Typically when I write “end-of-year” posts, I’m always pulling up what I wrote the year before in another tab as a reference. I already know that I didn’t do too much writing this year so it will be ambitious to find 12 posts that I really liked as opposed to last year when that feeling was so easy for me! That being said, I think there are going to be a few treasures in here that we can highlight. They may not be the posts that rank to the top in terms of views, but they are the posts that I enjoyed writing the most and the ones that you know I probably re-read a dozen times before feeling comfortable posting. Thank you all for another fantastic year… now let’s head into our 8th year of Yow Yow! This blog is now older than my previous Polly Pocket collection (7 years!)
This Happened Tonight – I honestly don’t know if this is enough to consider it one of my favorite posts, but this is me totally just fangirling out over here. It might be on my list of funny moments in 2016, but whatever the case – this needed to belong on SOME list and I chose this. I think I like this post just because it reminds me a little bit of how I used to write in the old days – you know back in 2009/2010 – no filter – just blagh! whatever I felt like spewing out at the time. If you read the post though (and you know me!) then you know I’m suppressing my feelings here for the sake of appearing normal on Yow Yow! If only this weren’t so short lived…
Happy 7th Birthday Yow Yow! – We’ve never celebrated a Yow Yow! anniversary like this before. The number 7 has no significance to me or Yow Yow! but after all this time, you kind of just feel like you need to do something different. We were already doing regular outfit photos, so I thought – why not throw in a balloon?! One of the best parts about this post is that Aritiza decided to feature this photo above for their Instagram account. I was ecstatic, but very quickly commenters started to notice that the balloon didn’t actually look like a “7” and actually looked like… male genitalia. So almost immediately, my excitement did a 180.
Looking Back: Space Girl – It’s a weird thing to be in front of a camera. I’m not a natural by any means. Every shoot, Elynn probably takes on average 15-25 photos and while we sometimes get 2-3 really good ones, the rest are of me opening my mouth, fixing my clothes, talking, being awkward, you name it. We’ve come such a long way… this post was incredibly special to me though. Space Girl was everything to me when we were in college. I never could get comfortable in front of the camera and having this helmet on made me feel invincible. When we stopped using it and went back to outfit shoots, you can plainly see how hard it is for me in these photos, but I will never forget the gateway that Space Girl provided for me to get me to where we are today.
Wedding Mondays – I know what you’re thinking. How can you choose a favorite? We’ve highlighted so many incredible wedding videos in 2016, but one that I keep going back to (in addition to Mandi’s of course!) is this one featuring Jean (from Extra Petite) and her husband Nick. To this day, we still can’t wrap our head around the three dresses, but we think it’s amazing. Secondly, Long Haul films is no longer doing wedding videos so that makes this one extra special. (see what I did there?) Also, when I was in Boston this past fall for work, I got to stop by the Boston Library and see this venue myself and we fangirled the same amount we did for BJ Novak. It was just as amazing in person as it is in the video…
Revisiting Casual – I like to look at “Casual” as something we continue to pass on. Every year, I’ve gotta share it with someone new and last year that was Manan. Together, him and I watched the entire series from start to finish and he loved it as much as I did! No surprises there – everyone I’ve ever shown this too has fallen in love with the series so it’s not too late if you decide to hop on the bandwagon. We’re still accepting fan club members. In all honesty, relationships are hard, okay? I’m never 100% content with mine and in 2016 it’s tough to date. If I knew in the long run that I was going to be okay then I would love to have that off my shoulders, but if Casual has taught me anything and if life has taught me anything – it’s that it’s all about timing. We have to let things play out the way they are supposed to. Thank you Casual for continuing to be a positive force in my life year after year.
And When We Give Back – It was such a surreal experience to be speaking with students that had been accepted to Seattle University as the class of 2020. Let that sink in a little bit. When I was a kid, I used to think that college was almost the end all be all. It was hard for me to imagine being a woman with a career – not because I didn’t want to have a career, but because it just seemed so far away. I’m fortunate that my friend who works at admissions asked me to do this panel because it put a lot into perspective. It was a very humbling experience to be giving advice to students as to why Seattle U was a great school for me even though I kind of do this in my real life job too. Additionally, it made me appreciate my parents in a way that I haven’t before. Seeing the parents of these accepted students was a little bit entertaining; they were SO nervous. I wondered how my parents were able to handle me going off to college with such ease and tranquility when that is very clearly not the case for most.
To Be a “Leftover” Woman in China – Never have I ever ugly-cried so hard over a YouTube video, but this struck a chord with me. It’s 2016 and the pressures of settling down or being in a committed relationship are still very much a priority for most. It’s overwhelming at times! I loved hearing the stories of these young women – young women that I can identify with and find to be so brave for doing something like this. I’m glad the video had a happy ending too, a newfound perspective for their parents.
A Girl and Her Bed – I never write pieces like this and I remembered being very on the fence about it because it seems abnormal for me to dispel some serious feelings about a part of my daily routine. In reading it over though, I think the post is kind of beautiful. I’m using words that I don’t normally use and I’m being vulnerable in a way that I haven’t with Yow Yow! before.
