Looking Back at 2016: My Year in Retrospect

Looking back at 2016, it seemed to have flown by even quicker than previous years. Rolling back the tape and looking at everything that happened last year, I realized I should do some sort of year review to document what I’ve done and challenge myself to do better in the coming year. So, in this all-in-one retrospective, I put 2016 in perspective, looking back at some of my favorite moments that motivate me to keep pushing forward.

It will definitely be a year we remember for quite some time. For some, it will be a year after the devastating earthquake of 2015. For some, it will be the year we lost international legends: David Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen and some of our own stars: Amber Gurung, Khem Raj Gurung, and Sunil Bardewa. And many more people of note.

And, of course, Brexit and America witnessed one of the most divisive and polarizing presidential elections that anyone can remember.

For me, it was about my personal and professional growth, and what a year it was.

Let’s dive in!

My Ventures

Two of my dream projects – Catch Internet and Catch Themes turned 6 and 4 respectively.

4th Anniversary
The Anniversary Cake

We added 10 new themes to our portfolio. Or, let’s say 10 quality themes. They are – Jomsom, Clean Magazine, Fabulous Fluid, Clean Business, Parallax Frame, Otzi, Rock Star, Helena, Lucida and Clean Education.

Catch Themes’ website got a new look which was a long overdue. It has a sleeker look and is more navigable. I’m quite confident that our clients will find it easier to browse with the new design.

Also, our older themes and plugins were upgraded numerously to keep up with the ever-evolving WordPress.

DevotePress, a website dedicated solely to WordPress, has been making waves on the World Wide Web. We published 73 posts which were well-received by the readers. Similarly, we launched NepalBuzz, an online magazine, to rave reviews from the readers. We published about 113 posts. Another thing to celebrate is that we’ve crossed over 60,000 likes on Facebook. Not too shabby for a year’s work, right?

And last but not the least, Theme Palace, an up and coming marketplace of WordPress themes & plugins has also been gaining a name for itself in the sea of theme markets.

On a more personal note, I participated in “Kathmandu Kora Cycling Challenge 2016“. I rode for “Help a Child Get Education” in the 75k event and raised over Rs. 12000 for the cause, which was more than I had expected.

After the challenge. All smiles.

And the backpacking trip in Europe was another unforgettable moment in 2016. I had a wonderful experience, the memories of which I shall fondly recollect in my coming days. The trip was hectic, with me walking close to 16 km per day. It was nothing short of a normal day in The Amazing Race.

WordCamps

If I had to choose any other title for this post, it would be “2016: My Year in WordCamps” and that would encapsulate the essence of how my year passed. Last year alone, I attended 4 WordCamps: 3 international and 1 domestic.

The first in the list is WordCamp Mumbai. It was one of the best WordCamps I have been to. Its amazing organization, the excellent roster of speakers and presentations and the city itself inspired me a lot. It was in March.

Then, in June, I went to WordCamp Europe in Vienna. I even volunteered at the event, marking my first ever experience as a volunteer. It was the biggest WordCamp event till date and I feel very privileged to have been a part of it.

Thereafter, I readied myself for the first ever city-based WordCamp of Nepal, WordCamp Kathmandu. It was scheduled for November. I was serving as the lead organizer of the event. It was one of my dreams that came to a realization.

Right after WordCamp Kathmandu, I had nary a time to catch my breath because WordCamp US 2016 was only a couple of weeks away. I was volunteering and speaking at the event – my first time speaking at WordCamp US. The talk was well received by the people in attendance. Hence, it was another blast, an awesome way to end an awesome year. It was a phenomenal experience for me and I believe for all other attendees as well. My time at WordCamp US 2016 was a weekend well-spent. My expectations for WordCamp US were all met and this has been one of the best WordCamps I’ve ever taken part in.

In 2017 I hope to continue, and ideally further increase, my level of contribution to WordPress because I believe the application and the community are important contributors to the future development of a free and open web.

American Holiday

After spending a memorable time in Philadelphia, I headed down south to Atlanta, Georgia. My parents, along with my sister and her family, live there. I intended to celebrate the new year with them. Besides, it was a much needed R&R. During my stay in the US, I visited a lot of places this time. From Tennessee to New York to Florida. Ah! The trip to Florida was probably the highlight of this visit. There we went to Disneyland. The little kid in me was overjoyed by the sight of familiar Disney characters. Then fast forward a little and I finished up my year with my family in Atlanta itself, where I’ve had one of the best celebrations of my life.

Final Thoughts

I have so much to be thankful for. I’ve made more progress than I’d ever imagined possible. There are more I could say about each of these things and many other things I could say. But since I’m 95% focused on looking forward especially this year, I’m going to stick with that.

I just want to end this post with a large dose of gratitude to you, my readers and my supporters. Thank you for being part of my 2016 and for making it a wonderful year both professionally and personally. I can’t wait to see where 2017 will lead me.

 

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