30 before 30


I know a lot of people dread their 30th birthday, but mine is coming up this summer, and I’m actually really looking forward to it. I’m finally getting to the age where I feel the number fits with my personality. I had the typical college girl, go-all-out, have a blast phase during my early twenties, but soon after, I got married, settled down and kinda outgrew the 2-0s. I’m happy to get to jump into a decade that seems to gel with my lifestyle a bit more.

That all being said, the fact that three-oh is a giant, huge birthday hasn’t been lost on me. So many of my friends that have already crossed the threshold into the 30s have told me how good the thirties are. You’re still young and have energy. But you also have the wisdom and confidence that can only come with a few extra orbits around the sun under your belt. It’s like this upcoming birthday of mine is the gate to a really awesome upcoming time in my life.

So to make sure I go into that new era feeling the best I can physically, mentally and emotionally, I thought it’d be fun to compile a list of 30 things I want to accomplish before I turn 30 years old. I’ve seen folks do these lists before and always thought it was such a fun idea. My 30th birthday is exactly four months from today, and I think using the next 16 weeks as a way to focus on making myself the best me I can be, is pretty much the best birthday gift I could give myself.

Ready for the list? I have to admit, compiling this was hard. I wanted tasks that were both meaningful and achievable (after all, it is only four months away). Striking that balance was a toughy, but I’m excited about the final list! Some are big. Some are small. And some are totally random (making sausage, anyone?).

me hike tree blazes

1. Do a double-digit mileage hike.
2. Go see a movie in the theatre.
3. Learn how to make sausages.
4. Go technology-free for 24 hours.
5. Read five books.

fox squirrel books

6. Hike Clifty Falls.
7. Watch five movies on the IMDB Top 250 that I’ve never seen before.
8. Paint our cabinets.
9. Make my own tonic water.
10. Drink 10 new-to-me beers.

me beer

11. Go canoeing.
12. Buy a pair of brightly-colored pants.
13. Land a big new gig.
14. Make fresh pasta using my KitchenAid.
15. Go on an impromptu road trip.

car drive road

16. Redesign BTHR to be prettier and responsive-y-er.
17. Start a mushroom garden.
18. Lose 15 pounds.
19. Buy a pair of jeans I feel great in.
20. Bake the perfect cherry pie.


21. Figure out a better clothes storage system.
22. Sew myself a dress.
23. Get the Cassie & Craig website up and running.
24. Start working on a cookbook.
25. Go vegan for a week.

seasame soba noodle salad

26. Work out everyday for 30 straight days.
27. Go camping for a weekend.
28. Go fishing.
29. Have a picnic in the Clark State Forest and climb the fire tower.
30. Travel to somewhere I’ve never been before.

luggage suitcase

Do you have any big milestone birthdays coming up soon? What would you like to get accomplished before then?


  1. says

    I’m 40 this year, which I guess is a big birthday but I found going from 29 to 30 much more of a milestone than I’m finding this one. Everyone is asking me what I’m going to do for it and I’m thinking not much…it’s just a birthday but I’m having the week off work. The only thing I absolutely have to do before August, is paint the living room! Do you have anywhere in mind for the travel, anywhere you really want to go to?

    • Cassie says

      A week off of work is a great way to celebrate 40!

      Probably somewhere close and drivable. :) I’d love to make a big honkin’ trip overseas, but that just isn’t in the financial cards this year.

    • Cassie says

      What’s that phrase about how the cobbler’s kids have no shoes? That’s how I feel about BTHR. I keep meaning to make it responsive, and other stuff just pops up and it falls to the bottom of the priority list.

  2. Krystina says

    I’d like to go back to school and finish my degree (or at least in the process of completing it) by the time I turn 25 (I’m 23 now).

  3. says

    I turn 30 in approximately 2.5 weeks! but I don’t have any particular goals in mind, nor would I have time to accomplish much in that time.

      • says

        Haha thanks :) I actually did think of one and took some strides toward it today. The four days following my birthday have us hosting a large work event that I will be fairly visible at, so I decided it was finally time to step up my grown-up appearance/wardrobe goals and ordered a few items!

  4. Jen in MN says

    Ah, the 30’s. They are awesome. At 34, I can attest!

    I feel like I’m truly finding myself (my real, true self) in my 30’s which is a fantastic thing.

    You will love it! To me, turning 30 wasn’t a big deal (in a bad way), and it’s nice to see when others don’t dread the big milestone, either. (-:

  5. Kristin says

    So many awesome ideas! I hope you are able to accomplish them :) I actually have thought about doing something like this for my 25th birthday which is coming up in about 6 weeks.

  6. says

    I’m also turning 30 around the same time as you. I love the idea of this list…I think I’m going to try to set something similar up. I hope you don’t mind if I steal some of your ideas! :)

  7. Becky says

    I love the list. I did one before I turned 40. The only two things that I didn’t get to were scuba diving and skydiving. Still going to them for the during my 40’s goals. You will love your 30’s they are so much fun and you don’t have to be all up tight to impress like we are in our 20’s To look at the future the 40’s are even better than the 30’s.

  8. Athena R says

    Love your list…good luck with it. I’ll be 40 in July. I recently found out I’m pregnant(yikes), so most of the things I will be accomplishing before then will be baby related, I’m sure. So much for that great 40th birthday trip I had hoped for…le sigh!

  9. says

    I love this idea! I am turning the big 3-0 in October of this year and I am going to do a list like this. I am pregnant and baby is due in July so I didn’t get to be as adventurous as I would like, but I now have 30 new goals to accomplish. Thank you for the idea and good luck on completing yours!

  10. says

    Those bookends are adorable! Where did you get them?

    I’m also planning to read Wicked this year; my bestie got it for me for Christmas. Have you read it yet?

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