2021 Goal Recap + 2022 Forecasting

A few months ago I wrote about my 2021 Goals (it was really fun to go back and revisit this post!) and how I select and track annual goals. This year feels the same, but different – this time I’m brainstorming with my list of values physically printed out in front of me.

As we wind down 2021 (am I the only one ready to wave goodbye?)…I thought it would be fun to revisit some of my 2021 goals and see how I fared.

At the balancing rock. Not a goal, but represents the hikes I did NOT do!

2021 Goals

Run 10KPartialMaxed at 5K for running, but did run every day in September + lots of walking + recorded my highest monthly mileage in June.
Get new running shoesYesIt did involve bringing home (and agonizing over) 4 pairs – I actually made a rating grid to test them out on different features and ran with all of them multiple times on the treadmill – but finally checked this off my list in June. Re-reading the above I sound neurotic, but an uncomfortable pair of shoes is just the worst.
Get two massagesPartialOne in January.
Get away for at least 1 night with JohnYes, yes, yesWent to White Point for 2 nights thanks to his award-winning photograph. And, bonus, the food was included.
Publish 52 blog postsYes, yes, yesWill get to almost 150 by the end of the year. So excited I finally took the plunge on this creative outlet!
Hike the entire Duncan’s Cove Trail NoOverall did a lot less major hiking this year. That’s fine.
Read Great ExpectationsYesFinished January 24.
Re-read the whole Harry Potter series (maybe with Abby)Yes, yes, yesAbby and I both read these books (I read Book #1 aloud to both kiddos) + we’ve listened to the audiobooks + watched all the movies in 2021.
Get to X lbsNoBut I ate healthfully, exercised regularly, and am (mostly) happy where I’m at. I won’t add a specific weight goal for 2022.
Use more stickersYesI put stickers on letters I sent in the mail and placed them in my daytimer on days I had low moods. It was a note of whimsy, and also an easy way to see cyclical patterns, often related to hormone fluctuations.
Print off a book of quotesYesOrdered on October 6. This was a decades-long project and I was so happy to bring it to completion.
Print off 2020 photobookYesFebruary
Get a new house facadeIn progressMajor external renovations happening. New windows + a front door have been installed, additional insulation (our house was built in the 1970’s so the walls are thin and insulation was sparse) has been added, and metal siding and new gutters are currently going up!
Hang something over the couchCan I sneak in a partial?We bought a shelf to go to the left of the couch so that one big wall looks a little less lonely. I think I want to hang a giant mirror over here? It’s been four years of a very blank wall and it’s time to spruce things up!
Go to Amethyst CoveNoSee note above about hiking.
Go downhill skiing at least onceYes, yes, yesWent as a family over March Break and ended up with season passes for 2022 + John bought second-hand gear for the family.
Water fast 24 hours (x5)PartialNever completely a full 24 hours, but lots of intermittent fasting. I think intermittent fasting really does help with my energy levels, but I’m not feeling the need to extend to a full day.
Get rid of spider vein on foreheadIn progressTacked this on to an appointment at the dermatologist. Think it will take another laser treatment. It’s been bothering me for years.
Re-read: Grapes of Wrath, Off the Clock, Bread and Wine, and Gretchen RubinYesI did intend to reread all the Gretchen Rubin books I own and only got around to reading one, but I’m still checking this off as completed. All the rest of the books listed I did re-read.
Go for coffee with someone newYesMet two casual acquaintances at my favourite local coffee shop and have subsequently become a lot closer with both of them!
Get and use an Instant PotNoNot really interested anymore. Another big gadget to store and use and meals are working pretty well lately.


