Jessica H

About Jessica H

I have spent my life exploring my surroundings. I grew up in Michigan and made a career in marketing. I followed my husband to NY, NJ and now CA for his career. I have a passion for traveling and experiencing other cultures. I love being out of my comfort zone. I currently work as a contracted Marketing Product Manager at Google. I love the Bay Area. The sun, relaxed environment and access to outdoor activities is very different from the East Coast.

Road Trip to LA: Where to Stop on the Way

There was no way out of a road trip to LA/Anaheim once the word ‘Disneyland’ had left my husband’s mouth and reached the ears of our 4 and 2 year old. We had a week to make the most of our trip and driving 7 hours in one day seemed like the worst idea I could imagine. It’s not just the kids, it’s impossible for me to sit for that long without getting cranky and thus starting the trip off on the wrong foot. Plus, there was no way I was spending an entire week at Disney!

Sightseeing: Places You Must See While You’re in the US

While you are here don’t forget to advantage of all the sightseeing the US has to offer. You will find traveling around the US is a bit like traveling around Europe in the sense that customs, dialect, food and music can change drastically from state to state. We lack the train system that makes traveling Europe so easy, but there are a lot of resources to help make a trip easy and fun.

Playdates: Are they really for the kids or the parents?

When it came to being social, we “dropped by” to see if someone wanted to play. It was always a bit impromptu and go-with-the-flow. I can’t imagine doing that in Silicon Valley. People would think I was nuts. Or more likely, people wouldn’t be home. If they were home, they would likely be getting ready to go somewhere and would ask to be sent a reminder email to plan a play date.

Playdate in the grass

Catch The Holiday Spirit In The Bay Area

I admit it.  I’ve had some trouble getting into the holiday spirit this year.  One of my favorite things to do is send holiday cards.  I didn’t send a one.  Didn’t want to.  This year I have been busier than usual and I think that has something to do with my glumness.   I haven’t taken the time to let the holidays in.  I’m going to set some time aside to immerse myself in a few holiday traditions that have given me that warm fuzzy holiday feeling in the past. Making sugar cookies. Check out Michelle’s family recipe. Getting a tree – even […]

First Time Pumpkin Carvers

Even if you’re not that into Halloween, you have to admit that carved pumpkins are pretty cool.  I especially like the ones that use multiples to create an image.  Jack o lanterns are not longer just faces.  The invention of the internet and the printer changed pumpkin carving forever.  You can find an abundance of free stencils/patterns online that will have you carving like a pro in no time.   I like who has free patterns, videos and advice. While I am no pumpkin lady, I have learned a few things over the years of participating in this Halloween tradition.  A few […]

Bay Area’s Oktoberfest in October

To me, Oktoberfest means that fall has arrived, and with it comes change.  The changes are more subtle in California, but they are there.  In other parts of the United States it is the changing color of leaves that signals a switch of season.  In the Bay Area, the first sign of cooler weather is the appearance of Oktoberfest activities. Oktoberfest actually begins in September but I can’t seem to get excited about it until October.  A short history: The first Oktoberfest was when Crown Prince Ludwig was married to  Princess Therese on Oct 12, 1810.  The citizens of Munich […]

Home: A Complicated Concept for an Expat

After you’ve lived somewhere new, for even a short period of time, you find yourself struggling with what it means to be home. My most current definition is a place you can be yourself. That means my home is not grounded in any spot; it is where my husband is. When vacation season rolls around, most of us find ourselves making the journey back to our hometown/country to visit family. That is when it starts to get complicated.