I should probably mention there is nothing about proofreading in this blog. I simply felt it was time to put this down on paper after hearing the sad news of Prince’s death. His amazing music was the soundtrack to my youth and I really really wish I had seen him in concert. That was definitely on my mental ‘to do’ list and now a missed opportunity.
I love lists and, of course, checking things off, so it’s no surprise that I have a list of things to do, see and achieve in my lifetime. It serves as a reminder of the amazing opportunities ahead and the wonderful things I have done in the past.
So, here in no particular order is my bucket list:
1. Go into space and orbit the Earth
2. Live and work overseas*
3. Write and publish a children’s book
4. Visit New Zealand and take the Lord of the Ring’s tour to all the sites used in the movies
5. Work for myself*
6. Learn to play the piano
7. Bungee jump*
8. Own a classic Volkswagen Camper Van
9. Learn to surf (again)
10. See the Aurora Borealis*
11. Raise happy, healthy children
12. Get tattoo removed
13. Drive along California’s Route 1 in a convertible*
14. Hot air balloon ride
15. Have a beach house in Newgale, West Wales or Mevagissey, Cornwall
16. Spend a family Christmas in a log cabin with proper snow, a reindeer sleigh ride and all the trimmings!
Okay, so number one is definitely the biggest challenge, but it’s also my most heartfelt wish. My hopes rest with Virgin Galactic running commercial flights by the time I’m a spritely Grandma. Also, I possibly need to have won the lottery or become a multi-million selling author to pay for my ticket!
I hope to inspire the mini-Fairbanks to not only follow their dreams, but to really dream big, who knows, maybe one of them would like to be an astronaut. My current Twitter obsession is Tim Peake (@astro_timpeake), our British astronaut living on the International Space Station (ISS).
What a star! He has been absolutely fantastic at sharing his experience with amazing photographs, his insightful thoughts/observations, and so many projects involving schools and the British public in general, not to mention the awesome #spacerocks competition.
Last month when the ISS was visible in our skies with the naked eye, we took the minis to the top of the Black Mountain to wave at Tim as he sped overhead. They loved it, although I think staying up past bedtime, hot chocolate and flapjacks also contributed to the success of the mission.
I believe everything on my bucket list is achievable and I am going to try and check off every single one. Some will require vast sums of money, others simply time and effort, and a couple of them determination, perseverance and maybe some luck.
Some are already fulfilled, such as working for myself. Red Ribbon Communications gives me the flexibility to work around our family life and my new venture Bell & Roo is going to provide a more creative outlet. Selling interior decor, kids’ stuff, upcycled items and gifts, I’ll finally be able to start using my fabric stash and all those buttons, ribbons and craft ideas I’ve been hoarding over the years.
Many moons ago, I spent the most fantastic year in the USA working as an Au Pair for six-year-old triplet boys. It gave me the opportunity to study marketing and a visa extension to travel for a month at the end.
During an amazing coast to coast trip from New York to Los Angeles, I bungee jumped in Las Vegas and cruised up the Californian coast hitting every beach along the way before heading back to the UK.
I was working as a graphic designer but I wanted to do something different, so I sought out the opportunity and I took it. I had no responsibilities, no mortgage, no kids, it was an easy decision.
I can honestly say that year ‘out’ led me to where I am today, as upon my return I came to university in Wales to continue my marketing studies and there I met Mr F.
Almost 20 years on, I fully appreciate that without that single opportunity and the decision to go for it, I wouldn’t be here in the beautiful Welsh wilds with a great husband, two adorable minis, five chickens, a cat and the goldfish.
Sadly, I will never get to see and hear the mighty purple Prince play live in concert but I am going to take every opportunity, say ‘yes’ every day and perhaps, as I check things off my list I’ll add new dreams too.
I’ll leave you with this wonderful quote from Dr. Norman Vincent Peale (1898–1993), a minister, author and a progenitor of the theory of ‘positive thinking’.
“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”
Photo credit: Tim Peake, Astronaut, International Space Station 2016.