Category Archives: Life

Bay Area Eats: Hog Island Oyster Co.

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Earlier this summer before my heavy travel season, I decided to take a random weekday off for myself. I previously wrote a post about this actually about how it was hard for me to figure out how I wanted to use this day. Internally, I struggled. Why did this particular day need to be more important than others? What did I need to do on this day that I couldn’t do on any other weekend I had off? So the first thing that always comes to mind for me is food. Eating at some of my favorite restaurants on the weekends means that I’m facing terribly long lines and crowds. I knew whatever I was doing that day I needed to be in the city. My work was in Southbay so why not have a change of scenery. Together with my friend Leslie, we settled on Hog Island Oyster Co. at The Ferry Building because I had never actually eaten there before. I got a cocktail, naturally, at noon because I didn’t have to work that day. And the both of us shared a dozen oysters, the clam chowder, and their Po’ Boy sandwich. Sharing things always means you get to try more and we loved everything we sampled.

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This isn’t the clam chowder that I’m used to having at Ivars in Seattle! It’s a little bit more watery, but I actually didn’t mind it. I thought it was very flavorful and hearty because of all the clams and potatoes. It ended up being a very filling chowder and I wish I could have had more of it.

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That Next Chapter

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( ^^ this is me September, 2013 on my very first day!)

This post almost looks like it was written by a different person doesn’t it?

I just read this over because I thought it would provide me with a foundation to write what I’m about to write next, but it didn’t actually do me any good because how I feel when writing this is much different than how I felt back in that moment. Very recently, I wrote on Yow Yow! about a life change I recently went through and nearly one month later, I’m finally ready to talk about it. I’ve actually written similar sentiments in two different places – a letter to my colleagues and in a Facebook post. The bonus part of this though is that I don’t have to get HR’s approval on this. ;)

After nearly 3.5 years, I finally made the decision to leave the company that I relocated to the Bay Area for. I was relatively private on Yow Yow! about where I worked, but it’s honestly not too challenging to figure it out. By no means was this an easy decision for me and it’s not exactly the way I had wanted to leave, but I was thinking about this today… it’s a breakup. And what do they say about most breakups? They probably should have happened a month or two ago before the breakup actually happened.

When I look back on my experience and time there, I am so grateful. I truly believed that I learned from the very best and in those 3.5 years, I grew more than I could have ever imagined. I still remember accepting that offer back in Seattle and having that “THIS IS IT” moment where it set in that I was leaving my home in Seattle and relocating to an area where I had one acquaintance – I had one Mandi – and she pretty much became my best friend. My colleagues quickly became my family and weekend after weekend, I spent all of my time with them. I loved to work. I loved to work more than I loved to write on Yow Yow! and I put everything into my job. I could make a scrapbook of photos that I have collected during my time there and while it was hard to leave – one thing that has brought me peace is knowing that at some point – we all will leave. This wasn’t even my first time leaving a job, but because I had been there for so long (my longest employer relationship!) it felt like it was the first time I was experiencing this.

So where do we go from here? I’ve left my job, yes. But I’m not without a place to go to and I wanted to wait until that was solidified before I wrote this. FAQ: I am not moving back to Seattle. What kind of girl would I be if I left home for one job and then came back after it was over? That’s not who I am. The process leading up to what got me to this decision and what came afterwards was a journey for me – lot of highs and many lows so we’re going to turn this into a mini series for the next couple of weeks while I have the time off and while everything is still fresh in my head. I learned a lot in just the past month from interviewing that I hope will be helpful to others, but also it’s nice to keep it all together on Yow Yow! to someday look back on. We’ve all been through a lot together.

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A Few Missing Posts

Every new year, we always try to kick things off on Yow Yow! with a lot of strong content. There are posts that are traditional for us that we look forward to like our yearly roundup of favorite things, our stats to look back on how we did the previous year, and celebrating Yow Yow!’s birthday. We didn’t do any of those this year among others and we have an explanation for that – though I’m not sure if it’s a good one.

