As January and February have passed with flurries of snow and days that conversely felt like spring, my 100s list is slowly getting more check marks. Not all of them are exciting, some are actually pretty lame and rather mundane, but regardless they are things that I need to get done. So, as we flip another month in 2017, I can happily report that I have made at least some progress on my 100s list.

After leaving a little New Year get together, I was surprised to be able to check #70 off my list in literally the first hour of the new year, ‘photograph the northern lights’. It was incredibly special to me to ring in the new year doing what I love most: kissing Ember and Kiska, and taking pictures. It wasn’t a particularly good show, not by any means; but it was January first, and I was out there with my tripod and camera, bundled up, while Kiska ran around with my man. After just two hours we ended up leaving, but the next day from Facebook it didn’t look like we missed much as the solar storm wasn’t very strong. But regardless, I started off 2017 already doing what is important to me.

As always, my only January first tradition (aside from struggle snuggles with the pets at midnight) is to apply for my PFD (#44). I am happy to report that this year it was just as easy as always, and to check two other numbers off my list, I supported Trail Mix (#42), and I also supported other charities (#43). I love that we can Pick.Click.Give and choose the charities that speak to us personally. I always choose: people, pets, services, and my passions. I make a point of always supporting Trail Mix, because I hike and run so many trails that they maintain. I support HARK (Haines Animal Rescue Kennel) because that’s where Kiska came from, also AWARE to support people in our community, and SAIL to support local services. And throughout the year I allocate other money to donate to worthy causes as they come up. Such as our beloved Out Door Studies instructor that got mauled by the bear, and the Special Olympics. The digital age of GoFundMe has made donating to charities so much easier, and there are so many worthy causes out there.

Number 11 on my list is to ‘start a book series’. I have had pretty grand ideas of all the books I will read each year, but I usually only squeak by a reasonable number of books for my ‘empty shelf challenge’ (empty a book shelf, and fill it up during the year with books you finish reading). So this year I am taking a different approach and steeping back from the specifics and making more general goals. This year, I am starting The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. My mom has always ranted about how good it is, so this year I am finally checking that one off my list. And interestingly enough, it has turned into a book club! The Facebook group #BooksAndBeer was born, and now I am on my way to accomplishing #13, ‘read at least 10 books’.

When talking to my siblings about Christmas presents, my twin said something about wanting a tattoo – the Pulsar Map. I have a good number of tattoos (over 10), so I was happy to give him my input and any bits of advice from my years of body modification. I told him that I would be very happy to gift him his first tattoo, and that brought up my comment of wanting ‘sibling tattoos’, #28. Now, bless my mother, but she is not much of a fan of her own daughter getting tattoos. She *says* she likes other people’s tattoos, but she always has some money comment or something else to say about mine. So of course she thought my twin getting a tattoo was just following his ridiculous younger sister. Lord bless her when she finds out there is a plot for all three of her children to be tattooed! (Insert evil laugh) I guess we will have to make sure she is sitting down when we show her.

Several on my list are things that take some time to complete, like #5 ‘volunteer 20 hours’, #6 ‘Sunday is a never rush day’, and #38 ‘save 4 months of bills’. These are things that I keep working towards, and though they aren’t as simple as doing them once and checking them off, they have a more lasting sense of accomplishment for me. Yeah actually, not rushing one day of the week is a legit goal of mine. So is working on #7, ‘bed is a phone free zone’. I hope that instead of viewing these things as goals, they are more habits I want to encourage and be more mindful of. And until the last week of December 2017 I won’t really know if I completed them or not. I hope that with these on my list, I can make lasting changes for me as a person, that these are traits more than tasks. Because who wants to be the same person they were last year?

Courtney Wendel has lived in Juneau since she was a year old. She has a twin brother and an older brother, and learned to enjoy the outdoors at a young age by following the boys into mischief. Graduating from JDHS in 2006, she attended UAS to receive her Literature of the Environment, BA English degree. When not at work she spends most of her time on the diverse trail system hiking, running, or camping with her spotted pooch and adventure buddies.