Daily Life, Monthly & Yearly Reviews
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2022 Review – A bucket-list year

I’m always a bit late to the party of yearly reviews, but after very hectic holidays I finally managed to write up this review for the year that just passed by. For me, this post is about summing up this year and having all its highlights in one place, but I know reading such recaps can be draining for some, so feel free to skip this post entirely if you don’t feel like it!

This past year was full, with lots of really busy days and weeks at work, a lot of adventures both local and faraway, and lots of times spent with friends and family, but also quieter times spent on my hobbies. However, as you can guess from the title of this post, it was most of all a “bucket-list” year, one where I managed to check things off my bucket-list, which left me feeling extremely grateful for all that I have.

Random favourites from 2022

  • Antipodes’ Avocado Pear night cream: this is a very random one, but I can’t tell you how much my skin loves this at the end of the day. It truly is a bliss for my dry skin!
  • Waterstones and reading: I read a lot more this year compared to the previous ones and, what matters most, is that I enjoyed it a lot more. I also loved going to this beautiful British bookstore called Waterstones in Brussels!
  • Gilmore Girls: I rewatched this cosy show throughout the year, and I grew to love it more and more – can’t wait for my next rewatch!
  • Youtube ambience playlists: from autumnal sounds to Ghibli-inspired playlists, I’ve basically been listening to ambience playlists this whole year to keep me focused.
  • Bubble tea: do I really need to expand on this? 😛
  • Scented candles: I’ve always loved scented candles but this year I did definitely go a bit crazy over them, and I started lighting them up instead of “saving” them for “better occasions” – yay me!

2022 highlights

A glimpse of Rome’s villa Borghese
  • One Country per Month: I can’t remember if I have already mentioned this in one of my monthly reviews, but we started doing this challenge with my family where we pick a random country each month and try to learn things about it: music, food, books, history, geography, you name it! So far, we’ve gone through Turkmenistan, Poland, Haiti, Hungary and Gabon, and we are currently on Zimbabwe!
  • Running 10K: I can’t believe I actually did this as I haven’t been on a run in such a long time but yes, I actually did run 10 km earlier in 2022, and hopefully I’ll do this again this year!
  • Having a bike: I rented an electric bike for several months last year and loved the freedom it gave me to go anywhere in such a short amount of time! I have cancelled my subscription for the winter months but I’d love to renew it for spring.
  • Sewing: I have started sewing more regularly this year and apart from a failed attempt at a skirt which reminded me of the importance of practicing before taking on a complicated project, I’ve been super happy with what I created, namely some scrunchies, reusable make-up wipes and a pretty summer top!
  • Blogging: from amazing collaborations to writing a guest post for Smileyioana, and finally managing to insert blogging in my daily routine, this blog and you, my blogger friends, were definitely a highlight of the year!
  • Lots of things to look forward to: both at work and in my personal life, I have started to work towards some things that hopefully will happen in 2023… let’s see how it goes!

Recap of my 2022 adventures

The stunning Northern Lights in Iceland

Of course, 2022 was a year of fantastic adventures, and I managed to capture many of them on this blog. So here’s a little recap of everything I’ve been up to this year:

