2021 Year in Review

Posted January 10, 2022 / Lifestyle, Personal / Information / Etc. / 2 Comments

I used to post a lot of life-related updates here when I was blogging more frequently (aka 2019) and the past two years have been kind of a blur. Aside from Covid ruining a ton of things for a long time, we managed to squeeze in our wedding when it was mostly safe to do so. (We didn’t have much of a choice from a contract perspective, but that’s a whole other issue…) I thought I would do a “year in review” kind of wrap-up here since my monthly Bookmark Lit Bulletins literally only discuss reading updates and my Lauren Lately posts fell by the wayside a long time ago. I hope when life is normal again… someday… they’ll resume. For now, here’s a month-by-month recap of my year and the few things I managed to squeeze in when I was able to!


We had a low-key NYE with our friends that we essentially quarantined with (they were the only people we saw when safe to, aside from immediate family members) – just us and our pups.

I got really into cooking, finding recipes, and acquiring cookbooks. We had a lot of fun food in 2021! I also continued my obsession with nail wraps from Etsy – I’ve done them on and off and it’s been nice.

Unfortunately Chris’s grandfather passed away in January and we had a small family-only Buddhist sendoff for him.

I went wedding dress shopping twice in January – once at the beginning of the month and once toward the end – and found my dress at the second appointment. We didn’t have fun at the first trip (David’s Bridal) but a local shop had the right one for me and was a better experience overall.

Miller had surgery to remove a tooth that grew in sideways so he wasn’t able to chew anything or play with toys for a few weeks! It was hard because that’s usually how he entertains himself and releases energy while I’m working. We did a lot of cold weather walks to give him exercise instead, and got his huge ball he could push around but not bite.


February had less going on… or at least less I took pictures of!

We kept up with walking quite a bit to get the dog tired. I looked at more cookbooks, tried new recipes (my first whole chicken, my first experience cooking with fennel, etc.!),

For Valentine’s Day, we got takeout from a local restaurant doing a prie fixe menu and ate it at my dad’s house. They were visiting my sister in Maine so we had to pop by to feed the cat.


March has some birthdays in our family so we had our first meals out during Covid at my parents’ favorite restaurant. We went an entire year of the pandemic without dining in somewhere. Things were looking better in Connecticut around this time and my parents were eager to get vaccinated.

We went to Chris’s sister’s new house where Miller met his large doppelganger, Rex. It was nice to see family and her new home!

I learned the best method for chicken wings: coating in baking powder and using the air fryer! It makes them so crispy. Needless to say, my cooking experiments continued. For St. Patrick’s Day, my friend’s dad’s store/restaurant did takeout corned beef and it was delicious. And yes, I tried the viral baked feta past and it was actually delicious.

The weather was weird – we had snow for a while and then it got warm enough to sit outside! Chris got into disc golfing last fall and we picked it up again when the weather was better, around March. When we go with a couple of our friends, Cassie and I walk the dogs while Andy and Chris play. Clearly one of them got a disc stuck on the roof.


April brought Miller and his sister’s first birthday! It was really hard to believe it. He’s starting to mellow out – more and more each month – and we love his personality so much. We had a little dog birthday celebration for them in my friend’s backyard. We also went disc golfing with friends again and sat outside at our favorite brewery after. All in all, a very busy birthday for the pup.

We spent more time outside as the weather got nicer, including trips to walk Miller around the local school and for Chris to throw discs in the field there. We went to a new disc golf course near Essex, one of my favorite areas of Connecticut, and had seafood outside in Old Saybrook. As you’ll see, our weekends very quickly turned into “disc golf course in the morning followed by an outdoor brewery trip in the afternoon” kind of routine.

We watched Wrestlemania with my first real big charcuterie board. So good!

We had a dog sibling meetup with some of Miller and Mayla’s siblings at a dog park in Mass – it was awesome to see the pups and owners again! I hope we try for another one this April in honor of their second birthday.

We went to some outdoor birthday celebrations for my two best friends who happen to have the same birthday – one backyard party and one dinner. My mom and sister also have the same birthday at the end of April so we celebrated them as well.

Natasha came up to do a makeup trial for the wedding and we had lunch, which was fun!

