Another Year Over (Looking Back on 2016)

Raise your hand if your mind’s blown that there are only a few days left of 2016! *Raises both hands* This year was quite the whirlwind between work, grad school classes, travel, and blogging. But overall, I have to say it was a pretty good one filled with lots of accomplishments! Let’s look back at some of the highlights.

Reflecting back on 2016.

Top 5 Life + Blog Moments of 2016

  • Completed my graduate certificate in business foundations (and with straight As!)
  • Received a HUGE promotion at work
  • Crossed off one new state + five countries on my travel bucket list
  • Reached my savings goal
  • Hit a milestone of 1k+ fans on the Small Towns & City Lights Facebook page

Top 5 Travel Posts of 2016

Top 5 Lifestyle Posts of 2016


Thank you all for your support of Small Towns & City Lights this year! I’m taking off these last few days of 2016 to recharge and can’t wait for 2017, which I have a feeling is going to be the best year yet! Happy New Year!

  • Shannon Paige

    Oh my goodness those are some huge accomplishments! WOW! Especially traveling to 1 state and 5 other countries?!!! Travel is a huge thing on my list for the new year, but i also want to move out on my own for the first time. Both very expensive things….but it can be done, right? =o *

    • Thanks, Shannon! They’re both totally doable! You just have to budget right. What places are at the top of your travel bucket list?

  • Dang girl you accomplished some seriously major things this year! Congrats to you on ALL of that! Hope your 2017 is just as wonderful!

    Clothes & Quotes

    • Thank you so much! I can’t wait to see what the year brings :)

  • Samantha Ponzillo

    Ok, so now I realize I didn’t do too much with my year lol Talk about setting the bar!

    • Haha, I’m sure you did great things! Cheers to an even better year ahead!

  • dang girl, what a year! congrats on all of it, especially the promotion! that’s awesome. i hope 2017 is a fabulous year for you!

    • It was quite the year! Thanks so much, Kristen! I hope your 2017 is fab too :)

  • Wow, what amazing accomplishments!!! I hope you achieve so much more!


    • Thanks, Corsica! I can’t wait to see what’s ahead for 2017!

  • What a year! Hope 2017 is even better for you!

  • Aw how cute! Hope you have a lovely 2017 xx

    • Thanks so much! I hope you have a great year too!

  • Great year! How cool that you got to check so many countries off of your travel bucket list!

    • It was indeed! I’m so glad I was able to visit all of the countries as well. Can’t wait to plan this year!

  • Wow, sounds like you did some great things this year! Check out all those major moments. Great job, lady!

  • You’ve had a great year!! I’ve loved seeing all of your posts!!! I’ve added so many new places to my bucket list thanks to your great reviews. I can’t wait to see your future posts!

    • Thanks, Mistle! I’m so happy to hear I’ve inspired you to want to visit some new places. Mission accomplished :) Which one is at the top of your list?

  • Kimberly @ Berly’s Kitchen

    Congratulations on reaching so many milestones this year! Wishing you the best in 2017!

    • Thank you, Kimberly! I hope you have a great 2017 too!

  • Congratulations on gaining your graduate certificate and for the promotion at work. You’ve done well this year!

    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas. All the best for 2017!

    • Thank you! It was an incredibly challenging but super rewarding year!

  • Ali Rost

    I love your links to content from the year .. can’t wait to read more about all of the fun things you’ve been writing about. Wishing you a very happy 2017!

    • Thanks, Ali! I hope enjoy the content + have a fantastic 2017 too :)

  • So many awesome posts this year, Rachel! It was an awesome year for you :)

    • Thanks, Jenny! It was a really great year. Still trying to figure out how to top it this year :)

  • You had such a great year! Full of rich content and information on your blog! Best of luck in 2017!

  • Nicole Parise

    Congrats on your successes, and happy new year!

    xx nicole

    • Thanks so much, Nicole. Happy New Year to you too!

  • I loved reading simple ways to pay in forward! There were so many posts from your blog that I loved throughout the year–and I can’t wait to see what posts you share for 2017!

