Today is my 28th birthday. I don’t feel 28. Not to say that 28 is old and I feel younger or vice versa. I just don’t feel any age. I am ageless. ha

It comes with a liberating feeling. As if 28 means I can finally begin to do things for me, instead of for the image I felt I should portray. I don’t know why that is, but there you have it.

27 was a good year, but in a very painful way. It was eye-opening and and honest and excruciating as only self-discovery can be. And with it has come desires and images of who I think I might become and things I think I might want to do with my 28 year old Self.

It's my birthday and I'll take narcissistic photos if I want to

I want 28 to be a great year. And I’m approaching it consciously, instead of allowing it to approach me.

This year I want to:

  1. Embrace my child’s fullness, even especially when it scares me
  2. Stand under more stars than I’ve ever seen
  3. Visit the Smithsonian
  4. Leave messages or gifts of love in random places
  5. Learn to love to prepare food
  6. Show my gratitude for life each day
  7. Learn the harmonica
  8. Visit my father’s hometown (Odessa, TX)
  9. Be silly
  10. Stop holding back
  11. Advocate more for children in public places
  12. Find and pursue my art
  13. Volunteer more of my time
  14. Validate, appreciate, and celebrate authenticity
  15. Only shop small and local
  16. Speak my husband’s Love Language more fluently
  17. Begin to learn Italian
  18. See Iron & Wine, Ray LaMontagne or Brandi Carlisle in concert
  19. Make silly/wicked/fun/cool home videos
  20. Lighten Up
  21. Let go of what others want me to be and Just Be Me
  22. Knit a pair of socks
  23. Dance more freely
  24. Find a place that takes my breath away
  25. Bite my tongue more often
  26. Be on stage
  27. Breath first and then speak from my heart
  28. Let Go of my fear of losing love and happiness & embrace this life fully


Here goes something…

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40 Comments. Leave new

Jasie VanGesen
December 9, 2009 9:39 am

That picture of you is just lovely, you need to know that. You are a strong, convicted, amazingly lovely person!

I also had no idea that we’re the exact same age. 28 is awesome.

Happy B-Day. Ahhhh, I remember 28, so much ahead of you. For #24, have you been to Yosemite? Add that to your travel stops once the RV is mobile. =)

Stacy (Mama-Om)
December 9, 2009 10:02 am

Happy Birthday!!! Happy Day!!!

OOOooh, your list inspires me. Especially #2 and #27.

I am wishing you all your wishes, and more.

Happy Birthday!

December 9, 2009 10:57 am

Happpy 28!!!! I love your list and the picture is beautiful….and your outlook on age is a wonderful way to look at it. #21 took me a long time to reach, I’m 39 and am just learning to let go of what others think and be myself. It’s a tough one, but such a freeing thing if you can do it.

Hope the day is great!

Happy birthday! I remember the pre-30 years. (grin) Now I’m exploriong the post-60 years. It’s all good.

rachel whetzel
December 9, 2009 11:11 am

GREAT LIST!! I still need to make mine. Better late than never, right? Off to TEXT you happy birthday, now that I CAN!! lol

Happy birthday my love. Hope you have a great day. Start from #28 and the rest will fall in place. I love you.

happy birthday!!

loove your list. i hope this year brings you all these things and more.

I hope you are having a wonderful 28th birthday! Looks like it will be a good year.

Happy Birthday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Happy birthday! For me, twenty-eight was about being pregnant and having a newborn–literally, that was my whole 28th year. hahaha.

I love your list. I used to enjoy preparing food–before I had a child clinging to me. It’s just not fun anymore. It used to be meditative for me, and a chance to be creative as well. My favorite was prepping vegetables–now I hate that part.

And can I just say that Italian is such a fun language to speak! I learned Spanish, French and Italian, but Italian was my favorite.

Happy, happy birthday. Your list is so inspiring. I’m going to make one for myself (my birthday is next month) It helps to write these things down…as a point of reference.
Have a great day. You deserve it. -Debbie

Happy Birthday!

My 28th birthday is Saturday. :) It’s not too often you find someone whose actual birth date is so close! I might allow myself to be inspired by your list and make my own…


As someone who is in the twilight of her 28th year, this has been an incredible year of more reflection and self discovery in such a short period of time. My 28 was hard, but things are improving and getting brighter every day. I wish you my kind of success. Hugs!

December 9, 2009 8:26 pm

Happy Birthday, you gorgeous, devoted, inspiring, purposeful, life-embracing woman, you!

