Tag Archives: Life

Officially A San Francisco Resident

Someone asked me today how my blog was going and I actually couldn’t even remember the last time I had written a post. Don’t worry, the dashboard says July 9th. Since you last heard from me, I celebrated Jennie’s Bachelorette Party in Disney Land (more photos to come!) and officially moved myself up to San Francisco. It has been a hectic two weekends, but we made it you guys. All in one piece.

Looking back, I had predicted that my move from Seattle to the Bay Area was going to be tougher, but it was actually the move from Sunnyvale to San Francisco that turned out to be the most challenging! I’ve acquired many more things over the last four years and I hate to admit this, but I’m not very good at throwing things away though I am improving. Also moving is expensive. It was my first time hiring movers and even though you think packing as much as you can into boxes will save you time, it won’t save you THAT much time. There’s also something ridiculous in California called DDT (Double Drive Time) and it basically means that if it takes you 15 minutes to get from Point A to Point B, they’ll charge you as if it’s 30 minutes. It doesn’t make sense, but you can’t dispute it. Whatever.

The point is…I got here and with the help of my brother who has now helped me with TWO moves. I have slept here for a total of four nights so far and I’m still not used to it. The adjustment to living in the city after being in the suburbs is going smoother than expected. I’ve already had a few friends visit me, which helps me to feel more comfortable with this transition everyday, but still wondering how I’m going to spend my extra time not commuting anymore. It means I can go home and think about making dinner – keyword here is think because it’s likely I won’t cook for the first month. There’s a lot left that I need to do that involves moving so those will be my errands on the weekends. I’m also looking forward to getting to know my new neighborhood and the surrounding neighborhoods. Should I share my favorite spots?!

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Yow Yow! at the SFMOMA

Top – Abercrombie & Fitch / Duster – Azalea / Jeggings – Uniqlo / Boots – J. Crew

The time in between when I left my last job and when I started my current job was the most calming and peaceful experience I’ve ever had. I can’t wait to share more about that later on with you. I had been wanting to check out the newly opened SFMOMA for quite some time, but never could find the opportunity to until I realized that I no longer had to work away all my weekends. Wenwen was a member of the museum so she took Leah and I one afternoon and it was so much fun! Growing up, I always loved going to museums. They were my favorite kind of field trips and because my father is an artist, I naturally grew up with art around me.

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I’m Moving…Again!

Don’t worry – I’m not moving too far! Just about 45 miles north to San Francisco. I was searching through my archives to try and find the post I wrote when I left Seattle for the Bay Area and couldn’t find it, which is probably just a sign from the universe telling me that this isn’t really that big of a deal. I’ve lived in my current home for nearly four years so saying goodbye is challenging for me. On top of that, I’m not someone that loves change. When I first moved to Sunnyvale, I got really lucky with the apartment that I received. It was perfect for me in terms of location, amenities, space, etc. As long as I was working close by, I was never going to leave. However, that all changed this past spring when I took a new job in the city. For three months I convinced myself that my hour long commute each way “wasn’t so bad.” Over time, I actually got used to it! I carpooled with Elisa and when we weren’t together, I listened to my music and got myself excited for work each morning or ready to wind down in the evenings. After three months, I knew that my lease would be wrapping and that it was now a suitable time to move on from this home of mine.

People ask me all the time how I like working in the city or if I’m excited to live there. I don’t have a good response for them! I’m moving up there solely for work and as much as I enjoy SF, I would still be just as happy living in South Bay. I used to think that since I lived in downtown Seattle previously that I would never really care to live in a city again and while that sounds pretty Negative Nancy of me, I want to let you know that when I move up there, I fully intend to embrace this new lifestyle of mine. What I’m looking forward to most is a) having more time back, b) not commuting really, c) experiencing my new neighborhood and d) living very close to Mandi.

In my next post, I’ll share with you more details about my house hunting, which surprisingly wasn’t as painful as everyone says. :) I think I just got lucky!

