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My computer crashed and has been in the shop for roughly a month now. This is keeping me from doing a lot of my normal things, like dealing with my email, or editing images — which gets in the way of completing any of “normal” posts I’d expected to be going up this month. But in the meantime, I’ve been working on a new 101 Things in 1001 Days list, and since that’s mostly text, this is as good a time as any to share it.
What is a 101 Things in 1001 Days List?
101 Things in 1001 Days originated with the folks at the Day Zero Project. It’s a lot like a short-term bucket list. One thousand-and-one days is approximately 2-3/4 years, which is long enough to tackle longer projects, plan trips and still have time to take them, cross over multiple seasons so you can do seasonal activities, etc.
I had one many years ago, and then created a newer one which basically crashed-and-burned (if I recall correctly), but it’s been a long while since I decided to tackle one.
What is a 101 Things in 1001 Days List to Me?
For a lot of people, there’s a heavy crossover between a 101 Things list and goals. For me, they’re pretty much distinct (although there’s typically some crossover, because I only have one life!). Because I view a 101 Things list as more of a “bucket list,” it’s mostly about me — not about my roles & responsibilities. So I use it to grow and stretch myself as a person and to have fun, but leave the more “important” stuff for more structured annual and monthly goals.
Special Challenges in Creating This List
I encountered some challenges here. First of all, many of the common 101 Things in 1001 Days list items are things that either I’m not interested in (e.g. donating blood – even if I wanted to, I’ve never been within the weight limits) or that are “do for the first time” kinds of challenges that I’ve already done (e.g. “bake bread“) or things that are already habits for me (e.g. “vote”).
Reading challenges are common, too, and I didn’t need a lot of specific reading goals on my list because I’m still working my way through the 2016 Challies list (yes, 2016).
My chronic illness issues, however, presented the larger challenge. These lists are often heavy on entries that involve traveling to/visiting new places, and those that involve trying new foods. My health prevents me from traveling — or, for that matter, even getting out much — and my dietary options are very, very limited. High-physical-stamina options are off the table, too.
The Flip Side
On the other hand, there were some things I wanted to especially focus on here. I’m a very “driven” person by nature. I’m highly goal-oriented, accustomed to diving in and “doing,” and “getting things done.” It’s hard for me to let go and just “be,” and doing playful things that lack clear purpose doesn’t come naturally to me. I also struggle with identifying my own emotions. (I know that I’m experiencing emotions, but it’s hard for me to pin down what emotions they are.)
So you’re going to see a lot of items on this list that may seem very “fluffy” to you. In many cases they are — and that’s by design. I sought to include some very childlike activities here, some very “pointless” activities, some practices to…well, practice identifying emotions, and some things to just be more simply present and mindful of the moment(s) I’m in, and experiencing the world through all of my senses.
(I also learned from past lists and broke down some things that keep showing back up on the list — undone — into smaller pieces! “Learn Spanish” was just not happening…so you’ll see smaller steps to that end show up on this one.)
As is the case with any goals list or similar list, it’s totally okay if these don’t all happen! (And, in fact, because only God knows the future, it’s important to hold any plans we make loosely, and be ready to let go and/or adjust.) The list still provides some direction and vision, and facilitates more growth than would take place without it.
Let’s get to it…
The Actual 101 Things in 1001 Days List (Nov. 1, 2022 – Jul. 29, 2025)
- Watch a Del Toro film. (Pan’s Labyrinth?)
- Watch 5 “must-see” movies I’ve never seen.
- Watch 6+ documentaries (that aren’t about health).
- Finish Challies challenge to at least 90%. (I think I’m at something like 65% right now.)
- Create & complete my own reading challenge. (This will be shorter than, but complement, the Challies list.)
- Graph a year’s reading. (Book journaling videos on YouTube got me interested in tracking some of my reading stats to get a better idea of the balance of what I’m reading.)
- Read 10 books recommended by friends. (This doesn’t count recommendations solicited for a specific purpose: e.g. “what’s a good book about prayer?”)
- Read books from/about 10+ countries across 6+ continents. (Antarctica has pretty narrow options. I might read Endurance, but that’s too specific too hold myself to it.)
- Leave a note for a stranger in a library book.
- Compile a list of favorite books (including a subset of “recommended reading before you graduate”).
- Solicit recommendations for and build a playlist.
- [not-yet-fully-solidified challenge around new music recommendations to expand my repertoire – like listening to Spotify’s Discover Weekly or something]
- Create a playlist of my favorite songs I discovered from TV/movies.
- Curate a global playlist.
- Listen to 12+ albums from 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. (Aim for different decades.) (Or find it here.)
- Build a “playlist of my life.”
- Choose a country and make a music playlist reflecting that country.
- Cook/eat something from the same country.
- Make a piece of art inspired by the same country.
- Take pictures in a photo booth with Michael.
- Get all photos printed through [target date TBD].
- Create a stamp (and die?) set.
- Finish and record “Let it Go” rewrite.
- Finish and record 2 “real” songs. (I don’t expect any of these to be “professional” recordings. But I have some half-finished songs that I would like to get finished enough that I can share them.)
- Establish dominion over the front garden beds. (These things are like my nemesis. It’s like a jungle out there no matter what we do.)
- Make rose hip syrup & liqueur (from rose hips in the garden).
