“Living the life I choose is, to me, as important as breathing. Inhale, and gain a sense of adventure. Exhale, and sever any cords that hold you back – realize they were only strings to be broken.” ~ Jack Janssen 


Jack's Story


Thanks for stopping by!

As a young man, in my B.C. (before children) years, I began traveling the world. I’ve seen many amazing places, both foreign and in my home country.

My backpacking days are behind me now, however my wife and I continue to travel and enjoy a life of long term vacationing. We reside in Ontario and each Canadian winter, live somewhere different – for us this usually means somewhere tropical and exotic.

Since you are here I invite you to have a peek at my photographs and read the entries that made it onto my Evolving Bucket List.

So, what is an Evolving Bucket List?

An Evolving Bucket List encourages us to look ahead to future endeavours while cherishing life experiences we’ve already enjoyed.

While traveling and telling others of my adventures it was suggested to me I write down all of my accomplishments because, I was told, one day I would forget.

I began drafting my Reverse Bucket List – places I had been and things I had seen along my travels. The list became quite long and as I keep adding to it the term evolving seemed much more fitting.

Since creating my EBL, I’ve been further encouraged to write a book.  And with the help of my wife and travel partner in this journey called life, we did just that. It’s about how to live our exotic lifestyle – titled Another Cocktail Pleasethe essential guide to long term vacationing.

The full story of why and how I began traveling at an early age is in our book, along with a multitude of tips we’ve learned along the way.

What are you waiting for?

Create Your Evolving Bucket List today! 

Create a Bucket List

How To (and Why) Create Your Evolving Bucket List


Why is it Called the Evolving Bucket List?

If you don’t write it down, you won’t remember.  Let’s admit it, it’s difficult enough to recall what we had for breakfast yesterday.  Recording past bucket list worthy events provides a history of your own. Something for not only you to look back on but also for your loved ones.  Just imagine being much, much older and trying to recall, to no avail, all of the great things you have done.  Wouldn’t it be nice to sit and read about your life’s accomplishments?

I originally called this my “Already Done it List”. Some call it a Reverse Bucket List. For me, it seemed an Evolving Bucket List is the most appropriate term.  Some people view a Reverse Bucket list as things they do not want to do.  Others see such a list as being complete.  Being able to add to my list gives me a sense of anticipation and excitement, something to look forward to.

Because this list continues to grow ~ it’s always evolving.

Why Create Your Own Evolving Bucket List?

Many of us look ahead to the future, opening our minds to new possibilities.  We tend to focus on what we want rather than events we have already enjoyed.  An Evolving Bucket List, or memory stir stick, brings back memories of time spent, adventures had, and offers a sense of pride. Not to show off or be arrogant, this is for each person, individually.   Having created such a manifesto provides a sense of having actually lived and helps celebrate the past. Upon reflection, gratitude ensues.

I have a conventional bucket list of things I would like to do. Once an entry is completed I move it over to the accomplished list. My Evolving Bucket List continues to grow until ultimately I “kick the bucket”.

How I compiled my Evolving Bucket List


My list is centered on my travels.  Thinking back to places I have been, things seen and adventures experienced, I wrote down as many as I could recall.  I knew there were many more stories. I then went on to look through my digital photo albums, printed photo albums, ticket stubs, and matchbook and coin collections.

Not to mention the tacky souvenirs!



Knowing there were even more I went online and zoomed around on Google Earth.  Looking at this virtual globe prompted recollections of places I had been around the world, which stirred further memories to add to the list.

Some of my travels took place back in the day, prior to digital photography.  I had hundreds of pictures and going through them all I took out the best of the best. Using a high resolution scanner I saved these digitally as well. So that I don’t lose my information, I created files and albums, storing all of this on the internet in Cloud and on a hard drive.

My Evolving Bucket List includes not only the list itself but also photographs. I have Google Plus and Picasa web albums of photography from virtually all of the places I have been in the world. As an example, I am reading my Mt. Everest Trek entry on my list. I then go online to my digital photo album and reminisce even further by browsing through my pictures of that time. Literally a ‘virtual memory stir stick’.

Any Bucket List is extremely personal.  What is important to someone else may not be important to you and vice versa.

There are unlimited ways to draft your own Evolving Bucket List. Some simply record the name of a place or event while others are more elaborate and include dates, times, who you were with and how you felt.  Some even include photographs and links to webpages for further description.


A great way to save your precious memories is by creating an album using shutterfly.com. With your holiday pictures you can create a beautiful photo book. Enhance your creation with memorabilia from your trip. Add in pictures of tickets, itineraries, brochures, postcards and notes. Being creative brings back waves of wonderful memories.

Where will your bucket list travels take you?

Have a look at my Evolving Bucket List – there may be some places there that interest you!

Here’s my go-to (no pun intended) book I look to for inspiration on where to explore next ~ 1,000 Places to See Before You Die.

National Geographic Traveler’s publication Destinations of  Lifetime features 225 amazing places to visit.

Once I’ve chosen where to go next I then purchase a destination specific book from Frommer’s or Lonely Planet. These detailed guides will help me make the most of my travels or vacation.  National Geographic Traveler has guide books by country  and city. Plus it’s always a treat to receive their tantalizing traveler’s magazine in the mail.