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JennifHsieh is a space for my rambling thoughts and snaps of my everyday style. I'm based in Astoria, Queens and I share a home with my two derpy cats and my equally derpy fiancé.

February 16, 2018

The Year of the Dog


I'm super excited to ring in the Lunar New Year tonight with Jeremy. Since my family is on the west coast (and my extended family even further beyond that), we don't really do anything huge to celebrate. However, I'm going to whip up a hearty bowl of noodles (which represent longevity) and I'm going to try to convince Jeremy to watch Mulan with me for the seventieth time. Oh, and do a load of laundry. Boy, this celebration is going to wipe me the fuck out.

Speaking of Lunar New Year, it's the Year of the Dog (my dad's year) and I'm pretty bitter that there's no year of the cat - considering that I'm now a cat person. There are a ton of stories out there to explain why, but my favorite one is the one that blames the rat. Having ridden the New York City subways for one too many years now, I'm well accustomed to those bastards. Legend has it that Buddha was having a meeting to give all the animals a year in the Chinese zodiac; the rat didn't bother waking up his friend, the cat, and so the cat missed the meeting. This not only explains the lack of cat in the zodiac, but also why cats hat rats, the shadiest of all specimen.

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February 12, 2018

Rainy Sundays in Astoria


This past weekend was full of rain showers, which made it hard to want to leave the apartment, but I couldn't be too mad about it because it was also warm enough to be bare legged for the first time in months. I'm starting to think our national treasure, Punxsutawney Phil, is just full of shit and there won't be six more weeks of winter. Screw you, you troll of a ground hog. Well, unless Mother Nature has a trick or two up her sleeves and she's the real troll here by trying to get our hopes up and Phil is just trying to warn us. Or maybe, just maybe, I'm overthinking all of this.

Jeremy and I grabbed our cheap corner store umbrellas and headed up to Ditmars, the more widely known area of Astoria, to stop by an open house for a co-op apartment. I always loved looking at different homes for some reason - a trait I think I got from my dad, as he’s always getting us to go to open houses just for fun. After pretending to be rich enough to buy in the city, we grabbed a quick brunch at Flattopps, the coolest restaurant-dance club I know. I mean come on, there was a live DJ playing sick remixes at 12:30 PM. INTO IT.

Also, HELLO CIRCLE BAG. It's been a hot second, yeah? As the weather warms up, this circle bag will be starting to make more and more appearances again and take back its reign from the always present red beanie on my Instagram. Prepare yourselves.

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February 11, 2018

Channeling my Inner Cool Mom


This week I tried to channel my "I'm not a regular mom. I'm a cool mom" vibes, ignoring the fact that I don't qualify to be either since I'm not a mom yet...unless my cats count as kids, and I don't want to go down that path (for now). I've got that turtleneck on which shows I'm cozy yet practical and those flare jeans that I kept from my "younger, crazier years" that still fits with the fashion that the kids are into these days.

Well, at least this is what I hope I'll look like as a mom, as I have a feeling I'm going to be the type that lives in her sweats, forgets to wear a bra, and throws my hair into a top knot. Wait, never mind, that sounds like my Sunday night going out to the movies.

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January 30, 2018

The Mystery Spot Hiking Trail



Adventuring around the suburbs of California means you're going to spend a lot of time in a car, driving along massive highways; but, it also means you're going to be surrounded by some of the most beautiful hiking paths, parks, and attractions.

While visiting my parents a few weeks ago, my Dad suggested that we visit The Mystery Spot, which is a visual illusion–based tourist attraction near Santa Cruz (I'm part of the small percentage that believes it's not an illusion at all, but aliens). But what I loved more about The Mystery Spot aside from the natural phenomenons, was the little hiking trail hidden behind the parking lot. It wasn't mind-blowing or anything, but there was something so perfectly quaint and peaceful about it, despite being only a couple hundred feet away from the throngs of fellow tourists. Bless you, Mother Nature.

Also, even more props to Mother Nature for the incredible west coast weather allowing me to bring back sweater weather with this cozy little number. You the real MVP.

Metallic Star Hair Cuffs c/o TobiIn Between Rib Cream Sweater c/o Tobi, Get High Skinny (Medium Wash) c/o Calico, Converse All-Star White Chucks, Urban Outfitters Red Knit Beanie

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December 22, 2017

One Small(s) Step for Cat


It's been almost three years since my descent into becoming a full fledged cat lady and, as I had only taken care of fish before, there was a huge learning curve for me. For the first few months, I assumed that all cats were low maintenance and that all I had to do was make sure they weren't hungry and that their litter boxes were cleaned. Boy, was I wrong.

While Jeff Goldblum was a bit easier as a domestic short-haired cat, Bubba had a bit more complications as a senior Himalayan-persian. From breathing difficulties to adult acne to daily brushings to dental surgery, he's definitely been one to keep an eye on. But the one issue that our veterinarian flagged for both cats was watching their weight and making sure they were hydrated, both issues that come with dry food. 59% of cats are overweight and 30% are obese; additionally, chronic kidney disease is the number one cause of death for cats. As Smalls' nutritionist, Dr. Susan Lauten, says, "it's the food, stupid."

So...Jeremy and I started to transition the cats to wet food.


While we avoided the brands run by larger corporations ("Big Pet Food") that seemed to focus mainly on using the most cost-effective ingredients (i.e. Iams, Purina, Friskies, etc), we still weren't finding a brand where the wet food actually looked like...well...food. Sometimes I would open up a can of wet food and have to keep my gag reflex in check as I slopped it out into Bubba and Jeff's food bowls.


And so here's where Smalls comes into play. The Smalls teams invited me and Jeremy into their Brooklyn kitchen where they cook everything from scratch, with love and human-grade food (seriously, we even got to make our own batch). They're incredibly passionate about their mission and even more transparent about their process. I even text them about my Smalls shipments and get immediate responses, which is mind blowing in the world of customer service waiting times.

I didn't realize I would get so emotional getting to make our kitties their own food but I just felt so much love watching Bubba and Jeff eating a meal we made with our own hands...which is something so rare when it comes to raising your own pets. We've even customized their own recipes and portions as Jeff is still a young chap and Bubba's in his senior citizen discount years.

I've already seen Bubba's energy levels increase and Jeff's breath is improving as well.

If you can't tell by this essay I'm writing, you guys I'm so in love with Smalls. Of all the brands I've worked with over my 8 years of blogging, this is the one I can't stop gushing about. Get 50% off your first week trial and I promise you, feeding your cats will never be the same. They always send over a packet of chicken liver powder to sprinkle on the food (Jeff always tries to break it open and eat it all at once) and bonito flakes (Bubba mews so loudly when he hears the bag open) so your cats are able to gradually get hooked on Smalls.

Seriously, this is one decision you will not regret and while I'm still on this adventure of learning how to take the best care of Bubba and Jeff, this is the one decision I've made in a long time that I feel so proud of. Feeding them has become a bonding experience and a way of showing them how much I love them and want to smush my face in theirs for as many years as I possibly can.



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October 12, 2017

Traveling with Sudio Sweden


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