My Life List

life listI’ve been wanting to create one of these forever. And after reading some of your comments on what you’d do with an extra $1,000 I’m finally sitting down to pump this out – so thanks!

And I plan on actually CROSSING THESE OFF MY LIST too – they’re not just gonna be sitting here looking pretty for the fun of it. If you’re anything like me, you want to do a thousand things but there’s never enough motivation (or memory) to DO them at the moment. If they’re written down though – esp for everyone to see like on this blog – there is a much higher chance of them becoming a reality. And you might even get a few cheerleaders along the way!

So in the spirit of living a fun & adventurous life (all somehow budgeted in, of course), here is the start of my very own Life List. In no particular order.

I, J. Money, hereby pledge to accomplish the following over my lifetime.

(and btw, this is all about the FUN things I’d like to do some day – totally separate from all the love and family and other important aspects of life)

  1. Go to an airport and jump on the next flight out! Me and a thousand others who’ve said they’ve wanted to try this before :) But like I said, I am going to make this happen! Even IF it’s one of the most un-frugal ways to purchase a plane ticket. Because when it comes to adventure and spontaneity, this is one of those that can’t be beat – with or without someone!
  2. Bet $1,000 on black. You know those movies where people risk it all on a 50/50 chance at roulette? Well, that’s gonna be me one of these days. I’m not crazy enough to bet the whole shebang, but $1,000 should be plenty enough to satisfy my high – whether I double it or not. (But I’m surely hoping to!)
  3. Buy a Fancy car. Whether it’s a Benz, Beemer (I know it’s spelled b-i-m-m-e-r, but that just doesn’t sound right to me), Porsche, whatever – I just REALLY want to experience V.I.P. one day, even if for only a year or two. My fear, of course, is that I’d fall in love with it & then never go back because I then know the difference!
  4. Work for myself full-time. COMPLETED!  Errr… currently fulfilling!I got Fired :) Haha… Would have been nice to do it on my own terms, but hey I’ll take it any way I can get it. Time to build things online and make money at the same time as increasing happiness! And if it doesn’t work, I go right back to the real world ;)
  5. Donate $10,000 ANONYMOUSLY to a charity. I’m not gonna lie, this is going to be hard for me. Not so much the money part of it, but the anonymity side. The most I’ve done before was $50 and the urge to put my name on it was so high!
  6. Get my “things” down to 100. This will probably take the longest of the bunch :) But the good news here is that I’ve already STOPPED collecting more stuff! So now it’s just about shedding the rest little by little until I finally hit that magic number. And it could very well end up being 200 or even 300 things by the end, I’m not sure. I just know that 5,000 things is way too much right now, and I’m fairly certain I have at least that.
  7. Launch Love Drop (It’s Live!!) – We did it!  We finally got our micro-giving community site up and launched!  Took about 100 more hours than expected, but we’re now out there DOING GOOD!  If you wanna change 12 families’ lives with us this year, come check it out :) Nate and I are incredibly excited about this.
  8. Build a house from scratch. I have ZERO experience or know how in this department, but give me a year and some industry contacts and I’d be a very happy boy! I’d like to say that I build the house I live in with my own bare hands – even if 100 or so others helped out :) (or maybe I give one of those tiny houses a go!)
  9. *NEW* Visit all 50 States! I totally forgot about this one until momcents reminded me (thx!). This will be a fun one since it’ll take some nice finagling trying to hit all those states I’d normally never go to :) And that would be a shame because there is so much CULTURE here in the states!  And we barely even touch it all staying in our own little area most of the time.  So while I’ve hit at least 24 so far, I’ve still got a long way to to. But I can’t wait!!
  10. *NEW* Play in the World Series of Poker! – it might cost a pretty penny to enter (Doc S thinks about $10,000), but to sit there and be surrounding by a whole bunch of really great players? With the chance of possibly winning? (if you play your cards right ;) bah dum ching!) – Totally worth it. As long as it comes from my entertainment budget ;)
  11. *NEW* Go on a cruise – Out of alllll the traveling I’ve done, and exploring all over the world, the one thing that still remains elusive is a cruise! I am going to make a point of prioritizing this and try to cross this one out within 12 months. It’s currently 6-16-11, fingers crossed! (UPDATE: I finally convinced my ENTIRE family to go on a cruise in December, 2011, got everyone excited and my dad to plan it all, and then they picked a date that wasn’t do-able for us! So everyone got to go but me and my wife!!! The ones who started the idea!!! haha… but I’m not giving up yet ;))