  • A week-long trip to Iceland, which was probably one of my all-time favourite trips, where we got to see stunning landscapes, admire beautiful waterfalls, visit ice caves and, most of all, see the elusive Northern lights, which have been on my bucket list for the longest time.
  • Exploring Amsterdam for a few days around my boyfriend’s birthday. It was a city that I didn’t really like the first time, but this time was completely different and I can’t wait to go back – luckily, it’s only a train ride away!
  • A week in the South of France, where I could show my boyfriend around my adoptive region, Provence. We went to see the beautiful lavender fields, the town of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, the impressive Gorges du Verdon and many cute little towns, as well as visit family members.
  • Visiting Tuscany and Rome with my boyfriend, my sister and her boyfriend (I’ll call us the “Fantastic Four” from now on), where we went on a three-day road trip starting from the beautiful Florence and continuing in lots of quaint little towns. Our final stop was Italy’s magnificent capital – and my hometown – Rome, which we stayed in for five days.
  • 10 days in the Cyclades, in Greece with my boyfriend, where we visited Athens and explored the stunning islands of Milos and Paros. It was a perfect combination of relaxing moments and adventurous days, with crystal-clear water, beautiful hikes, delicious food and charming little towns.
Lavender fields in Provence
  • A week-long trip with my friends to Portugal, a country that I had never visited. We took the car and went from Lisbon to the southern region of Algarve, stopping by the beautiful Sintra. We went on gorgeous hikes, swam in the very cold ocean, ate fantastic food, and I could check off half of my bucket-list item of “going on a North-to-South roadtrip in Portugal”!
  • Going to Canada and spending a few days in a stunning National Park in Québec, and revisiting the amazing city of Montreal, that I love more and more each time. This was another “Fantastic Four” adventure, with my mum as a special guest!
  • Spending an amazing week in Los Angeles with the rest of the Fantastic Four, where we ate an incredible amount of food, went to many thrift shops and did a lot of other amazing and touristy things in the city of angels and around. This included checking off another of my bucket-list items, which was probably the first-ever thing I ever put on my bucket list: roller skating in Venice beach!
  • Going back to Vienna around Christmas with my friends and walking around the countless Christmas markets and wandering about this city that I once lived in was the perfect final adventure for this year. We went to the opera and ice-skated in front of the stunning Town Hall, drank loads of hot chocolate and just walked around.

Challenging moments:

The end of a hike in Portugal

This year was also challenging for many different reasons, and while I don’t want to expand on it too much, I also think it’s important to acknowledge the lows as well as the highs to keep things more real. While I feel extremely blessed for the year that just passed by and the amazing experiences I’ve had, travelling so much also meant feeling exhausted at times and in dire need of a routine, which wasn’t always easy to combine with the really busy weeks we’ve sometimes had at work, unpredictable workloads, late nights and early mornings.

At the same time, this year was marked by a lack of motivation for my work, which didn’t feel fulfilling enough most times, even though it allows me to go on all of these adventures. I also saw drops in my motivation for my hobbies and passion throughout the year, which wasn’t always easy to navigate.

Add to this the stress and anxiety of daily life, some great projects that I’m working towards but still take on a lot of mental preparation and space, and you have a pretty hectic  year, with some moments of rest but not enough, and a lot of overwhelming days and weeks!

Intentions for 2023

The theme of 2022, if you recall last year’s review, was BALANCE, and even though my life was not balanced all the time throughout the year, I did notice a huge improvement from the previous one, where I felt constantly torn between resting and socialising, going out or staying in, being productive or allowing myself not to be… In 2022, I do feel like these issues bothered me less, and I intend to keep this for the new year and hopefully get better at balancing things out.

For 2023, I will focus on G R O W T H, trying to find a way to do things with passion and intention, not losing track of what brings me joy, and trying to find it in everyday life, in local adventures and moments of rest. I want to grow in all areas of my life and build a stable and consistent routine that I can easily go back to when I feel overwhelmed or need some stability. Hopefully I can manage this by slowly creating some helpful habits that will make things easier for me.


2022 was an amazing year of adventures, exciting moments and times spent with my friends and family. From seeing the Northern Lights, to skating in Los Angeles and going to the Opera in Vienna or on a road trip in Portugal, it really was a “bucket-list” year, and I feel immensely grateful for it.

Of course, this blog and my blogger friends also played a huge role in how great this year went, and I am also extremely grateful for those who take the time to read, like and comment these little posts of mine, my little diary.

I hope 2023 is a fantastic year for all of you, filled with all sorts of adventures and the brightest sunny days!

☀️

30 Comments

  1. I giggled at the idea of “Fantastic Four” and I can only dream of what the next adventures of that crew will be like. This turned out to be a really awesome and epic wrap-up, it goes to show that you were able to make the most out of 2022 and that’s awesome! I do like the idea of growth as a theme and I hope it’ll allow you to notice said growth by the end of 2023. I hope 2023 has been awesome so far; I imagine it’s mostly filled with a lot of “planning” with what you’ve got going for your new home-to-be!! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ahah yes, it was easier than writing everything all the time, and I thought the name was quite fitting! 😀 2022 turned out to be an epic year, with lots of traveling to compensate the lack of it the previous year and the next one – as this year will undoubtedly be quieter! Thanks for stopping by Lashaan, and I hope you have an awesome 2023!