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Yow Yow! in Muir Beach

You would think from how often I talk about the beaches in California that this would be the first time I’ve ever been exposed to them. It’s not, but I love them so much more in California than Washington. With Megan visiting, I wanted to give her an experience of both the city and life outside of it. Muir Beach is such a short drive from where we were so after brunch one day, we set off for the road. We wanted to do both Muir Beach and a hike in the Redwoods, but only had time for one. It was too cold to get in the water – and I don’t think I would’ve anyways, but it was so nice to walk along it. Megan also challenged me by asking if we could hike to the very top of the hill. I was definitely not wearing the appropriate attire given that I was in an Oak + Fort sweater, but I decided to be a good sport. She was visiting from Yakima after all!

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Happy Pride!

T-shirt – Quip / Denim – Rag & Bone / Sandals – Qupid via Moorea Seal

Typically, I stick to one outfit photo a day, but today is PRIDE and I didn’t want to have to post this photo five months later. I actually wore this outfit a couple of days ago and received this tee from my friend’s company, Quip. This year, they made shirts just in time for the event. Coincidentally, my company did the same also, but I got this Thursday so I wore it to work on Friday which is when I got my company’s shirt. It’s 2017 and there is no reason to not stand by the LGBQT company. As a tech employee, I’m really proud of not only my company, but those in the community that support pride. I know that tech in the San Francisco Bay Area doesn’t always have the best reputation especially in the last couple of weeks, but those events do not define ALL of us. And trust – there’s a lot of us. Despite some of these things, I feel lucky to be in an industry that is strengthening efforts in supporting diversity, inclusion, and all communities. There’s still a lot of work ahead of us.

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Blog Roundup

We’re doing a different format this week. This two-part article about a girl who texted her boyfriend to commit suicide is now facing nearly 20 years in prison. Read the two parts to the article here:

  • The Bizarre Trial of the 20-year-old Who Texted Her Boyfriend to Kill Himself [Vice]
  • Inside the Tense Courtroom When the Suicide Texter was Found Guilty [Vice]

Other roundup news:

  • Chance the Rapper Hires American Sign Language interpreters for upcoming shows [Hypebeast]
  • What Would Happen If You Never Used An Alarm Clock? [Digg]

  • Skateboarding legend Brain Anderson on coming out [The New Yorker]
  • I was an investor, she was a founder. [Source]
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Your List of Job “Must-Haves”

Starting where we left off…here! I’m now over three months into my new job, but nowhere close to finishing out this series. I’m a firm believer in finishing things that I start though. I believe that was also one of my New Years resolutions so onwards we go!

Over the holidays, I met up with someone who I’ve sort of looked up to career-wise. Not only did we graduate from the same university, but she had the most impressive resume having worked at two very successful large tech companies and a startup that I used to think was my dream job, and we shared a love for food AND blogging. I wasn’t quite sure what would come out of this info chat, but I was so grateful that she took the time to sit down with me. In our conversation, I remember her asking me a fairly simple question. In fact, it’s the same question that I have asked my own candidates time and time again, but yet when it came time for me to answer it myself, I couldn’t find the words.

“What are you looking for in a job?”

The reason why this was so challenging for me was because the last time I had to answer this question, I was in a different place in my life. I was 23 and I wanted to work in tech for a product that I had used. Pretty generic. I also was leaving all my friends and family behind in Seattle so I wanted friends in my new city. I was young and I wasn’t ready to think about my career long term. I’m not saying that this was the wrong way to go about it, but it’s one way to approach finding a job. Looking back, I still don’t think I would’ve done anything differently, but it was vastly different than how I was feeling back in January of this year. At that point, I felt like I was at a crossroads. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to continue down this career path, but I also didn’t know what else I should be doing. Annie told me that when looking for a job, you typically have a few things that are important to you (true) but that they could be of varying importance depending on the company (something new that I learned!)

Here were the things that were most important to me: (in no particular order)

  • Who would I be reporting to and what would it be like to have them manage me?
  • Would I enjoy working alongside my team? How integrated into the company are they? Are they respected by the rest of the company?
  • Do I believe in the product and the mission of the company?
  • Is the company culture a good one? Do I feel valued and respected as a member of this team?
  • Compensation – is it fair and aligned with the responsibilities that I’ll be having?
  • Impact – how much will my work matter in the company?

