This is 40.

When your birthday falls on the second day of the year, it’s an especially natural time to reflect on the last 365 days and set some goals for the future. This year is particularly special: age 40 is a true milestone. I’ve shied away from the idea of resolutions the last few years, bidding adieu to unrealistic expectations and opting instead to contemplate ways in which to better myself. (You can read some of my thoughts about this HERE and HERE.) Over two years ago, I embarked on a challenge to achieve 101 personal goals in 1001 days. When I started making my list, I was surprised at how difficult it was to come up with that many things I hoped to do. Now, as the final day approaches in about a week, I’m shocked at how quickly 2 ¾ years flies by. I’ll be recapping my Life List hits and misses soon (I have some updating to do!). Now that the specified time period is over, I’ve decided to tweak the concept. I want my goals to be realistic and feel attainable. I want them to be more easily checked off as ‘complete.’ And I want them to challenge me.

My new list includes 40 goals to reach before my next birthday- a mini bucket list of sorts. Some items are to better myself, some to better this world, and some are just for fun. The past year was often difficult, full of heartbreak and struggle and frustration and confusion. But it was also full of love, family, adventure, unexpected strength, and letting go. I started this blog almost three years ago as a space in which to remind myself of (and encourage others to see) the joy in every moment. Life is a gift. Every birthday is a privilege. As I challenge myself to continually look ahead this year, I’ll do it with a smile. It’s really been a beautiful year.


Follow along on my “40’s 40” goals here!


  1. Happy belated birthday, Amber! I love your new list and congrats to all that you accomplished on the last one. Looks like you’ve got a lot of great things to look forward to in the year ahead of you (don’t you always though? 🙂 ). If you and Amanda want a buddy to hike to the Hollywood sign, let me know. I’m not far from L.A. and it’s something I’ve always wanted to do. 🙂

  2. Welcome to Club 40!!! I hope you had a wonderful birthday, and I hope your year is filled with everything you’ve wished for! 😉

  3. Every birthday is a privilege- I just love that. Happy Birthday again lovely lady. I am looking forward to following along with you over this next year! I have a feeling it is going to be a very good one for you 🙂

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