I am Melody. I am 40.

So, months and months ago I made a list of 40 things that I wanted to do before my 40th birthday. (September 12) The list is made up road trips, haunted places, meeting celebrities, eating delicious and artery stopping foods.  Only recently have I come to the conclusion that many of the things on my list are more than a bit far reaching.

When this list was made, I had 150% intention of completing it.  Then, the Navy stepped in and told me that my husband would be deployed for 3/4 of 2016.  Cool.  Always a good time.  But, this creates an enormous issue when you take into account well… I have children to take care of.  Damn heathen children.  😉

So, I have made the decision that I am going to AMEND my 40 Before 40 list so that I can do things that I want to do but, are able to accomplish them without the aid of a babysitter or the hubs. So, now seems to be as good a time as any to invite everyone on my journey to the big 4-0.

  1. Stay at the Clown Motel in Tonopah, NV.
  2. Winchester Mystery House.  I need not explain further.
  3. Give $40 in an envelope to a stranger and tell them that our transaction was over and to never contact me again.
  4. Girls Only sleepover. Yes, there will be the cheese factor.  Julia Roberts, manicures, facials.
  5. Fanny packs.  Huntington Beach. Is it necessary that I explain further?
  6. 40th Birthday Cake Smash session.
  7. Fun, Fabulous & 40 photo shoot with all my girls.
  8. Stay at the “Hotel Cortez”.
  9. Eat at Pink’s Hot Dogs, Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles and White Castle all in the same day.
  10. Go camping.  Like, without a fireplace and hot tub.
  11. 40 hour trip to Vegas.
  12. Cotton ball someone’s car.
  13. Allow myself ONE DAY to wallow in the fact that I am no longer in my 30’s and ask everyone to do everything for me. Because I am just. So. Sad.
  14. Get a “4-0” tattoo to commemorate the “Big Day”.
  15. I want to do one of those art and wine things with my friends.
  16. Celebrate my 7th year of sobriety with a margarita.  JUST KIDDING.  Go to an AA meeting. Shake 40 peoples’ hands and tell them a brief story of my journey.
  17. Send 40 handwritten letters to 40 of my friends.
  18. Volunteer at a soup kitchen or women’s shelter. Then, make it a part of life to give back to people.
  19. Road trip to San Francisco to see the Golden Gate Bridge and to ride the boat to Alcatraz.
  20. Save $1k to fund my 40th birthday, solo Hawaiian vacation.
  21. Organize another Western Eagle food box drive and feed 40 families.
  22. Go horseback riding.
  23. Stand on the median with a “It’s my 40th birthday, my husband is deployed and I need a bob job. Please give me money” sign and bucket for donations.
  24. Ride on a motorcycle.  Don’t laugh.  This is a HUGE fear of mine.
  25. Go to the animal shelter and read to the dogs.
  26. Plant a tree in honor of “the big 4-0”.
  27. Take a Saturday morning road trip with the men-children for breakfast at Cracker Barrel.
  28. Make 40 care kits for the homeless and pass them out as needed.
  29. Pet rocks.  Make that shit happen.
  30. Pay $40 extra on my light bill every month.
  31. Write my husband 40 letters in 40 days during this deployment.
  32. Plant 40 mini rose bushes around my home to remind me of military members that we have lost.
  33. Walk 40 miles. NOT concurrently.
  34. Write in my neglected journal at least 40 times.
  35. Meet Dr. Dre. Hey, fuck off. It could happen.  And, if anyone has connections… help a sista out.
  36. Take all of the photographs that I have printed over the years and put them all into photo albums.  Letting go of my OCD tendencies and just getting them in the albums. No order. No rhyme. No reason.
  37. Get 40 people to read this blog and to share it on their pages.
  38. Write each of the men-children letters. Enough said.
  39. Send my husband a themed care package each month that he is deployed.
  40. Wow.  And that’s that. Now, I need suggestions for the big one.  The very last thing on my 40 Before 40 list.  GO!