Life List Surfing in Hawaii and Soccer in Barcelona


I’ve been life listing a lot in the last couple of years.  Living like I have one foot in the grave and the other on a surfboard, and I’m only planning on ramping it up from here.  And while I’ve been living all this *life*, I’ve been thinking a lot.  Thinking about purposeful living and what it means to live life to the fullest, happiest, most badass it can possibly be.

What does that look like for you guys?  For me, my Life List changes every year.  I go back to the original Life List (aka Bucket List)  I made in 2010 and change it up all the time.  Things that sounded awesome to me 4 years ago sometimes sound stupid to me now.  So I take things off the list, add new things, and all the time try to cross things off, having fun in the process.

cleanse diet

For example, #30 on my Life List is to be in better shape at 40 than I was when I made the list.  The last few years of my health have been pretty awful.  What am I doing about it? As much as I can, really.   Well, a month ago I started a diet cleanse (no Diet Dr Pepper for 2 weeks straight, cold turkey) and yesterday I hired a personal trainer (help!).  I’m serious about getting healthier.  No more 3-month-long migrainesAin’t nobody got time for that.

Last Spring, I impulsively agreed to a trip with one of my best friends, Rachael Herrscher, to the South of France.  It was a trip I couldn’t afford to take, but couldn’t really afford not to, and I crossed a whole bunch of Life List stuff off on that two week prance around France and Spain.


#33 on my Life List was become fluent in Spanish again.  I took Spanish Immersion in Elementary school and junior high, but lost a lot of my Spanish somewhere along the way to adulthood.  I worked on recovering said Spanish all over Spain, and a few times in France as well.  I worked on #16 (collecting sea glass from 50 beaches) in Barcelona and Antibes.  I’m counting #13 done (attend a World Cup soccer game); even though the soccer game (fútbol, rather) Rachael and I went to in Barcelona wasn’t technically a world stage, FC Barcelona (please tell me you’ve heard of Lionel Messi) played a kind of soccer I’ve never seen played before.  It was spiritual.  Even if I’m not lucky enough to attend a World Cup game (I’ll give it my best),  I’ll still die happy for having attended that FC Barcelona game.

UC Barcelona

#24: Swim in the Mediterranean sea: I swam in the Mediterranean and it was warm and clear and lovely and practically wave-less.  I had never considered such a thing to be a possibility in any sea, but there it is.


#37, Attend an honest-to-goodness movie premiere: I went to a movie premiere at the Cannes Film Festival + at said festival, wore a ball gown to an event of importance #69.

Cannes Film Festival

#38, Roam around Paris: I Roamed around Paris for a few days alright, (best food I’ve ever experienced in my short life) + #86 visited the Louvre.

Paris France

A few years ago I went to Hawaii, stayed at Turtle Bay Resort (swoon), and took surf lessons from the Hans Hedemann surf school where a nice kid from Samoa via Georgia (really) helped me actually, properly, stand up and surf a wave.

Surfing in Hawaii

After tries in both Huntington Beach and Costa Rica, I (finally) Learned to surf in Hawaii #5.

Life List

But not all my Life List stuff is as grand and exciting as Paris and the Cannes Film Festival + surfing in Hawaii.

For example, I’m working on reading every book in my vast library (#40).  I buy a lot of good books, I just don’t always have time to read them.  So I’m working on that.

home library

Brian Kershisnik is my favorite artist of all time and #26 on my list is to own a painting by him.  I can’t quite afford a painting yet, but thanks to his niece Annie Kershisnik Blake I now own a beautiful sketch by him.  And I’m totally counting that as a win.

Brian Kershisnik

So here’s my question for all of you: what are YOU doing to make your life more wonderful?  Are you getting weekly manicures, working out more, getting a whole 8 hours of sleep, reading good books?  What do you want to do to make your life a happy place?

Tell me.  I want to hear it, all of it.

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Hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. I do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, home remodel projects, and cool DIY crafts you totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!


  1. Angela :

    I love this post. love love love it. i need to make a life list stat. currently i’ve been eating mostly vegan and it has changed my life- i have more energy, my skin is brighter, i’ve lost weight and i’m no longer tired every afternoon. p.s i’m so jealous about cannes. :)

  2. karen :

    Love this article. It is so inspirational, I will be searching for my life list today (tucked away somewhere)…crossing off, adding to. The older I get, the more I am focusing on doing things…hurry…life is becoming shorter…I don’t have time (or a body) like I did when I was 20. Keeping healthy to travel, have experiences, and sharing it all with my family is of utmost importance.

    And by the way, on my way to reinventing myself, you’re haircut inspired me. I chopped it off and I am loving it! Something I would have *never* done at 20. Snip, snip with abandon! Wish I could leave you a pix.