Welp. 2020 is over. What a god awful year. But somehow we made it through to the other side and learned several valuable lessons along the way— the importance of family, the value of time spent relaxing at home, and the pleasure of simple things like puzzles, baking, and family movie night.

I’ll be honest— I did not mind clearing my calendar and having nowhere to be. I liked removing the word “busy” from my main character traits. I clung to that word most of my life, like it made me important or popular or some kind of martyr to a successful life. Nope. Turns out, paring down actually adds value. That will be my main takeaway going into 2021.

Below are my top nine Instagram posts from last year. It’s as 2020 as it gets.

I like that it includes both the highs and the lows. And that everything was taken at home. We’ve got not one, but four photos from the two weeks I was quarantining in my guest room, after my doctor told me he was 95% certain I had COVID. There were no tests available at the time, so I still don’t know for certain.

Other big standouts was the election of Joe Biden, the passing of RBG and of course, the introduction of our new puppy Frankie.

My thoughts on being pro-choice made the list, which makes me wish my top nine reflected more of the great discussions that happened on my blog and Instagram stories, on topics about everything from white privilege to cultural appropriation to if we can still love Harry Potter while canceling JK Rowling.

This was the year that posting on my blog and Instagram went beyond cute kids and funny anecdotes. I always think that the main thing that has shaped my social media presence when compared to other mom bloggers and influencers I follow is that I am not an expert in anything. Not parenting, not home decor (obviously) and not cooking (certainly!). I think NOT being an expert actually helped me navigate this crazy year. I was already used to feeling like I DO NOT KNOW. I like asking questions, listening and taking constructive feedback.

2020 was a year for learning, growing and evaluating your choices. And I really believe this was an excellent community to do it with. You guys have taught me a lot. And maybe you learned something from me too.

Lastly, I love that a family photo made it to my top nine. Because nothing is more symbolic of 2020 than hanging out with my husband and kids, my core four, at home. That photo was from Passover back in April, the first major holiday that we celebrated with just us and extended family on Zoom. Since then, there have been four birthdays, Thanksgiving, Halloween, Hanukkah and Christmas celebrated at home, with just our inner circle and COVID restrictions in mind.

In that photo back in April, we thought it would all be over soon. The photo below is us on New Year’s Eve, older and wiser. We can see the end, but know it’s still a long, hard road. But we’ve got each other and we feel very fortunate.

Thank you all for following. I am so very grateful. Let’s hope better days are ahead for all of us in 2021.