The Siberian American: A Year in Review: 2016 Highlights (Part One)

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

A Year in Review: 2016 Highlights (Part One)

2016 was a tough year. It’s no secret that overall, it was the hardest year of my life. Still, there was so much good in this year, and I want to remember it. I love doing the year recaps every year (here is 2015 part one and part two and 2014 part one, part two, part three, and part four), so I was looking forward to doing one in 2016.


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We kicked off the new year by celebrating New Year’s Eve with my parents and friends in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Chris had to leave the next day, but I spent an extra day with my family. Then, my parents drove me to Chicago, and I spent an afternoon showing them some of my favorite places in the city.

Another January highlight was my Christmas present-tickets to the Potted Potter! We had the best date night watching the show and eating at Cheesecake Factory.

Click here for a full recap of January in Chicago.


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Chris had to work on Valentine’s Day, but he still made it special with a sweet message from the dog park while he was walking Skyler. We went to Bohemian House on the Monday after Valentine’s Day to celebrate. It was so delicious and ended up being one of my favorite meals in Chicago.

February was filled with lots of great restaurant and a gorgeous walk on a 50-degree day.

Click here for a full recap of February in Chicago. 


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March was such a fun month! After Chris got off work on St. Patrick’s Day weekend, we headed to the Chicago River to see it turn green. It was a blast, and I highly recommend visiting Chicago during St. Patrick’s Day.

March was also a great month of visitors. I had such a fun time with my Red Army girls on our reunion weekend. I loved showing them the city! Then, my in laws came into town for Easter weekend. I loved going out of town with them for a day trip, so they could see more of Illinois.

Click here for a full recap of March in Chicago. 


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I realized there was something wrong with me in early February, but I wasn’t able to get an appointment until April. By April, I was having a hard time moving, so we weren’t able to explore as much. Still, I had a blast taking photos with Christopher to remember our time in Chicago, eating at Smoque, and enjoying the NFL Draft Town festivities.

Click here for a full recap of April in Chicago. 


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In May, I was determined to not let being sick ruin my last full month in Chicago. By that time, Chris and I really missed Russian food, so we loved going to Russian Tea Time and meeting friends at a Ukrainian restaurant called Shokolad.

On Mother’s Day, we went to our first Cubs game ever at Wrigley Field! I have been joking with friends that they won the World Series this year because we are lucky charms. Haha.

Of course, I can’t write a short recap of our month without mentioning the Gelato World Tour. It was so neat to go to the festival and eat gelato from all over the world!

Click here for a full recap of May in Chicago. 


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June brought so many changes. Christopher finished intern year, and we celebrated in our favorite way: trying out new places to eat in Chicago. We went to Bavette’s, an amazing French steakhouse and CafĂ© Ba-Ba-Reeba for tapas and sangria!

We capped off our time in Chicago in the best way: with a fireworks cruise on Lake Michigan. If you are ever in Chicago during the summer, put this on your list!

My parents drove from Texas to pick Skyler and me up, so I wouldn’t have to ride in the Penske truck. My dad made the drive from Chicago to Texas in 13 hours, and I spent the rest of the month meeting up friends, relaxing, and moving into our new place.

Click here for a recap of our last weeks in Chicago (filled with lots of amazing food!) and our first weeks in Texas.  

Now it's your turn! What was your favorite part of 2016?


  1. Love the recap. I'm glad you're remembering the fun moments and experience from this year! (I think it was a tough year for a lot of people!) I'm so glad I stumbled across your blog this year! I can't wait to read part two and more in 2017!

  2. Just another reason I love blogging-it's so easy to look back! I'm hoping 2017 is wonderful and HEALTHY for you, friend!

  3. I love how y'all made the most of your time in Chicago and got to see and do so much during your year there. I know that it was a tough year for you, but hopefully 2016 is ending on a high note!

  4. goodness, what a busy year. i really hope 2017 is as good to you as 2016 was tough.

  5. What a great recap, sounds like a great year!

  6. I'm so glad you had so many amazing moments in 2016! I know this has been such a hard year for you so I love that you are focusing on the good things that happened as well! :)

  7. There are always great moments & I love your recap. You've had quite the year, that's for sure.

  8. All the pain aside it sounds like you had a fabulous year and enjoyed some fun celebrations with Chris plus the beautiful Chicago weather!

  9. Even though it was a tough year for you health wise, it sounds like you still were able to see and do a bunch of things! I hope 2017 is a much much better year for you!!

  10. You certainly visited a lot of cool places in 2016! But, I hope 2017 is a bit easier for you!

  11. What a beautiful year. All those travels, food, great friends you spent it with. Lovely!
    Happy 2017!

  12. Sounds like you had an amazing year!

    Lauren Elizabeth
    Petite in Pearls

  13. You've had quite the year, from the good to the bad. I can't wait to see what 2017 brings you! I hope it's all wonderful :)

  14. 2016 was a hard year for me too, for different reasons. I hope that 2017 is better for both of us! :) I love your photos in Chicago! <3 XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

  15. Yup... your Cinque Terre post is what inspired me to go!! I'm so hopeful that 2017 will bring about a healthy, happy year for you. Hugs!!


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