I recently went through a pretty major life change. It has allowed me to be able to post regularly the way we have been for the last month, but not spend as much time on the other posts like we normally would. I’m not quite ready to talk about this change yet, but we will soon. In fact, we may even have a mini series about it, which I’m excited to share! Everything is going to be okay. :)

Yow Yow! has always taken a backseat to my life and I’ve struggled with that over the few years, but I’ve had to be realistic about my situation. I worked incredibly hard for my education and it’s something that my family has supported me on so it only made sense for me to make my career my first priority. With that said, I’m so proud of this little project that started out of my freshman dorm room! (We’re changing the subject now by the way) I wanted to celebrate Yow Yow’s! 8th birthday with a mini photo series just like last year and this time with cake, but we’re just going to write this simple post instead. Eight years is a long time. I’ve raised a child in the form of a blog. I can’t wait to someday look back on Yow Yow! and remember those moments in my life – where I graduated college, got my first job, and moved to California. For those of you who were my college classmates and are still following along, thank you for watching me grow up and coming along for this ride.

If I’m being really honest, I thought that Yow Yow! was going to end after I graduated from college. It seemed like the right time to wrap things up. But there were people in my life that encouraged me to continue with it (and I wanted to also!) Yow Yow! continues to be the longest standing thing in my life that I have never given up on and I’m pretty proud of that not only because of how long the average lifespan of a blog actually is, but because as a kid, I was such a quitter! Every sport, the time I wanted to act in our school’s play, my college newspaper… these things couldn’t stick for me, but this did. I’m excited, but nervous to share with you the next step in my life. I couldn’t imagine sharing it anywhere else other than Yow Yow!

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Bay Area Eats: Tin Pot

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My favorite ice cream shop down here likes to entertain me sometimes. They do this really cute thing for kids where they add these edible eyes and carve out a mini mouth. The eyes don’t taste very good (not surprising there) but these make for such cute photo opps. I absolutely adore Tin Pot. Is it embarrassing to share that sometimes when we have a craving for ice cream, we’ll drive the 30 minutes for it? I don’t think so!

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Bay Area Eats: Tanto

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My dad is going to be so psyched when he sees this post. Though they never say this exactly, both of my parents are huge advocates of “treating yourself.” Our weekly phone calls typically consist of them ending it by telling me to eat a really good dinner to which my dad will interject and be like, “go to Tanto! They have fresh fish!” And he’s not wrong. Here’s a photo I took of their sashimi the last time I went. Often times when you go to other sushi restaurants, they really skimp on the way they cut their pieces, but Tanto doesn’t do that. Every piece is fairly large, buttery, and perfect. To clarify though, Tanto (in Sunnyvale) isn’t a sushi restaurant. They’re a Japanese tapas place, which is even more exiting because their menu is enormous. There are so many options and even though I’ve been there a few times, I’m no where close to having tried everything on their menu. They’re a highly rated restaurant with a very good reputation in the South Bay. The bottom photo is the Hotate Butter Uni Nose – a bowl of rice topped with scallops, uni, and salmon roe. If you’re going with a group of four people, it’s best to get about 7-8 dishes that you can all share.

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Summer Getaway in LA

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I had the opportunity to take a pretty last minute trip to Los Angeles this summer and every time I go back for a visit, the list of places to go continues to get longer. We were just there in fall of 2015 to see Gelesia, but even still it felt like there wasn’t enough time to do everything. On this trip, we checked out a few new places and returned to some of our old favorites! I’ve never imagined Los Angeles as a place that I could call home, but I wouldn’t mind spending an entire week there. We’ve still got plenty of neighborhood to explore. During our trip, we must have had four meals a day and only retreated back to the hotel for sleep and getting ready for the day/night’s activities. I know we’re six months away from summer, but we can’t wait to get back there already. I hope you enjoy our LA photo diary!

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Our first meal off the plane was going to be Lemonade, but since I had heard that LA just got a Shake Shack, YOU KNOW I made us pivot. How good does this look?