These may be some of the things you also consider when looking for a job. You may care about more or less than what I have. The part that was surprising to me was that there is no particular order. Company A might allow me to have the most impact I’ve ever had in a role while Company B might have a team that makes me feel at home every day that I come in. They are different things, sure, but my feelings towards these two things might be so strong that it can make a decision like this very challenging. All six components were important to me and no one thing was more important than the other, but it was all different for every company. When I was early on in my career, maybe only one of these things mattered to me. I’ve been told that as you get older and progress further on in your career, you continue to learn more about what you want. That is probably why I have six things to consider now, but that search to find the right job becomes even tougher!

I have a couple more posts that I’d like to share in this series, but before I go on is there anything you’d like for me to focus on? I’d love to include it if I haven’t already!

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Half-Tuck

Turtleneck and Skirt – Aritzia / Socks – Uniqlo / Boots – J. Crew / Bracelet – Madewell

I just realized that very recently I wrote on Yow Yow! about power outfits and clearly when I wrote that post, I forgot about this one. This Aritzia get-up is one of my all time favorites and mostly because it’s an outfit that I would have normally never gravitated towards. I had been seeing these two separate pieces from Aritzia pop up everywhere – in my emails, on their website, on display in their stores. Each time, I never had a desire to try them on or make a purchase. It was like the universe was trying to tell me something else though. Finally one day, I gave in. I used to think turtlenecks were old school and also, why would I have wanted a turtleneck that isn’t super thick and as sheer as this one? Turns out, it’s one of the most comfortable things I own. It’s actually really nice to not have it be very thick because it means I don’t get stuffy in the sweater. It’s also loose fitting enough to wear untucked or tucked into this perfect suede skirt. I didn’t want to purchase the skirt because I was afraid of not knowing how to take care of it. I also worried that it wouldn’t be as versatile, but it turns out even if it isn’t – it goes well with this turtleneck completely so that’s enough for me. The rest of the photos in this series make my laugh. The bracelet shot below makes it look like I think it’s a watch when it’s not. Also, we may have gone a little overboard on the editing in the last photo, but I like that my hair is the color of FALL and my surroundings.

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Lauren Singer Is A Better Person Than All Of Us

Today was a very productive blogging day. One reason why I love Sundays is because I’m always trying to look for content that teaches me something and I think it’s a good way to kick off the week. Sundays growing up for me were always homework days. It’s the day where I reset; I get back down to the grind and it gets me ready for the rest of the week. I also just believe that it’s fun to learn something new so that you can share it with your classmates or your colleagues Monday morning. (TBH Yow Yow! started that way anyways!)

I watched this video of Lauren Singer and learned from Vox that she has basically collected only 4 years of trash in this jar. Today, I threw out one full bag of trash and one bag of recycling and gave myself a pat on the back. Now I feel like a dummy because Lauren is kicking our butts! There are many things I wish I could improve in my life – one of which, is being more sustainable. The thing is, it isn’t that hard even if you do little things like not using plastic water bottles anymore, composting, bringing in your own reusable mug for your local barista every day. See? I can list off these things, but easier said than done or just… plain lazy. We may not be able to wake up tomorrow being a changed person right away, but we can take baby steps right? We just have to follow in the footsteps of Lauren Singer basically.

[Source]

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My Power Outfit

I’ve been experiencing something interesting recently and at first, I wasn’t even sure how to talk about it. I recently hit my one-month anniversary at work (the time has flown by!) and as much as I love it, I’ve been noticing that I’m not feeling myself lately. I started to wonder if it was because a lot of things were different now like a new city or a new environment, new responsibilities or a new office and what I’ve come to realize was… it’s my clothes.

