26 Things I Haven’t Done or Can’t Do By 26

I am 26 today (woooooooo) and I thought I would write a list of things I have yet to do or accomplish or can’t actually do as a 26 year old adult woman. AKA: the list no one asked for because, really, no one gives a shit.

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  1. I haven’t written a bestselling book.
  2. I haven’t been an award-winning anything.
  3. I haven’t been a dedication in someone’s book. Rude.
  4. I can’t do a handstand, cartwheel, or anything relating to putting my hands on the ground and kicking my feet in the air.
  5. I have never learned to be graceful. I am not well coordinated in any way, shape or form. I broke my toe tripping over air. AIR.
  6. I forgot (hated) to wear my retainer and now have crooked teeth … again.
  7. I don’t own a LBD.
  8. I don’t know how to eat slowly. I always eat food like I have been starved my whole life.
  9. I don’t know how to make really good coffee.
  10. I haven’t gotten the Harry Potter tattoo I keep talking to everyone about.
  11. I can’t whistle.
  12. I’m not married or have kids. To be honest, I haven’t ever had a serious, proper boyfriend.
  13. I haven’t won the lottery.
  14. I haven’t gone a day in the past year without doing cheesy finger guns after a bad pun.
  15. I haven’t ever run a mile. I walked it in high school (in under 10 minutes—that’s good, right? Right?).
  16. I can’t talk to a room full of people without turning bright, tomato red.
  17. I can’t and won’t ever stop thinking about the time in middle school when I forgot the dance routine to “Hot, Hot, Hot” and stood in the back of everyone during the half-time performance, flapping my arms about pretending I was doing what everyone else was doing.
  18. I can’t play any instrument nor carry a tune and that’s probably the saddest thing about me.
  19. I haven’t grown out of loving romantic historical fiction (yes, the books with the two half-naked lovers embracing on the cover is my kryptonite).
  20. I don’t have the perfect Instagram bod where I am all nice and toned and tanned. I’m more Pillsbury Doughboy than anything (pale and fluffy).
  21. I’ve never not finished a gallon bag of peanut M&Ms by myself. Probably why I don’t have the above.
  22. I’ve never had perfect skin. Is that a thing some people have? Are they just genetically blessed? How do I get perfect skin?!
  23. I haven’t ever been to a party where my very cool party trick of reciting either the opening chapter of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Store or the Prologue to Romeo and Juliet went over well.
  24. I’ve never shotgunned a beer that hasn’t immediately gone up my nose. I think I’m doing something very wrong.
  25. I’ve never been able to see the numbers 69 and not smirk.
  26. I don’t know a lot of things but speak like I have an authority on everything so never believe me. Or just pacify me and nod your head even though I’m probably wrong.
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To the Women in My Life

It’s International Women’s Day and I felt it would be the perfect day to celebrate the top six women in my life at the moment (obviously). This is not to say that there aren’t other women in my life that mean an incredible amount to me, you know who you are, but these six have gotten me through a pretty difficult transitional period of my life. And honestly? I don’t know what I would have done without them this past year.

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Kelsey

The fact that you put up with my 100+ random text messages on a daily basis is a testimonial to how much of a good friend you are to me. I honestly don’t know what I would do without your continued support and friendship over the past two years. You have been my rock, my shout into the void, my shoulder, my comedian, my constant and I can’t thank you enough for that. I know that I can go to you about anything and you’ll always be there to listen. You’ll support my stupid decisions, correct my stupid mistakes (Judd Apatow) and laugh along with me because life is a wild ride and I’m glad to have you in the passenger seat. You’re absolutely the Head to my Heart and vice versa. Thanks for everything.

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Emma

There’s only certain people that come into your life at a pivotal moment and you were one of them. After three years of not seeing one another, it was the best feeling being back in your company and feeling as if no time had passed. I know that I can text or call you at any time and you’ll always be there at the other end ready for a conversation. Thank you for always listening to my rambling chats, listening to the random songs I send you, and for being there for me. Always.

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Paige

You left me and finally understand everything I’ve told you for five years—you find yourself when you’re away from everything you know. I’m so incredibly proud of you for making the biggest move of your life and I love that you’re making a home for yourself away from your friends and family. You’re my biggest inspiration this year and for the past seven years, you’ve made me stronger and braver. Even if you don’t realize it. Thank you for your no-nonsense, not putting up with bullshit attitude. You’re the fiercest person I know and I still have a lot to learn from you.

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Brittany

You definitely won’t know how much or understand how much being friends with you again has saved me this year. Thank you for inviting me to that initial One Republic concert and letting me into your circle of friends. It’s a weird thing moving back home to no friends and starting over and reaching out to someone you haven’t seen in nine years is a little intimidating. Especially when you are the outsider to a group of friends who have been friends for a long time, but you’ve been so welcoming and amazing and your friends have welcomed me and I can’t think you enough for that. I really, really can’t.

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Roxann

Oh, lady, thank you always. Yeah, we’re not always the best at keeping in touch and going months without seeing each other (life always gets in the way!), but you help me step out of my comfort zone and learn to be a bit more extroverted. I’ve met some truly amazing people through you and ate some of the best food of my life thanks to your introductions. Every time we see each other, I know I’ll laugh until I cry, drink a bit too much and dance a bit chaotically and I thank you so much for that.

