Happy New Year! 2016 Wrap Up

January 1, 2017 by Jeann @ Happy Indulgence | Features, Reflections

Another year has gone by and it’s a good time to sit down, reflect and look back at everything that’s happened during the year. We join forces and look at the highlights in our blogging and personal lives!

Jeann – A Year of Challenges

There’s the general consensus that 2016 was a shitty year, and it was definitely one of the most stressful years I’ve ever had both personally and professionally. However, when I look back at how the year has gone, it’s also been an incredibly fulfilling year filled with exciting changes and I’m so glad to be where I am today.

2016 Blogging Highlights

  • I kicked off the monthly #OzYAY segments on ABC Radio with Rhianna Patrick and Sarah Mayor Cox, reviewing 2 Aussie YA titles a month
  • I was invited to host a kickass author panel at Kinokuniya in Sydney
  • Joining my fellow #AusYABloggers Aentee, Jenna, Joy, Jaz, Emily, Angelya, Sarah and more at Sydney Writer’s Festival
  • Hanging out with more #AusYABloggers at Brisbane Writer’s Festival where I got to meet with Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, Kirsty Eagar, David Levithan, Justine Larbalestier, Melina Marchetta and Caroline Kepnes
  • Redesigning the blog at the start of the year with the help of Steph
  • Hanging out with Jenna in Brisbane and Sydney
  • I reached over 3000 followers on both Instagram and Twitter! THANK YOU!

2016 Personal Highlights

  • I bought a house and set up the library of my dreams
  • We added our little golden retriever puppy, Toby to the family
  • I found a job which I love and am appreciated at


Aila – A Year of Endurance

This was a hard year for me, in the long run. I tried to stay optimistic throughout it all, but I think I’m at the spot where it really hits home how important everything I do is. For example, I just got finished checking over (for the second time) all the colleges I’m applying to. But 2016 definitely had its upsides though, which balanced things out.

2016 Blogging Highlights

  • Passed the 2,000 follower mark on Twitter. Thank you guys for listening to my ramblings! <3
  • Published over 300 posts on my blog
  • Met Jenna when she came down for a conference this past Spring
  • Met incredible bloggers at ALA Annual Conference, like MC from Blame it on the Books, Cat from Let the Pages Reign, and Brittany from Book Rambles
  • Also met amazing authors at ALA like Tara Sim, Erin Summerill, Stephanie Garber, Kami Garcia, and more
  • Created a bookstagram account (follow me @ailareads!)
  • Opened a Society6 and RedBubble account for book quotes and other aesthetics. I haven’t updated it recently due to school, but will be on top of it over the summer.

2016 Personal Highlights

  • Applied to 20 colleges
  • Visited Bali, Indonesia
  • Taught at Chahe Primary School at Wulian, China over the summer as a volunteer and brought pen pal letters to the children
  • Had a fun senior marching band experience as drum major


Jenna – A Year of Opportunities

I actually had a pretty great 2016 in terms of my personal life. I got to travel a lot this year for work and I had a lot of great experiences because of it. A lot of great opportunities also arose for me this year that will be super beneficial to my career in the long run.

2016 Blogging Highlights

  • I celebrated my one year blogoversary over at my own blog
  • I reached over 1000 followers on Twitter
  • I started a bookstagram account (@readingwithjenna) and have been updating it regularly for the past two months
  • I got to meet a lot of bloggers this year during my travels, including Aentee @ Read at Midnight, Jeann, Aila, Reg @ She Latitude, Jesse @ Books at Dawn, Joey @ Thoughts and Afterthoughts, Maria @ Big City Bookworm
  • Got to hang out a lot with my fellow Sydney bloggers: Jaz, Joy, Emily and Hannah
  • Reached my Goodreads goal of 200 books!

2016 Personal Highlights

  • Reached the halfway point of my PhD (though this is not always a good thing)
  • Forged collaborations with international researchers that will give me the opportunity to move to Toronto for a bit in 2017 to learn brain imaging techniques
  • Won a cash prize for best student presentation at a conference
  • Ran 9 experiments this year that will all contribute to my dissertation
  • Moved house and got new bookshelves to rainbowify
  • Got to travel to Melbourne, Florida, Los Angeles, Boston and Toronto for work


Happy New Year clouds & cloudettes! We hope you have an amazing 2017 where all your dreams come true…whether that’s meeting your favourite author, getting that prized ARC or simply getting in some reading time!

