All posts in: Life

15 Mar 2021

Taking Your Birthday Off

For the first time ever, I’m taking my birthday off. In previous years, I’ve always loved celebrating my day with my friends and coworkers. What’s the fun in taking the day off (on your birthday) if no one else can spend it with you? Even while I’ve taken trips or celebrated on the weekends, I never took the work day off. That is, until this year.

I’d be lying to you if I said I had a particular joyous birthday last year in the pandemic. My birthday happened to fall at the beginning of it as in, the period of time where no one left their house, saw each other, and San Francisco neighborhoods were a ghost town outside. Despite gifts and multiple video chats that day, it wasn’t the same. I knew this year a birthday would also feel like every other work day so how do we solve for it? Try something different.

Not only am I taking my birthday off, but I’m taking a whole four work days off! In pandemic times, it isn’t easy to take time off because nothing seems worthy of doing so. And honestly, staycations don’t hit the same. While I may not be doing much, it’s totally beats having a normal work day and I’d rather be spending time doing what I want. Even though it’s completely approved by my manager, we still feel like we’re playing adult hooky.

14 Mar 2021

Blog Roundup

  • 7 Meghan Markle Interview Bombshells That’ll Make You Anti-Royalist [Vulture]
  • How SF Restaurants Have Rearranged the Room for Indoor Dining [SF Eater]
  • The Death of Take-Home Design Exercises [Meaghan Li | Medium]
  • Revisiting the Great Covid Social Media Scold [Vanity Fair]
  • Steve Yuen’s New Frontier [GQ]
  • Asian Bodies That Proudly Defy An Archetype [HuffPost]
  • A Thailand Mall Has Two San Francisco-Themed Floors [SF Gate]
  • This Is Our Asian-American Experience [Byrdie]
  • Korean TV’s Unlikely Star: Subway Sandwiches [NY Times]
07 Mar 2021

Blog Roundup

  • 13 Things A Designer Would Never Do In Their Living Room [My Domaine]
  • The 43 Breathable Face Masks to Shop Now [Vogue]
  • FKA Twigs Discusses Shia LaBeouf Allegations in Gayle King Interview [The Fader]
  • Margaret Zhang Named Editor-In-Chief of ‘Vogue’ China [Fashionista]
  • Marin County May Be the Fakest ‘Woke’ Place in America [The Bold Italic]
  • Ten Years Later, ‘Greek’ Remains TV’s Gold Standard for the College Experience [The Ringer] not my college experience, but a series I loved!
  • Trailer for Michelle Obama’s Waffles + Mochi [Source]
  • Why I’m No Longer Staying Silent About Anti-Asian Racism by Sophia Li [Vogue]
  • Chloe Zhao’s America [Vulture]
  • We said goodbye to Daft Punk after 28 years
  • Swallowing Our Bitterness [The Cut]
  • The Future of Work Might Look Like This [Surface Mag]
  • I Love You, Please Get Vaccinated [The Cut]
  • The Invisible Artistry of Asian Actors [The Atlantic]
05 Mar 2021

This Weekend

What We’re Watching: Nomadland

After watching the Golden Globe Awards last weekend, I’m feeling a bit of FOMO having not seen many of the films and television series that were nominated. Given the last year, you would think we’d be on top of it. Somehow we missed 75%. In an attempt to catch up, I decided to watch “Nomadland” after work today. It was high up on my list because the film’s director, Chloe Zhao took home a Golden Globe win! I’m naturally attracted to films that tell stories about different kinds of people. It’s one of the reasons why we love Lisa Ling’s “This Is Life.” “Nomadlife” balances showing us the perspective from Francis’s point of view as a nomad, but also from the outside looking in. It’s about strength, loneliness, loss and community all in one.

What We’re Listening To: Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak, Silk Sonic – Leave the Door Open

It was a week ago that I learned that Bruno Mars, Anderson .Paak and Silk Sonic would all be teaming up together for an album. Believe it or not, we had this on the agenda to post about and then time got ahead of us. Now it’s one week later and the single is out alongside a music video. I can’t put my finger on what this single reminds me of, but it brings back old school laid back R&B vibes for me that I loved as a child. These days, music just doesn’t sound like this anymore and I’m nostalgic for this to come back.

What We’re Wearing: [Lunya Washable Silk Tank Set] – $178

Technically, we don’t own this yet and I’m still on the fence about it. I’ve been seeing Lunya all over my IG for the last year and while I’ve always been used to wearing whatever to bed. As I think about entering further into my 30’s, I’m wondering if I need adult woman pajamas. Also, is there anything better than washable silk? The price tag is hefty, but the reviews say they’re worth it!

What We’re Eating: Ju-Ni Chirashi Bowl

Indoor dining has opened up in San Francisco, but we’re not quite ready to do that just yet. It’s time for my monthly visit to Ju-Ni to snag their Chirashi Bowl for takeout and this Sunday we’re taking ours to the park.