That’s the list for now.It will change and grow overtime as I get older and more wrinkly, but for now that’s what I’m workin’ towards. If I can accomplish all 7 of these I will be one happy mother f’er! And the reality is they’re all within MY power to make happen – so you better believe it’s just a matter of time. I can be one stubborn bastard when I’m passionate about something! ;)

Want to join me? I’d love to hear all about your wishes too! If you’re up for it, share it below in the comments or send me a link to YOUR own Life List and we’ll all support each other. Then maybe if you’re lucky I’ll create awards to hand out every time you cross one off your list :)

Lots of great lists already in the comments (seriously, some of these are really fun!!!), and others around blog land too – Get excited!!!

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  1. Jeff @ sustainablelifeblog August 16, 2010 at 9:05 AM

    I dont want to quash your fun, but you dont actually have a 50/50 shot at roulette (you’re forgetting the 2 green pieces, 0 and 00). And I’ve also thought a lot about those tiny houses, and some of them are awesome. I’m definately going to look into those when I buy some vacation land :)

    I’ll write up one of these as well and post it on my blog.

  2. Uncle El August 16, 2010 at 9:12 AM

    Heres my short list J. Mula!
    1. Finally buy that Rolex I always wanted.
    2. Go on a hot air ballon ride. (eventhough Im afraid of heights)
    3. Go on vacation by myself. ( Might be bored after a several days.)
    4. Open a business that I can call my own.
    5. BE completely Debt Free! (Notice the order and how this should really be the first goal)

  3. jolie August 16, 2010 at 10:05 AM

    Re: the house from scratch. Pitch the idea to HGTV. Sexy financial blogger completing his life list by building a house from scratch with no previous background in home building. Based on your personality, I think you’d be a huge hit!!

    on my life list: Go to some out of the way diner and leave a $100 tip for a cup of coffee :-) I’ve just always wanted to do that.

  4. Red August 16, 2010 at 10:17 AM

    Good luck on getting down to 100 items! I think you could totally do it. I’m at 136, but I’m a girl, so my list includes crap like makeup. (You don’t wear makeup, do you J?) It’s a very rewarding process. My coworkers think I’m crazy, but knowing that I love everything in my apartment (and that there’s no clutter!) makes it all worthwhile.

  5. Brandi August 16, 2010 at 11:23 AM

    House Building –

    Brandi = Structural Engineer

    Just saying :)

  6. momcents August 16, 2010 at 12:48 PM

    I started a list like this recently… then got busy and forgot all about it! A couple of the items on there:

    1) Visit all 50 states
    2) Become fluent in Spanish
    3) Sail through the Greek Isles
    4) Achieve a 7 figure net worth.

    Thanks for reminding me of this. I need to dust off my list and hop to it!

  7. Techbud August 16, 2010 at 4:34 PM

    Here’s my list:
    1 – pay off my debt
    2 – direct a film
    3 – buy a house home in CA

  8. jennydecki August 16, 2010 at 5:47 PM

    Oh, see, I didn’t realize people were putting their list in the comments section. I went and blogged the darn thing. To each their own!