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Life, by Okinawa

I stumbled across this video last week and it brought back so many memories of my trip to Okinawa when I was in high school. I was 17 at the time and such a brat. It was hard for me to appreciate a trip like this at the time because I just “wanted to spend my last summer at home before college.” It took me about a day into the trip to realize how lucky I was to be able to travel to such a beautiful destination. I’m looking forward to someday returning too. This video was a nice little throwback.

[Source]

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Saucy in Santa Cruz

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Top – Brandy Melville / Shorts – Aritzia / Sunglasses – Kate Spade / Scarf – Forever 21 / Booties – Munro (Nordstrom)

Who dis?! We find out that we’re spending a day in Santa Cruz and of course we turned this into a whole outfit thing. In case any of you are wondering, Santa Cruz doesn’t exactly fit that bohemian vibe that we’re attempting here, but that didn’t matter to us, clearly. Over the summer, some of the employees at work wanted to treat our interns out to a fun afternoon in Santa Cruz. I hadn’t been back since winter 2012 so I was pretty excited to spend a hot summer day there. And okay, it’s no Disney Land, but the rides aren’t bad. More importantly, have we mentioned how much we LOVE Skeeball?!

I wasn’t planning on beaching while in Santa Cruz, but this was the perfect outfit for everything else we did that day. Aside from the fact… that we had to take our scarf off during the rollercoaster and my booties got sand in them. Other than that – 100%! I actually haven’t worn this scarf since I had been back in Seattle and even then I had just worn it pretty simply around my neck. Draping it like this was more fun!

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On This Weekend:

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“I am proud to be the daughter of two immigrants. My parents along with all of my aunts and uncles left their homes so they could create a better life for their future children. I’d like to know where there is threat and harm coming from something like that because all I have seen is selflessness and the greatest intentions. I would not have the life that I do now if it weren’t for them and a country that welcomed them in to give them this opportunity. What is happening in our country today is not okay. It’s inhumane. We need to do better.” [Instagram]

Staying silent does more harm than good. And we’re not just going to spew things out when it’s convenient for us. (Taylor Swift) We’ve refrained from political views on Yow Yow! for a long time, but my education from Seattle University has taught me to do otherwise and that’s the part that we need to voice right now. We’ve been retweeting passive aggressive tweets since before the election and I know I’ve had to stop myself from saying things here, but enough is enough. This isn’t what we signed up for, but no one is accepting it and that to me is extremely powerful right now. I’m excited to be in the Bay Area – a place where individuals are continuing to fight this every day because it is the right thing to do and using their voices to do good. We’re going to do that too.

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Narrowing Your Wedding Invite List

As we start the new year, a few of my engaged girlfriends have already started confiding in me about the many annoyances of wedding planning. “Are charger plates absolutely necessary?” “Do guests need to go home with a wedding favor that they’ll forget about?” “How in the world do you continue to narrow down a wedding invite list?” Clearly, this is the tougher question to answer out of the three. There’s never an easy way to tell someone (or not tell them by not sending an invite) that has had an impact in your life that they won’t be able to celebrate your special day with you. There’s plenty of advice online that can help you with this process from this answer on Quora to Mandi’s Wedding Wednesdays post. I recently came across this fun little survey on Style Me Pretty that I thought might be useful too. Not everything can be solved with just a checklist; these are important people in your life that we’re talking about here! However, I like to think that any little bit of advice helps. Happy trimming!

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Bay Area Eats: Twirl and Dip

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Because normal ice cream on a cone is boring, you guys! While on a walk through Potrero Hill and finding that my friends and I were having some sweet cravings, we stumbled upon Twirl and Dip. For some reason, the fact that the melted chocolate could develop into a hard shell almost immediately was fascinating to me. However, don’t be fooled. Just because it’s in a shell does not mean you are able to eat the ice cream slowly. It will melt. And it will be a mess running all the way down your hand.

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