a day in San Francisco

Saturday was the most perfect 80 degree, sunny day so we took advantage by exploring the city. We’ve lived in the Bay area for over a year now, but there’s still plenty of SF bucket list items to cross off my list. Here’s what we did in one beautiful day:

1. Grabbed a delicious Filipino fusion lunch from Senor Sisig… (because everything is better in a burrito)

2. …And ate it among the crowds in Union Square (after a pit stop to browse the lovely Cuyana store)

3. Picked up a couple of cherry doughnuts from Mr. Holmes Bakehouse (obligatory)

4. Admired the colorful walls of Clarion Alley (after another pit stop at the Everlane store…this itinerary was very obviously planned by me)

5. Got a cold brew from Craftsman and Wolves (because…coffee)

6. And a green smoothie from Project Juice (am I a real Californian yet?)

7. People watched at Dolores Park (the best.)

8. Channeled our inner children at the Seward Street Slides (deceptively fast. Video is on my Instagram)

9. Took in the gorgeous view from Twin Peaks (a new must-see anytime we have visitors)

10. Acted like tourists at the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps (impossible to get a picture without people in it, but they sure are pretty)

11. And ended the day in Pacifica at the best Taco Bell (the perfect way to end the perfect day)



podcasts to binge

Back in the days when I had a painful commute down 90 in Chicago and sat in agony in bumper to bumper traffic on a daily basis, podcasts may have saved my life. Here are some worth listening to from beginning to end:

1. Serial – Season 1
Like many others, this is how I entered the world of podcasts. I heard good things so I gave it a try and it was worth it. For those who still don’t know, it’s a murder investigation based on a case of young girl murdered more than 15 years ago.

2. Missing Richard Simmons
I just finished this one and Richard Simmons is so so so fascinating to me now. He’s on my list of people/places/things to Google incessantly until I have an unhealthy amount of knowledge on the subject. I’m a fan.

3. S-Town
So I gave in to this new podcast simply because they were very obviously marketing towards fans of Serial. I’ll admit I fell asleep through a portion of it — partly because I was trying to listen on a red eye flight and a little because I couldn’t seem to get totally into it. Overall though, it’s a beautifully told yet devastating story about a very interesting person.

4. Millenial – Season 1
This podcast was just so darn relatable when I first heard it that I couldn’t stop listening. It’s basically reading the mind of every 20-something out there trying to figure their life out.

the why

I thought about deleting all of my old posts (or at least making them private) and starting fresh again, but I couldn’t get myself to do it. Every single post was at some point in my life something I was feeling or needed to share, and deleting any part of that just didn’t feel right to me. So this will have to be my “fresh start”, years into this blog.

Here’s why I’m blogging — the “why” behind “with a why”, if you will:

  • Because I like to write. This is as simple as it sounds. This is my millionth attempt at blogging and definitely not my last. I enjoy writing and I’m trying to do more of what I enjoy.
  • For my sanity. I’ve noticed that a lot of times I start writing again, it’s because I don’t know what else to do. This time is no exception.
  • To remember thingsThere are so many moments I’ve wanted to capture and so many ways I’ve tried to capture them. I’m adding this to the list of ways because there can never be enough.
  • Because sharing is caring. I’d by lying if I said this blog wasn’t first and foremost for myself, but if someone somewhere gets something positive out of it then it is definitely worth it.
  • To create something real. In a world of posing for Instagram likes and styling pictures of breakfast foods, I needed to create something that was messy and honest and imperfect. Here it is.

This should be fun.

happy friday

I have some family in town so it is definitely an extra happy Friday. Here are my 🙂 for this week.

1. Little stick hut on the beach in Santa Cruz

2. Cutest succulent pick up from my weekly Trader Joe’s run

3. It’s been raining non-stop but still beautiful

deep breaths

And the highlight reels just keep on coming.

When you’re in a rut, it’s hard impossible not to compare your life to everyone else’s, and unfortunately at those times, the internet make it so very easy to. Social media is tricky like that, isn’t it? When I’m happy, I love to read about all of my long lost friends’ promotions/ engagements/ baby announcements/ [insert other exciting life milestone here]. When I’m feeling not-so-great about my life though, well, that’s a different story. I’m still happy for them, but the joy quickly becomes overshadowed by questions in the tune of “what have I done with my life lately?”

And so, here’s a list of things I am grateful for. Because this is what matters and will always matter.

  1. My husband, who is endlessly supportive and eternally optimistic.
  2. My family, who will never change and is always there, no matter how far away I am.

This is a short list because those are really the only reminders I need of how wonderful my life is. Just those and my faith.

I may be in a rut right now, but I am thankful.

happy new year

Okay, I’m a little late. At least it’s still January.

Since I am on a constant journey to find myself and become the best version of me (aren’t we all?), I’m all about goals. Naturally, I made some for this year. Here are some of mine:

  1. Always be: creating, reading, learning. Ask me at any time what I am currently creating/reading/learning and I should have an answer for you. It’s not really a resolution, but more of a forever goal.
  2. Find something I really love to do. Looking for that one thing that’s worth waking up early and staying up late for.
  3. Challenge myself every day. I started a list of challenges for the year with the intent of randomly choosing one each day. I don’t think I have enough to make it 365 days, but I like the thought of giving myself something to focus on each day that is different from my regular routine.
  4. Answer texts/calls/emails right away. It’s a work in progress, but I’ll get there. The hard part for me is that I let things sit until I come up with the perfect response. Slowly starting to learn that there never is a perfect response.
  5. Send more gifts and letters. I love snail mail. I love giving gifts. So many people I love are so very far away. This is a no-brainer.

I’ll admit, 2017 is off to a rocky start, but my resolutions still give me hope. There is always so much to look forward to.