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Momma Bear

And finally, my wonderful, wonderful momma. Everything I do is for you and I never ever want to disappoint you. Thank you for always being my support system and listening to me complain about people you don’t know and excitedly talk about things you don’t care about. Thanks for letting me cultivate and explore the things I love and not stopping me from going after the things that I’ve wanted. You’re the reason that I have such excellent taste in music and know all the words to Bennie and the Jets (finally!). You’re my best friend and I have so much to learn from you still and won’t ever stop learning from you. You’re my favorite person in the world (even though we constantly get on each other’s nerves). Thank you for everything. I love you.

A Reminder


Take things as they are and don’t question them. Don’t explode from sadness or unquestionable doubt. Keep moving forward and you’ll find the person you’re meant to be. Keep it all in and you’ll be rewarded. Be pretty, act mean, don’t let others dictate your happiness. Selfish people live longer. Lust and desire only last so long and then there is nothing, so moving on is key to any relationship. Let people in but only for a moment because once they see inside your soul, you’re done and they know how to hurt you. Be afraid but never show it. Courage and hope is the only facade you can show to the people around you. Don’t let it all infect the being of your flesh. You’re better than that. You don’t care. You’re over it. Shrug your shoulders. Put on your lipstick and fake it until you make it because everyone is a phony.

Friendly Advice // Chad

Name: Chad Curtis

Where do you rest your head at night? In the suburbs of the twin cities, MN.

Is that where you’re originally from? Nope, I was born in Michigan (so I’m told), raised in St. Charles, MO, and then moved to Ames, IA for college before I ended up in MN.

Best thing about the city you live? Anybody can find something to do. Whether its food, music, sports, lakes, beer, etc., there are a multitude of options for entertainment. The people up here are pretty great as well, so finding a friend to join you for all of these activities is also an easy task.

If you’re not originally from the city you currently reside, what is the best thing about your hometown? Going to Cardinals baseball games! If you haven’t been, then you’re missing out on one of the best things to do in STL. 😉

What’s one thing that tourists do that you wish they didn’t? Flock to the Mall of America and make traffic a nightmare. I do my best to avoid that area.

Best places to eat? That is a tough question. I’ve only scratched the surface of the MN food scene in my short time here, but from my experience Black Sheep Pizza is an option you can never go wrong with, and the pork banh mi from Lu’s Sandwiches is my current addiction.

Where all have you traveled? I’ve been to just about half of the states, and I’ve also been to Kenya twice and spent a night in Amsterdam. I plan on adding to that list in the near future.

What is your favorite place that you have traveled? Definitely Kenya! I went with Hopeful Africa, a non-profit that was started by a good friend and fraternity brother of mine, and had such an amazing experience the first time, I had to go back for round two.

List five places you want to travel to: It’s hard to pick only five, but here goes nothing– Barcelona, Prague, Australia, Italy and London.

Insert one of your favorite photos you’ve taken on your travels:

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Chad Curtis is a recent graduate at Iowa State University and when he isn’t traveling all around the US with his company, he likes to attend concerts and drink beer. Lots and lots of beer.

Friendly Advice // Emma

Before I leave for a new place, I usually check in with friends who either a) live in the location I am traveling or b) have visited said location. A lot of my friends, hell most of them, are far more experienced when it comes to traveling, more than I will ever be. With all this in mind, I have come up with a small list of questions that I have sent to a number of my friends to answer for a monthly post (possibly more than monthly) of “Friendly Advice.” The first set of questions were answered by my best friend, Emma.

Name: Emma DiPasquale

Where do you rest your head at night? Cleveland, Ohio.

Is that where you’re originally from? Nope. I was born and raised in Pittsford, a town right outside of Rochester, New York.

Best thing about the city you live? The best thing about Cleveland is that you’re always discovering new things to do. It’s a very underrated city – we have a lot going on. There’s an awesome food and music scene which is always fun to explore.

If you’re not originally from the city you currently reside, what is the best thing about your hometown? One of my favorite reggae bands, Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad, originated in Rochester.

What’s one thing that tourists do that you wish they didn’t? I wish they didn’t feel the need to do “touristy” things. Find your own spots to explore and enjoy. That’s what makes traveling fun.

Best places to eat? This is a tough one. Cleveland is known as a “foodie” city so we have awesome spots all over. Some of my favorites are Greenhouse Tavern on East 4th St. and Great Lakes Brewery on Market Ave.

Where all have you traveled? A few states here and there. I’ve lived in London. Over there I traveled to Scotland, Ireland, Italy, France, Switzerland, and The Netherlands. I just recently got back from West Virginia, which was absolutely beautiful.

What is your favorite place that you have traveled? Another tough one. I’d have to go with Switzerland.

List five places you want to travel to: Germany, South Africa, Australia, Colorado and The Pacific Northwest

Insert one of your favorite photos you’ve taken on your travels: Photo taken in Interlaken, Switzerland)

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Emma is an undergrad at John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio. She is studying English and hopes to hike around in Alaska, similar to Christopher McCandless, whose real life adventures are documented in Emma’s favorite novel “Into the Wild.”