  9. J. Money August 16, 2010 at 9:43 PM

    @Jeff @ sustainablelifeblog – Hey, close enough :) Let me know when you get the post up and I’ll include it on the new list above!
    @Uncle El – Ooooooh those are some good ones. I especially like the “vacation by yourself” one. It takes a lot of character to be able to do that one so I’d be very impressed. I did something kinda similar myself today actually – I went to an upscale restaurant and ate by myself :) At the bar – haha… I pretended I was some dot com mogul and that money wasn’t an option (even though I ofcourse made sure to order something not *as* bad). It felt good too! And since I only stayed for like 40 mins I didn’t get bored.
    @jolie – HAH! Wouldn’t that be something…. do you know anyone who works at HGTV? :) (GREAT tip idea too – that would be super hot)
    @Red – WOW, GOOD JOB!!! That is so freakin’ impressive, ESP since you’re a girl! I don’t wear makeup, no, but I certainly make up for it in all my hairspray products ;) I think the hardest area for me is the clothes area though, as well as the sentimental stuff. Not sure how to get past that last one.
    @Brandi – WHAT? that is sweet!!! I’ll be knocking on your door one day just you wait.
    @momcents – Yessssssssss! Totally totally forgot about that “visit 50 states” one. Yes, going to update the post already now – thank you :) Maybe we can save the same last state and go visit it together? haha… that would fun.
    @Techbud – All doable! Esp if directing that film doesn’t mean one that people go pay to watch ;)
    @jennydecki – That’s great Jenny! I’m gonna start linking to others’ lists as I come across them so I’ll throw yours in there right now :) Looking forward to reading it!

  10. Hank August 16, 2010 at 10:26 PM

    I want to jump in a boxcar of a train and see where it goes or how far I can get.

  11. Kimberly August 17, 2010 at 12:01 PM

    I like your list, and I’m stealing number 8 from you! Let’s see, for the rest of my short list here is what I’ve got for now: 1. Write a novel (hopefully a fantasy/science fiction series that is as successful as Harry Potter), 2. Take the Foreign Service Exam, 3. Live in South America, 4. Read the newspaper from front to back everyday 5. Buy a boat for my vacation home 6. Have enough money to buy a vacation home. Just a short list for now, I’m sure it will grow!

  12. Quizshow August 17, 2010 at 12:07 PM

    I’m an architect so I can help you with the house project.

    My list (early version)

    1) Travel through Italy, from the Alps to the boot.
    2) defeat debt and live debt-light
    3) Visit all 50 states
    4) Buy something without checking the price. Just slide the card.
    5) go hiking + camping – just so I can say I’ve done it eventhough I hate being outside
    6) embark on a gastro-roadtrip.
    7) learn to swim

  13. J. Money August 17, 2010 at 8:53 PM

    @Hank – Without paying money? Cuz that would be even more fun ;)
    @Kimberly – Oooooh the novel sounds good! Mrs. BudgetsAreSexy is starting to dabble in that a bit – really hoping she continues with it cuz then one day we could both be writing anywhere in the world!
    @Quizshow – “Buy something without checking the price. Just slide the card.” haha, that’s a good one. And I will be sure to hit you up too when it comes time for that house! Might be a while though ;)

    *btw* just remembered another dream one to add to the list! involves poker :)

  14. Jenna August 18, 2010 at 11:58 AM

    On top of going to every state, I want to go to every continent. Including Antarctica!

  15. Kelsey August 18, 2010 at 2:18 PM

    Here are just some of mine- visit every state, donate 10% of income to charity, go on vacation by myself, and brush up on my spanish skills!

  16. Kevin I August 18, 2010 at 4:39 PM

    1. Take my wife on a surprise vacation.
    2. Teach my daughter to draw.
    3. Go on a silence and solitude retreat for a weekend (week?)
    4. Get my webcomic back up and running on a regular basis, just to prove to myself I can.
    5. Or to think bigger: Be able to have a booth at New York Comic-Con for said webcomic where someone comes up and says “Ominous Knife? I LOVE this strip!”
    6. Film a stop-motion short film.
    7. See the West Coast (I’ve never been farther west then Michigan)
    8. Actually read all the books on my bookshelf/beat all the video games in my game drawer.

  17. J. Money August 18, 2010 at 7:57 PM

    @Jeff @ sustainablelifeblog – Love it dude! Esp “Climb a ridiculously tall mountain” haha… for some reason Zoolander comes to mind there ;) Adding you to the list!
    @Jenna – That would be hot. (or, cold?! haha..)
    @Kevin I – Excellent list my friend, I really like that a lot. Esp #1 and #6. Maybe you can do both at the same time? Bow chicka wha wha!

