January 3, 2017

Every December, one of my friends from school makes a list of 10 things she did that year that she had never done before. I’ve known her for a few years now and every year I look forward to reading her list. Last year, I made my own list but I forgot to post it on my blog.

So this year, I wanted to take a moment to pause and reflect on the good things that happened in 2016. On the things I accomplished. On the ways I pushed myself. On the things that defined my year and on the things that made up my days. On the big things that I will never forget and on the little things that I might have otherwise forgotten.

In 2016, I:

1. Went to Vermont

biking on lake champlain finding ithaka (15 of 22)

2. Lived in Connecticut

finding ithaka life lessons from connecticut (1 of 1)-2

3. Moved twice

PCSing in pictures (28 of 33)

4. Got published on a website

5. Went to Harry Potter World (blog posts on this coming soon!)


6. Started doing yoga (semi) regularly

7. Completed a Whole30

8. Read 60 books (last year I read 51).


9. Hiked Koko Head. This hike is over 2,000 steps and before this year I didn’t think I could do it.


10. Joined a book club.

So there you have it, a different kind of snapshot of my year. I can’t wait to see what new adventures 2017 bring.

What have you done this year that you’ve never done before?
Let me know in the comments or make your own post!

carolann signature (1 of 1)


30 responses to “10 things I did in 2016 that I had never done before”

  1. Very cool! Lots of traveling and moving. I’d love to travel more.

    • Carolann says:

      I love to travel! We got really lucky this year because whenever we moved, we were able to take a vacation in between leaving our old place and getting a new one.

  2. Audrey says:

    These are such wonderful accomplishments, Carolann! And I love the idea of posting about things you’d never done before (and some you didn’t think were possible, too!). Love this!

    • Carolann says:

      Thank you! When I saw my friend post her list on Facebook I thought about what a cool way it is to measure your year. I wanted to do some kind of reflection of 2016 and this seemed like a fun way to do it!

  3. Carly says:

    I love this way of looking back on the year! Did you come up with everything at the end, or were you keeping track as the year went on? Harry Potter World is on my list for things to (hopefully) do this year, so I can’t wait to read your post about it!

    • Carolann says:

      Thank you!! I did this for the first time at the end of 2015 and I thought of everything all at once. It was so much fun so I decided not to keep track and just come up with the list in December each year. A couple of times it did cross my mind, though. I thought to myself, wow I am moving twice this year, or, I am going to Harry Potter World finally! But I waited to make the list until December. I really need to get working on my Harry Potter World posts. We spent 3 days in Universal and most of that time in Harry Potter World. It was so much fun! I hope you get to go this year!

  4. Sarah says:

    I love this so much. It’s such a great way to look back at a year – like, what did this year add to my life? Rather than, what made it shitty? I’m so sick of all the negative posts about this ENTIRE year, it’s SO good to read something positive, or at least realistic!! I’m going to steal this idea I think for a post if that’s ok!

    • Carolann says:

      I would love for you to steal this post idea! I can’t wait to read it. And yes, while a lot of shitty things happened this year, we all already know them. I wanted to think about things that happened that were good, that were new, that helped me improve. I’m really glad you liked it:)

  5. I love all of your bookish accomplishments this year, and I still can’t believe that y’all moved twice! The view from that hike looks extraordinary, and I don’t think that I would have been able to do it either! I’m looking forward to reading your Harry Potter blog posts!

    • Carolann says:

      That trail was SO hard but I am so glad I did it! I think I could even convince myself to do it again. There was an older man who did it about 3 or 4 times while I was still doing it my first time!! I really need to get on my Harry Potter posts – it was such an awesome trip!

  6. This is a great way to sum up your year. You did some great new stuff! I’m a total neophyte so doing new things is what keeps me ticking. More of that in 2017 I say!

    • Carolann says:

      If I don’t push myself or really make an effort, I will end up doing the same old things all the time! I love trying new things but I just really don’t think about it or try to make it happen. It’s easier for me to just stick to a routine. So I am really glad I was able to push myself to do some new things in 2016 and I hope to become more like you in 2017!

  7. Amanda says:

    Did you like the Whole30? Did you feel better after? I’ve been thinking about doing something like this at some point!

    • Carolann says:

      I loved the Whole30. I completed it about a year ago, and now I can safely say that it changed my life.

      I really wanted to write a blog post about this and maybe I will. But I am not an expert on nutrition so I don’t want to lead people in the wrong direction. It’s also a really controversial topic and I don’t want to tell someone to do it if it’s not for them. If you want to talk about it more I would really be happy to! I love talking about it.

  8. Julie says:

    Awesome! Definitely good to push yourself each year to do something new!

  9. Emma says:

    This is SUCH a lovely idea – celebrating the good things of the year gone!

  10. You ready 60 books?! OMG this is so embarrassing – I think I read two!! That’s one of the things that has really gone down since I started blogging and writing more, which is that my reading has gone down a lot, which is not at all what I want so I need to start balancing things out a bit better! You guys have accomplished a lot this year!

    • Carolann says:

      That is not embarrassing! You are very busy. I want to get better at writing and they say that the best way to do that is to read a lot and write a lot. But I have always loved reading so much. When I was in grad school right before I got married, I had zero time to read anything for fun so I feel like I have a lot of catching up to do. I go through phases where sometimes I’m spending more time writing/blogging, and other times I totally neglect those things because I’m reading more.

  11. Leanna Cherry says:

    A busy … And FUN …. Year indeed!! Tried Jam will have to be added to a future list!

    • Carolann says:

      I just booked a flight home in April so we have to finally make Jam happen! I got a free flight so I figured why not use it for Susie’s birthday??

  12. Jen says:

    I love this post!!! You did so many awesome things. I’ve been to Harry Potter World and it really is amazing!

  13. Meg Taylor says:

    Hi Carolann!! Christy just told me about your blog because my husband and I are headed to Oahu later this month and thought you might have some good suggestions 🙂 I can’t wait to look through your Hawaii tab and get some ideas. Also, where did you live in CT? I live in Charleston, SC now but grew up in Rhode Island and lived in CT for a few years before moving down here. Can’t wait to learn a little more about you 🙂

    Meg, Borrowed Heaven

    • Carolann says:

      Hi!! I am soo excited that Christy told you about me because I am an Oahu expert;) This is our second time living here. Where are you staying and what kind of things do you like to do? I can send you some recommendations for sure. I have a bunch of older posts about Hawaii but feel free to ask me any questions about anything at all! I am so excited for you.

  14. Christy says:

    What a great year for you!!

  15. Jane says:

    I went to Vermont for the first time and completed my first Whole 30 in 2016 too! And, Koko Head is one of my favorite places on earth. <3 What a great year!

    • Carolann says:

      That’s crazy! How did you like the Whole 30? I loved it! I was thinking about doing another one soon but I’m not sure when would be a good time!

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