A final look at my 21 for 2021 Goals

I’m not a big resolutions girl, but I do like setting goals for each year. This year, I set “21 for 2021” goals and even though there are still 11 days left in the year, the rest of 2021 is going to be spent enjoying time with my family and not focused on achieving any final goals. So that being said, today I’m going to review all the goals I set back at the beginning of the year and see how I did!

1– Get involved with our church’s foster care ministry. This has been one of the most rewarding items to check off my list this year. I joined this ministry team a few months ago and have really enjoyed getting involved. My work goes towards helping at-risk and foster families and I’m so glad I can be of service to them, even in a small way.

2- Sort through 2013 pictures and create 2013 family album. After sitting on my list for a couple years, it might just be time to admit that this is a goal I have but just do not have time for. I honestly need at least one full day to just sit down, get out our external hard drive, go through all the pictures, and then go online to create an album. I do want albums, but the time commitment to creating them is an obstacle that for this stage in my life, I just don’t have the capacity for.

3- Register for Be The Match registry. Done! This process was super simple. Be The Match sends you everything you need and it’s a very straightforward process to swab and send your samples back in. This is something I have wanted to do for a while now and I’m so glad to officially be in the registry now.

4- Take LJ to swimming lessons. Done! Both LJ and Vi have been enrolled in swimming lessons for several months and they have both gained swimming skills. Vi especially has become quite the little fish and gets so excited to go every week (LJ isn’t quite that enthusiastic…) It’s been fun to see them each learn new skills and develop confidence in the water!

5- Invest in footwear with a purpose. I did research different brands and found some footwear that I’m really interested in, but I still haven’t actually purchased anything. These pieces are definitely investments (read: not cheap), so I just want to be extra sure before actually buying.

6- Continue to “level up” small areas of our houseThis is an ongoing goal and so far we’ve upgraded the playroom light fixture, the mattress in our guest room, the curtains in LJ’s bedroom, and a few of the pillow covers in our living room. I recently added some original artwork to our bedroom.

We’ve also replaced the window trim in the playroom with a chunkier trim (we’re slowly doing this throughout every room in the house). Just some small changes here and there that have made a big difference in the way our house feels!

7- Exercise at least 3 times a week. Sadly, I did not reach this goal. There were times this year where I was better at prioritizing exercise than others, but I have not been consistent at all. This is definitely a top goal of 2022!

8- Give our bedroom some TLC. DONE!!! I am in love with how our bedroom renovation turned out. The room truly feels like a relaxing little haven for Justin and I now.

9- Commit to less screen time. I now have a timer for Instagram and this has made a big difference for my daily screen time. Not only does the timer limit the total amount I spend on Instagram, but knowing I only have a limited amount of time makes me more conscious of how I actually spend that time – I now have less mindless scrolling and more intentional use!

10- Learn how to use at least two new tools. I did not learn any new-to-me tools but I became a lot more confident with power tools, particularly the miter saw and nail gun, after replacing all the primary bedroom window trim and creating Vi’s dress up clothes rack by myself. The whole point of learning new tools was to become a little more independent with my projects and I think I did achieve this!

11- Paint the main floor of our house. This goal is about 75% done. I painted the laundry room, kitchen, dining room, and bottom half of our two-story foyer, but still need to address the living room and the top half of the foyer and staircase. It’s not going to happen in 2021, but I think it definitely will be finished in 2022.

12-Invest in a good night cream and eye cream. I’ve been using this moisturizer at night and this eye cream and so far I’m happy with both.

13- Explore three new-to-us places in our surrounding area. We did two different places, so this goal got 67% complete. In the spring, Justin and I had a day date exploring a small town about 20 minutes outside our city and it was so fun to spend the entire day doing whatever we wanted: shopping, enjoying a bourbon and wine bar, dinner out, and splurging at a candy store haha.

After dropping off the kids with my parents one weekend, we decided to stop in a nearby downtown area before heading home. It’s a town we’ve driven by but never spent time in together – it was in December and we strolled the downtown square where there were pretty light displays, live music, and a little Christmas market. We also popped in to a local brew house + wine bar. It was a fun way to connect and explore a different area!

I had hoped to explore a new-to-us local area with our kids, and while we didn’t get to any “new” area, we enjoyed lots of fun family adventures like local festivals, trips to the zoo, tons of swimming in our pond, and trips to visit our families.

14- Build planter boxes for our patio. We didn’t get to this project this year. Better luck in 2022?

15- Create/enjoy a new family tradition. Last year we poured some hot chocolate and drove around to look at Christmas lights and we did that again this year. Such a fun little tradition! This year, LJ was in soccer and we started having a weekly ice cream treat afterwards. Justin and I also started having little day dates with our kids where we spend one-on-one time with them and that’s a tradition I definitely want to continue!

16- Organize our utility room. This area of our house is kind of a weird landing zone for project supplies and things coming into/going out of our house. So it would get a little cleaner, then stuff would pile up, then I would organize a bit, then it would go back to cluttered. It’s definitely an area that needs more focused time to organize and improve its overall function!

17- Replace the boob lights in our house. Playroom, check! Dining room, check! Laundry room, check check! Four down, only one left to go. The guest room boob light is the last one remaining and while it may not get replaced by the end of 2021, its days are definitely numbered in this house.

18- Wake up before kids to have quiet time to start the day. I did get better at doing this, and also my kids got better at sleeping in! There was a point there where LJ was waking up between 6:00-6:30 and coming into our room to ask for breakfast . . . those days were rough! Now he’s waking up between 7:00-7:30 and he’s able to entertain himself for a while (and Vi sleeps in until 8 or so!) so I’m feeling like our mornings in general have been much more enjoyable lately.

19-Swap out our living room throw pillow cases. 50% done-ish. I did buy a couple inexpensive Ikea pillow cases to swap out about half of the old ones. I didn’t end up prioritizing this goal very much because the living room is likely going to be a 2022 project. I’ll decide on fabrics and patterns as I make other decisions about the room!

20- Support small businesses as much as possible. On our day date to a local small town I purchased a maple cutting board, linen napkins, soaps, and books for the kids from different small businesses. For our bedroom upgrade, I bought two gorgeous sconces from a small business in Texas called Illuminate Vintage. Other things I’ve bought are greeting cards from a vendor at our farmer’s market, home decor from a fair-trade business in my parent’s hometown, and birthday and Christmas gifts from local small businesses. Sometimes shopping small means paying a little more and buying a little less, but the quality of items is often higher and I appreciate knowing I’m putting money back into my local community. This is an ongoing goal that I’m going to keep doing as much as possible in the future!

21-Set aside one date night each week. We have been pretty good with this, although sometimes “date” is very loosely defined haha. While we do occasionally get a babysitter so we can go out to dinner, out date nights are mostly spent at home after the kids go to sleep: we might play a board game or do a puzzle together or just sit and talk on the couch, or snuggle up and watch a show together (we love This is Us and we’ve also really gotten into an older show called The Killing). Wednesday nights have become our night to set aside for time together and we’ve tried to stick with it every week.

Overall, I’m really happy with the progress I made this year on the goals I set. Bring on 2022!