For the last month, I’ve been coming into work wearing a different set of outfits than I used to at my last workplace and it doesn’t feel quite right. Sometimes, I wear the same clothes that I used to wear, but they just feel different. I can’t explain it. I also made the choice to not buy all new clothes because I work in tech and the pieces I own should be transferrable at any workplace. So for the last month, I’ve been trying to figure out my “power outfit.” What makes me, me? I’m a firm believer in dressing for myself and I’ve been doing that since I’ve been working and since I’ve gone through school, but lately, my clothes don’t make me feel as confident at work and I’m not sure why.

Readers, I’d love to hear from you. What’s a piece or an outfit that makes you feel like you’re at your best. It’s a tricky thing to explain isn’t it?!

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So You Want To Leave Your Job

I’m a month into my new role, but while I was taking time off I made a promise to myself that I would finish this series about the transitioning in my life. I hope you don’t mind me picking up where we left off. :) Growing up, our parents were known to be in their jobs for pretty much their whole lives. It wasn’t common for them to changes roles every couple of years. In Silicon Valley, it is becoming less of a faux pas for you to change jobs every year. Whatever the case, it’s likely that you won’t be at your job for the rest of your life in this day and age.

One of the most common questions I received from my peers when I made my announcement was “Why?” followed by “When did you know?” I don’t want to get too into depth about my answers, but what I will tell you is that you don’t wake up one morning and decide that you’re going to leave. It starts with curiosity. You might stumble upon an interesting article about a company or meet someone while you’re out that works elsewhere or you catch up with someone that recently left the company that you’re at. It could be one of these things or none of these things. Maybe you’re just fed up with something or there’s some drama; or you think about something completely out of left field. It’s different for everyone. Where it’s the same though is that you have that lingering thought. It’s the same thought that everyone else before you has had and over time the thought comes to the forefront. It starts to get bigger until you can’t put it in the back of your head anymore. For me, that first thought was June 2016, then August, then December, which led to my leaving in January.

Whatever it is that makes you want to leave; do your best to leave when you’re still happy and not when you are angry or upset. Why? Because you don’t want to leave out of desperation. It will cause you to make rash decisions that are not well out and when it comes to determining your next job, it’s not something you want to take lightly. Secondly, the attitude that you have on your company when you are looking to leave will come to light in your interviews and that’s not what you want to come across.

I had been at my previous company for years so when it came time to look for my next move, I didn’t have a plan and that’s when Manan advised me that that was the first step. The funny thing is, I work in this space so I should be very aware of knowing what to do, but because it had been so long I just didn’t. He advised me:

  • Make a list of companies you want to work at
  • Find someone at each company that can help refer you somehow. If it’s not someone directly, maybe a friend of a friend.
  • Apply to all of the companies at once and go from there

It sounds simple enough, but you and I both know that applying to jobs is a full time job in itself. I wasn’t a perfect interviewer and I had a lot of challenges at the beginning. I wasn’t prepared when I started and maybe I was overconfident that I could wing it. The second and third time, I made a list of all the questions I thought I would be asked and started to craft “my story.” Everyone has one and an employer wants to know how you got to your last job, what you did there, and what’s next for you. I received some rejections – completely normal and also a humbling experience in its own. Every time I got a rejection, I found one more company to apply to that same day.

If there’s anything I wish I had done sooner than when I got to this experience, it would be a few things. I wish I would have taken info chats sooner regardless of whether or not I was looking for a position just to build those relationships and utilize my network. I had a number of info chats when I was searching and these chats (as casual as they were) spun into interviews and opportunities that I didn’t originally envision for myself. I also believe that it’s helpful to take calls with recruiters when opportunities comes up to understand your worth in the market. I’ve actually been advising many of my peers to do this recently especially because there’s been previous data around women not negotiating and this is something that helps you when you get to that stage in the interview process.

In addition to Manan’s steps, here are mine:

  • Get your resume updated
  • Practice interviewing with your friends or another recruiter if you’re lucky
  • Turn on the feature within LinkedIn that lets recruiters know that you are “open to new opportunities”

I was going to include in this post a deeper thought about doing some soul searching when you’re in this stage of your life and what non-negotiables I had, but I think I’ll save that for the next post. :)

Good luck!

