There is something about a new beginning that brings hope and joy. For me I don’t let that come around only on New Year’s Day. Every week is a new beginning as I continue to live with my chronic migraine illness. Each day brings a new challenge, as I try to work and live as full of a life as I want. In order for me to keep trying to ascertain what I want my life to look like, I keep a yearly goal list of all that I want to see (and eat) in my own backyard so that my life is never completely off track. My train might just be delayed a bit.
The great thing about keeping a scorecard is that you never really have a blank slate. As you cross things off, you add new things to the list. It becomes a living, breathing document that evolves as you do. That is what I like best about it.
Of course after I have decided what to do, I make plans to venture out. While out trying to take it all in, I am taking the photos that I know I will use on the blog, and slowly piecing the words together that I will want to remember later to use. Sometimes it is not even the words I am trying to capture but a feeling that I want to be able to hold on to so that when I type the emotions will just pour out of me through my fingers and onto the page. Half of the time when I go back and read what I have written I am amazed. I was typing so fast I couldn’t even keep up and read at the same speed. It is like I am split into two parts; my soul and my brain. My brain and the intelligent part of me knows what it wants to say and my soul knows when and why it needs to say it. This is the reason I continue to write my blog and do this work. Yes it is still work for me despite the passion I feel. For every artist I am sure they have this aspect in their art. For without the work you are never going to feel the pride.
Before we move on to this year’s hit list I think it is important to reflect back on this past year for a moment for this is the only way I get to see an entire year’s worth of adventures at a glance. For one thing there were only sixty blogs written a drop down for me from the previous year, a clear indicator of how much my illness had progressed and taken a hold of my life. But despite this challenge I am proud of what I was able to accomplish though always craving more.
My favorite blogs are (see links below):
· For A Few of My Favorite Things
· For The Vanderbilt’s Summer Home “The Breakers”
· For Cynthia Nixon’s “Wit”
· For the 2012 New York Times Travel Show
· For My Blog’s First Birthday
· For a Giant Pot of Gold at the “End of the Rainbow”
· For My Mother
· For an Anniversary As Priceless As a Gem
· For Sheldon Cooper, “Harvey”, and Most of All Jim Parsons
· For Jonathon Larson and All The “Seasons of Love” He Has Given Me “Rent Off Broadway”
· For a “Woman’s Worth” Alicia Keys at The 92 Y
· For “Thanks and Giving”
I suppose I love all of my blogs equally but these are the ones I can reread over and over again and with a gun pointed to my head would be the ones I would choose for others to read if I had to pick only some. They are the ones I feel define me as an individual. They are the most personal and reflect the people I wished to honor and the places I adore the most. They tell the stories that make up who I am and what I value. They are the lessons I want to share. I hope that going forward I continue to peel back layers of myself and I continue to learn along with my audience the things that are important in life as well as the things that make it worth living. Then sometimes you just need to cut loose and have fun. That will always be a part of me and my list. Cyndi Lauper said it best, sometimes “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.”
Now on to the fun stuff!! The 2013/2014 contenders!!
As you will note in previous blogs (see links below) I have always started my do to lists, in the middle of the year usually after my blog’s birthday in March or late April. This year it took me a little longer because of my health and because there are many things on last year’s list that I have completed but have not had a chance to write about. There are still a few coming up and you will notice what they are if you compare last year’s list to the one below. For the activities I still have not gotten to, they will reappear on this list and at the top of their section because I consider them top priority. Some already even have dates on my calendar, thankfully. Some will just have to wait until the summer is over because I don’t do well in the heat. The one new feature to the organization of this list is that I have now broken down the food category between what I consider to be a meal, like for lunch or dinner, and what’s best for dessert or a snack. This will highlight my choices in superior manner. Other than that I have kept our three basic categories the same: plays/shows, activities/lectures/exhibits/, and food-meals/desserts. Obviously this is only based on information I have at this time. I am sure my list will continue to grow so please pay close attention to my Twitter and Facebook accounts during the year if you want live and current information so that you do not miss out on any fun especially those great New York City limited run special events.
Ok here we go; these are my plans for the next year or so!
a) Chicago (seen before now staring Wendy Williams until August 11, 2013)
b) Madame Butterfly (if open this season)
c) Bill Maher (comedy festival)
d) Megan Hilty (if she ever comes to NYC)
e) Mary J. Blige (if she ever comes to NYC)
f) Rihanna (if she ever comes to NYC)
a) Intrepid Sea, Air, Space Museum (especially Space Shuttle Pavilion)
b) Circleline Cruise (of NYC skyline and 5 boroughs)
c) FDR Four Freedoms Park
d) Slavery and Underground Railroad Tour
e) Greenwood Cemetery Exhibit (A Beautiful Way to Go) at Museum of the City of New York (May-October 2013)
f) “Photography and the American Civil War” exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (until September 2, 2013)
g) Old Stone House
h) Teddy Roosevelt’s Sagamore Hill
i) FDR Home in Hyde Park & FDR Presidential Library
j) Vanderbilt Mansion Historical Site
k) Grant’s Tomb
l) Alexander Hamilton’s Grange (house)
m) Harriet Tubman’s House
n) Harriet Tubman Statute in Harlem
o) Collyer Brothers Park
p) Weeksville Heritage Center
q) The Conference House in Staten Island
r) Raynham Music Hall
s) Wicked back stage tour
i. Locanda Verde
ii. Gorilla Grilled Cheese Truck
iii. Phil’s Steaks Truck
iv. Luke’s Lobster
vi. Baked Potato King
vii. Beacher’s Handemade Cheese
viii. Buttermilk Channel
xi. Hill Country
xii. Neely’s BBQ Parlor
xiv. Blue Hill
xvii. Lasagna Ristorante
xxii. Antica Pesa
xxiii. Mighty Quinn’s BBQ
i. La Columbe (now in NYC, like in Philadelphia)
ii. Blue Spoon Coffee
iii. Sugar, Sweet Sunshine Bakery
iv. Sullivan Street Bakery
v. First Prize Pies
vi. Holy Cream/Doughnut Ice Cream Sandwich
vii. The Culture Yogurt Company
viii. Macaron Parlour
ix. Laughing Man Coffee
x. Intelligentsia Coffee (now in NYC from Chicago)
xi. Momofuku Milk Bar
Do you know what you are doing from now until June 2014?
I would love to know! Post comments here or on Twitter or Facebook.
For Past To Do Lists:
My Favorite 2012 Blogs: