20 for 2020 + 21 for 2021

Today is the final day of 2020. I think I speak for all of us when I say WHAT. A. YEAR. Looking back on my goals for 2020, it’s almost comical to see how I had absolutely NO idea what was in store for us. Obviously, many of my goals had to be adjusted or removed altogether, but it’s also nice to look back and see what all we did get done. We made it through a year unlike any other and while it was full of many many challenges, it was also full of joy. We still experienced fun, laughter, love, and accomplishment even in the midst of lots of difficulties and unknowns. It’s definitely a year I will never forget!

You can read my initial post about my plans for this year here. Let’s dive in and see how reality matched up with my goals for this year!

1 – Plan a dreamy office/reading room. DONE! And I could not love it more. You can check out the reveal post here

2- Select pictures for family photo albums. Ugh. This one and the next one were repeats from my list from 2019 and once again they did not get completed. Honestly, it’s intimidating to tackle such a large project and I need a big amount of time to complete it, so maybe for 2021 I need to break it down into even smaller, more manageable chunks.

3  – Create family photo albums Nope 😦

4 – Update the Simplify the Chaos website Done! All the homepage’s menu tabs have been updated and I’ve been able to keep up with updating them as I add posts and projects. I feel like this makes the navigation on my blog much smoother and I’m happy with accomplishing this one.

5 – Replace basement carpet. We looked at samples, got a quote for new carpet, and were discussing a plan to save up for it, but then the pandemic hit. With no one coming over to our house and other, more pressing home projects popping up (like our A/C system dying in June), this item got intentionally removed from the list. We’ll address it someday, but it’s not a priority right now.

One thing we DID do in the basement was sell Justin’s recliner from college. That was on my 2019 list and it sure felt good to finally cross it off! 😉

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One last rock for old times sake 😉

6 – Update book recommendations list. Done! You can check out the updated post of my top book recommendations here.

7 – Get a dip manicure. Done! I had a girls night out with a few friends and one of our stops was the nail salon. This manicure was unlike any I’ve ever had before – I loved the feel of the powder! It was like sinking into the softest sand.

It did almost have a fake quality to it – there was so much on my nails that it looked like a bubble sitting on top (as if I had a fake nail pressed on). I’m not sure if I loved that look? I think part of the reason was because my nails weren’t very long, so I’d be interested to try it again with longer nails.  It was also a little weird to type on my computer because my nails were so much thicker than normal! It lasted for weeks, which I loved, but I did not like that I had to go back into the salon to have it removed – it made the manicure feel both low and high maintenance at the same time.

8 – Invest in footwear with a purpose. This didn’t happen this year, mostly because I was leaving my house so rarely that new shoes didn’t really make sense. I’m including this on my list for next year though!

9 – Try at least 5 brand new (to me) foods. Done! I tried a new Mexican street food dish at a local food truck, the special sauce burger as recommended at a local restaurant (normally I go boring and don’t get new sauces), and my friend Amber made us a dinner from a Jerusalem cookbook where I tried three new dishes, all of which were delicious!

10 – Set up a 529 for Vi. Done!

11 – Read 60 books. Done! I was able to read 64 books this year and you can access all the reviews for each book on my ‘Bookworm‘ tab.

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12 – Take a continuing education class. This one got eliminated from my list after I discovered that in Indiana, there is no penalty for letting your teaching license expire. Should I decide to go back to teaching in five years, I’ll simply need to meet the same requirements that I would’ve had to meet to keep my license current.  I may as well wait until I know that I want to go back to teaching before investing the time and money in keeping my teaching license current. So this was one I was happy to just remove from my to-do list for now.

13 – Host a big summer party. The pandemic prevented us from the big summer bash we hoped for, but we were still able to have a smaller scale outdoor gathering. My immediate family tries to get together every summer on a Saturday. It’s an all-day event we’ve started calling the Washerdrum (because the first year, my brother-in-law discovered an actual washing machine drum in a remote corner of the pond!) While it was just my parents, my two sisters, and one brother-in-law this time, we enjoyed a gorgeous day outside grilling and swimming and that felt like a huge win for 2020!

14 – Update Vi’s room. Done! I did a very simple scalloped accent wall and added a little gallery wall of artwork and now it feels fresh and fun and just right for our baby girl.

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15 – Plan a family staycation. Done! We explored a new-to-us park and playground downtown and checked out a local food truck.

16 – Take LJ to swimming lessons. This one didn’t happen because again, pandemic, but I am making it a top priority for 2021!