I also keep a running list of things that didn’t necessarily make the “goal” list, but I’m glad to have accomplished in the year. Some highlights from 2021:

Installed a new toilet in the en suite and fixed miscellaneous plumbing issues.
Submitted photos to Saltscapes photo competition (and John won!)
Planned and hosted a birthday party for Abby in March.
My audio question was played (and answered) on Best of Both Worlds. Between this podcast episode + Laura’s surveys for her upcoming Tranquility by Tuesday book, I gathered the momentum to start this blog!
Set up elisabeth-frost.com and started posting regularly (and SHU linked to some of my posts).
Had a call with Laura Vanderkam. As in the author whose book I have on my living room hutch!!! A phone call. With Laura!
Enjoyed another coffee with friend (and local author) Jan Coates.
Survived solo-parenting for the first time since March 2020.
Worked toward an exciting business acquisition opportunity.
Accepted an unexpected job offer pushing me back into the research sphere I left over a decade ago.
Read books with accompanying movies. Highlights included: Anne of Green Gables, Heidi, and The Fantastic Mr. Fox.
Went to NB x3 when the border bubble was open. Had a great time at the lake.
Hosted my father-in-law – whom we hadn’t seen in 2 years – twice!
Participated in a ladies’ Bible Study at our new church.
Almost finished reading the whole Bible again…but then stopped at day 311.
Survived a month-long lockdown + return to at-home learning. The kids spread their proverbial wings with neighbourhood friends.
Hosted A LOT of playdates for the kids + even 2 sleepovers.
Did in-home date nights almost weekly the whole year.

looking ahead to 2022

I’m not sure how long this will make sense (somehow 50 goals in 2050 feels a bit excessive), but I have forged ahead and come up with 22 goals for 2022.

I put my butt in a chair and typed for 15 minutes and this is what I came up with – in no particular order. I’m glad to be starting now so I can ruminate a bit and tweak, remove, or edit. Obviously, I’m not tattooing these to my forehead, so it’s fine to modify the list as I go, but there is something satisfying about listing these intentions at the front of my annual planner and not touching them until year-end. It does feel very reno-heavy still, but 2022 should be the last big “push” in terms of upgrading our home!

Without further ado:

  1. Travel somewhere that requires an airplane. We had to cancel our much-anticipated trip to visit my sister in South Carolina in May 2020. I would love to be able to make it down to see her family, and it would mark Levi’s first trip on an airplane! Obviously, this goal is heavily dependent on COVID (as is much of life, it seems), and with the new variant, I’m also 100% at peace with the fact travel may not happen for a while yet. But it is nice to dream…
  2. Get away alone with John at least twice. Upping the ante for 2022. I would settle for one trip back to Paris, however unlikely (see #1).
  3. Take each child on a special date (not just popping into a coffee shop for a muffin – like an all-day sort of thing).
  4. Go to Grand Lake at least twice over the summer.
  5. Print off a photobook for 2021 (this feels a bit like cheating because I always do this and this particular photobook is already ~75% complete), but it’s my list…so I’m doing it.
  6. Run in an organized race. Doesn’t have to be timed, but something official with other people participating. A 5K Blue Nose event in Halifax, perhaps?
  7. Go out for coffee at least once a month with a friend.
  8. Finish reading (probably just to myself) all the Anne of Green Gables books. It has been almost two decades since I read the complete series.
  9. Get a blog comment from Laura Vanderkam and/or Gretchen Rubin.
  10. Research the steps to starting a podcast (I have a particular friend in mind I’d want to do this with; we joke about this possibility regularly and I’d love to make it a reality someday). This would be for fun, no pressure – just a bit of casual background research. AND/OR be a guest on someone else’s podcast!
  11. Get blinds/curtains for the windows and patio door in the living/dining room.
  12. Have all the bedrooms on the main floor painted. We haven’t painted or done any upgrades to the bedrooms since we moved in so I have no idea how old the existing paint is…but it’s definitely showing it’s age. (Plus get the trim painted and all the touch-ups from renovation work in the living room; bonus points if we get the pink tile in our en suite painted; bonus, bonus points if we introduce a note of whimsy – e.g. a pop of colour – in some of the bedroom closets).
  13. Upgrade electrical outlets on the main floor.
  14. Re-build the carport/expand the entry way. This is a big one, but after only a few months without it I am missing it!
  15. Get one week of meal-delivery kits.
  16. Enjoy at least three soup-and-sandwich oasis visits.
  17. Go out for a nice supper, just adults, when my brother and sister-in-law come from Denmark to visit Canada (COVID restrictions permitting) in the summer. It will be 3.5 years…I think, I’ve lost count?…since we last saw them.
  18. Go to the movies at least once with John and at least once with the kids.
  19. Get better at downhill skiing. Go at least once during the day without kids and go at least once at night to ski under the lights.
  20. Get a pair of (small) hoop earrings. I have never owned a pair of hoops.
  21. Get a dressier, down-filled puffer coat.
  22. Try to make a habit of Sunday-afternoon naps. I’ve had a hard time with Mondays this year, and I think going into the new week with a boost in my energy via a quick, restorative nap would be a great goal for 2022.

