As a mama of two boys, my life bucket list has evolved a bit over the past few years. It still includes beach vacations, trips to Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia, but now I think of all the things I want my boys to see as well. Bodhi has been begging to go to Africa on a safari and to South Africa to see cape buffalo. He also wants to see bison running in Yellowstone National Park. OK, sweet boy, we will make it happen!

After our trip to Sri Lanka in January (while pregnant and traveling with a 2.5 year-old child) Bodhi had a very big interest in traveling more. I’m fairly certain he was meant to be a world traveler. At two and a half years old, he was a total rock star on two 36 hour legs of travel. He had one massive meltdown on our way home at London Heathrow airport, but we were lucky enough to have access to an airline lounge that served food and had showers, bathrooms and reclining chairs for rest. A nap was all he needed.

Do you have a bucket list?

I think most of us have a bucket list, a list of all the things we want to see, do or experience in our lifetime. Maybe yours isn’t on paper yet, but it probably exists. Some bucket list things could be simple like taking my boys on a crunchy walk every fall which is basically hiking in fall with crunchy leaves under our feet. Some may be very aspirational (start a nonprofit that fixes cars for low-income families—cars breaking down is the worst, right?).

Challenges to completing a bucket list

For a while, I thought that having kids was holding me back from crossing things off of my list. After traveling to Sri Lanka, I changed my tune. We could ABSOLUTELY still travel and do things with children. Yes, it’s more complicated, but it’s still possible. Check out my toddler travel tips here.

And who doesn’t mention money when they think of things holding them back?

What is holding you back from crossing things off your list? Time? Money? Resources? All of the above? Don’t let money be the reason you never run the Paris Marathon or go on a yoga or meditation retreat in Asia. Make your bucket list a priority. Consider challenging yourself to save for and cross off something each year from your list.

SunTrust Bank has resources to help you on your journey to financial well-being. They offer resources, tips, and tools you need to feel confident and in control of your finances. Having some financial breathing room gives you that confidence and control so you can save for your goals and splurge knowingly on what matters most to you (getting my hair done regularly).

A few of my bucket list items for the next five years

  • Ladies staycation with a full spa day (January/February-this IS happening)
  • Running a 10K
  • Running a half marathon
  • Annual family vacation with our children (this is more of a tradition/goal)
  • Surprising our children with a trip to Disney World (and not telling them until the morning we wake them up)
  • Creating family traditions around holidays and birthdays (already happening)
  • Traveling to Sri Lanka again, but this time with Ezra too
  • Taking Bodhi (and possibly Ezra) to South Africa to see Cape Buffalo
  • Traveling to Yellowstone National Park in a RV as a family (and hopefully with our parents and my grandma too)
  • Creating a unique lookbook/magazine for Oh Boy Style
  • Become a certified BYOB and/or prenatal yoga instructor
  • Send my husband on a meditation retreat for a weekend or week

And the list goes on, but I need to be realistic as well.

What would you be willing to give up now so that this time next year you are living your bucket list? Can you shave off $100 from your monthly food budget to save for your bucket list? When was the last time you shopped your car insurance – potential savings towards your bucket list? Sit down, review your budget (or even better, make one if you don’t have one!) and challenge yourself to find $20, $50, $100, any amount, that you can save monthly. We did this before I left my corporate job and I talk about it in detail with SunTrust bank here.

Make your bucket list a priority and imagine that awesome feeling when you cross something off!

SunTrust offers an easy excel budget worksheet to help you find places where you can shave some money to save.

Leaving my corporate job was definitely a life bucket list item for me. Read about how we pulled it off financially here.

I offered some ways to save money in that post, but I’d also love to hear from you? For us, cutting our ridiculously expensive cable bill was a HUGE gain. Share your tips.

At SunTrust Bank their purpose is lighting the way to financial well being. They help you get organized, make a plan, and stay on track so you can get and stay in control of your finances. When you are confident about your money, you can save for your goals and splurge knowingly on what matters most to you.

To get started visit

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SunTrust Bank. The opinions and text are all mine.

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