    • Thanks, Kiara! That makes me so happy to hear :) Can’t wait to keep writing on this year!

  • Wow it looks like you had an awesome year! I also can’t believe how quickly this year went by. 2017 is going to be an amazing year – I can’t wait!

    • The year really did fly by – thankfully it was filled with all good things! I can’t wait to see what’s ahead for 2017 either!

  • Barrie (Daily Dump)

    Looks like you had a great year of posts! I just started this year, so hopefully next year I can be that successful!

    • Thank you! You definitely can – can’t wait to see what this year brings you!

  • Great round up! I just checked out your post on the beer spa – I’ve heard of these before and have always wanted to try it. I’m hoping we can make it to Prague sometime before the end of the hockey season, this would be so much fun to experience!


    • Thanks, Annessa! I really hope you can make it too – it’s the coolest thing ever! You’ll have to let me know what you think after :)

  • Sounds like you had a very successful and fun year! Can’t wait to see what’s in store for you in 2017. Happy New Year!

  • Kathleen Brown

    Rachel looks like you had a fantastic 2016. Looking forward to seeing what you will do in the New Year..

    • Thanks, Kathleen! I’m ready for big things this year! Hope it’s a great one for you too!

  • I’m happy to tell 2016 bye bye! 2017 I know will be an amazing year for me! I can fill it in my bones lol.

    • Haha, I think a lot of people felt that way. I’m feeling good vibes for 2017 too! Can’t wait to see what it brings :)

  • What a great year! I’m so ready for 2017!

    • Same! I love the fresh start of a new year. Hope it’s a great one for you!

  • Looks like 2016 was so good to ST&CL! I’m excited to see what 2017 looks like!

    • It was a pretty good year! I can’t wait to see what’s ahead for this year either. Love the feeling of a fresh start! Cheers to a fantastic year ahead :)

  • Cydney

    Love the idea of rounding up blog posts from the year, looks like you’ve travelled to some great places! Need to check out your travel planning resources!

    • Thanks, Cydney! I hope you find some helpful resources :)

  • Sarah Jean

    what a great year you had! hopefully 2017 is even better :)

  • Ali Mageehon

    Great accomplishments! Congratulations! Love the roundup – I think it’s a great way to reflect on the year before and start thinking about the year to come.

  • Jennifer Anderson Marx

    Sounds like a great year! Congratulations on your achievements and your promotion at work!! Happy New Year!

  • Happy New Year Rachel! Congrats on hitting so many milestones!

    Rachel | The Confused Millennial

    • Thanks, girl! Let’s hope 2017 is just as great – if not better!

  • Definitely missed a few articles I think, so thanks for sharing! I hope you have a fantastic 2017 coming up

    Xxxxx Naomi in Wonderland

  • Lauren Scorzafava

    Such a fun roundup! Happy New Year!

    Lauren Elizabeth
    Petite in Pearls

    • Thanks, Lauren! Happy new year to you too – cheers to 2017!

  • Rosy Flynn

    Looks like you had a great 2016, congrats on your promotion :)

    Rosy | Sparkles of Light Blog
    My Instagram | Instagram

    • Thanks, Rosy! It was a pretty great year overall. Can’t wait to see what’s in store for 2017!

  • Sounds like you had an amazing year! I would love to have traveled to five new countries! Hope 2017 is just as great!

    • It was a great year! I hope you’re able to get lots of traveling in this year too :) What places are at the top of your list?

  • What a great year you had! Congrats on the promotion and the savings goal! Checking out the podcast post now! Happy new year!

    • Thank you, Laura! I hope you find some new podcasts to love!

  • Jessica Bradshaw

    Awesome! You accomplished so much in 2016! You hit several of my travel bucket list places too.

    • I did! So proud of it all. Can’t wait to see what’s ahead for 2017. I hope you’re able to get to some of your bucket list places! Which ones are at the top for you?

  • Definitely checking out your podcast list! I love listening to those when I sit in the lovely Tampa traffic.

    • Thanks, Amanda! Do you have a favorite podcast? They’re my go-to for long drives + traffic too!