Life can take a lot of unexpected twists and turns in the run of a year (or even a day for that matter). I’ll likely have to abandon some of these aspirations, or at least be content for modified versions. But, for now, I say: bring on 2022! We’ll see how long my enthusiasm lasts…

What about you? Any specific goals/plans for the year ahead?

Header photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

16 thoughts on “2021 Goal Recap + 2022 Forecasting”

  1. Wow! You really did a lot in 2021! You should be so proud of yourself, especially in light of how challenging this year has been.

    We have lived in our house for four years and there are three areas where the lack of art on the walls dismays me (an area right in front of people when they come in our front door, the entire dining room, and a space over the television). I find myself struggling to spend money on these things, but we really should do something about it, shouldn’t we? I feel your struggle.

    I do quarterly goals, but I need to start thinking hard about my goals for 2022. I might take a page from your book and add doing at least one new hike at a new place every quarter. There are lots of beautiful places within an hour or two of my house that I’ve never been to and I should make it a priority to see those places!

    1. I love the idea of doing this quarterly. Making goals a year out feels…tough. For example, in 2020, I had two travel destinations on the list and obviously, those didn’t make the cut with COVID entering the world stage. Having things on a goal list definitely can help move the needle in doing fun things that have resistance (i.e. your nice hikes would be fun and are relatively close, but just never happen without having a goal in place for inspiration).

      The biggest place the blank wall bothers me is definitely the bare spot over the couch. It is one giant long wall (our living room, dining room, and front entrance are all in one space). It is so, so obvious when looking at it from the street. I feel like when you’re inside it’s not as noticeable because we have a lot of other art up on the opposite walls (which are easier to hang art on because they have windows to break up the space). But because the one wall is so long, I just don’t know where to start. Even a single large painting would just look overwhelmed and weird. It probably needs some sort of architecture (maybe a hanging shelf) and a series of art prints? We love to get art at thrift stores, but it is hard to find large pieces, usually, and that’s what this space really needs.

      Also, having no blinds on the windows (another of my 2021 goals) doesn’t help. My father calls it the “fishbowl” because you can see right into the living room and it’s like a giant bald forehead of a wall staring back. Haha! Oh well. It will come with time.

      We also have incompleted walls in the family room; weird placement of windows and currently have some undersized art that really needs to be swapped out. I even have most of the pictures of the kids I want to put up already printed off and framed, I just haven’t gotten around to making the final decisions.

      I’m going to give myself a bit more grace on this and then watch out 2021 – the year of filling blank spaces (on walls at least; I could use some more blank space in general life).

  2. You’ve accomplished so much! This was great to read. I love your goals for the coming year too.

    It’s funny you mention the earrings. I only ever wear hoops, and I have had sleeper hoops in for a few years – yesterday I lost one! I am bereft. I have to go back to putting on earrings in the morning. My ears feel naked.

    1. Thanks! Despite 2021 feeling like a very…odd year…a lot of good stuff happened.

      Sleeper hoops? Wow, I feel like I’m learning a new language. I’m assuming this means they’re easy to wear 24/7?

