China Camp, San Rafael

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 5 Comments

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Chris and I took an overnight trip to San Rafael to see the one and only Bill Cosby, live in concert! We spent Sunday wandering around China Camp by the water. Despite it storming the night before, it was beautiful and serene. Surprisingly there were barely any people and the water was so calm it looked like glass. We had such a lovely day, we’ve already started looking at house listings to move to the North Bay. Oh and if you’re wondering how Bill Cosby was, he was AMAZING! Hilarious and made us laugh for three hours straight.

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photos by jforjamie

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 4 Comments

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Wishing you all a lovely Friday today. One of my favorite little details from our wedding were the love quote cards that we made for each place setting. I thought today would be a great day to share them! We didn’t want conventional (re: cheesy) quotes so we picked sayings from movies and songs that we love. Now you can print them out at home (formatted for letter-sized paper) and give them to your own sweethearts, just click the link below to download. Because everyone loves a good Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure quote.

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 photos by the Manchiks

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Road Trip to Big Sur

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 4 Comments

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My sister’s 30th birthday celebration continued on in Big Sur last weekend. A few of us couldn’t commit to staying the night so we drove up for the day. She’s a regular renter of this house in Big Sur that’s colorful, eclectic and fits her personality to a tee. Us day trippers arrived at the house and then took a walk along the water to watch the sunset. It was a short trip but fun nonetheless. I definitely recommend staying over night if you’re going to Big Sur, there’s so much to see and you’re not going to want to leave the perfect scenery.

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Voyager, San Francisco

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 7 Comments

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I love finding stores that have something for both Chris and I. We were walking around San Francisco’s Mission District and came across a store we could both enjoy, Voyager on Valencia Street. They have men and women’s clothing, housewares art and accessories. They even have old records (which Chris was most excited about). The back part of the shop has a built-in submarine structure designed by John McCambridge. From what I’ve learned, Voyager is a collaboration and collection of several different local shops, which I love. Valencia Street is one of my favorite streets to go shopping on in San Francisco and Voyager is a great addition.

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photos by jforjamie

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Brit + Co. Makeshop

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 6 Comments

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The Brit + Co. Makeshop is one of the coolest creative spaces in San Francisco and it’s open to the public! Located at the Brit + Co. headquarters, is a space to make, with tons of DIY materials including 3-D and laser cut printers, paints and Brit Kits. The other side is a shop with items sourced from local designers and shops. They welcomed us into the shop during our blogger meet up and it was a perfect place to mingle and get creative. The Makeshop also holds classes like 3-D laser printing and puff pastry making so I’m grabbing some girlfriends and signing up!

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photos by chris mieuli

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Bay Area Blogger Meetup Sponsor Gifts

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Chinese New Year Traditions

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 13 Comments

Happy Chinese New Year! There are so many traditions in Chinese culture in general, it’s hard to keep up. When I was young, I remember my mom displaying bright orange tangerines and making special Chinese cakes during the New Year but I never asked what they meant. Because this is our first Chinese New Year as a married couple, I think it’s a good idea to learn the traditions and their meanings so we can carry them on. My mom and aunt helped break down a few of the meanings.

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In Cantonese, visiting your relatives on New Years day is called bi nin. Bi means “to visit and show respect” and nin means “the year”. We start at my grandmother’s house, then visit each aunt and uncle’s house from eldest to youngest. It’s at these visits that we present gifts or offerings.

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First rule on Chinese New Year, wear red. Red is a symbol of good luck and fortune (and pretty much everything positive). Conversely don’t wear white, it symbolizes death and mourning. Lai See (red envelopes) are given by married couples to those younger than them. You can put any amount in them but the money should be new (you can order new money from the bank). When giving or receiving the lai see, hold the envelope with both hands. Cha or tea is served at the bi nin visits.

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Some things to include in your bag of offerings are fresh vegetables, specifically asparagus which symbolizes your wealth coming to you smoothly in the new year. Lettuce symbolizes growing wealth. A lot of meanings derive from the similarity the words have with each other. In Cantonese, the word lettuce sounds a lot like the word for “rising wealth”. Some other traditional items to give are canned fish, dry mushrooms and dry scallops.

