2015 Met Gala

Anna Wintour in Chanel – she hosted the whole thang so she had to be first. 

It killed me that I couldn’t post every look and have this ready to go for you all this morning! I was so excited to see some of the looks from the Met Gala yesterday evening and then a part of me knew that I would hate some looks as well. With the theme being, “China: Through the Looking Glass,” I was concerned that there would be jabs poked at stereotypes and Asian trends that would make me cringe. Of course there were, but like all things, we have to move on and not dwell on them. In the interest of saving time (and space!) I am choosing not to include looks that I felt were in poor taste.

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That Time We Tried SoulCycle

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If you’re looking for an activity to kick your ass on a Monday or any day of the week, then you should sign up for SoulCycle. I’ve actually been curious about it for awhile having seen a lot of bloggers try it out and it being pretty popular in both SF and NYC, but I can honestly say that I had no idea what I was getting into. I came into this thinking that I would be enjoying a leisurely indoor bike ride with some top 40 jamz. Instead, I found myself struggling to get strapped into my bike, feeling a little scared and intimidated by everyone around me, but leaving feeling sweaty, (in a good way! Is that even possible?) strong, and motivated!

Let’s start from the beginning. My co-worker Melanie and I made plans last week to try SoulCycle for the first time and signed up for the Monday class after work. Pretty great way to start off the work week, right? I found out Sunday that I actually had a birthday party to attend to Monday night and thought that I wouldn’t be able to do both so I almost considered canceling. That class is $30 though so I decided that since I’d already committed, I was just going to do work and make it happen.

When I arrived, the entire staff said I looked scared. No surprises there. However, even though I was terrified, I was greeted with a big hug from my instructor Kamelle welcoming me to my first class. He quickly took me under his arm and showed me around teaching me how to use the lockers, where to fill up my water bottle, and handing me over to the ladies at the front who gave me my first pair of shoes. They were really cute because they were so small, but since they strap into your bike, you kind of feel like you’re walking weirdly with your toes up towards the sky. Melanie and I waited patiently for our 6:30 session to start and as soon as the session before us finished, we started to see the cyclists filing out one-by-one. Flushed, soaking in sweat, and panting. So I had to show up to a birthday party after this exercise sesh and that was not the way I wanted to come out of the room at the end.

Since I had never really cycled before, I had no idea how to set up my bike and probably should’ve had someone help me much earlier before the class started. I’m also not strong enough to strap myself into the bike properly and had lots of difficulties which shook me up before starting. I don’t know what I expected, but the room was much smaller than I had thought it was going to be and the bikes were so close together that it made me a bit nervous. When we did start, the lights dimmed and immediately the EDM/rave music started pumping. I came into that room feeling very calm, but because everyone else around me was pumped up on adrenaline, I felt like I needed to be at their level and quickly adjusted to fit in.

Here’s the real truth about SoulCycle. You’re not just cycling. Your instructor makes you move to the beat of the music alternating between going low on your bike and standing up, going from side to side with the beat of the music, stretching and alternating your arms on different counts, and at one point using the baby weights that are in your bike to do curls and raises while you’re cycling. Because I’m so aloof, I completely missed the boat on this one and decided to sit back, cycle, and observe. I also felt like I was cycling and doing hip hop kind of at the same time because of the counts and beats. SoulCycle is no joke though and I found myself not being able to do everything that was asked of me by the instructor most of the time and watching everyone around me keep up. The person in front of me looked like a pro so I kept trying to use her as my motivating example. Honestly, I’m just in awe of this kind of work out. It is really really hard especially for a first timer like myself, but the people around me were so good and they made it look easy when I knew it wasn’t.

Another aspect of SoulCycling that I have to give credit to is the instructor. Kamelle made me feel like I could do anything even when I knew I couldn’t. He mentioned to us that it was Monday and that it was a great way to start our week and what we had to look forward to. During a portion where we were winding down, he advised us to leave the things that were holding us back behind. In my head, I was like “Bai haters!” He didn’t say anything along those lines, but that’s alright. Then when the same song picked up, he encouraged us to cycle towards that thing we wanted and I cycled so fast I thought I was probably going to pass out.

As tiring as SoulCycle can be, I actually had a lot of fun. I started to find my rhythm halfway through the class and when I came out sweaty (the sweatiest I’ve probably ever been!) I didn’t feel as disgusting as I thought I would feel. It just meant that I had a great workout, but I know I didn’t reach my max on this session so I’m definitely looking forward to the next one when I can push myself even more. I haven’t scheduled that next session yet though because I’m waiting for the lower half of my body to stop hurting.

P.S. this is the most active that I have ever been in my life! Kid me would think this version of me was crazy.

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Song of the Day

Layla – Smokestacks

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Five Favorite Pins: Cinco de Mayo

Would you believe that I have never had a true Cinco de Mayo celebration?! College doesn’t really count when it’s just a Cinco de Mayo themed party. I’m actually looking forward to celebrating this year if I get the chance though I don’t have any plans lined up yet. While most people are looking forward to the drinks, I’m always looking forward to the food. Here are just a few recipes that I think would contribute to the ultimate Cinco de Mayo party and that will keep your guests fed and happy.

Roasted Strawberry Margarita via Style Me Pretty

Because every party NEEDS to start with a drink.

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The Weekend: 5 Things

Caturday

So remember how two days ago I said that I would just do a montly roundup of photos? Well, I’ve got this thing about inconsistency… Actually, I found some extra time to do one of these posts this weekend so I thought I’d just do while it was still relevant and fresh as opposed to waiting till the end of the month. Let’s just say this will vary on a case-by-case basis and call it good.