27 Feb 2021

This Weekend:

What We’re Watching: 2021 Golden Globe Awards

My sense of time is just gone at this point! How have we already made it to the end of February? I can’t even believe that we’ve reached the point of the 2021 Golden Globe Awards because while I know I’ve watched a lot, in some ways, I feel like I have watched nothing? Is anything I watched even nominated? It feels like we’ve also missed out on a whole year of red carpets which all of you know is one of my favorite parts about award show season. Despite this being another abnormal year, I’m still looking forward to the event. We’ll clear our schedule and make the most of it.

What We’re Listening To: Giveon

TikTok has the ability to introduce me to a lot of new music. The only downside is that it’s not always timely. Many of the songs have been released for some time, but evidently its TikTok and its users that give the tracks a revival. Because of a recent trending dance, Giveon’s “HEARTBREAK ANNIVERSARY” has been all over my For You page. And while I love it, I feel so behind because it came out a year ago! We’re used to wanting to stay ahead in the music world, but TikTok doesn’t care about that and will make things relevant when it makes sense.

What We’re Wearing: [Knitted Sweater and Shorts Lounge Set] – $53 $26.50

Okay so I’m lazy and I haven’t actually planned ahead for my outfits this weekend, but I can tell you now that I’m wearing a pair of knit lounge shorts from Nasty Gal. They aren’t the same ones as above, but I wanted to give you a sample of what they are like and if you wanted your own, this seems like a great set to buy!

What We’re Eating: Devil’s Teeth

Since it’s a beautiful weekend in San Francisco, my friends and I headed out to Devil’s Teeth this morning (my first time at this SF staple!) and picked up breakfast which we took to the beach. I didn’t actually get the popular breakfast sandwich, but my friends did! Instead, I opted for something a little lighter: a slice of meaty quiche (bacon!) and a donut muffin as my dessert for tonight.

20 Feb 2021

Instant Noodle Aisle = Instant Serotonin

In a pandemic, you need to be able to find joy in the little things. When the highlight of your week is a trip to the grocery store, you zero in on what will become your favorite purchases. The instant ramen aisle is endless. There’s no shortage in new things to try and its array of colors and packaging make this aisle a lively one.

Also, I’m not sure where this trend came from of influencers taking photos in grocery aisles (we’ve done this too!) but it’s interesting to see what trends come out of pandemic times. Who would’ve thought that poorly lit aisles and mediocre items would be a hit? Not us, but here we are. I’m always on the hunt for some of the best instant noodles though my mother would not consider this a healthy diet. Share with us your favorite recommendations? So far my favorite has been anything involving Jajangmyeon!

15 Feb 2021

On Our Hiatus

There are very few times in Yow Yow’s! life where we’ve stepped away for a bit. Over the holidays is when I feel the most content charged, but I forget that periods of that can also lead to my own burnout. In January, I left the city for a cabin 90 minutes away. We still had access to wifi and I was still active on most of social, but selective. Instead of sharing immediate stories from my stay, I waited until I returned back to San Francisco. Nothing was preventing me from sharing out, but I needed this for myself.

The two weeks that I chose to go silent were two weeks in which the world chose to be loud. It started out as a slow burn with Bean dad and white women Mahjong before it escalated to our Georgia runoff win, the insurrection and Trump being banned on Twitter and Facebook. Somewhere in the mix, there was a Soho Karen.

I couldn’t break my rule of not posting during this time. The plan was to return home and share my thoughts afterwards. That time never came. It was a combination of the news just not being relevant anymore and myself not feeling the need to comment anymore. It may seem like an obvious lesson here, but news is timely. It’s one of the reasons why we ask our friends whether they are ‘living under a rock?’ when they’re a day late to a story breaking.

When the moment has passed, we should let it. In 2021, we act as if we all need to have commentary on everything. Shouldn’t the focus be on being better listeners? There’s a race to get to the news first and to have our take on it, but more often than not, it’s not our voice that needs to be heard. Stepping back for two weeks made me realize that I could sit back every once in a while. Why not let someone else’s voice be amplified? I thought this challenge for myself would be difficult, but it wasn’t. In fact, it only showed me how easy it could be to step away someday and be completely okay with all of this.

15 Feb 2021

Blog Roundup

Patricia Chang
  • Instagram Really Isn’t Optional For Restaurants Anymore [SF Eater]
  • Ella Emhoff and Amanda Gorman have been signed to IMG [Fashionista 1/2]
  • Even the White House Logo Got a Makeover [Fast Company]
  • How to Make McDonald’s Hash Browns At Home [The Takeout]
  • BTS Is Heading to ‘MTV Unplugged’ [NYLON]
  • The Most Popular Brand in Every Country, Mapped [Digg]
  • This Concept Video for Virgin’s Hyperloop Transit System [Mental Floss]
  • Why Aren’t More Asian American Costume Designers Helping Tell Our Own Stories? [Fashionista]
  • Former FBI Agent Analyzes First Date Body Language | WIRED [Source]
  • How to Adjust Covid-19 Social Distancing Pods When Someone Gets Exposed [Vox]
  • The Many Lives of Steve Yuen [The New York Times Magazine]
  • Jenny Han Talks ‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before’ [Call Your Girlfriend]
  • ‘My People Are Dying in Silence – and I’m Here with A Megaphone’ [AdWeek]
  • Nordstrom Introduces Black_Space to Amplify Black Designers [High Snobiety]
  • I’ve Never Been More Prouder – Or More Heartbroken – to Be Asian American [Byrdie]
  • 38 Moments to Talk About From the “To All The Boys” Series [The EveryGirl]
05 Feb 2021

