Project’s End: Celebrating Day 1001!

30 09 2012

101. Write a Mission 101 list and publish it to my blog 
(a) Write a blog entry on my progress at least once per month (33/33)
(b) Reassess every six months for outdated/irrelevant goals
(c) Complete at least 75% of the goals on my list by September 29th, 2012
(d) Celebrate Day 1001!

I did it!! *insert much farfare and rejoicing*

Yesterday marked Day 1001 of my Mission101, and the end of my project.

2.5 years ago, I opened this blog with the following statement:

Starting a new blog brings with it the kind of excitement and anticipation that opening a new book evokes… what will its pages hold, and how will the narrative journey unfold?

I plan on using these pages to list, record and document my Mission 101 – that is to celebrate small achievements by achieving 101 goals in 1001 days (or roughly, two and-a-half years from now). As I sometimes tend to spend more time focusing on the negative than positive energies in my life, this project will be a way of trying to restore the balance. It is said that it takes three weeks to form anything into a habit – hopefully within three years I can turn positivity into a lifelong one.

Though I didn’t specify it here at the time, another of my reasons for starting this project was focusing on little things in light of receiving news about my fertility (and the notion of perhaps not being able to have a child of our own). I didn’t want to overshadow this blog with woe-is-me musings, nor goal-setting about pregnancy, birth and parenting. I wanted to celebrate the small things in life, and that I have! Along the way here are some of the things I achieved:

  • Upgraded to my dream camera (Nikon D700)
  • Tried out 50 new recipes
  • Got a professional mssage
  • Completed a blog for the families of children I teach, spanning an entire school year
  • Watched a sunset from the highest naturally-formed point in Melbourne
  • Made 5 homemade birthday cards and a set of Christmas cards
  • Learnt to play a strategy boardgame
  • Planted a herb garden
  • Sent someone a care package; and
  • Left a permanent mark somewhere in my housing estate.

What a fun time this has been, and even more amazing to look back and see how much I have squeezed into the past 2.5 years. I’m currently sitting at 57/101 goals completed, but looking through my list I can see a few goals left undocumented… so I can imagine the final tally will be 60+ (short of my original goal of 75+, but not far short).

I will finish up writing about these goals and my final summaries on completed/uncompleted goals in the coming weeks, then I can officially call my Mission 101 project complete. 🙂

Thank you to everyone who has read, commented and cheered me on since 2010!


29 09 2012

048. Read 50 books (33/50) [more info]

So I got one more book finished before my project’s end last night…

Fitting that it was the last in a trilogy (Blackout, by Mira Grant), so a suitable end to the day. I really enjoyed this series – I read the first book while pregnant with our son Rowan, the second when he was only a couple of months old (snoozing in my arms!) and the third when he was a toddler. Kind of bittersweet that it’s over now, but I don’t think there’s anywhere the characters could really go from there so it was a fitting end. 🙂

In regards to reading, I didn’t get to my goal of completing 50 books in 2.5 years. It seemed so do-able at the time, but then again my time was my own back then – no child to take care of and my work commitments weren’t too large. Pregnancy and birth changed all of this, and there were times I found myself reading a lot and other times I went months without barely reading much at all. I was talking to someone about this recently, that I could have made this goal “easier” by choosing to read shorter books… but I did not want to compromise on books I wanted to read (or re-read) simply because they seemed too long and therefore not going to get finished in time – ie, Coalescent by Stephen Baxter, which I’m re-reading at the moment but didn’t get finished before my project’s end. I love that series, and I’m looking forward to continue digesting it over the coming months.

With my next project (oh yes, I’m guessing that there will be one starting in the next year),  I will lower my expectations of time spent being able to read a little more and drop that total number from 50 to something like 30, for example. More do-able, I think.

Markets I’ve Visited

28 09 2012

042. Visit five markets I’ve never been to before  [more info]

I’ve visited a few markets within Melbourne (and surrounds) that I had never visited up until the beginning of this project, which were:

  • St. Andrews Market
  • Hurstbridge Farmer’s Market
  • Flemington Farmer’s Market
  • Bundoora Farmer’s Market
  • Wattle Festival, Hurstbridge

While I didn’t blog about all of these markets, I have pictures of all but Flemington Farmer’s Market, as it turns out (though I remember taking pictures at the time… I just can’t find them on my computer unfortunately!)

Produce we bought from St Andrews Market (2010)

Hurstbridge Farmer’s Market goods (2010)

Bundoora Farmer’s Market (2012)

Hurstbridge Farmer’s Market again (2012)

The Wattle Festival, Hurstbridge (2012)

Thank You Nicole

28 09 2012

024. Regularly visit a Naturopath over a twelve-month period [more info]

Nicole, my naturopath, has been wonderful to me over the course of the past 2.5 years. Her speciality is in women’s health and fertility, and she really helped me to get a handle on my body, make positive changes and to understand my menstrual cycles in a way that I’ll never be able to forget this information again (it’s all about tuning into your body and understanding your fertile signs).

