a convertible.  This would be fun to do for a weekend of local adventure, or when  you're on a trip and you want to add a little pizzazz to your activities.  If I rented one, I would want a red one, but wouldn't turn down any other color.  My sister, Barb, had a convertible for most of her life, and we had many happy times together in it.

395 - Dip your strawberries in chocolate.  Recently, my friend Jean and I
were in Cleveland at a restaurant called "The Chocolate Bar".  If you can believe this, there were half price appetizers, one of which happened to be berries in chocolate!  When our friendly waiter brought this amazing plate of ten gorgeous strawberries and a martini glass full of chocolate, I felt like doing a happy dance.  I stayed seated, but I was doing a bit of a happy dance in my chair!

Every Valentine's Day, it is a big deal tradition for my daughter, Maribeth, and me to go to the local candy store and get boxes of chocolate dipped strawberries for ourselves and my daughter-in-law, Dyan.  We all believe that we are experiencing chocolate heaven.  Now I know that heaven can be even a little bit more exciting and delicious by having a chance to personally dip my own strawberries!  Yippee yo yo YO! 

396 - Go to a farmer's market.  There's a wonderful flea market and farmer's market in Hartville, Ohio.  I could easily spend a day in the Hartville area.  Produce there is quite extraordinary -- I even found out that purple string beans taste much like green ones, except sweeter.

397 - Light a candle to create a special atmosphere, on a dinner table, or for any occasion.

398 - Write thank you notes every day for 30 days!  Once you start thinking about it, you will be amazed at how many people make your life easier, but often go unnoticed.  You can let your mail carrier know how much you appreciate such faithful service, a manager know how helpful a salesperson was, a friend for their love and care, a former teacher for mentoring you . . .  finding 30 people to thank could be an amazing adventure!  Expressing gratitude on a regular basis can be very fulfilling and even life changing.  I read that you can't ever be grateful and upset at the same time.

399 - Send a greeting card once a week to someone with a brain tumor -- sign up at   I have been sending a card every week for two months and it has been a very rewarding process.  I make just one card a week to send along, but my friend Ann creates and sends over 80 each week!

400 -  Make a tradition of taking a photograph of your child (or grandchild) just before they start their first day of school every year.  Here are Nate and Andrew, my beloved grandchildren, just before they started fifth and second grade at their new school.  My son, Kevin, has taken a photograph of the first day every year since Nate began kindergarten.  These photographs are special treasures for sure!

Today is a celebration in reaching 400 fun things to do out of the goal of 1,000!  We are almost halfway there.  Please join me by adding your ideas in the comment section.  Together we can make it happen!

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