      When I first got my ears pierced (at 19, so relatively late), I slept in earrings every night. It never bothered me. Now if I happen to wear earrings to bed I will wake up in the night to remove them. I also used to wear earrings in the shower, but lost a beloved pearl earring down the drain once and immediately started removing them before showering, too.

  3. Whew! 2021 + 2022 all in one post! That’s a lot of stuff. I made a 21 for 2021 list but I honestly kind of decided to ignore it this year. I just had other things taking my energy and I didn’t really have the headspace to even go there. I think by default I did naturally accomplish a few of them, but some were a definite no. I also didn’t love how I formatted them- I might have mentioned this before, but I ended up adding several items that were like “do ______ X number of times per week”- things relating to the kids, or personal items… But that just didn’t seem to work well for me, for some reason. Maybe if I had limited it to less items. It seemed like I would forget about them, and then once I remembered, it felt like, “well, what’s the point now?” I have yet to even start any 2022 planning. I have my new planner sitting here but I have not written a single word in it yet! I’ve been finishing up my 2021 planner, so I’m okay for the moment. But hopefully this next week, after Christmas, I’ll find a few hours to sit down and start sketching things out. I haven’t decided on a “word of the year” yet, either. 2021’s word was “PEACE”. I did come back to that word a lot, just given the crazy state of the world and things these days. I hung a sign in my office to remind myself when I would start to get worked out or stressed….peace. back to peace. 🙂

    1. I have never really jumped on the one-word bandwagon, but I do love the idea of it.

      I’m very excited to start planning; SHU sent me her Sprouted planner and it has a lot of extra pages for sketching out goals and then each month has some summary questions that provide food for thought. I haven’t touched it yet; I feel like until I have several hours to get into the planning headspace it doesn’t make sense but, honestly, with the kids off school for dear knows how long and company coming, getting hours strung together might be wishful thinking.

      Like I said to Lisa, this whole annual goal thing is very new for me, but I do find it helpful. Like skiing last year – I’ve wanted to do it again for over a decade (since the very last time I went downhill skiing). I definitely think having it on my list made me take the leap. Some are definitely things I put on there just to have something I’m guaranteed to cross off (like the photobook, for instance). This year doesn’t feel quite as “fun” as last year – hard to beat one that simply says to use more stickers!

      Peace sounds like a great word. The only year I did have a “word” I chose Simplify, which I loved. I’m thinking “relax?” Relax in my parenting. Relax in my eating. Relax in my eating. Relax in my reading and work and…I have a hard time relaxing and so maybe having the word cue would help? Or maybe it would just make me more anxious that I should be relaxing?! Haha.

  4. I haven’t thought very hard about my 2022 goals yet… I didn’t really set goals for the last 3 or 4 years? But I’ve been adjusting to life as a parents over the last 4 years so have kind of cut myself some slack and tried not to require too much of myself. I think I did a 19 in 2019 list maybe? or 18 in 2018? I will have to look at my archives. But those felt less like goals – there were some practical things on the list like getting a will established but also some family fun things, etc. I got a real planner for the first time since 2017 (have been using a bullet journal for the last 4 years) so I feel like I’m kind of in the head space to think more intentionally about goals? Although I have yet to sit down and write them out but maybe I can do that one day next week when the kids are at daycare as surely it will be a quiet week at work.

    You did awesome with your 21 in ’21 list, though! Way to go!

    1. I’m a huge fan of the practical goals! Most of mine tend to be practical, but having them written down makes it feel a bit less like drudgery (for example, re-building the carport fills me with dread – SO MANY decisions, but checking if off – if we manage to get it done – will feel like a huge win in a way I don’t think it would if I hadn’t recorded it as a goal…if that makes sense)?

      I only started doing this the last few years as the kids have gotten older; I definitely wouldn’t have had the mental headspace for this when the kids were little.

      I’m not sure how many more years I’ll do it like this (i.e. the # of goals corresponding to the year), but for this year it still feels like a good fit!

