The highs and lows of parenting and real estate.

10 Things To Do Before You Have Kids

Don’t get me wrong, I totally dig my kids and hubs. I have a good thing going here, and I know it. I managed to find a man who totally puts up with my shit at a very young age. Most aren’t so lucky. That said, I started this whole ‘being a grown-up and nurturing human life’ crap pretty early. I wasn’t a teen mom or anything (obvs. Or you would know me from my US Weekly cover shoots), but I definitely skipped a certain amount of early 20s shenanigans in favor of diaper changing.

Because my kids are finally reaching a slightly more self-sufficient stage, I’ve had a little more time to think about things that I want to do for me: activities, travel, hobbies, life dreams, etc. I realized, there are a few things I wish I could go back and do under the protection of ‘Young and Stupid’ that I will never be able to get away with at this point.

So just to help everyone who hasn’t yet made that jump into parenthood and responsible adultness, but is considering it, I’ve made a list of 10 things I wish I could go back and do before I had kids:

1. Dye my hair blue – I’ve totally always wanted to sport an alternative look. Now it would just be a detriment to my kids’ abilities to score playdates. “Jared, you want to go to Gray’s house after school? Isn’t his mom the one in her 30s with blue hair? I think she has mental problems, it’s a bad idea.”

2. Join an acrobatic troop – I was a gymnast for years when I was a kid and a diver in high school. What I wouldn’t kill for now to be in the Sea World dolphins and divers show? Or do a stint in a Vegas show involving trapezes and sparkly pasties? I’m obviously too old and fat to learn the trade now, but hot damn to I wish I could go back and rock that shit when I was 20.

3. Live in a foreign country – I know if Jason and I decided we really wanted to move to Uruguay or something, technically we could. But obviously we wouldn’t. The ridiculousness of finding schools and jobs and housing and packing up all of our stuff infinitely outweighs the romanticism of experiencing the daily life of another culture. Let me tell you, though, if I was 23 and single and could find any excuse to spend a summer working at a Gelato stand in Rome? I would jump at it.

4. Have a job I spend 12 hours a day at – I know it seems ridiculous to want a chance to work myself to death, but I’ve never really had the opportunity to hold a job I could give EVERYTHING to. I graduated from college and had a baby 2 months later. 7 weeks after that I started my first adult job. There’s a certain decadence to the idea of being only committed to doing your job awesomely. I’ve never even actually worked through dinner.

5. Own a piece of white furniture – Did you see that episode of The Rachel Zoe Project where she had her house designed all in gorgeous white couches and rugs and accents and amazingness? Yeah, all I could think about while watching that was that it would immediately look like a Jackson Pollock painting if it was in my house.

6. Pose for an artist – I’m not saying I was gorgeous before I had kids, but it would be nice to have proof that I didn’t always have a roadmap of stretchmarks.

7. Try out for The Amazing Race – which totally didn’t exist before I had kids, but whatever, this is my fantasy. I think my sister and I would rock TAR. And by ‘rock’ it I mean totally embarrass our family by our lack of natural directionality.

8. Live alone – I went straight from my parents, to roommates, to a husband and a baby. I don’t know that I’d love living alone, but I think it would be interesting to have the experience of being completely in control of my own space and schedule, if for no reason but to learn how I’d deal with it.

9. Attend Burning Man – I’m still not totally sure I understand what goes on at Burning Man besides weird costumes and some sort of artistic chaos, but I have this feeling it would be something I would remember. I also have this feeling that at this point in my life I’d prefer to sleep in a bed and super drugged out people would terrify me or piss me off. I’m obviously too old for that shit now.

10. Chain myself to a tree or go on a hunger strike – Extreme political passion is for the insane or those with the luxury of extra time. I wish I had the energy to save the world from itself, but I’d totally settle for the ability to say I had at one time.

So there you go, kids, if you’ve completed that list, feel free to make the big leap!

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