This Weekend:

What We’re Watching: True Beauty

After Start Up ended, True Beauty seemed like the drama that everyone was running towards. Instead, I went in the opposite direction selecting Run On, but I don’t regret my choices. Last weekend, I finally decided to see what all the hype was about and it was very deserving. True Beauty is one of the most fun dramas that I’ve seen in my collection with some emotional moments here and there. I haven’t seen any of these leads in anything else which made me excited about an up and coming ensemble. It’s highly unlikely that we’ll be able to finish the entire season by the end of the weekend, but anything is possible. I’m already on episode 11!

What We’re Listening To: Hayley Williams – FLOWERS for VASES – descansos

Hayley dropped her second solo album last night and at first I thought we’d be getting a handful of songs, but it’s more than a handful. Williams is serving us 14 tracks. If it’s anything like the first, we’re already bubbling with excitement. Even though Hayley and I aren’t far apart in age, I feel like she’s someone that looked up to as a role model growing up in the music industry. Essentially, we have watched her grow up from her style of music to the solo work she’s doing now.

What We’re Wearing: [WVVY Faux Sherpa Snap-Front Jacket]

Every year, buying a new jacket after Christmas is one of my favorite traditions. This year, it really didn’t make sense considering how much time we were spending indoors, but I saw a piece that I couldn’t resist. For even those freezing moments indoors, we decided to continue with our lounge wear to normal wear trend. This is one of the more girly pieces that I’ve purchased in a long time, but it was either this or the reverse – all of pink with cream accents. I had my followers vote and this one came out on top.

What We’re Eating: Super Bowl food

It’s going to be a quiet event this year in my house, but despite that, I haven’t changed the portions. I’ve got every single kind of dip and multiple things to dip with. Whether you enjoy football or not, the eating portion of it is one to look forward to. The debate is still out on what the main course is going to be, but I’m going to let someone else decide that.

30 Jan 2021

Our 12th Year

After some time, the excitement of anniversaries kind of wears off. It’s the reason why some of us either love or hate our birthdays. I started to feel this way beginning last year because after you celebrate a milestone of 10 years, where do you go from there? The 11th anniversary is awkward and the 12th anniversary means you’ve been doing this for far too long.

My winter break this year from day-to-day work was filled to the brim with even more outside work. Every day we were pushing out content to Instagram, TikTok, and this blog to the point of doing that for two weeks straight had me burnt out. I had made a decision before that though that I would spend the following two weeks after pulling back. I cut off the Instagram Stories arm and while it wasn’t a full social media detox, just one portion of it made a difference.

For years, I had been so used to daily postings covering various aspects of my life both work and personal. Cutting it off cold turkey wasn’t easy though. Shortly after my break from posting started, something came across my way. Instead, Instagram decided to flag me for hate speech (my first ever!) I later verified with Elisa that what I was posting was not really hate speech and that we’ve both seen worse examples on the platform. Regardless, this was the sign that I needed. The universe said STOP.


Over the holidays, I caught a segment on Aimee Song’s IG where she was answering questions from her followers. When someone mentioned that they were just starting a blog and asked for advice on how to build a following, Aimee said “Don’t.” She said unless you already have a following, don’t put your energy into that and instead redirect it to a platform like Instagram or TikTok. Though this wasn’t directed at me nor was I in the same position, I felt a wave of discouragement. So much so that I reached out to Elisa and Veronica at the same time and asked “Are blogs dead?!” This was the year that I was crafting what I believed to be some of my most important writing pieces. Would it be for nothing?

I’d be lying to you if I said this didn’t impact me for days afterwards. I had to have a serious moment with myself wondering if it was not only a) worth it to continue, but b) could my life be okay without all of this? From time to time, Veronica is the voice of reason in my head. “Remember why you started.” When we began, this was never about being viral, getting fame or reaching influencer status. If that came, we would welcome it and learn how to navigate, but for years we were content just putting things out there.

On the flip side, my absence from the online world didn’t go unnoticed. Some even reached out to be to ask if I was okay because they hadn’t seen any activity from me. We’ve been doing this for so long that something has to be wrong if I’ve gone quiet. While well-intentioned, that idea also didn’t sit well with me. There may come a day where we walk away from all of this completely. I actually got a taste of that for two weeks while I was away and it wasn’t so bad. As I look ahead to 2021 and our 12th year, I’m reminding myself that I can only do this for as long as it makes me happy. When that joy is no longer there, it’s time to say goodbye.

For those of you who are still with us, as always, thank you! I have so much gratitude for those that continue reading my words and find value in my posts.

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