  5. Look at you checking off all the things (or at least partially) on your goal list! You did amazing for 2021 being such a bust (in many ways!). I have in recent years posted a “things i want to do in 20XX” list and have also started reviewing what I did or didn’t accomplish. It’s nice to have an ongoing list to add things to and check things off 🙂 Very satisfying for this planner girl!

    1. It is satisfying to have a longer-term (in this case a year) list to refer to. 2021 is definitely the year I got the most checked off my list, but it also feels like one of the hardest years lately? Though none of the things on the list were particularly draining I think, in general, I pushed too hard to be productive this year, likely trying to control things even more than usual to compensate for the fact that so many things (hello, COVID) were out of our control. Travel plans, remote learning…all these things felt so precarious.

  6. Good job on tackling so many from your list. I’m so bad at keeping track of to do lists. I feel that every year I start with some challenges/goals and before end of January I forget about them. I’d love to hear how to keep track of them throughout the year. Also, I feel like my goal changes over the course of the year so many of those that seem relevant in January stopped being so in few months. Would love to learn more about your process.

    1. Hmmm. I honestly don’t always remember all the things on my list; I’d say I refer to it every few months. When I DO finish something on the list, I write down the date completed. For example, if a goal is to get two massages, as soon as I get the first one, I’ll write that date down in my planner beside that particular goal.

      Someone mentioned making quarterly goals, which I think is a great idea two. Maybe 3-4 goals/quarters? And if you didn’t finish something in one quarter, but want to keep aiming to complete it, just move it over into the next quarter? Much shorter term, which definitely has distinct advantages.

  7. You did amazing on your 2021 goals, especially starting a blog and writing 150 posts! While I’m a brand-new follower, I’m so glad you started your blog because I can already tell it will become a favorite of mine. I love your writing style!

    Starting a podcast is one of those dreams of mine, too, but it’s something I haven’t really let myself think too much about. It’s one of those dreams that feels too far-fetched (which I know is silly!) I have an idea in mind + a friend I’d want to do it with, but who knows if I’ll ever make it a reality.

    I’ve been thinking about my 2022 goals and it’s just so much fun to dream and scheme for what I want to accomplish in the upcoming year.

  8. So much fun to read the 2021 goals – you accomplished so much! – and see what you plan to do in 2022. I don’t typically set goals in my personal life but I may have to do that this year to try to get myself through my time of reflecting and then (I hope) growth.

    I need new small hoops, too, so if you find any nice ones that are also available in white gold, I’d love to see them!

    Also? every time you post about your soup-and-sandwich oasis, I think it’s a real restaurant, forgetting that it is your friend’s house. 🙂 Needless to say, I’ve clicked through each time you mention it, thinking I’ll find out about a cool cafe in NS and… nope. Unless your friend plans to open one?

    We did parent dates as kids and I loved them. Kids got to set the agenda (or, “adgenda”, as I misspelled it for YEARS, often on the “adgendas” for our family meetings… ha…). I don’t remember too many specifics but one that repeated annually was my dad – not my mother, NEVER my mother – taking us to an amusement park after work in the middle of the summer. We looked forward to that trip every year (it was close enough we could go in the evening and just leave when it closed). Your kids will have similar memories I am sure!

    Happy New Year! (A bit late…)

    OH! PS!!! I just finished the Anne of Green Gables series (the whole darn thing!) a year and a half ago or so and I desperately want to start again. I got bogged down in HP for some reason (that was the next reread up) and I think it was just too hard – still – to read about Voldemort, given what’s happened in the US the past two years. Sigh. So, please! Update when you start that and as you move through it. I’d love to hear your perspective reading the series as an adult. And perhaps I shall start again. I do love spending time with Anne, and Diana, and Marilla and Matthew. Oh, and Gilbert (eventually). OK, I’m really done now, promise!

    1. I wish my friend had a restaurant – she is SUCH a good cook. I am really hoping to get out there three times. Hopefully Omicron passes quickly and life feels more like normal once again.

      Yay for you! I’m on the 2nd book and will slowly work through the series this year. The first two books are my favourite. I need to watch the movies with the kids as well. Such classics!

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