Kiva @ Farmstead Lady
December 9, 2009 8:34 pm

Happy Birthday and you are beautiful just the way that you are!!!

wow. 28! happy happy birthday.

28 was a long time ago for me yet i don’t feel old! ;P first husband, no kids, living in chicago. still had new mexico, florida, back to illinois and divorce before i even met my wonderful husband. wow.

time flies. i love your list. involves being aware and enjoying every minute.

hugs to you on your day.

Anna (adversarian)
December 9, 2009 11:30 pm

If you’re ever in Scandinavia in winter, try to take a trip as north as you can and look at the stars on a clear night. It’s breathtaking! When I first saw it in Finland, I laid right down on the ground to look at it, snowy and cold as it was, because it was so mindblowing. You could clearly see the band of the milky way! (Finland’s good for that sort of thing, since it’s so sparesly populated – no city light interference!) Plus there’s the chance of seeing the aurora borealis.

In today’s pressurized world it’s hard to let go. How I’ve tried to see it is that understanding what will make me happy (letting go, being grateful, and being myself) already separates me from most of the pressures out there. Lots of people don’t even understand what makes them happy. Realizing I’ve already set myself apart has made it easier for me to let go of the other things bogging me down. It’s gotten to the point where I’ve realized that my own (stubborn) insecurity is all that remains of the pressure I used to feel. Sometimes it feels like I’m just scared of happiness. It’s not unusual for me to have a great day and fall asleep feeling sad; I’m so scared to lose it.

Understanding my own goals of letting go (especially of fear)and being more open-minded makes me really appreciate your list. Your blog is an inspirational read, and as a teen it’s nice to see that my thoughts aren’t too far from that of a woman who, despite being self-admittedly imperfect, still manages to be an amazing person. :) More people need to be open about the fact that imperfections aren’t as unnatural as people make them to be. They shouldn’t be shameful – they should be seen as nothing more than being human!

I love this post. :) And, despite the fact that’s 2:30am, and therefore December 10th, Happy Birthday!

“Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” – Abraham Lincoln

Happy Birthday girl! My gosh, if you are this forward thinking at 28 just think how cool you will be at 38! The world is yours for the taking. I hope you keep your birthday list on your blog and cross out as you go along the year so we can all keep up with your progress! What a year 2010 is going to be for you!!!!


Free Spirit Mama
December 10, 2009 3:08 am

Happy Birthday!!! It just gets better! I know you’ll achieve everything on your list and more…love, Annette

Happy Birthday Organic Sister, from a fellow Sagittarian!

Happy Birthday. Wishing you a wonderful year filled with joy, happiness and peace. Beautiful Photo and an inspiring list. x

Happy Birthday and great picture. Keep us up to date you your list.

Happy Birthday Sagittarius!

I feel the same way as my birthday was on December 7th and I turned 28 as well. I don’t feel 28 – I feel either like a very old soul or youthful and inspired! I still want to play like a kids, lol!

You inspired me to create a list of things I would like to do this year. Thank you!

I really like your blog by the way! :)

Happy Birthday, Tara! Tell justin to call Scott for any help with motorhome or anything else! We picked a date to hit the road and its jan. 30th.

Absolutely lovely :) Happy Birthday!

Happy Belated Birthday!!!!!!

Hey, Happy Birthday. 28 has been a great year for me, so far. I love your list. And, cute pic!

Happy Birthday, Tara. I thought of you yesterday and wondered what you did with your day. Hope it was great. This will be your best year yet. :)

I wish you the happiest of birthdays. Blessings,

With regards to item 24, have you ever been to the Pacific Northwest? If you haven’t, consider making your way up here sometime.

December 16, 2009 7:26 am

I’m a little late to the party, but happy birthday and as long as you don’t insist upon coming to see the Smithsonian in July, August or September (the National Mall is disgustingly, excruciatingly hot with very little shade in the peak summer months) I’ll be happy to show you around a bit since I live in the DC metro area.

Happy late birthday! My life started profoundly changing at 28, and after 30, it’s been a constant round of redefinition! You’re in for a great ride!

Hi Tara, and happy brithday…at least :)
I found yor blog ’cause I want to make dreadlocks, but I’m really fascinating about your life…in very part so similar at mine.

I’ve read that you want to learn Italian, and so, I’m Italian ;) and you have clean my mind from doubt to make my hair in dread.

Thank you, and..sei bellissima, selvaggiamente e meavigliosamente tu.(you’re beautiful, wildly and amazing YOU) ..and sory form my English!

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