August Adventures

3 09 2012

Since my last post was almost a month ago, I guess it goes without saying that I’ve been severely slacking in my bucket list blogging. The problem is that I spent almost the entire last month house sitting for 3 different families, and was therefore not at home in my usual routine of blogging at night before bed. Yes, I do have a laptop and should have just posted from there, but… well, once you get behind, it’s hard to catch up! At any rate, here is a brief recap of the bucket list items I completed over the last several weeks!

#7a Read A Tale of Two Castles

I started reading this book, only to discover that I just read it earlier this year. I don’t remember when exactly I managed to get around to reading it, but from the moment I read the first few sentences, I realized that I knew exactly what the story was and how it ended. Since my goal of putting books on my summer reading list was to read books that I hadn’t gotten around to yet or hadn’t read in a really long time, I decided to just not worry about this one. Maybe I will have forgotten the story and will enjoy re-reading it in another two or three years.

#7d & #7e Read the Kane Chronicles: Throne of Fire & Serpent’s Shadow

I was really excited to finish out this trilogy of stories from Rick Riordan. I had re-read the first in the series earlier in the summer, and was really looking forward to see how the story ended. It was definitely interesting, and I really enjoyed them, though I was a little bummed that I could pretty well figure out some of the things that were happening before the author explained them to us. I like it when a story line is so complex that I can’t figure it out and I just have to keep reading to figure out how it all works. At any rate they were still great stories, and I’m glad I got around to reading them.

#51 Play a Game at a Fair

A group of my friends were all going to our local county fair, so I seized the opportunity to play a game and ended up winning a prize. I was really blown away by how ridiculously expensive the games were, and couldn’t believe how many people were playing them. It cost me $3 to throw ONE dart at a wall of balloons. Needless to say, I don’t think I’ll be playing very many games at fairs in the future.

#65 Build an Epic Sand Castle

My wonderful boyfriend, Alex and I took advantage of a gorgeous day at the coast to build a sand castle. I don’t even remember the last time I had built one, but I know I was much younger. I remember the flimsy plastic shovels, and only having one sized bucket, so you couldn’t really stack things on top of each other. Since I was determined to build a good castle, I came prepared with a big shovel, and several different sizes of plastic containers. Alex and I decided to build a moat, and to use the sand from where the moat was to build up the castle. Unfortunately, part way through the process of piling up a mound of sand, we realized that we were digging up a bunch of tiny baby crabs! They were smaller than my pinky nail and their shells weren’t hard yet, but they were definitely squirming and wiggling and in our way! I wasn’t interested in starting over, so we ceased building the height of the castle up any more and just tried to make it look even. We added some towers on top, a bridge across the moat, and decorated it with a bunch of nearby shells and feathers. I think we ended up with a pretty awesome castle!

#71 Dress Up Super Fancy

My mom was getting married this summer, so I knew I’d be dressing up super fancy for it. A dress, heels, hair, nails, makeup… I felt like I was getting ready for a prom!

#79 Temporary Tattoo

I was soooooo excited to see my favorite childhood “zebra gum” when I was checking out at a grocery store one day! there are several different fruity flavors, the gum is striped, and the wrappers have temporary tattoos on them! You just moisten your skin, set the paper on, and it transfers the tattoo! Absolutely nothing has changed about this gum since I was a little kid, and it was a huge trip down memory lane to find a pack.

#95 Get a Massage

I bought a discounted massage from a site similar to Groupon, and decided that it would be the perfect opportunity to check this item off of my list. Unfortunately, the lady didn’t push very hard at all, and I don’t feel like very many of my knots got worked out. It was still relaxing though, and I look forward to getting one again sometime. (I forgot to take a picture.)

Whew! It feels great to be all caught up again! This week I will be eating sushi, going fishing, and getting ready to leave on a trip to Vegas for the first time! Sadly, I only have 3 weeks until school starts. =(

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#8i, #7c, #93, & #13 Sound of Music, Red Pyramid, Butte to Butte, & Fireworks

4 07 2012

Wow, I’ve really been slacking on my blogging! I accomplished several items on my list over the last week, and worked on several others that are not quite finished yet. For example, I practiced my handstand, worked on a 1000 piece puzzle, tried sipping several different types of beer (Bud Lite with Lime is the one I dislike the least so far), bought new flowers to keep in my room, took a picture with another Amanda (I’m up to 6 so far!), watched several episodes of South Park, and I tried calling into a radio station to win movie tickets, but the lines were busy. Needless to say, I’ve been very busy! And without further ado, here are the ones that I actually finished over the last few days:

#8i Watch The Sound of Music

How did I ever make it so far in life without watching this movie? I watched my sisters in a dance recital on Saturday night and when we were sitting around the house at midnight after the show, my sister Hannah said she was wide awake and really wanted to do something on my list. We looked through the list and she couldn’t believe that I hadn’t seen this movie yet, so she begged me to watch it with her. She told me “It’s only about an hour and a half long!” so I agreed to watch it. 2 1/2 hours later, I sleepily dragged myself off to bed and told her I’d have to finish the ending another time. I couldn’t believe it was a 3 hour movie! Even though it was ridiculously long, I LOVED it! I recognized several songs that I hadn’t realized were from this movie (Favorite Things, Doe a Deer…etc) and I just really enjoyed it. The Anne of Green Gables books and movie are some of my favorite stories, and this was right along the same lines. Anyways, even though I technically still have another half hour to watch, I feel like I saw enough to learn that I loved it and will be watching it again sometime.

