Fill-the-Bucket List

Maggie from Northern Expenditure wrote about her Fill-the-Bucket-List at the beginning of the year, it was so inspiring that a few other bloggers followed suit and took her challenge (many other bloggers – the list is growing). Like some of the ones who participated, I too used to have a bucket list, but I stopped updating because I didn’t like the pressure it makes me feel every time i looked at it. “When am i going to cross this one out?” “Ugh I’m way past my target age!.” “I don’t think I’m doing this in this lifetime.” You get the idea. (Reminder: I’m a self-confessed worrier.)

Maggie’s Fill-the-Bucket list is a genius idea that made me look at bucket lists in another way. Instead of feeling unaccomplished, this list allows you to celebrate what you’ve already done. It is a very positive take on bucket lists and I knew I wanted to make my list too.


These are some of the things I’ve filled my bucket with:

Moved to Australia. Life-changing, this one. I was originally opposed to coming here because I had an okay life back home – I had my family, a progressing career, a person I liked, my friends. It’s never easy to start a new life somewhere else, away from everything and everyone you’re used to, but I can now say that I’m glad I did it. I don’t think I would be the person I am now if I didn’t come here. To be honest, I went back home a year after my first move, but later on realised that I wanted to give it another go and came back a year and a half after. I guess I can say, the move was sweeter the second time around.

Moved to my own place to adult. I used to stay with relatives when I first came here and for a few months after my brother came here as well (about two years after I came here). Living with family has its good and bad that sometimes it’s actually best to move on and keep your distance. I started looking for a place for my myself and my brother the moment I got a full-time job and luckily, someone was kind enough to give a good word for us to the real estate agent because we didn’t have any rental history. It was tough financially because we were only relying on my income to pay for most of our expenses as my brother was paying for his school. But at least we have that experience to look back to every now and then and we can always say ‘yeah, we survived that.’

Cambodia 1Traveled to Cambodia and visited the temples. I don’t think I will ever say this enough but: the temples in Siem Reap are beautiful! I haven’t seen enough of Cambodia to write much about it but I definitely would like to go back and explore more. I went to Siem Reap during a time when I needed to do some reflection and man, did Siem Reap help! A lot. I cannot explain the solitude I felt when I roamed around the temples (Bayon was easily my favourite). The bus ride from Phnom Penh was interesting too, and somewhat familiar. It felt a bit like being back home.


Flew to Auckland and went to Middle-Earth (by bus, ha!). Hobbiton was exactly how it was in the films. I’m not a big LOTR fan but that was just pure art. It was an amazing experience and one that I’m always proud to tell. (The image I used for the title is from there!) Auckland is a nice, quiet city that I see myself living in. And because this travel happened before my PF epiphany, I also had the chance to experience food at Sidart. While they didn’t serve us edible gold (hi, ONL!), the place was fancy, nonetheless.

Maps, because Vodafailed.

Did a North to South drive of Tasmania. Technically, I was a passenger, my but my boyfriend and I spent a week in Tasmania and did a self-drive from Launceston to Hobart. We initially wanted to go out of the country for Christmas but something happened that forced us to change our plans. I suggested Tasmania after visiting their tourism website where they have a whole page dedicated to ‘self-drive itineraries’. My boyfriend didn’t need any convincing, we booked everything, including a rental car and we drove about 900 kilometres in 6 days.

2016-04-12 22.41.44Hiked to the Pinnacle twice. I don’t think anyone goes to the Grampians without walking to the the Pinnacle. And because we’ve been to the Grampians twice, we’ve walked to the Pinnacle twice too! We walked both trails, the difficult and easy. Both trails were challenging and each had a different view and charm. Next time we go, I’d like to do the walk from town (Halls Gap) which is an 11km circuit walk.

Saw Bob Dylan live. Ah, that one time when his show was announced and I waited religiously for pre-sale and bought tickets the first minute it went on sale. Ha! I saw a living legend perform live! Watching concerts is one of the few things I gave up last year to boost my savings, but I realised that music is an important part of my life and not something I should totally cut off my spending. So this year, with our “Fun & Learning Fund”, we aim to watch a few (we saw the Tedeschi Trucks Band, last month!).