  18. Trevor August 19, 2010 at 8:01 AM

    J Money,

    I love the post. Have you checked out RyanAir over in Europe? It’s like Southwest but ten times cheaper. If you want to go to an airport and hop on the next available flight a RyanAir flight would be ideal. If you book in advance you can get flights for under 10 euro, so if you just show up and grab the next available you could still get away with a flight for a couple of hundred, thereby fulfilling your dream on a budget. Oh yeah, the flights go all over Europe too, so not only are you being adventurous and frugual, but the destinations are awesome.

    Love the blog.

  19. J. Money August 19, 2010 at 8:25 PM

    ooooooh nah, never heard of! I like the sound of it though :) thx man. appreciate the kind words too! i’ll let ya know if I ever make on one of those flights.

  20. Ryan August 20, 2010 at 11:33 AM

    Making an anonymous donation of $10,000 to charity is big. Not necessarily because of the size of the donation, which is honorable, but because then you would have a more difficult time claiming it on your taxes… (not sure what the rules are there, regarding which kind of proof you need). I understand the spirit of giving, and my wife and I end up giving over $10k per year to church and other organizations, but we also claim it on our taxes. It makes a big difference! :)

  21. Betty August 20, 2010 at 12:09 PM

    1. Open a tour company that takes people to all 50 states. :)

    For real #1: Buy an oceanfront condo in NJ. This will never happen, so I’ll settle for something within walking distance to beach.

    #2: See Niagra Falls
    #3: Learn to knit or crochet (cool hats and scarves for everyone)

  22. J. Money August 20, 2010 at 10:01 PM

    @Ryan – Oh yeah, hadn’t even thought about that part yet…. so if I donate, don’t claim my name, and ALSO don’t claim it on taxes – that would be REALLY pimpin’! haha… it’ll have to wait until I’m more flush in that case ;)

    @Betty – How come the oceanfront won’t ever happen? Cuz you don’t think you’ll ever save enough for it, or you’d rather spend your money elsewhere? Sometimes I feel like by the time i’m ready for my fancy car I won’t be able to justify the money for it. But now that it’s on this list I have no choice! (hah!)

  23. Betty August 21, 2010 at 6:45 AM

    No, if I had the money, that’s where I’d spend it. But I don’t think I’ll ever save/earn enough. I’m still keeping it on my life list though.

  24. doctor S August 22, 2010 at 10:09 PM

    I am still coming up with new stuff for my list!!!!!!

  25. J. Money August 23, 2010 at 10:40 PM

    Well you better post it up one of these days big boy! I’ve added to mine 2 times already ;) Now we gotta start working on them…

  26. Anna December 17, 2010 at 7:25 PM

    Looks like it’s the perfect time to pursue #4. Either that – or #1 (if you’ve got your passport in order). Go for it!

  27. J. Money December 21, 2010 at 3:53 PM

    hah! so true. I can now go cross that off, thx for reminding me ;)

  28. John @ The Best Money Blog January 5, 2011 at 12:17 PM

    Thanks for the love here and on Twitter. It’s a long road to achieve everything on the list but it’ll be fun…hopefully.

  29. Jen February 19, 2011 at 2:21 AM

    I haven’t made a life list yet, but if I did, visiting all 50 states would definitely be on there.

    I’ve visited all 48 continental states, plus Canada and Mexico, so all I have left are Alaska and Hawaii!

    That said, I might want to make it a future goal that my husband and I take our future kids to all 50 states, because it was the most memorable set of experiences my dad has ever given me.

    My parents started when my brother and I were young, probably around 5 or 6, and we stalled out around the time we went to college. The only two left are the hardest (and most expensive) to reach – so maybe someday when my student loan debts are paid, I’ll use a couple months of loan payments (3 months = $3500, roughly) to vacation in those last 2 states!

  30. J. Money February 20, 2011 at 5:24 PM

    Wow, that’s excellent! GREAT idea to involve the kids too, that’s how I got hooked as well – by starting early due to my dad :) Just be sure to bring them to both Alaska and Hawaii so you don’t have to repeat! haha…. or maybe you can “forget” on purpose to force you to go back ;) We lived in Hawaii and LOVED it, esp as kids. Only had a layover in Alaska – don’t think that counts.