#7c Read The Red Pyramid

I had been working on reading this book over the last couple weeks and then I realized that I had copied the audiobook from the library and stared listening instead. I listed to the last half of the story while I drove 2 hours to my parents’ house, 2 hours back home, and a final 2 hours while I cleaned an office on Sunday. I really enjoy curling up with a good, hard copy of a book and getting lost in the story for hours on end, but it’s also pretty awesome to get lost in the dramatic voices of an audiobook too. The Red Pyramid is the first in the Kane Chronicles series, which are written by the author Rick Riordan, who also wrote the Percy Jackson series. I had actually read this book 2 years ago when it first came out, but I had long since forgotten everything that had happened. I remember thinking that it was really good and being anxious to read the next book, but that’s about it. Needless to say, it was really exciting to read a book that I had no memory of, but that I knew was good because I’d read it before. Does that make sense? Anyways, I’m very eager to start the next one in this series!

#93 Run the Butte to Butte

The Butte to Butte is a 10k race that takes place in my hometown of Eugene every year on the 4th of July. The race is very appropriately named because the course goes from Spencer’s Butte to Skinner’s Butte. This year was the first time they offered a 5k option as well, but since I put this item on the list intending to run my first 10k, I felt like it would be cheating myself to take the easier option. The first mile of the course was a brutal uphill climb, but the second mile was downhill, and the last 4 miles were (mostly) flat. I had fully intended to start running several weeks ago in preparation for this race, but I never quite got around to it… and the last time I had run was in January. I was definitely not in running shape, but I managed to finish, and that was my goal! My wonderful boyfriend, Alex, was kind enough to slow down his pace enough to keep me company for the 1 hour, 8 minutes, and 50 seconds that it took me to complete the race. I had to walk a few times and my face was raw from wiping sweat away (I hate the feeling of sweat on my skin), but I did it!

#13 Firework Show

And what would the 4th of July be without fireworks? I’m lucky enough to live pretty close to the Oregon Horse Arena where they hold our local rodeo every year, and they set off an awesome fireworks show at the end of the night. Alex had to take a big test first thing in the morning for his intensive summer biology class, so his mom and I drove down the road to take in the view. Unfortunately, my phone doesn’t do a very good job of focusing on fireworks, and this was the best picture I got. But the show was really awesome and was a great way to end the holiday!





#69, #7b, & #8a Grill on a Charcoal BBQ, Read a Book, & Watch Star Wars

5 06 2012

I accomplished a LOT today! I started off with finishing 7b, reading The Beyonders: Seeds of Rebellion. This is the second book in the Beyonders trilogy, and now I absolutely can’t wait for the third one to come out next year. It’s written by Brandon Mull, who is also the author of the Fablehaven series (my boyfriend, Alex’s favorite book series ever), and he is really an amazing author. His story lines are so detailed and complex, and they have all really drawn me into their world. I highly recommend you check out his books if you like J.K. Rowling and Rick Riordan.

And then the real fun began. Until today, I had never used a charcoal barbecue. I’d eaten plenty of burgers off of them, but I’d never actually done the cooking on my own. I was actually quite intimidated by the thought of using one, since it’s not like you just turn a knob to the temperature you want and set a timer. It actually turned out to be considerably easier than I expected. To start with, I dumped in the charcoal briquettes and stacked them up into a nice pyramid. Then I got to douse them in lighter fluid and light a match. Honestly, lighting the match proved to be the hardest part! The box I was using only had 5 matches left and I couldn’t get them to start! The first one broke in half, the next 2 got blown out by the wind, the 4th one just fell off of my charcoal pyramid and went out, and finally, the last match successfully lit the pyramid on fire! Then I got to douse it with more lighter fluid and put on the lid. After several minutes, the briquettes in the center of my pyramid were glowing hot, and I got to spread out my pyramid into an even layer. Then it was just a matter of putting on the burgers, flipping them occasionally, adding cheese, and pulling them off! Easy peasy.

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The night concluded with experiencing Star Wars for the first time. It was a bit confusing, but I mostly enjoyed it. Having heard Star Wars references for my whole life, I had a few ideas in my mind for how I thought things would be. For example, I was really expecting Darth Vader’s voice to be much deeper than it was. When he spoke, he really just sounded like a normal person. I was really expecting him, to have a deeper, angrier, voice. And I wanted Luke and Leia to be cuter. I mean, Leia is a PRINCESS for goodness sakes! She’s supposed to be a knockout! And I thought that the wookie would talk, so I was somewhat put off when I discovered that he could only make annoying wails. But I mostly liked it. I might even watch another one sometime. In the meantime, today was a very successful bucket list day, and you HAVE to check out this little girls recap of the movie!