I realize it’s not practical, but there are days — a lot of them, actually — that I wish I could redo college. While I loved my time at UCLA, and am so very grateful that I had all the opportunities I had back then, I can’t help but think I would soak up all that learning a bit differently if I enrolled now.
A major case of real life has left me curious about so many things.
When I was 19, I had no idea that some day my dream would be to write a book. I was a Communications major, and I knew I loved the topics in my classes, but only one of those courses focused on real-world writing. It was the course that made the writer in me come alive. It was also the first quarter of my senior year, and my schedule was pretty much set in stone for the year since I’d be graduating in the spring. I knew that if I wanted to grow as a writer, I’d just have to learn on the job. And while I absolutely have, there’s still so much I don’t know. (But don’t tell my kids that.)
When I was 19, I had no idea I’d live an hour or so outside of Napa and have a real interest in wine (well, the kind that doesn’t have “cooler” in the name and isn’t served in a red cup, that is). Now I absolutely love learning from experts about great quality wines, and finding the ones I love that are affordable and delicious.
When I was 19, I had no idea that I would do a major house remodel and need to know the difference between man-made materials, natural materials, insulation materials, and about 500 other kinds of things that end with the word “materials”.
It turns out being curious is not only a good thing, but for the most part, these are itches I can scratch. Since the reality of my life right now doesn’t have me enrolling in university extension courses, I’m thrilled to know I can still be learning the things that will make my life experiences richer with Curious.com.
Back in December I was invited to a lovely, hands-on Curious.com event at Sunset Magazine. Since both of the companies are not only local, but truly intriguing to me personally, I was thrilled to get to meet members of their teams in person. I was even more thrilled when Sunset wine editor, Sara Schneider, told us we’d be doing a tasting and learning from her expertise (which can also be found in Sunset Seminars of Curious.com). And The O’Neil Sisters — a couple of Curious.com’s most successful teachers — even taught this clueless DIYer how to make a necklace. (Above. Not bad, right?)
Since that wonderful evening of friends and inspiration, I’ve had a chance to take a couple Curious.com courses on writing fiction. (The site is filled with all kinds of fascinating topics ranging from how to brew beer to mastering Excel spreadsheet formulas — and range in time from a few minutes to a few hours and in price from free to $99, with no advertising.) I’ve found that a 10-minute dive into a topic is about what I can manage time-wise and brain-space-wise these days. And I loved that I could watch a minute or so without being charged to be sure it was something I’d really gain knowledge by watching.
My friends have been on a learning binge too. Cam of Growing Up Goofy is taking a photography class. Beth of TechMamas is getting over her fear of crafting. And Domonique of A Bowl Full of Simple (pictured next to me) is checking out the lessons her kids will enjoy.
What are you curious about? If you know, dive in and search for lessons on the topic at Curious.com. If you don’t know, browse through the site or app and see what makes you light up. And be sure to use this link: https://curious.com/invited/FWGUj-SY_YY which gives Using Our Words readers an exclusive $25 credit for lessons. That’s a whole lot of learning with very little commitment.
Tell me, what would you learn if you had an extra 10 or 20 minutes — or even hours — on your hands? (And a $25 credit, of course.)
Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post, though I was treated to this lovely event and given thank you gifts for attending. All opinions and experiences are my own.