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The meaning of giving apples is to wish a safe year ahead. In Cantonese, the words “tangerine” and “gold” have similar sounds so giving tangerines symbolizes wishing the person plenty of gold or wealth. Giving tangerines with the leaves still attached means you hope all their wishes come true. After receiving apples and tangerines, these can be displayed prominently in the house during the holiday.

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Candies are given to wish a sweet year ahead. These are some of the sweets I remember my mom having in the house and the panda cookies are my dad’s favorite. Of course, the types of traditional and new Chinese candies are endless. Not to mention the pastries (which needs an entirely different post).

The proper Cantonese new year greeting sounds like this: Gung Hay Fought Choy, Sun Leen Fai Lock (say the second part if you really want to impress someone). If you want to learn how to pronounce and read Cantonese, check out this amazing websiteThese are traditions celebrated by my family and may differ in other households. Photos by jforjamie.

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Bay Area Blogger Meetup

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 9 Comments

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A couple of weeks ago, we threw our first ever Bay Area Blogger Meetup. 25 bloggers from around the Bay Area (and beyond) came to meet and connect at the Brit + Co. headquarters in San Francisco. Andrea Pimentel of Bakin’ Bit catered the most delicious food and my friend Dan Cohen photographed the event. Brit + Co. also opened their MakeShop during our event so the bloggers could get creative and shop after mingling. I was so happy with the turnout and so inspired by all the amazing bloggers that attended. I can’t wait to share what we have planned next!

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Thank you Brit + Co. for being such an amazing host and to Of Trees and Hues for helping with sponsor and attendee recruiting.

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We had so many great sponsors who contributed to an amazing gift box that each blogger took home and Brit + Co. gave each of us a lovely Brit Kit containing supplies to make our own stamps. I gave my own personal touch with handmade, hand-block-printed Furoshiki wraps. To see Instagram photos of the event, search #sfbabs.

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On the menu: Cheese, Fruit, Olive, & Nut Plate with Baguette, Pineapple Sausage Skewer, Shrimp Mango Fresh Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce, Vegan Artichoke Tarts, Zucchini Ribbon, Fresh Mozzarella and Mint Salads, Key Lime Pot de Creme with Gingersnap Cookie Spoons (my favorite!), Brownie Dulce de Leche Shots, Mini Almond Scones, Pomegranate Mint Lemonade and Cucumber Lemon Water. Andrea is a teacher at the Academy of Art and caters on the side, isn’t she amazing?

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We spent the evening getting to know each other and sharing our blogging experiences over delicious food and drinks. I was thrilled to collaborate on the spot with some of the bloggers for future photo adventures and blog posts.

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Buluchu
sponsored our on-the-spot giveaway. My husband Chris (who was there for technical and moral support) drew the lucky winner’s name who was, drumroll….LaTache of Smiling Is Good For Your Teeth Blog! She won a waxed canvas and leather Buluchu hobo bag from their new line available now on their Etsy shop!

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photos by dan cohen + chris mieuli

Check out more blog posts about the Bay Area Blogger Meetup on Rio The Dream Catcher (part 2 and my outfit also here) and Dear Vixen.

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The Makery

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 8 Comments

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During our day in Los Altos with the Torrez family, we stopped by a shop called The Makery. I think I’ve found my dream store. It’s filled to the brim with colorful party decor, crafting supplies and unique home items. They also hold various workshops like sewing, knitting and calligraphy and even have a space to hold a party. It’s every DIY-er’s dream and I’m so happy it’s so close to where we live. I really want to throw a party just so I can get everything from The Makery.

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photos by jforjamie.

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Los Altos with the Torrez Family

Posted By Jamie Wong >>> 3 Comments

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We spent the day in Los Altos with our friends Nick and Milcah and their adorable twin babies, Hazel and Eli. We took them to a super kid-friendly restaurant called Bumble (complete with a sandbox, giant fish tank and playroom). I think my new favorite local spot is downtown Los Altos, there are a ton of new cute shops popping up. It was the perfect day for brunch, arcade games and a sunny stroll with the Torrez family. We seriously love these babies, they make us want to have twins of our own!

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