Yearly Reflections

Why is it that January 2017 seems so long ago?  Am I the only one that feels that way?  I was looking back at my posts from then and my Instagram pictures and it just seems much longer than that.  12 months feels like a lifetime, but ... at times it feels like I just did some of those things.  Years are weird.  Anyway, I figured now was a good time to share with you some of my own thoughts on my past year and recap what was going on and what was popular on the blog then, in case you missed anything.


I started January with my 2017 bucket list.  I actually managed to accomplish 16 out of 23, which is great because I sort of forgot the list existed.  I updated it on that page if you're curious about what I did or didn't accomplish.  I have to remember that I sort of suck at yearly goals.  It's pretty much monthly, 101 in 1001, or bust for me.  I'll remember that in 2018.

Life-wise, January was quiet for us.  We stayed home and decorated the house and generally just got ready for John to graduate the fire academy and start work.  January is always quiet for me, I think that's why it's my favorite month of the year.

Two of my favorite posts from that month were If You're Going To Read Just One (my book recommendations) and How to Survive a No Spend Month, because I'm planning way more of those in 2018.  Like 12 in a row.


Unlike January, February was big!  We had family day at the fire department and then what was basically prom, then John graduated. And then started immediately at a firehouse, seriously I think it was like 3 days later.

In February I also finished up my 30 Bags in 30 Days challenge, which was great for removing things from the house.  Something I'm always working on, though it's much less often now.  It's a very efficient system, so if you're thinking about decluttering in the new year, you might want to look into that.

Favorite posts were How I Plan and Organize My Life and But I'm a 90s Bitch.


March was a learning curve, which John's new job starting, so it wasn't as busy as far as going out and doing stuff.  We had to get used to the schedule - some of us more than others (ahem, Hawkeye.)  But when he was scheduled on a weekend day, it gave me a lot of time to start cooking healthy things every weekend with my mom.  And Hawkeye got her teeth cleaned, so that was a particularly high point for me!

Two favorite and related posts were about my cruelty-free picks, my 5 under $5 and my 10 under $10.  But another one I loved was my Little Known Facts About Me, because it's always fun to get to know the blog author a little more.


April showers bring May flowers!  She was very mad at me for that, but I love that photo.  We found a dog rain jacket while (finally) cleaning and organizing my parents' house.  April is always fun because it's our (officially) anniversary and also Hawkeye's birthday.  The weather started improving so we visited the firehouse more and I was able to start walking outside again.  And of course my favorite part of April, Draft Day.

My personal favorite post was, of course, the one about Hawkeye's 8th birthday, because who doesn't love a good Hawkeye photo overload post?!  Other favorites were about my capsule wardrobe series, mainly the one on how to save money on it.


Hawkeye got the visit the firehouse for the first time in May, right after a fresh haircut.  She loved it.  John loved the warm weather because he loves to grill, and I admit it was nice to actually use our backyard.  I mostly like being able to open our windows and get some spring cleaning finished!  I also ventured out for Betsy's belated birthday brunch and watched my parents' dogs while they went to Kentucky.

Popular posts included Real Life This Week, How I Reset for Each Week and Month, and Life Lessons I Learned From My Dog.


Summer is just an insane amount of street fests for me, but I ain't mad about it.  I try to go to one every weekend because seeing my friends' bands and drinking in the streets at 3 in the afternoon is my favorite way to spend a day.  But I'll settle for John's parents' backyard next to the pool too.  Tara came into town for one weekend of fests and drinking, and we made the most of it.  And at the end of the month we saw the Moody Blues at Ravinia, just randomly.  Because why not.

The posts that people loved the most this month were definitely the Keeping Up With Life posts Part 1 and Part 2.  But my favorite was probably my 4th of July layered shots.


The beginning of July was the craziest time because we not only had the 4th, but we also had John's 30th birthday, a party which we hosted at our house.  It was a ton of people and food and fun but it's totally exhausting to plan and host parties like that.  I had more street fests, of course, and was able to get out to the Botanic Garden with Betsy.  We also went to the Blackhawks convention downtown, mostly for the benefit of John's brother.  We were able to get him signed jerseys from Saad, Toews, Sharp, Keith, and Seabrook, so did pretty damn well.