We’ll be right here with you xx


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Jeann is an Aussie YA blogger and mum who loves to read and recommend books! You can usually find me fangirling about books on my various social media channels including Tiktok@happyindulgence, Instagram and Youtube.

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20 responses to “Happy New Year! 2016 Wrap Up

  1. Jeann, I remember your posts and updates about stressful atmosphere at your previous work and your health problems, and I’m so happy to hear that you find a job that you love. It’s so wonderful that looking back to 2016 you chose to remember positive and exiting things. You are one of the most resilient persons I come across in bookish blogosphere; thanks for starting this blog and inviting the girls to join you. I adore all of you. Oh, and your puppy is sooo cute.

    Aila, applying to colleges is a stressful period, but also period of opportunities. You are intelligent and bright young woman; keep going I’m sure everything will be alright.

    Jenna, I thought you are a psychologist and are taking your PhD in this field, am I wrong? I’m confused that you are going to learn brain imaging techniques. Have no doubts halfway point is always a good thing. It looks like you steadily go towards your goals. Good luck with you dissertation!

  2. WOW, it sounds like 2016 was pretty crazy for all of you! It seems like it's been a really hard but rewarding year 🙂 Jeann, yay for new house and Toby!! Aila omg, 20 colleges, that's amazing (I applied at like…3. Lol). And Jenna, Toronto?? That's so cool! It's amazing that you get to travel so much for work 😀

    Happy New Year, girls, and best of luck in 2017 🙂

  3. karaterzis

    I'm still not over the fact it's 2017!? Like where has the year GONE!? But I'm also super super excited to see where this year will take us all. 🙂 (…and also get back to blogging… I've hardly blogged at ALL this year!) Anyway, it looks like you've all accomplished a lot–happy new year, guys!!

    • I\’m actually pretty relieved, I was one of those people that couldn\’t wait for it to come hehe. So glad to see you here Kara! I\’m excited too, happy new year lovely!

  4. Somewhat Reserved

    Whoa, you guys did a lot of awesome things in 2016! I hope to have my own library one day xD

    And Happy New Year!

  5. Cyn @ Bookmunchies

    Jeann and Aila, glad you guys were able to find some highlights in a somewhat rocky year. You're puppy is so adorable Jeann! And I spend time in Indonesia this year, too Aila! and Jenna! Glad to hear this year was full travel and opportunities (: All best you guys in 2017! Happy new year!

    • Happy new year Cyn, thanks for all of the support you give us! Yes it\’s important to look back and see how far we\’ve come which is why I love these recaps hehe. Toby is definitely a cutie!

  6. I definitely feel you with the stress. I'm glad to see that you had a pretty amazing year though!! It can definitely be hard to keep going when you feel inundated so seeing how much you've accomplished is definitely really inspiring. So glad I was able to find your blog this year. I hope 2017 is even more amazing for you ♥

    • Yesss if things were never bad then I wouldn’t appreciate the good times as much you know? I’m so glad that you are able to be inspired by the journey! I’m so glad I discovered yours as well Lauren. I hope you have a fab year ahead, Happy New Year!

  7. thebookprophet

    Happy New Year to all three of you! And congrats on all of you're successes in 2016! Let's hope for even more in 2017!

  8. booksbonesbuffy

    Happy New Year everyone! You all had wonderful accomplishments this year. And good luck Aila with your college applications:-)

  9. susandyer1962

    Wow! It was an awesome year for you! Your puppy is gorgeous and I'm so jealous of your.library!

    Happy New Year!!

  10. Jeann–I'm so glad there were still things this year that managed to lessen your stress. 🙁 I haven't been on at all last year so I haven't been here for you, but hit me up anytime on Twitter/FB if you need me! <3 Congratulations with all your milestones, though! Toby is ADORABLE! <3

    Aila–Oh my, good luck with all the college stuff. I'll be applying later in the year as well, eek. 🙁 But hooray for the milestones you've reached, girly!

    Jenna–Ahhhh your year has been fabulous! WHOA ON YOUR PHD THAT IS AMAZING. 😀 Keep going ahhh! <3

  11. AvalinahsBooks

    Looks like you all had a good year in personal terms though 🙂 I'm happy for you. And…. Toby! Seriously, the year you get. Lovely puppy can't be bad.
    Here's to a good reading year on 2017!

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