The inspirational journal of rising NYC jewelry designer, entrepreneur, violinist, and pastry chef, Yumi Chen.

NYC Jewelry Designer, Violinist, Pastry Chef, Small Business Owner, Free-Spirit, Positive Thinker!

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Posts Tagged ‘business’

My Ode to Craigslist

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009


There once was a man named Craig,
He didn’t want his friends to beg,
So he created a list
With the flick of his wrist
Where people could buy and sell
They’re all recycled goods, though no one can tell
One man’s junk, another man’s treasure
Who knew it would bring so much pleasure?
Now Craig’s little list has grown,
Far beyond For Sale and For Rent alone
Its followers are spread far and wide
A loyalty and addiction they cannot hide
It is a list many thousands swear by:
For apartments, for chairs,
For jobs, for jokes,
For lovers, for events;
A place to find anything,
Go on, give it a try!

photo credit:

The Big, Bad, Backup Drive

Monday, March 9th, 2009


My whole life is more or less in electronic format on my computer. It’s getting to the point that I understand the language of .jpg and GB and USB better than a simple Spanish “hola”. My computer is as important to me as a dog, or maybe even a child, not only for my personal use but also for my business. The thought of losing anything on it makes me as anxious as someone who’s golden retriever has run away (they have a knack for doing that, I hear). But I can feel comforted knowing that there is an entire market out there of devices to protect against such a mishap.

I just so happen to be a devout Apple fan, so when I learned about the backup drive that Apple techies use to backup their own data, I wanted one of my own! It is called the G-Raid2, and is, essentially, the Rolls Royce of backup drives. What’s cool about it is that is partitioned so that it backs up your files twice. It has 1 Terabite of space, but it’s really 500 GB that backs it up twice. Have I computer-geeked out on you yet?

Apple is kind of the God of the computer world, more and more everyday, but there are plenty of other drives to choose from, both Mac or un-Mac. I won’t tell you what to buy; leave that to the real techies who are more fluent in the language. But I will urge you to get something to protect your data. That is one loss no one wants to bear!


Friday, February 27th, 2009

photo credit:

Do you ever wonder if we are living in a time that will one day be the fodder of great art and literature and history books? It’s the little things that tip me off. Like when I went into my coffee shop to order my latte yesterday. I always grab a packet of honey to sweeten it up, but I was told “Sorry, out of honey”. Really? Not quite the life of Ma and Pa Joad, I realize, but it’s just far enough away from the norm that it makes you stop and think.

I bumped into my superintendent the other day as he was hauling a used refrigerator into my neighbor’s apartment. He told me that my neighbor’s gorgeous stainless steel refrigerator’s compressor broke and due to the recession, they were unable to get the parts to fix it. The company apparently told them that they would be shipping out the parts in a few months, so for the meantime, they were placing a temporary refrigerator in the apartment. Seriously?

Maybe I’m hyper-aware of the situation since I’m reading Ayn Rand’s “We The Living” which takes place during the Communist Revolution in Russia. The words are beautiful, but it is almost too depressing and frightening to read. It makes me so grateful that we, in modern day America, are only standing in lines at the change counting machines in banks (I had over $70 in change! Yippee!) rather than spending hours in line hoping to score some stale bread or sour millet. Sheesh.

But you can’t help but notice the “Recession Special” signs adorning shops and cafes (Gray’s Papaya neon signs are probably the most obvious), the special bargain menus popping up at restaurants everywhere, even at Jean Georges! Conversations everywhere are about money and work. At least people seem to be maintaining a certain sense of humor about it all: the windows of a store on Broadway are covered in papers saying: “The ‘We’re Not Closing’ Sale- Up To 70% Off!”

I read somewhere yesterday that hard times don’t build character, they reveal it. If there’s one thing I’m sure of it is the resilience of this city and its people. It is definitely an interesting time, but I do feel confident that we won’t be faced with the struggles depicted in the photos and stories from the 1930s.

I can do without honey for a while.