Seattle

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J for Jamie Blog | Seattle

We decided to take my parents on a nice weekend getaway and thought Seattle would be the perfect place. They’ve been through a lot the past few months so we wanted to go somewhere fun, easy and relaxing. My mom loves big cities and cold weather and my dad has been wanting to visit the Pacific Northwest for a long time. We booked a fabulous Airbnb in the heart of downtown so it was really easy to get around via Uber. We did all the fun touristy things like Chihuly Gardens, the Space Needle, Seattle Aquarium, and Pike Place Market. Of course, getting coffee at the first Starbucks and visiting the Starbucks Roastery was at the top of her list (she’s a Starbucks fanatic). We even got to visit one of my best friends from high school that has lived in Seattle now for 10 years. My parents don’t really travel on their own so it was fun to go to a new place and I hope we can take them on many more trips.

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Poplar Beach

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J for Jamie Blog | Poplar Beach

Chris and I both had a day off recently so naturally we looked for a fun place to bring Charlie to. We ended up in Half Moon Bay at Poplar Beach just around sunset. It was amazing because there wasn’t a soul in sight! Charlie loves running on the beach so she was pretty darn happy.

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Alexandra + Laurence

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J for Jamie Blog | Al + Laurence Proposal

Last month I had the honor to participate in a beautiful proposal for my lovely cousin Alexandra. Al is one of the kindest, funniest and most intelligent people I know so when her boyfriend Laurence asked if I could be part of the day, I was so ecstatic! Laurence planned everything out to the last detail and disguised the day as an “early Valentine’s Day”. We went up to Tomales Bay to go for a private morning kayak ride, guided by none other than my sister Jasmine. Then we drove down to one of my favorite places, the Marshall Store, to have oysters and champagne. He actually bought an oyster ahead of time, shucked and cleaned it out, attached the ring inside and glued it back together (I know, straight from a rom-com right?!). During lunch, Laurence offered to show Al how to shuck an oyster and the look on her face when she opened it saw what was inside was absolutely priceless. The best part was everyone at the Marshall Store was in on it and started cheering and applauding when he got down on one knee. It was one of the cutest most precious moments in history and I got it all on video!

I am so so so elated for their love and the adventures to come and I’m so excited to see them grow as a couple, they’re truly a match made in Heaven. Congratulations Al and Laurence!

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Popo

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J for Jamie Blog | Popo

After my grandmother passed away in December, I’ve been so emotionally drained, it took me a while to muster up the energy to write this post. I also didn’t feel right posting about anything else until I properly honored and shared about my grandmother. My grandma Helen, whom I called Popo (that’s what you call your mother’s mother in Chinese), came down with pneumonia right around Thanksgiving. For the three weeks she was in the hospital, my family and I were at her bedside, keeping her spirits up, making her comfortable and hoping with all our might that she would get better. To our devastation, her health rapidly declined until one day, she passed peacefully in her sleep. My mom, aunt and uncle were all by her side when it happened. After a month of stressful sleepless nights and keeping a 24-hour vigil with 25 family members, I came home and cried myself to sleep in Chris’ arms.

Popo’s love was pure and genuine. What was most important to her was just to be around us, she didn’t care what we were doing. It was the little things that made her happy and she was so proud of every single one of us. She spoke Cantonese and very little English so for my whole life, our communication was limited, but we showed our love in other, non-verbal ways. Every time I saw or visited her, I automatically felt comforted and loved. She gave the purest love human beings can receive. Boy do I regret not visiting her more often – if I could go back, I would visit her everyday. She loved to go out, get dinner, go shopping, see new things. She loved dogs and babies and would clap in delight and pure joy when they were around her. One of my favorite things about her was how she took immaculate care of her skin. She had a strict nightly skincare routine and used the same Elizabeth Arden moisturizer for 40 years. When she would come visit, I would sit and talk to her while she went through the routine, using her silver antique handheld mirror and never skipping a step. When we would go to the mall, people would stop us to ask what her secret was for looking so young. I was always so proud of that. That was who she was to me, perfect, beautiful delicate in every way.

I got to keep a few of her things after she passed, a beautiful red coat and a traditional Chinese dress. But one of the most special things we found, was a notecard she had written with my Chinese name and my cell number. I know it’s just a card but to think about her writing my name down, thinking about me, makes me smile. I miss her so much but knowing the amount of love she left behind in all of us, shown more prominently these days than ever, I am comforted knowing that she would be so proud.

