A Year in Review: My Best Moments of 2016

While many are counting down the days for 2016 to officially end, I’m still savoring every moment. Sure, it hasn’t been the best year for some, but I’ve learned to never rush the days away and cherish the time I have on earth. There will always be ups and downs, but that’s what life’s all about. If we dwell on the disappointments and losses, we rob ourselves of our joyful experiences. Of course it’s not always easy, but focusing on the positive aspects of my life brings me peace. That’s why I’m reflecting on my best moments of the year.

Check them out below:


My sister (far left) and cousins at the W Hotel in New Orleans, LA.

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun: Cousins’ Trip to New Orleans

Gumbo is and will always be synonymous with the Big Easy. Since it’s one of my favorite dishes and a big part of my blog’s name, I had to take a trip to the place where the delicious soup originated. This year, I finally made it happen and with great company: my sister and two cousins. We laughed until our stomachs hurt, ate endless bowls of gumbo, and took in the sights of the French Quarter. I’ll cherish those fun times for years to come.


My daughter, Ava, being taken up, up and away at Epcot Center in Orlando.

When You Wish Upon a Star: Attending Disney’s Social Media Moms Celebration

Being invited to one of the most coveted conferences in the blogosphere was by far one of my best highlights. It was an honor and privilege to attend the House of Mouse with my hubby and kids in tow. The four-day excursion was not only one of my most memorable moments this year, but one of the top events of my entire life. Learning all about Disney with likeminded bloggers coupled with experiencing the parks with my family for the first time was priceless. Plus, it took place over Mother’s Day weekend—that’s going to be a difficult gift to top!


Me channeling my inner Janet Jackson for Halloween.

Ms. Jackson If You’re Nasty

Now that I have children, Halloween has become a pretty big deal in my home. From Paw Patrol costumes to putting together scary witch getups, dressing up on that final October day is the best part of fall for my family. In fact, this year my daughter insisted that I dress up as something other than my boring go-to cat costume. I obliged and created a DIY Janet Jackson Rhythm Nation ensemble. It was exciting putting the look together—plus, it was cool to pay homage to such an iconic entertainer. Stepping outside of my comfort zone led to a night of fun that I won’t soon forget.


My hubby and I soaking up the sun in Miami.

Mini Miami Getaway

My hubby and I live in New York City, arguably the best city in the world. While we love being in such a bustling metropolis, sometimes you just need to get away. Since none of our families live nearby, we rarely have date nights. So, when the opportunity came for us to take a quick trip to Miami we took full advantage. My mother-in-law watched the kiddies while we watched ocean waves. My husband and I had the chance to simply enjoy each other’s company sans kids and it was great.


Me with my younger cousin having a bit of filter fun at our aunt’s wedding.

Epic Family Weekend

My aunt has been widowed since I was nine years old. But, for as long as I can remember she’s always wanted to get remarried. Her dream came true this year and our entire family celebrated with an extended weekend of festivities. Family I hadn’t seen in years converged in Chicago to witness my aunt’s wedded bliss. Over the course of the weekend, we danced, ate amazing food and made lasting memories that will go down in our family history book.


My hubby and kids at the National Harbor in Washington, D.C.

Trips to the DMV

They say home is where the heart is. Ever since my sister moved to Silver Spring, MD back in 2008, the DMV area has become my east coast home away from home. My family and I travel there a couple times a year and 2016 was no different. We always have a great time being driven around (a luxury in NYC), dining out, visiting the zoo, museums or catching a movie. When we visited in November, we saw “Trolls” and it clearly left an impression on my son—he has watched clips from it everyday since we saw it!

What were some of your most memorable moments of the year?

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