Celebrating One Year in Seattle

Hooray! Made it alive to the One Year mark in Seattle! 🎉🎉


My transition here was quite a struggle. My many social media accounts show the highlights of my time here, the restaurants, museums, and cooking projects. But this was my first time being so far away from home, and outside of my home state of California.

Chihuly Garden and Glass, Space Needle, Pike Place Market

The first time I moved away from my hometown, San Francisco, was for university in Santa Cruz and being away only lasted for 6 months. The stresses of living so far from home turned out to be too much. Not having my Mom’s delicious cooking, not being able to take a five minute walk to the best shopping on the West Coast in Union Square, and not having my lovely friends nearby – were all things that drove me crazy.

I needed to move back home and decided to transfer to a a school closer to San Francisco.

A couple years later, I was put to the test again with another move to Los Angeles. This time, I couldn’t bail as easily since I received a scholarship opportunity for furniture design and couldn’t pass this learning experience up! For the first six months, I did the seven hour trip home almost every other weekend, to be somewhere that made sense to me. And for the first year in LA, I remember crying my eyes out almost daily (not a very fun year!).

Just when I was getting well-adjusted to Los Angeles after two excruciating years of getting used to a new city, here I am again, hit with another major move because of my hubby’s new job.

A year ago today was my first day here in Seattle and it was rough. I cried and cried because of a little rain and some grey clouds. I knew it was grey and wet in the Pacific Northwest, but a part of me didn’t want that to happen because I love the beautiful sunshine! Now I go through the same song and dance of experiencing a new city, and learning about the culture, and what kind of quirks it has.

Jcoco Chocolates, EMP Museum, Pie

First year experiences:

– Summers can be even hotter than LA!

– Lot of trees. Everywhere. No wonder they call it the Evergreen State!

– Apparently, I’m severely allergic to…Cedar? But the treatment is cheap and effective :) Hooray!

– It feels really dark at night, which was scary at first, but it’s actually a good thing. I guess I’ve been accustomed to heavy light pollution living in SF and LA.

– In terms of socioeconomics, it feels a lot more balanced as there is a larger middle-class. Unlike San Francisco now – almost all rich and no room for the middle-class and beyond, or in Los Angeles where the super rich are very prevalent, and then there’s everyone else.

– Food is different from the menus in California. I’m used to avocados in everything. We love our Ahi Tuna, Kale Salad, and anything that looks healthy on our Instagram profiles. But here I feel that there’s less focus on worrying about health foods all the time. New menu items I see everywhere include Chicken and Waffles, Breakfast Hashes, Fried Chicken, and other comfort foods. Tex-Mex and Teriyaki are surprisingly popular. And they even have night time dessert bars!

– While wine is big here, beer takes the spotlight! I do like that there’s a good number of local wineries and the local wine is good. Although I’m starting to like the beer here too, especially if it didn’t make me burp.

– I’ve never been to a city that’s so crazy about their sports teams: Seattle Seahawks, Mariners, and Sounders. And can’t forget about college sports. UW Huskies are everywhere. We have to remember not to go anywhere on Sundays during football season because there are throngs of screaming Seahawks fans everywhere. And I’m from 49er Land.

– More kid friendly: more activities like berry picking, petting zoos, restaurants that accommodate children. Overall I like that because I like to do kid friendly activities, who doesn’t love holding a fluffy bunny???

Fran’s Chocolates, Lake Union, Trophy Cupcakes & Party

There’s definitely a lot of cool stuff in Seattle and looking forward to discovering more! The biggest lesson I’ve learned is to be open-minded about a new environment. I was always excited to travel, but I knew I had my familiar home after the trip was over. And recently, I’ve had to be more open minded about moving permanently because sometimes life makes you leave your hometown.

While moving is stressful, and I’m not looking to moving again anytime soon, each move has gotten easier. The hardest part about moving, is physically leaving the connections I’ve built with people. But fortunately it’s just a short flight to meet up with my lovely friends in person and chat over a glass of wine. 😘

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