At the end of the month, we decided to go up to Portland for a weekend. We quickly learned Miller is too barky and nervous for hotels! We did hit all of our favorite spots for donuts and other food, walked around the city, and then went to Kennebunk to play disc golf on the way home. We also stopped in Kittery for our favorite bread and lunch spots.


That weekend trip bled into the first weekend of May.

We became officially fully vaccinated in May as well – thank god!

I had a bachelorette trip to Niantic, CT for my friend and we had a gorgeous house right on the ocean. I would love to stay there again! It was a wild weekend and a lot of fun. We mostly stayed at the house but we also did a beer/wine tour in Mystic, which is my favorite place.

Unfortunately I came home to news that my nana was not doing well and I was able to see her in the hospital one more time. She passed the following week. My friend sent some chocolate covered strawberries, which was very sweet, and Miller was able to meet my uncle’s crazy new puppy the weekend of her services.

My book club got together outside for the first time in ages and Miller got to meet my friend’s two dogs as well.

At the end of the month, my friend “got married” – they had their first ceremony in the backyard the previous summer and held their reception at the beach the following year. It was a good night!


I had another bachelorette in June for my friend who was getting married at the end of July. We went to Saratoga Springs and genuinely had the best time. I loved the group and we did so many fun things, while keeping it super low key.

I went dress shopping with my stepmom and sister to get their dresses for the wedding.

We played more disc golf and went to the farmers market with Miller, attempting to do our mat training that we took up with our dog trainer. We dogsat for Cassie and Andy when they went to a wedding and it was interesting! Their pup loves ours but she’s older and more mom-like so she tires of him very quickly.

We spent a lot of time at Chris’s parents house in their pool and even got Miller in there! We got him a little life jacket and let me tell you… he is not a fan of the water. Way too cute though!


We went to our favorite brewery during Fourth of July weekend and ran into some of my friends there. Miller was pooped from our disc golf adventure that morning. We also spent a lot of time at the pool at Chris’s parents house still.

We went to the Farmers Market more and to a local pet store’s grand opening, where Miller got free professional photos taken and a goat milk popsicle!

We also headed down to southern Connecticut to do another wedding makeup trial. Chris and Miller came down with me so we could all hang out, and Miller was able to meet my friend’s new puppy. He’s adorable but has crazy puppy energy of course.

We attended a surprise birthday party for my friend down at the beach and later that night I went to another friend’s house to celebrate their “bachelor party.” Miller got to come with me and played with yet another new puppy friend. It was a super busy weekend but it’s probably when life felt the most “normal” – summer 2021 was not a bad one.

We ended the month of July with our friends’ wedding and it was an absolute blast. We had so much fun hanging out with everyone and Miller got to spend the weekend with my parents.


In early August we spent another night down in southern Connecticut to visit with our friends. Miller and Teddy played even better together this time. The next day we had a virtual cooking party with my company, which was tasty! We also went up to Boston for a night to see my friends and have a “backyard wedding” for our friends.

More disc golf courses and more puppy play dates – this time with Miller’s sister. We put our training to good use with the mats. I went down to pick up cake samples for the wedding, which finally felt like it was getting real.

Chris went off to his bachelor party for the weekend in late August, which was a lot of fun for him. They went to Mass and played disc golf at the best course in New England (in some lists it’s the best in the world), then did other bachelor-esque things the rest of the weekend. I stayed around here and saw friends/puppies.


Finally at my favorite month and one month before the wedding! We spent some time at the skate park and local school watching Chris skate. We also went to another local brewery for beers and pizza. The drive-in movie theater near our house started allowing dogs so we brought Miller to see Shang-Chi!

We went for a wrestling show night at my friends house, as we always do, and had a great night. They got some surprise birthday cupcakes for me and another girl there.

For my 30th birthday, I went and got a mani/pedi with Chris’s sister in the morning and then Chris came home early from work. We went to a crappy Mexican restaurant for some apps and margaritas and spent some time with the pup. We had dinner with my parents down the road at a new restaurant.

The next day, I headed off for my bachelorette with my friends to Cape Cod. It was the right mix of activities and relaxation, which is what I was hoping for. I was super lazy and hungover on Saturday lol but we enjoyed the local area and had a good time.