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Whale Watching

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For New Years Eve, Chris and I joined our two friends, Katie and Robin for a whale watching excursion in the Monterey Bay. The company that took us out guaranteed that we would see whales and possibly dolphins so we were pretty excited. It was cold but sunny and we did catch glimpses of Gray Whales (I didn’t bring a long lens so my photos of them are kind of lame). We also saw tons of seals and a couple sea otters while we were out. I would recommend going in December to get better views of them but regardless, sailing around the bay is always fun!

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Blog Party x PicsArt

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J for Jamie | Blog Party x PicsArt

For our first Blog Party of the new year, we partnered with PicsArt to put on a calligraphy workshop at their headquarters in San Francisco. PicsArt invited one of their top users, Bianca Mascarro, to lead us through an introduction to hand lettering. She then showed us how to apply our calligraphy to our own photos using the PicsArt app. This was the first time doing putting on a Blog Party in the workshop format and I was so thrilled with the results. Thanks to PicsArt, it was a breeze to put on – they provided everything from the food to the lettering supplies. PicsArt is also one of my new favorite apps to use for photo editing so this Blog Party is the gift that keeps on giving!

Hop on over to the Blog Party site to see all the photos from the night – and stay tuned for more exciting Blog Parties to come!

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YEAR 2015 IN REVIEW

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J for Jamie Blog | My GrandmotherJ for Jamie Blog | 2015 in Review

To spare you all the details, lets just say the holidays were a bit hectic and I didn’t have a chance to do a proper 2015 recap. So as we welcome the New Year (can’t believe we’re 4 days in already!), I’d just like to take a look back at last year and then put it in the past where it belongs and move forward. All in all, 2015 was a challenging one but looking back at all the memories, I think the good outweighed the bad and I just need to look at everything in perspective. I’m so grateful for the friends and family that make our lives full of adventure, love and happy memories even in hard times – I seriously don’t know what I’d do without all of you.

A moment of reflection on the loss of my sweet and beautiful grandmother, Helen. May you rest peacefully as we promise to carry on your loving spirit in our hearts. I love you Popo. 

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photos by Jamie Wong, Hailee Fleming Repko, Sarah Park, The Manchiks

Fort Funston

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J for Jamie Blog | Fort Funston with the Torrez Family

We met up with our friends Nick, Milcah and their adorable twins at Fort Funston on Halloween weekend. We love this beach because dogs can be off-leash and there are plenty of four-legged friends for Charlie to chase and run around with. The twins, Hazel and Eli, had a blast running around in the sand and Eli took a particular interest in Charlie which was so very cute. Milcah also asked me to help take a couple of photos she could use to announce their pregnancy! They are expecting their 3 child early next year and I was so honored to help them out. I love hanging out with this family, they are so much fun and they make some pretty awesome subjects for the blog!

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Hailee’s Bachelorette

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J for Jamie Blog | Hailee Bachelorette

We threw our dear friend Hailee a Palm Springs Bachelorette this summer that had such impeccable decor, I had to share! Our friends Adrianna and Keghan organized the whole weekend and really outdid themselves with the decorations. It was a 60’s Palm Springs flamingo theme complete with plenty of Hailee’s favorite, Veuve Clicquot – Keghan even brought homemade 60s themed bathing suits for some photo ops. We stayed at the Ace Hotel which is one of my favorites and was perfect for the celebration. Check out #haybridechilla on Instagram for more photos from the weekend!

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Carmel by the Sea

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J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

We took a day trip out to Carmel by the Sea which is only about an hour drive from where we are. Charlie absolutely loves the beach so when we find a dog-friendly, off-leash beach, we’re there. Carmel is extremely dog friendly and there’s a cute little downtown too. We played on the beach, stopped at an amazing farm stand to get some freshly picked artichokes, ate a nice dinner and then drove home. This is definitely one of our favorite getaways when we want a change of scenery!

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

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J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

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J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea
J for Jamie Blog | Carmel by the Sea

Follow me on Instagram, @jforjamie, to see more photos of our weekend adventures or search for #chrisandjamieweekend

 

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