- Tap the maple tree. (I expect we’ll only get something like 1/8 cup of syrup. But I want to tap our tree and go through the process with the kids for the experience of it. I can never find my tap and our book of instructions at the same time the tree is ready.)
- Plant an apple tree…again.
- “Catalog” the plants in the yard.
- Make a “beach” to walk on.
- Finish and/or hand off 6+ crafty “UFOs” (unfinished objects).
- Send 6 Postcrossing postcards.
- Send monthly cards/letters for a year.
- Donate 3 dozen handmade cards.
- Send (empty) pillow to Prayer Pillow ministry.
- Assemble a complete NICU care package. (“Sending” one felt all kinds of wrong to put on a list, since it seems like hoping someone will be hospitalized.)
- Complete an art journal.
- Observe a single outdoor item (e.g. a tree) over the course of a year in a variety of ways.
- Choose 5 emotions and describe (in writing) what they feel like.
- [training thing I saw on Facebook and have to find again after I get my computer back]
- List 100 things I love.
- Practice reframing complaints for a week.
- Go a full week without complaining.
- Make affirmation cards. (This is not as woo-woo as it sounds; I just don’t have a better name for it. I’m looking to make cards that are Scriptural truths, but in an affirmation-type format. Not looking to make “I’m making reality conform to me”-type cards.)
- Finish marking “health” Bible. (This is notes I’m making for a major project. Hard to describe in a nutshell.)
- Start a personal “systematic theology.” (Writing out — for my own benefit — what I believe on various points of theology.)
- Reread Praying for Your Elephant.
- Identify & read 3 other books about growing in faith.
- Pray for 100+ specific requests, a la Praying for Your Elephant.
- [reserved for faith-building “exercise” TBD]
- Curate a “prayer” scent for a candle.
- Learn to do smoky eye makeup. (with Ariel?)
- Wear false eyelashes. (not all the time; I just want to try them.)
- Use nail wraps. (I bought some of these and never use them because I don’t want to figure out/mess with my cuticles.)
- Commission a video intro for T2H YouTube.*
- Convert college slideshows to video and upload to YouTube.*
- Go live on Facebook.
- Make a “talking head” video for YouTube.*
- Make a filming-something video for YouTube*. (Can you tell video is an area I need to develop my skills in? LOL)
- Sales goal [exact numbers TBD]
- Break up with PayPal.
- Establish a crypto wallet.
- Play 8+ cumulative hours of Valheim (or similar) with Michael. (I’m not much of a gamer; this is not really my thing. But my husband really likes it when I play with him.)
- Hang upside-down. (with Caleb?)
- Play a glow-in-the-dark outdoor game with the kids.
- Blow bubbles in the freezing cold (or similar outdoor winter activity).
- Make a friendship bracelet. (with Liv?)
- Buy a large box of crayons and use them. (with Shoshi?)
- Skip (somewhere other than at home).
- Do a(nother) at-home escape room or complete a puzzle book.
Like These: (I haven’t personally read any of these yet, so I’m not vouching for them.)
The Great Sherlock Holmes Puzzle Book (Sirius Literary Puzzles)The Paper Labyrinth: A Book-wide Puzzle Solving AdventureThe Master Theorem – A Book of Puzzles, Intrigue and WitThe Master Theorem: Elite – A Book of Puzzles, Intrigue, and WitThe Cypher Files: An Escape Room… in a Book!
- Celebrate the fall holidays. (We always want to, and always lose track of the dates when they’re approaching, so we’ve failed at making these a habit.)
- Write a story, character, description, or similar based on a prompt from Ariel.
- Complete daily creativity challenges (in the vein of those in Syllabus) over 8 different months.
- Learn 6 new flatbreads (including 3+ non-wheat flours). (with the kids)
- Participate in #30inks30days (officially or unofficially). (But use different pens.)**
- Complete the 30-Day Music Challenge.
- For a month, journal daily everything I sense. (Not all day! Just for the time that I’m journaling.)
- For one month, journal daily “I felt today…”
- For one month, participate in a photo-a-day challenge.
- “Ground” for 5+ minutes daily for a month, including at least one day of 30+ minutes.
- Practice physical somatic exercises daily for a month. (These are gentle exercises that are supposed to be good for activating your nervous system.)
- Learn to “travel” while bellydancing. (Bellydancing is really good for core strength and fluidity, and it cam be pretty gentle for those of us who don’t have a ton of energy. But I’ve never mastered actually walking while dancing.)
- Learn the Git Up dance. (This is highest-impact item on my list, in terms of physical energy. But short.)
- Learn 3+ new-to-me folk songs.
- Learn to start a fire without matches/lighter.
- Learn a(nother) skill from 100+ years ago that’s still useful today.
- Replace camera lens.
- Buy a lottery ticket. (No, not something we usually do. This fits into the doesn’t-really-have-a-point-except-to-say-I’ve-done-it-once category.)
- Get a new computer.
- Get concealed carry permit.
- Look for 5+ tactile textures to incorporate into everyday life.
- Take a foot bath once a week for a month.
- Try 5+ different salts (besides RealSalt).
- Sell or donate the “sell” pile.
- Create a “Flat Rachel” to send traveling in my stead.
- [reserved for on-the-fly additions]
- Make a “things I’ve already done” list. (Like a backward bucket list.)
- Write new 101/1001 list.
*Or similar alternative video platform.
**Maybe work on improving handwriting and/or doodling in conjunction with this.