Best of 2016

There were a lot of horrible parts of 2016. We all know that. It’s not a secret. We’re good at remembering the crummy things that happened. But I think we need to do one last difficult thing that will be good for us before this year’s up. Let’s make a list of the best parts of 2016. I’ll tell you mine if you tell me yours.
But before we start, here’s a curse-word-laced, completely, hilariously accurate list of the less than pleasant aspects because Matt Bellassai is so funny.

So, anyway, here’s my Best of 2016 List!

Art by @jennakutcher

Favorite TV Show: A Chef’s Life! PBS for the win of my life in 2016. With all the… excitement of 2016, drama-free television really stepped in for me. I have been taking a lot of solace in shows like this–where there are no life or death scenarios. Just each episode tackling another ingredient and answering the age old question, “what’s a sun choke and what can you do with it?” Turns out a sun choke is in the root system of a sunflower. Did you have any idea??
Honorable Mention: Chewing Gum on Netflix. #blackgirlmagic

Favorite Book: The best book I read this year was The Atomic Weight of Love by Elizabeth J. Church. Any time someone has asked me about a good book, my heart would ache to mention this one. It’s an epic, life story of a woman who spent her whole life waiting so patiently for her turn. I loved it–it echoed the stories of so many women that I’ve known in my life and even parts of my own. I feel like a little bit of this book is going to live in my soul forever. Is that too much hype? You might hate it. There, hopefully that evens it out.
Honorable Mention: Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng


Favorite New Recipe: I made this recipe for brinner night at our Sunday Suppers gathering and it was a hit (though I subbed out the spinach for kale because that’s what I do)! I’m thinking about making it for Christmas breakfast… but cinnamon rolls are also singing to me. Would it be indulgent to make both? Probably. But that’s what Christmas is about, I suppose.
Honorable Mention: I made this taco pasta salad. I only made it once, granted, but it made a huge batch and I was THRILLED to eat it every day for lunch for an entire week. Usually I get tired of things after a few days but I was actually sad when we ran out of this.

Favorite App: Ibotta! I love Ibotta, still. We used it for 6 months and then cashed it out to pay for (most of) the gasoline needed for our trip to New Orleans! Yeah! Free money! And also, if you use that referral code to sign up you get $10 the first time you use the app and I get $5. We all win!
Honorable Mention: A Color Story for editing your favorite photos!

Favorite Surprise: Fiona! We didn’t start out the year knowing that we were going to get a dog or even that we wanted one! But one day it felt like we both woke up with this thing… we needed a dog. We went to one humane society and fell in love with one dog–but that fell through and I was heartbroken. We spent the next week researching dogs online and fell in love with her picture. Then we went to the Wichita humane society and waited for five years… sorry, that was a typo. But barely. We waited five HOURS to meet her. We belong to each other.
Honorable Mention: All of the billions of babies that were born into my life this year.


Favorite Podcast: Another Round–classic. Brilliant. Hilarious. I get psyched every time there’s a new episode.
Honorable Mention: The Liturgists–they’ve reignited something in my spirit.

Favorite Attitude: Everyone is different. One of the most freeing things I did to improve my interactions with other people is to remember and recognize that what works for me in any giving situation may not work for everyone. Multiple therapists told me that I’m a fixer and I didn’t believe them until I held an informal survey and all of my friends agreed. Admitting you have a problem is the first step. Recognizing that you don’t have all the answers to everyone’s problems is the second.
Honorable Mention: Whatever will be will be.

Favorite Resturaunt: The Anchor in Wichita, KS. I didn’t say that I was making a list of all new things–The Anchor has been our place for a long time. But it still is. Especially since they brought back the poutine burger. That’s right. Poutine. Burger.
Honorable Mention: The Franklin in the Bywater district of New Orleans, Louisiana. This is where we went for our first anniversary dinner in May. The food was so, so, so good. I had prawns and we both had so many glasses of wine–happy to be able to take an Uber home.


So what were your favorite things this past year?


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