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We’re Getting Too Old

That time has come; it is beginning to get very challenging for me to blog every night after work. Sometimes when I come home now, I just leave my laptop closed and sit and reflect – sort of like the way I reflect on my hour long commute to work into the city. That being said, I’m enjoying this new stage in my life. It feels exciting and stimulating to me and for the first time in a long time I get to combine the career I’ve had for the last 4 years along with my creative passions from high school through college. We’re dedicating our Saturday to Yow Yow! today so just stick with us and please do continue to let me know via email what kind of content you’d like to see on the blog!

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A Collection Part 47

 

The theme of this collection is minimalism. Before I left my last job, my life was very noisy. My mind was constantly racing with a million thoughts. I wasn’t always able to communicate my feelings articulately. I was stressed with needing to be two places at once, and in general my home – my sanctuary felt cluttered. The time off that I had from working made me feel well again. I felt like I could take care of myself the way I needed to and get that clear head that I was seeking. I couldn’t remember a time where I was THAT happy! And that’s why it was also challenging to get back to work after that… but more on that later. This post is a collection of things that just feel simple to me. There’s not a lot of noise in them and as you’ll notice in these photos, more space than usual. Enjoy!

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Trying Lyra

Growing up, I didn’t have too many options to choose from when it came to exercising or participating in a sport. If you were a kid, you could either do soccer, softball, or basketball. Well, I sort of gave each one a shot, but nothing ever felt stuck or rather, I never felt like I belonged. I was a petite girl (still am today!) and I didn’t enjoy running – something that is involved in almost every sport every kid my age was in. As an adult, staying healthy and being active is important to me. It’s not in my top 5 priorities, but I am very aware that I’m not going to have my metabolism forever and the work I put into my health and wellness now will serve me better as I age.

In the fall, Sandy asked a few of us if we’d be interested in trying a Lyra class with her. I hadn’t ever done it, but looked it up before I headed to the class and thought because of how tiny I was that it would be doable. I had been going indoor rock climbing on/off for the last few years and knew I had some upper body strength. Well, when I say I had been going indoor rock climbing, what I really mean is that that was the last form of exercise I had done and I probably hadn’t gone back in a year so that upper body strength I thought I was equipped with? Gone.

First off, please excuse for the not so high quality photos. I know it looks like I’m making it seem easy in these photographs, but the girls I went with all know how much I struggled. It was hard for me to even push myself off the ground let alone get into the hoop and balance myself. These two poses were done at the very end of the class and even then I had little hope that I would be able to pull them off! Lyra isn’t about endurance, but more so strength and a whole lot of patience, which I realized I clearly didn’t have at the end of the session. Would I try Lyra again? Potentially! However, now as an adult, there are so many different classes you can take – many options that I didn’t have when I was a kid and I’m really excited that I get to choose from them all.

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I’m A Bridesmaid!

In the last few years, some of my favorite content on Yow Yow! has been through some of my own experiences. Typically, when something happens, Instagram will get the exclusive first in that moment, but Yow Yow! will get the deep dive into it all maybe just a few months later. This past fall, two of my favorite girls – Ashley and Jennie – got engaged! You may know them as the women I am always referencing in “Wedding Mondays” post. Both of them got engaged while I was traveling on the East Coast for work and when I got the infamous texts with the photos of their respective rings, I was fast asleep as I was always three hours ahead. Obviously, I was excited for my girls, but I experienced a lot of FOMO as well and it was sort of a reality check that I was away from people that I cared about and have been for a few years now!

Shortly after her engagement, Ashley asked me to become one of her bridesmaids! You never know it’s going to be you until you actually get asked though so the arrival of said box above was the greatest package I had ever received. This is my first time being a bridesmaid for one of my friends and hopefully not the last. I’m taking this job very seriously though and though I don’t know what I’m doing, I will somehow be incredibly knowledgeable in being a great bridesmaid to Ash haha. We haven’t discussed any plans to document this wedding journey yet, but we’ve got a whole year to go so who knows what could happen.

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