Bucket List 2012 Complete?!?!

So I’m sitting here daydreaming and working. And then, it hit me: I’m on track to complete my 2012 Bucket List next week.

This whole concept of having a Bucket List for each year– not just one for your life– came from a blogger named Lesley Carter. I’m sure you’re familiar with her… she’s amazing and has like 5 billion followers. Go on and check her out.

Anyway, taking a page from her, I decided to create a Bucket List for 2012. Here is the article which completed my list. 

Nick’s 2012 Bucket List

1. Complete a 2-week juice fast.
2. Attend a “Destination Party”
3. Produce a Mini-Documentary
4. Camp for a Week… with Diverse Friends.
5. Go on a “NEW” Cruise
6. Learn Something, Make a Change
7. Pete. Pete. Pete.

First things first. That juice fast. Icky, icky. But I did feel like a million bucks afterwards.

Second things second. Attend a destination party. I checked that off my list just last week. Driving through the Florida Keys and attending Fantasy Fest was wonderful. I truly believe that in order to really understand other humans, you’ve got to interact with as many different types as possible… Check out this picture of me having fun at this annual Halloween bash:

Good time that was. Third on my list was to complete a mini documentary. This made the list because I was hungry to return to producing videos. I went to school for it. I’ve been doing it since high school. But the latest projects that I had until the beginning of the year involved weddings and things of that nature. I’ve scratched this item off the list time and again this year… due to my first Children’s Book, Pete the Popcorn, being released. It has been such fun to work on promoting the book through various videos, including visits to schools and gourmet popcorn shops.

The fourth item on my list is the one I’m getting to next week… sort of. I wanted to camp for a week… with diverse friends. Here is the thing: I should not have worded my goal so strictly. I love to camp. And I’ve done it quite a few times this year. However, it’s hard to get people to organize— and it’s even harder when a lot of your friends are not too fond of camping. So my goal should have been to vacation for a week… with diverse friends. That’s what I’m doing.

Next Thursday, I board a big Carnival Cruise ship in New Orleans, Louisiana for a cruise with over a dozen friends in tow. The best part? They’re all first-time cruisers. So, it might not be camping… but it’s spending a week with a very large and very diverse group of interesting people. Stories and good times will sprout from this week, let me assure you. Not camping… but cruimping?

My point is this: though the goal changed by one word, the meaning was the same– to forge deeper relationships through a great, fun experience.

The fifth item on my list was to go on a “NEW” cruise. If you don’t follow this blog on a regular basis, you may have assumed by this point that I’m a huge fan of cruising. But I always tend to go on the same ones… Caribbean, Mexico, Caribbean again. I had a hunger to do something more. So on April 30th, I flew to Barcelona and got on a ship… and that ship sailed to Dubai.

Check number 5 off my list.

Number 6 was an item that I found difficult to put into words. I ended up settling on Learn Something. Make a Change. At the end of 2011 and the beginning of 2012, I was so extremely bored and unsettled. I was hungry to fill a void, even though I didn’t know what that void was. Well, I found it. My need was to be creative and contribute something to the society around me. And it was also learning that I could still learn. 

My change was not necessarily changing careers… but cutting back on “a job” and replacing it with what I hope to carve into “a career”. And I’ve had so many great experiences this year: traveling to places I’ve never been, visiting so many children in so many schools, meeting people in cities all over the country, hearing concerns about our educational system, engaging with folks to hear of their own experiences. Wow. Looking back, it’s amazing to me. And I owe all of it to number 7.

My 7th and final Bucket List entry for 2012 was Pete, Pete, Pete. Not only did I want to publish a Children’s Book… I wanted that book to make a splash, be a success and make a difference. Little did I know what a difference it would make in my own life…

Pete the Popcorn was released on February 29th, 2012. Immediately, it started a flood of media appearances, school visits and book signings. In addition, it began the ball rolling on a litany of other projects.

In June, our second book was released. Clipper the Comet allowed co-author Joe Kelley and I to celebrate our grandparents and also the area of the country where we were both raised: the rust belt, the automotive-producing heartland of the country.

In July, we began working on a book for adults: P.E.T.E. Pursuing Excellence Through Encouragement. This will be officially released on Amazon.com in the coming weeks.

In September, we wrapped up work on Pete the Popcorn for iBooks. This amazing interactive book can even have the characters read the book to you! This ibook is currently working its way through Apple’s review process and should be available to the 100 Million iPads and 73 millions iPhones worldwide before the Holiday shopping season kicks into gear.

Also in September, we embarked on a 40-City, 25-State, 2-Month national tour. We’ve been to countless schools across the country and it’s been amazing.

All of this is culminating in yet another project— our illustrator, Kathleen Smith Waters, has been very hard at work on Casey and Callie Cupcake. This “frosted fable about being fantastic just the way you are” is currently open for pre-ordering through November 6th… and pre-order packages will be shipping before the end of the year. Here is the cover:

With every single project, we’ve also attempted to teach a lesson or wrap up the book’s release into an event promoting some sort of good.

With Pete the Popcorn, the message was kids encouraging others. Released on Leap Day, we told kids that it was time to take a huge leap forward when it comes to bullying in this country.

For Clipper the Comet, we talk to kids about taking pride in their work. And we released it at a Summer Book Swap, where we gave away thousands of books to deserving children.

And now for Casey and Callie Cupcake, we are allowing children to head to our website, www.PeteThePopcorn.com on Election Day. They’ll be able to cast their ballot for Casey or Callie and learn about America’s Election process. We are presenting parents and teachers with an opportunity to talk with kids about our right to vote— something so important that gets lost in the political warfare of the season. Here is the link to the Facebook event… I would appreciate you joining the event and sharing it with your friends. With your help, we can make this a National movement: http://www.facebook.com/events/336105706487487/

Gosh I really can’t tell you how grateful I am to Lesley Carter for reading about her yearly bucket lists. I just don’t know if all of these things would have happened this year if I wouldn’t have written them down.

All of these projects stemming from one Children’s Book? These opportunities to travel? Chances to learn?

Some folks might write down “jump out of an airplane”… and I really might do that for next year. But I’m so proud that many of my Bucket List goals for 2012 were based on accomplishing and achieving things that weren’t guaranteed.

I better start writing the list for 2013. Any ideas?


Thanks for visiting this blog! As you see, it is not supported by advertising. If you would like to personally support this blog and its authors, please visit Amazon to purchase our Children’s Book, Pete the Popcorn! If you don’t have a child in your life, donate a copy to your local school or library! Also, we LOVE it when people LIKE us on Facebook. To learn more about our books, please visit www.PeteThePopcorn.com 


2 comments on “Bucket List 2012 Complete?!?!

  1. Your books look verry interesting, I have a few friends with young children That I will forward this information to, I think they will like it. As for Ideas for next years Bucket List, have you considered Peru, there are so many amazing things to see in the Cusco area.

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