I have a few more in my list but these are the ones on top of my list. I hope I get to fill my bucket with more experiences this year, may they be travel or other memorable events. The fill-the-bucket list aligns with my values more than the normal bucket list because it allows me to count my have’s rather than my have-not’s. It makes me practice the attitude of gratitude and reminds me to appreciate my enough.

Have you taken the fill-the-bucket list challenge yet? 



18 thoughts on “Fill-the-Bucket List

    • J says:

      Thank you! I thought you’d like the Cambodia part. 🙂 I actually have a photo in a shop as well, similar to baby Penny’s. I thought of you while I wrote this post. Hobbiton was just surreal! I think anyone will like even non LOTR fans. Maybe this part of the world can be your stop after England. 🙂

  1. Our next life says:

    We should rename ourselves the Gold Eaters. Ha! Your travels sound incredible, especially New Zealand in Tasmania. I’m not a huge Lord of the Rings fan either, but I would totally love to visit Hobbiton. And this is probably a dumb question, but where did you move to Australia from?

    • J says:

      Haha! Sorry, I just had to write that. 😛 New Zealand and Tasmania are actually pretty similar, they are both tranquil places, maybe that’s why I really enjoyed my time there. Hobbiton is great, being there felt like being in another world. It was a great experience. I don’t write about it often but I think I mentioned somewhere that I’m originally from the Philippines. 🙂

    • J says:

      It’s so worth it, Claudia! And this is coming from a non-fan. I went with a friend who is a huge fan and she was conspiring with another tourist to camp overnight, illegaly of course, because they loved it so much. Haha!

  2. Dividendsdownunder says:

    I really enjoyed reading this! It’s a really nice insight into what experiences you value, I didn’t know you moved to Australia – that is an enriching life experience on it’s own.

    New Zealand and road tripping around Tasmania are on our yet-to-do bucket list too.


    • J says:

      Thanks Jasmin! I highly recommend self-driving around Tassie. You don’t need to spend a lot of time there to see many places. NZ is nice as well, but I’ve only been to Auckland, I heard the southern part is more beautiful.

  3. Mrs Dollar Notes says:

    Hey J,

    this type of bucket list is so encouraging, I should definitely try to make one myself to get a bit of perspective! I bet it would have been quite a transition to move to a new country, had you been to Australia before you moved there?

    • J says:

      You should! It was a fun exercise to do and definitely a trip down memory lane. I’ve visited Australia a few times before I moved here for holidays because my grandparents are here. I was already familiar with the place and the culture before the move, but I still found it difficult to adjust. My adjustment period took a while and I think it’s because I came here by myself, having relatives was a plus but it’s not the same as having my immediate family or closest friends. I did feel the loneliness, a lot.

  4. The Personal Economist says:

    Thanks for sharing. Where did you come from originally?
    Love your ‘growing up’ stories and trip to Cambodia and NZ. And love Tassie too .
    I haven’t been to the Grampians but it will get added to the list now.

  5. Mr. Tightarse says:

    This was the first I read after finding your blog and found it a great as a sort of get to know you! Super cool that you’ve moved over here, it’s one of my goals to one day live overseas at least semi-permanently.

    I’m Tasmanian so I’m glad you loved it down there (forgive us for sending you back to physical maps with our poor reception). Moving into my own adult place is high on my list and happening toward the end of this year! (I don’t count living out of a car as my own place).

    Glad to have found your blog and look forward to reading more!

    • J says:

      Yay for another Aussie blogger! I’m glad you found your way here. Living overseas is a life-changing move, but well worth it. I think everyone should try it if they have the opportunity to.

      We loved Tasmania! But yes, we didn’t understand why reception was so poor? Is it just Vodafone? Living out of a car is sort of your own place — it’s just like living in your own caravan! I kid. 🙂 I hope you find a place soon.

      Thanks for dropping by. Will head over to your blog now. 🙂

      • Mr. Tightarse says:

        I think it’s just a lack of population (500k in the whole state vs say 5+M for vic), it’s slowly getting better and I find Optus and Telstra both have alright reception in most of the state.

  6. ZJ Thorne says:

    I’m jealous of Hobitton! I was really delighted that I got to go Hong Kong and see one of the Big Buddhas and on a beautiful day. Very impressive.

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