We watched the Panthers have their only good games of the season in September and quickly collapse soonafter. We went to more disc golf courses with the pup and continued to go to new breweries after.

We hosted a virtual cooking night with our friends over Zoom and it was a lot of fun! I copied the format that my company does and we all enjoyed the meal – sweet potato quinoa tacos, guac, and a berry galette.


Needless to say, early October was full of random errands and things to get ready for the wedding. We had various appointments, pickups, etc. to do that week. We had a rehearsal and dinner with our families the Thursday before, stayed in the hotel Friday night after running errands all day, and had our wedding on Saturday October 9th. It was truly a fucking blur, just like people warn you. The early part of the day felt like it took forever and the night itself was so fast. I did indeed have a lot to drink but made it until the very end of our afterparty, outlasting many friends. It was definitely the best day.

We checked out Sunday morning, went home, packed a little, then went to Chris’s parents house to see his family who had come in from California. It was nice to unwind with them and meet a lot them more officially. We left for our minimoon to the Catskills in NY on Monday afternoon after packing and chilling all day. The first place we stayed was a remote cabin up a mountain with the worst driveway ever, so we basically only left once a day. We went to breweries, bopped around small towns, took the dog on walks on disc golf courses, and just relaxed. There was a hot tub there with a great view and we went in it at least once per day we we were there. We set up a projector and screen outside so we could watch shows from the hot tub. We may be the only people who binge-watched Squid Game on our honeymoon?? We also managed to sneak in a quick trip to Legoland since we were less than an hour from there! It was a lot of fun.

The final few days turned into more of a 30th birthday trip for Chris – we stayed at a Tiny House Resort and it was amazing. I wish we were there longer (I may have even looked up if they had vacancies to keep the trip going…). We got massages by the creek, bought lots of merch, made a fire, and explored a different section of the Catskills. Chris’s birthday was a chill day with a skate park visit and good food. All in all, it was such a great trip.

We had spent so much of the year anticipating the wedding and dealing with Covid-related planning stress. Once we got home from the minimoon, we were like… now what?! It was so cool to have an open schedule and time to just be the three of us, with no weekends booked up with bachelorettes and wedding stuff.

We had Halloween with our usual friends – we were pumpkins!


November immediately brings the holiday books and movies, so I’m happy! We met up with friends for a round of disc golf with the pups and had a lot of fun seeing people post-wedding.

We had a family lunch of dim sum to celebrate all of our fall birthdays and found out we’re going to be an aunt and uncle! Chris’s sister is having a baby in the summer. Later that night, we met up with our usual wrestling friends to watch another show and went for a round of disc golf at a new course near their house the next morning.

We took a day trip to Rhode Island for – you guessed it – another disc golf course and brewery day. We also stopped by some of my favorite places, including my college campus and their excellent pizza place.

We saw my mom and family for an early afternoon Thanksgiving and went to Chris’s parents the next day for another Thanksgiving. It worked out that Chris’s sister had to work Thursday so we could spend less time running between our families.


We didn’t have any plans the first weekend of December and decided to take a little trip to New Hampshire to the Lake Winnipesaukee area. We had gotten our boosters that week and felt like shit so the trip was a bit delayed, but it still happened! We hung at the house, went to a disc golf course or two, and explored the lake area. Nice little getaway!

We put our Christmas decorations and tree up when we got back (later than I would have preferred) while watching What About Bob (the movie that inspired my constant desire to go up to Lake Winni).

Chris took part in a local disc golf tournament (his first one) and shot his best game. It was really cool to experience!

We watched Christmas movies, went to see the new (amazing and perfect) Spider-Man movie, and got a little bit of snow right before Christmas! It was nice to have a mini white Christmas. Chris always has off the week between Christmas and New Years so we had a low-key time at home, ran a lot of random errands, and hung out. We were not feeling well most of the week so it was chill. We spent our New Years home with the pup, watching shows and wrestling!

2 responses to “2021 Year in Review

  1. This was a fun recap! I am so impressed that you were able to remember everything month by month- I feel like I have been living in on big blur since March 2020! Your wedding photos are gorgeous, and your mini moon sounds so relaxing! I hope you guys are able to do your full honeymoon soon (Hawaii?!)

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