  31. J. Money May 28, 2011 at 4:44 PM

    Love it dude! Esp that you knocked off all that credit card debt AND wanted to/admitted to failing in a business venture. Keep on keeping it real, bro!

  32. Jenny @ exconsumer June 16, 2011 at 4:22 PM

    Hey J$ – This is my first time visiting your blog and I’ve really been enjoying what I’ve read so far!

    I love #1 on your life list. I’ve never considered going to the airport and jumping on the next flight out, but I am now. :)

    Visiting all 50 states in the U.S. is on my list too — along with stepping foot on all seven continents (Antartica could prove to be difficult to access!).

  33. J. Money June 16, 2011 at 5:43 PM

    haha, well maybe you’ll get lucky and you’re “random flight” will take you there and you can scratch off two with one try! :) gonna go check out YOUR site now – thanks for the kind words!

  34. Levis Johnson September 13, 2011 at 9:58 AM

    I just want to take my wife on her first flight. She has never flown and just turned 30. She wants to fly before she turns 31.

  35. J. Money September 13, 2011 at 10:40 AM

    Wow!! Yes, that’s a *great* experience to do with her :) It doesn’t have to cost that much money if you go somewhere reasonably close? Maybe make a weekend of it…. find a place to walk around and check out, and stay at a Bed and Breakfast there :)

  36. The Happy Homeowner November 14, 2011 at 3:16 PM

    I once made it through a 14-week Texas Hold’em tournament to be invited back the final night to play for a satellite seat in the World Series of Poker. This ‘lil lady beat 51 gents to end up playing heads-up for 2+ hours for that seat. Unfortunately, my adult ADD kicked in, I got tired, and ended up losing. Moral of the story? If I can make it that far in some random tournament (did I mention it was free and I accumulated mad amounts of beautiful, clay chip sets by placing first week after week??), you can dooo iiiiiiiittttt! Bonus points if you rock the same kind of tie-dyed, neon, fuzzy slippers that I wore to every event in the series!!!

    Check out my extensive list on my blog if you haven’t already (on the right nav. bar at the top)….

  37. J. Money November 15, 2011 at 2:08 PM

    Haha, that is awesome. I can only HOPE to get to that spot one day! That would be so damn cool… I gotta get back into the swing of it though, I haven’t played in months :(

  38. Nancy Black February 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    Life’s List:

    Pay off all debt and be debt free.
    Have a huge emergency fund
    Buy land and finally have a small farm where I could have my horse,
    Start a free health clinic in my town.
    Be able to mentor others.
    See the Kentucky Derby in person.
    Visit every state park
    Meet C.J. Box
    Donate to the Humane Society

  39. J. Money February 22, 2012 at 10:54 AM

    I like it!! Esp buying the land and farm, and also seeing Kentucky Derby in person – I’d like to give that a shot too :) Maybe we’ll get lucky and end up there together?!

  40. Tr!na April 16, 2012 at 12:01 PM

    Soooooo, any updates on that cruise?? (peers up at #11)

    Sidebar – that goal reminds me of one of MY Life List Goals… plan the most kick ass 25th Birthday Trip which, ironically, begins 6/16/12. I’m flying from Philly to Las Vegas staying at the Cosmopolitan with my bf (the suite is gonna be SWEET), getting a rental car and driving to L.A. to crash with friends for a few days. Although, I currently am notttttt so sure how I’m going to save the $1,000 in spending money I’d like to have (hopefully Ramit hooks me up!).

    Anywho, yea, don’t forget about your cruise goal! Make it happ’n captain!