While I didn’t become pregnant as a result of the hormonal changes that we tried to bring  about (with liquid herb preparations), when Matt and I decided to go down the IVF route following the tests confirming my fallopian tube blockages she assisted in preparing my eggs for stimulation cycles.

When I discovered I was pregnant after our first IVF cycle (!) after having had so many usable eggs for the fertilisation process (and with four additional embryos frozen), I think it is in part testament to the wonderful work that Nicole did.

If pregnancy does not happen for us easily the next time around, I will be going back to see Nicole again (she went on maternity leave shortly before the birth of our son Rowan, and he was a few months old by the time she returned; I have not been back to her clinic since his birth).

So thank you Nicole, every day I look at my son and know that you played a part in bringing him into being. 🙂

A Year of Scrapbooking

25 09 2012

053. Scrapbook a year [more info]

I can’t believe that I had forgotten to cross this goal off my list (this also applies to a few other goals; considering my project officially ends in FIVE DAYS TIME, I should get onto it!).

When I originally made my Mission101 list, I added some scrapbooking-related goals because I knew that digital scrapbooking was something that I wanted to get into more seriously. I had dabbled in it before but didn’t have the time alongside work-related things (namely children’s portfolios). Even though we weren’t pregnant at the time, I hoped that while my project was underway I would be blessed by pregnancy and being able to scrap a pregnancy (or baby’s 1st year) album was a goal of mine. I purposely didn’t make any of my goals pregnancy/birth-related in case this didn’t happen for us – in fact, part of the reason I chose to make a Mission101 list in the first place was to focus on the little things in life rather than dwell on what was (or wasn’t) becoming a reality for my husband and I.

So, long story short (or the TL;DR version), for the past two years I have digiscrapped a LOT. My pace has slowed down a bit in the past few months since returning to paid work (after finishing maternity leave), but it is something that I really enjoy – plus I have a wonderful (well, so I think!) “1st Year” album I have created for our son Rowan, as well as an album documenting my pregnancy with him. I have also been working on a 2012 album (with all sorts of miscellaneous things in it – family life, work, musings etc). None of these projects are quite finished – although I have under 10 pages left to complete in Rowan’s album and 5 to go in the pregnancy album. I would have liked to have shown pictures of completed projects as evidence of completing this goal, but digital images will have to suffice.

Did you know that in the past twelve months I have completed over 100 layouts? I’m impressed too! (if I counted properly – rather than guestimating – that number would probably be closer to 150, I think).

Here are a few of my favourite layouts from the past year:















New Zealand Photobook

1 09 2012

056. Make a photobook out of our New Zealand pictures [more info]

Matt and I went to New Zealand in late 2008 (just after Christmas, celebrating the New Year in Christchurch), as a belated honeymoon following our wedding two months earlier. The photos sat on my computer since… I looked at them occasionally, knew that they were some of my better pictures at the time but didn’t print any out. I’m not sure why, I think it had to do with it seeming like such a big job because most needed retouching work due to a dirty lens that I didn’t discover about until I got back home to Australia again.

So when I created my goal list in early 2010, getting these photos printed into a book was a priority for me (as was getting our wedding photos printed too, but except for the album we bought as part of the package via our wedding photographer there hasn’t been many). I finally got around to finishing this project off the other night, prompted by a coupon I bought for an online store expiring – I had plans to print out my pregnancy scrapbook with the coupon but was five pages short, so no point wasting it!

I combined writings that I kept as part of a notebook I put together during the trip, as well as maps of our travels and plenty of pretty pictures. While I should get my book in the mail within the next 2-3 weeks, I haven’t seen the photobook in hard-copy as yet but I really like what I saw on the screen in the previews. Here’s hoping that the finished product impresses me as much as the preview did!


Something Decorative in the Kitchen

2 08 2012

068. Get overhead cupboards installed in my kitchen [more info


Okay, so these aren’t exactly cupboards, just to state the obvious. After looking at our finances and thinking about what we wanted to add to our kitchen on a smaller scale, we instead decided with simple shelving (thank you IKEA!). Matt put up the three shelves above the sink and the stainless steel rack (with hooks) next to the rangehood. We thought it was odd when we moved into this apartment that there was a random rangehood and no overhead cupboards (but then again, our carpet is nicer than the other apartments in the building, so go figure?). This is what it looked like originally:


So it isn’t a huge change, but definitely a functional one for us. We’re thinking of selling up next year, so didn’t want to invest too much money into the kitchen as the new owners might decide on changing it up themselves (presumably with cupboards). What I’m liking about the new shelves is being able to have some of my baking implements (spoons, measuring cups, whisk etc) at my fingertips instead of in a drawer. Also, above the rack is a great place to put baked goods, bread, tea and the like. I hadn’t considered putting FOOD there until Matt suggested it, now it’s really handy to have things on hand instead of in the locked cupboards below – another childproofing mechanism!