This past weekend was Caturday at Dolores Park and a few of my co-workers were going so I thought I would just tag along! I wish I loved cats…but let’s just be real here – I’m much more partial to babies and kids than household pets. I figured that if I was going to attend this thing though, I was going to get really into it and the only way to do that was to have someone let me “Simba” their cat. Mission accomplished. Have you ever seen me look this happy?!

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Blog Roundup

– Because everyone here is obsessed with Blue Bottle’s New Orleans Iced Coffee – here’s how you can prepare your own at home! [BlueBottle] – I pretty much do the short version of this every morning at work ;)

– Our favorite Craigslist Ad of the week.

– How Slack is changing workplace culture [Slate]

– Secret shutters [Circa]

– Emily Schuman talks about how she created her successful blog [Inc.]

– Seattle start-up Tune provides for women studing computer science at UW [Geekwire]

– Kanye changes the name of his new album to “Swish” [The Fader]

– How to execute on choreographing an unforgettable music video by the choreographer who did Tinashe’s “All Hands on Deck” [The Fader]

– An acoustic performance by Lauryn Hill of “Doo Wop (That Thing)” [Pitchfork]

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Song of the Day

Miguel – Coffee (F***ing) ft. Wale

Apologies for the expletives

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Doug McKenzie’s Tricks

I’m going to let you all in on a really nerdy secret of mine. I totally have a thing for magic tricks. Don’t get it twisted – I don’t find David Blaine attractive or other magicians, but if you can do magic tricks – I will watch you for hours. I was completely captivated by this video of Doug McKenzie though who has now started to incorporate technology and personal belongings like our phones into his latest tricks.

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When One of Your Girlfriends Gets Engaged

mandi and me

There’s really something special that happens when you learn that one of your favorite girlfriends has been proposed to, is engaged and now doesn’t have a boyfriend, but a “fiance.” This isn’t the first time that I’ve gotten this news from a friend, but it’s different every time and so special that it feels like the first time. I was at my desk having a casual conversation with a coworker of mine when it popped up on my screen. My iMessage with a text from Mandi that said, “Hi Eric and I just got engaged !!!!!” What? So anticlimatic given the surroundings, but with enough emotion to make me tear up right then and there.

When I first moved to the Bay Area, Mandi and Eric were the first friends to welcome me into the city and into their circle. They made sure that I never felt alone and that my two feet were going to be on the ground again like they once were in Seattle. After all, the three of us were beginning to make the Bay Area and SF our new home at the same time. Mandi has been a great example in teaching me how to be a better friend and together her and Eric have set a great example for how to have a healthy and loving partnership together. I am absolutely overjoyed and thrilled for the both of them and can’t wait to celebrate with these two every step of the way. Congratulations Mandi and Eric! The road to the wedding day is going to be the best ever and now we’ll finally have a purpose for these wedding expos we’re going to be attending!

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Song of the Day

Michael Jackson – Rock With You (Reflex Revision)

Oh yeaahhhhh we’re throwin’ it way back today! Happy Sunday!

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Two 12-Year Old Dancers Join Ariana Grande on Her Tour

Why wasn’t I starting my dance career at 12 instead of holding on to my Polly Pocket collection?

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Lately: In April

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I used to love my “The Weekend: 5 Things” post (or was it “5 Things: The Weekend?”) I always got this mixed up! Lately, things have been picking up for me with work, trying to create more original content for Yow Yow! and really just enjoying my life here in the Bay Area that we haven’t been able to do these posts as often. So I’ve decided at the end of the month, we’ll just do a roundup! Some of the pictures will be from my Instagram and a few others will be photos that didn’t make the Instagram cut, but that I still wanted to include.

At the beginning of the month, Mandi and I had a girlfriends date together where we brunched and took a stroll around Hayes Valley. We ended up at the most perfect sweets shop and had to get a photo of their jars with their wallpaper.

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Song of the Day

midnight – Sinister

Happy Saturday y’all! It’s feeling more and more like summer every day here in the Bay and I’m headed up to the city for brunch at a new spot this morning that I’ve been wanting to try since I’ve moved here! We’re also having a mini adventure at Dolores, but more on that later…!

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Waffles & Honey – Mother’s Day Boxes

Mother’s Day is right around the corner and I wish I could say that when it came to presents for my mother, I was always nailing it. The truth is this – she loves the Tieks and that’s a sure thing, always! This year though, I’d like to get a little bit more creative with my gifts so I’ve been doing some research and came across these three lovely Mother’s Day Boxes from Waffles & Honey. Now, she won’t really love this as much as I would getting these as a gift, but in case anyone is looking I still thought it was worth the post. These boxed type gifts have been what everyone is talking about lately and I think it’s just because people in general love getting packages with lots of little things inside. Pictured above is the Spa Day Mother’s Day Gift Box and here’s what it includes:

Each box contains:

  • The initial letter necklace of your choice, to represent the ones she holds most dear (Add additional letters using the drop down menu below ‘Add to Cart’ button). We are currently sold out of the heart and “x” charms.
  • An individually hand-poured candle made with pure soy wax and a wooden wick.
  • Hand-crafted Himalayan sea salt and grapefruit body scrub.
  • Artisan chocolate covered Brazilian espresso beans.
  • A relaxing bundle of dried lavender.
  • Our handmade Mother’s Day quote.
  • A note card for you to enclose your message.

Super sweet, right?! We are loving this idea by Waffles & Honey. Would you purchase this for your mom this Mother’s Day?!

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