In July, I did the first Fire Life Update post, which people found very interesting, as well as my out of control hair care routine.


August always means that Tara comes into town and we hit up our favorite fest, Market Days, over in Boystown.  This year was extra fun because John got us rooftop tickets to see Florida Georgia Line with the Backstreet Boys and Nelly.  We loved it, because open bar.  And the music of course.  I spent the rest of August enjoying my summer beers and ignoring the eclipse.

At the end of August I did an 18 Before 2018 goals list, which I did way better at than my January bucket list.  I updated that post as well if you're curious about my progress.

Some of the more helpful posts of August included Tips on Being Vegetarian/Vegan, Creating a Cleaning Schedule, and 5 Minutes to a Naturally Clean Bathroom.


It actually started to turn to fall weather in early September, which I love.  Almost as much as I love football season, even though the Bears were dismal.  John started coaching little kid's football for his old grade school so our schedules suddenly got packed between daily practices and Saturday games.  Also in September we worked really hard at clearing out our fridge, freezer, and pantry, and attempted to spend as little as possible at the grocery store, which was a great success.  I want to plan another month of this in 2018, it helped a lot both with organization and with finances.

The popular posts of the month included my intentional morning and evening routines, and the I'm the Kind of Person Who post.


October is a favorite month for us just because we love Halloween so much.  Truth be told, I start the indoor decorating for Halloween in September.  John said no to outdoor decor until October 1, but that day, I was out there!  And it paid off, because every neighbor who came trick or treating said they loved our house.

I also took a roadtrip with Megan to visit Tara in Iowa and tailgate for the Hawkeye football game, which was so much fun.  2 weeks later, Tara made the trip to Chicago and we did the same thing with Billy, but at Northwestern.  What can we say, we love day drinking and college football!  It was tiring to have those back to back though, so we opted to attend John's brother's Halloween party at his apartment instead of hosting one at our house.  We still stayed home on Halloween though for all the trick or treaters!

The best posts from October were Common Decluttering Roadblocks and Three Fictional Characters I'm Most Like.


The month started out both rocky and fun.  We originally had a trip to Vegas scheduled, because John was on furlough (17 paid days off in a row.)  But the day before we were going to leave, my dad went into the hospital and John's grandpa wasn't doing well either, so we cancelled.  My dad ended up being totally fine in a couple of days, but since he was in the ICU for 3 days, there's no way we would have enjoyed Vegas.  Instead, we drove down to Kentucky for a long weekend, just to relax and explore.  The most fun was probably Churchill Downs, because we love horse racing, and no one was there in the chill, even though it's heated inside.  We won more than half the races!  We actually got to rest and have fun, so it was much needed and I'm glad we went.  Before I knew it, it was birthday time.  I was low-key about it this year, but I still enjoyed it.  Same with Thanksgiving.

Two favorite posts from November were definitely the one about 2018 planners and 33 Things I Still Haven't Learned in 33 Years.


And here we are now in December.  I got the tree up right away but then I blinked and this month was halfway over, I seriously don't know where the first two week went, other than the fact that my parents went to Florida so I'm watching their 2 dogs at their house, plus Hawkeye.  It throws off my schedule when I do that, because 3 dogs is tough!  Plus I'm not at home, so it's an overall feeling of not getting my normal stuff done.  But it wasn't all (dog) work - John and I made it to Zoo Lights at Lincoln Park Zoo last night and tonight Megan and I are eating Chipotle and watching the first 2 Pitch Perfect movies in anticipation of seeing the 3rd one when it comes out (my birthday gift to her.)  I also have plans for Christmas Eve, Christmas, and New Year's Eve, so the month is far from over.

Less posts this month since the final week will be quiet here, but the two popular posts from the beginning of the month were How to Make a 101 in 1001 List and Choosing a Word of the Year.  I guess everyone is looking forward to some 2018 goals.

And that's been my 2017!  I didn't think it was too eventful of a year but, dang, it kind of was, wasn't it?  John graduating seems like a lifetime ago.  Which was your favorite post of mine?  How did the year turn out for you?

Thanks so much for stopping by.  You can also join me on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.  In addition to minimalism and organizing, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #notentirelyperfect on social media so I can see your beautifully unstaged life.  On the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or subscribe via e-mail to be alerted to each new post.

No comments