17 – Create something. This was a really vague goal of mine at the beginning of the year, but I do feel like I have been able to stretch some creative muscles, particularly with home projects. Things like our using date night to build DIY shelves, making over an old dresser, tricking out the Secret Nook, renovating the basement kitchen (especially painting the tile floors and counter top!), and designing and building a play kitchen for our kids have been a fun way for me to channel creativity while staying home.

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18 – Have professional family photos taken. Done! We had a photographer come out to our house in August for Vi’s one-year-old photo shoot and we’re so thrilled to have a few wonderful family photos. LJ putting his arm around Vi was totally unprompted and the sweetest thing ever!

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Photo Credit: Natalie Joy Photography

19 – Actually use my InstantPot. You would think this would have been an easy thing to do with all this time at home, but apparently that is not the case haha. I still need to use this!

20 – Host at least 4 game nights. We have had immediate family (my parents once, my sisters together once, and my sister and brother-in-law once) come to our house and played games each time. It’s not really what I envisioned with this goal, but with 2020, we’ll take what we can get! I’m also very thankful for technology and our ability to play virtual games with our larger families and our small group while staying safer at home this year. I’m hopeful that by the end of 2021 we’ll be able to have more friends and family over for more game nights!

And now, let’s look ahead at my goals for 2021!

21 for 2021

1- Get involved with our church’s foster care ministry. Foster care is something that has been on my heart for years and I really want to get involved in a meaningful way with helping to support our church’s ministry and those who foster children.

2- Sort through 2013 pictures and create 2013 family album. I’m narrowing this goal down to just one year – the first year we were married. I think that’s manageable and hopefully I can get through this task finally!

3- Register for Be The Match registry. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time!

4- Take LJ to swimming lessons.

5- Invest in footwear with a purpose.

6- Continue to “level up” small areas of our house. There are many areas of our house that I’ve worked on already but I want to go back through and add a few new elements to (a lamp and ottoman to my reading corner in the office, a new light in the playroom, a different full length mirror in the guest room, etc).

7- Exercise at least 3 times a week. I used to be so consistent with exercise, but this past year has been tough and I haven’t prioritized movement and myself as much as I should. I’m committing to moving much more in 2021!

8- Give our bedroom some TLC. All we have done to our main bedroom since moving in is install a new ceiling fan and paint the walls white. It’s boring and uninspiring, plus it’s time upgrade some things like our mattress and linens. It probably won’t be a full blown renovation, but our room definitely needs some attention and I’m already deep in the planning stages!

9- Commit to less screen time. 2020 had lots of staying at home and scrolling, and I absolutely want to cut back on that and be more present with my family.

10- Learn how to use at least two new tools. I want to be a more active part of the building processes in our DIYs!

11- Paint the main floor of our house. It’s all brown and it’s time for a new look!

12-Invest in a good night cream and eye cream. I’ve slowly been upgrading skin care as I find products that I love. This year I want to focus on finding a good quality night cream and eye cream (so my skin can rejuvenate as I sleep on our new mattress haha!)

13- Explore three new-to-us places in our surrounding area. While I hope 2021 is better than 2020, I don’t anticipate big vacations quite yet. I still want to take some day trips to local parks, trails, and local (preferably outdoor) attractions and would love to find some new places!

14- Build planter boxes for our patio.

15- Create/enjoy a new family tradition. This year we poured some hot chocolate and drove around to look at lights – I can definitely see that becoming a yearly tradition! I’d love to keep finding small things that can become “our” family’s traditions.

16- Organize our utility room. The small room in between our garage and basement living area is in desperate need of organization!

17- Replace the boob lights in our house. If you know, you know.

18- Wake up before kids to have quiet time to start the day. I’m a morning person, and now that our kids are sleeping in a little more and I’m not up at 5 am to breastfeed, I want to wake up early to do my devotions, eat my breakfast, and start the day with a little quiet time. I think this will go a long way in making my days feel less chaotic.

19-Swap out our living room throw pillow cases. Our pillow cases are in rough shape and I want to actually take time this year to replace them.

20- Support small businesses as much as possible. Whenever purchases need to be made, I really want to try to support small businesses (bonus if they’re local) as much as I can.

21-Set aside one date night each week. Even if it’s just a basement couch date watching a movie, I want to carve out intentional time regularly to connect with Justin and not focus on kids/house/work/adulting.

Happy New Year!

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