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    • Oh yes, I also couldn’t really believe in it when I wrote it down, that seemed like way too much! But I guess that’s the perks of having family abroad too! Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. Regarding travel 2022 was very fruitful for year. I hope this year brings you a lot of new adventures. What a fun idea to learn about different countries through various topics. Next time you are in London, visit Waterstones shop in Piccadilly area, it is huge

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, there was definitely a lot of travelling! I’ve never been to the Waterstones in Piccadilly but I’ll remember it on my next visit for sure! I wish you lots of adventures for 2023 too!

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  3. Wow, what a fantastic and adventurous year you had, Juliette! I am glad to see you had a chance to visit so many different countries, and I very much loved all your travel posts about them. When I lived in Edinburgh, Waterstones was one of my favourite bookstores as their book selection was always well curated. Thanks for sharing – I love reading such recaps! Happy New Year to you and here’s to more adventures and personal growth. Take care 🙂 Aiva xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks a lot Aiva! I was really lucky to be able to visit as many countries and do so many amazing things, that’s certain! I’m glad you enjoy the read and I hope you’ll have a fantastic 2023 too!

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  4. I did notice that last year you traveled a lot, which is good. The fact that you managed to do some things that have been in your bucket list is also nice. What is also good is that you acknowledge your low points as well. As an introvert, I used to struggle a lot to find balance between my social and personal life. But over time, I figured out ways to overcome exhaustion — knowing what I enjoy doing the most at home is important — and gradually started living a more balanced life. I still find it hard sometimes, but it is possible. Wishing you a better year ahead, Juliette!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, all this travelling really was amazing, and I really feel grateful for it, which is a fantastic feeling. I wanted to include some lows as well to balance it out, because of course all of these adventures lead to more overwhelming moments I think. As a fellow introvert I completely understand, finding a good balance when you actually need the alone time is definitely hard! I wish you an adventurous and well-balanced 2023!

      Liked by 1 person

    • To be honest I couldn’t really believe my eyes when I was writing this post and was definitely wondering how I managed to do so much, but well… nothing to complain about, that’s for sure! Moustiers is really one of the prettiest towns in the area! Thank you for stopping by and I wish you a fantastic 2023!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I have to say, I’ve definitely chat with my blogger friends WAY more than my real life friends, so I guess that’s saying something. And yay on your 10K! Perhaps you should spice 2023 up with a half marathon instead 😛

    My word for the year is ‘inspire’. I would hope that by striving to inspire others, that I can somehow do the same for myself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ahaha, I’m absolutely certain that I could *not* run a half marathon, unless by “spice up” you mean “spend some time at the hospital” 😛 I’d love to do another 10K though, but I haven’t been running in a while so I’ll need some time to get back into it!

      I love your word of the year, and since you are most definitely already inspiring others, your inspiration will soon follow! So, I wish you an inspired and amazing 2023!

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  6. Love this recap! I can relate to all the traveling but feeling exhausted! We have a few months off from traveling and I’m excited to be home and rest up. Hope 2023 is the best year yet!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, even though I love traveling, it can be really tiring after a while, so a little rest is necessary! I hope 2023 is fantastic for you too! Thank you for your comments!

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  7. I’m sure you have few if any regrets about your 2022 travel year Juliette, that’s a decent haul you have there. I used to live in Amsterdam, a city very close to my heart. What was your favourite thing about the city this time around? My eyes widened when I saw you spent some time in the Cyclades, Sladja and I are going to spend 3 months living on the island of Naxos at the end of the month. L.A. is one of my biggest travel dreams, so I’m a bit jealous there 😉 All the best for 2023!

    Liked by 1 person

    • 2022 was definitely an amazing year travel-wise! The first time I came to Amsterdam, we didn’t have time to visit much and it was overcrowded with lots of obnoxious tourists, while this time we could really enjoy the peaceful canals, cute little independent shops and the overall vibe of the city. The beautiful houses along the canal definitely stole my heart!
      It’s amazing that you are going to Naxos! I’m sure you will love it! We almost went there but decided for Paros instead, which is right in front of it. If you go to Paros or Milos one day, don’t hesitate to reach out or look at my posts about them!
      I wish you too all the best for 2023 and maybe it will be the year you go to LA? 😉

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  8. Pingback: My little guide to seeing the Northern Lights in Iceland | Sunny Days with Juliette

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