  41. JMK May 13, 2012 at 11:22 AM

    Before I had ever heard of a bucket list we had already managed few things that I would have put on if it’d made the list in my early twenties. Is it cheating to start off with the handfull of things you’ve already accomplished so you recognize the things you did before the list? Most of my goals are travel related, but that’s where my heart lies
    1. Build a house (done)
    2. Hawaii: swim with a sea turtle, watch the sunrise from the top of a volcano (done)
    3. Santorini, Greece (done, but only a one day stop on a cruise, leaving on the list and planning to go back for a week)
    4. Assorted must see sights: Colosseum (Rome), Accropolis (Athens), gondola ride in Venice, double decker bus ride in London.

    and now the new stuff still to do
    4. Japan – visit a Buddhist monestary and a garden.
    5. Australia – dive on the Great Barrier Reef; visit Ayre’s Rock
    6. Cambodia – visit Angkor Wat Temple
    7. Jordan – visit Petra
    8. Peru – visit Machu Pichu
    9. Declutter my life – work, physical things, and any commitments no longer aligned to my life goals! I’m not going so far as 100 items, but just to simplify so much that I can drop everything and travel on a few hours notice.
    10. Retire at 57. On track to retire in Dec 2020.
    11. Year long around the world trip, probably solo but open to having travel buddies join for various sections. If I find a way to make money on the road I may make it an indefinite trip/lifestyle. I know someone who returns home from her world travels for 4 months each year to take care of tax filings, family visits/commitments, and picks up a temporary job for the 4 months. Combined with a small pension, retirement savings it’s enough to travel frugally the rest of the year. Of course this required getting rid of virtually everything except what can be stored inside her pop-up trailer. The trailer is stored 8 months a year and she rents a spot at a campground for the 4 summer months she’s home.

  42. J. Money May 14, 2012 at 10:48 AM

    @Tr!na – Haha, you’re right! I still need to do this!! I had a REALLY close chance the other month, but the schedules didn’t line up and my family ended up going with out me (boooooo), but it’s still on the list! I’ll get it done for sure ;) And your trip sounds AWESOME!!! Wow. I’d love to join you on that, haha… take lots of pictures!

    @JMK – Cool!!! I see you love to travel and explore, that’s great. Always something I’m interested in too – you learn and experience so much! One of the best uses for money, in my opinion. I hope you get to do all those things! You’re off to a great start so far!

  43. PJ June 18, 2012 at 12:11 AM

    I like the 50 states goal. I also have that and am working towards that in the next 10 years. Along with this, I think visiting the 7 continents would be a nice next step.

  44. J. Money June 18, 2012 at 4:34 PM

    Hell yeah it would! Def. do-able too over our lifetime :)

  45. Lance@MoneyLife&More June 20, 2012 at 7:08 PM

    Did you end up taking a cruise within your year or has that been pushed w/ the baby?

  46. J. Money June 21, 2012 at 11:32 AM

    HAH! Funny story on that one – I convinced my ENTIRE family to go on one this December, got everyone excited and my dad to plan it all, and then they picked a date that wasn’t do-able for us :( So everyone got to go but me and my wife!!! The ones who started the idea!!! haha…. but I’m not giving up yet – one of these days!! :)

  47. lana March 19, 2013 at 1:59 AM

    climb the Sydney harbor bridge
    Live in the South of France
    Have fun with a passel of my grandchildren
    Get someone to clean and cook for me (haha, sad but true)
    Have a huge party for all my friends with cost not being a factor.
    Raft the Blue and White Nile from Lake Victoria to Alexandria.

  48. J. Money March 19, 2013 at 10:07 PM

    I want to go to the South of France with you! Looks beautiful!!

  49. Nikki Rae April 15, 2013 at 11:05 PM

    I have far too many to list but you can find the entire list on my blog and how I’ve gone about achieving them.

  50. Mark May 21, 2013 at 10:45 AM

    That a nice list. I hope you accomplish your goals.

    1. J. Money May 21, 2013 at 2:59 PM

      Thanks man – your turn to share your list :)

  51. Marcel February 29, 2016 at 1:48 PM

    Beemer is a BMW motorcycle. Bimmer (rhymes with swimmer) is a BMW car. Many people mistakenly call BMW cars Beemers. Quick history: BMW made motorcycles before they made cars. When BMW started producing automobiles, cycle enthusiasts rebelled after car owners started using the same nickname that they’d had been calling their rides for years. Hence, “Bimmer” was coined just for automobiles. Beemer = BMW motorcycle. Bimmer = BMW car.

    1. J. Money February 29, 2016 at 3:11 PM

      Hah! Nice! I had never heard of that before… thx for jumping in, brotha.