“The Panic in Central Park” – Is this my favorite TV moment in 2016? Yes. I must have watched this episode at least 25 times and at one point, once a day for a week. We had given up on Girls the season before this one, but after hearing about how much commotion this episode stirred, we hopped back into it. Luckily, for this episode, you didn’t need to know what was happening before it. It was like it’s own standalone episode and it was a beautiful piece. Marnie may be one of the most annoying characters in the series, but in “The Panic in Central Park” she was all of us. We’ve all had that scenario – some version of it, sometimes shorter or longer or more fun or less fun than what Marnie had, but we all got to the same theme at the very end of it.
Our Twenties: How We’re Doing – “Be good to yourself” – a friend once advised me. Too many times in a year, I find myself complaining about how I don’t have this or don’t have that. How annoying for those around me that have to listen to this! The truth is, your 20’s aren’t easy. They were never supposed to be so it’s important for us to cut ourselves some slack. Earlier in 2016, I wrote about my New Year’s resolutions. This post though was sort of like our midpoint review. Initially this started out as a mini-project with Casper, but I ended up actually enjoying this more than I thought I would and had a lot of fun with it.
Aging and Alone in Manhattan’s Chinatown – I have a thing for pieces that remind me of my sweet Grandma Ruby. This profile by Mantai Chow truly captured a look into the life of an elderly living in Chinatown. I remember watching this video and thinking back to how I never worried about those that lived there because they had what I believed to be a strong community. In reality though, it seems much more lonelier than I thought. These individuals are more brave than I could ever be especially this woman profiled. Hearing her story was one of the highlights in Yow Yow’s 2016.
Let’s Talk About New York! – We made it to 12 posts! With all the trips we took this year, how could we not include our favorite one? It took me 26 years to get to New York, but I couldn’t have asked for a better traveling partner and tour guide. Mandi and I took the next step in our friendship and explored New York City together. She was a pro – obviously having done grad school there and me? Well, I could barely have a successful run on the subway without having a mini freak out. There was never a moment for us to stop because we were constantly on the move. And even though we had made a very packed itinerary for our trip, we only ended up doing half the things we were supposed to. I guess that just means we have to go back.
– 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 😉
Describing the fallout after her assault, one Harvard student says, “I went to the dean of students’ office and she said, ‘I just want to make sure that you don’t talk to anyone about this.'”
Directed by Kirby Dick, The Hunting Ground tells the story of how major universities across the country are looking the other way when it comes to women getting sexually assaulted on campus to protect their name and their brand. I’m very fortunate to have gone to a school where this wasn’t a huge issue, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen outside of school. 1 in 4 women will experience sexual assault in their lifetime and you should never tell anyone that this happens to to stay silent. I think this film is going to be very important and I think it sends such a strong message to both universities and other young women that could potentially find themselves in a situation like this. The film will be released February 27th in select cities.
Just as she was rising to the top of Victoria’s Secret stardom, Karlie Kloss is preparing to make her exit. It was reported last week that the angel is indeed walking away from all the VS modeling gigs and trading in those wings for a bunch of school books. This fall, Karlie will officially be a student at New York University! Hooray! She’s not quitting modeling for good, however, but as you might imagine, a contract with Victoria’s Secret takes up a fair amount of time. At least she’s walking away with four Victoria’s Secret Fashion Shows under her belt. While at NYU, Karlie will be enrolled at Gallatin School of Individualized Study and word on the street was that former supermodel Christy Turlingtun Burns was the one who actually wrote Karlie’s letter of recommendation. Awwww. It’s hard to believe she’s just 22 because the girl seems much wiser beyond her years. We’re excited for her education and what she’ll do next!
After eating my favorite Fried Egg Sandwich from Plow two weekends in a row, I decided it was finally time to mix it up a little bit. Outerlands is a brunch spot that I have been itching to try for quite some time. After hearing such good things about it and having a friend that lives somewhat nearby, I decided to set up a date. It’s in the Sunset after all so there’s really no other reason to go over there other than this place. We may have waited nearly an hour or maybe an hour and a half or so to be seated, but it was worth it. Also, this is San Francisco and if you’re not waiting that long for brunch then you’re not going to a very good spot.
(That’s not exactly true, but sort of.)
I decided to order “Eggs in Jail” and for those of you who have been reading Yow Yow! for quite some time, you know that this is a meal that Veronica and I made almost every other week because we were just SO POOR! We were 22 years old and completely satisfied with the childhood meal of frying an egg into the middle of a piece of a toast. On a Friday night, we would each eat two of these, but not before accidentally burning and ruining two before we could eat.
Outerlands made our favorite dish even better by adding tomatoes, bacon, and what we think could be a cauliflower drizzle. We’re really not sure. What I am sure of is that I really loved this twist on a classic college meal. What a throwback!
We all know how easy it is to make a quick joke on social media these days, but oh how things can go sour fast. The federal financial aid agency which we know as FAFSA made a huge mistake today posting the following tweet above and naturally, people were offended. In fact, I’m offended. I get that they were trying to be clever, but categorizing those that fill out the FAFSA as poor is incorrect. Not everyone that fills out the FAFSA is poor and why shame those that do when tuition for higher education currently is as high as it is.
The tweet was up for an hour before it was taken down and followers had a lot to say in response.