March 2023 Newsletters

Road Trippin’

I lived in a tropical country for most of my life and would take weekend road trips almost every other week. Back then, I thought that treating myself and exploring the beauty of my country was something that would nourish my soul from the burnout of work (buuut that’s a topic for another time). All kidding aside, from all the trips I took back in my 30’s, I thought I had it down pat with my road trip essentials or “Pen’s Road Trip Survival Pack”, as I used to call it. However, with age (hmm..or should we say, maturity?) and restarting life in Los Angeles, my very own survival pack has seemingly evolved.

I’m not saying it was easy peasy done in a jiffy, but what was remarkable is the difference in things I used to think I needed compared to what I actually did.  Maybe it’s maturity or recognizing the fact that my only focus was to enjoy this time, relish in the place, and the person I am with…OR is it because my partner took care of the Airbnb booking, navigation, chains on the tires and did the actual driving? Whatever the real reason may be, I still want to share what Pen’s 4.0 Survival Pack looks like these days:

1. WATER – staying hydrated during the ride and your trip is a must! I cannot survive without at least a few liters a day. Mind you, restroom stops should be planned accordingly.

2. FOOD – which can be divided into snacks for the ride and easy meals you can prepare in the Airbnb to save on time and money. For us, it was eggs, bacon, hotdogs with cheese (my latest discovery!), pineapple juice (anti-inflammatory and my absolute fave, especially when you add… RUM!!), bread, rice, yogurt, cheese, and butter (because bread is life but bread with butter is lifer). With this spread, breakfast is served all hours of the day…which in my opinion, is the best meal of the day.

3. DOG FOOD, DOG SNACKS AND DOG CLOTHES – must make sure the puppies are well taken care of no matter what! A crowd favorite is thinly cut chicken or turkey mashed with rice and sprinkled with grated cheese… YUM!

4. SUPPLEMENTS AND EMERGENCY MEDICINES – with our uhm, stage in life, we cannot go a day without our magnesium, zinc, vitamins, and omega fish oil intake. Can’t forget headache, allergy, and stomach acidity meds (my new best friends since I turned the big 4-0).

5. THE RIGHT CLOTHES AND SHOES FOR THE WEATHER – I must say thermal socks and comfortable waterproof non skid shoes are lifesavers. Gimme all the toasty thermal warmness goodness!

6. SKIN CARE PARAPHERNALIA – as an Asian, I follow the recommended 11 step skin-care regimen religiously. But for this trip, I tried to scale down and just brought the ABSOLUTE necessities: facial oil cleanser, facial wash, toner, Vitamin C serum, under eye cream, and moisturizer. For a day out, I also add sunblock (Biore Rich Aqua Essence is highly recommended), color correcting treatment with SPF 30 to boot (with the cold, can’t help but have red splotches on your face, so gotta even that out), BB cream (again with added SPF 40) and lastly my handy dandy LIP BALM. I swear by Aquaphor – which also serves as an eyelash thickener and all-around balm. This all sounds pretty basic, right?

7. PERFUME – we can’t have ourselves smelling like ^%^* all weekend, so my fragrance of choice was Jo Malone Orange Bitters.

6. FLASHLIGHT – for better visibility when attaching your snow chains, power outages, and random wildlife sightings. DO NOT FORGET!

8. FIRST AID KIT – we always have a portable kit handy for the car and or any trip we go on. I find that bandages and antiseptic ointments (I swear by SILVEX® Wound Gel) are my absolute must-haves.

9. AANNNDD… THE MOST IMPORTANT PART…. THE ROAD TRIP PLAYLIST! This is crucial to establish the overall vibes in your car and the rest of the trip. This kept our 5-hour long ride fun and light hearted (even if we were moving at a snail pace up the snowy mountain road). Elsa and Anna were great companions. Check out our Spotify playlist here:


10. BE PRESENT – whatever you do, wherever you are, whoever you’re with, ENJOY every moment! Being fully present is what makes any experience the best and is honestly, the most important part of Pen’s Survival Pack 4.0

‘Til the next trip!

March 2023 Newsletters

Seven Days of Love

When you think about it, love means almost everything and almost nothing at the same time.

What does love mean to you? What makes you feel loved?

I don’t know about y’all, but I love to love those I love. I’m very selective with who I choose to love, who I choose to invest my time and energy into, and who I choose to genuinely connect with and show up for. Because my energy is precious and love is a choice, not an obligation. You feel me?

When given the challenge to write about 7 days of love, my mind automatically went into overtime, over thinking about how I was going to show people love for the next 7 days. Feeling like I was going to have to go above and beyond what I would normally do because I didn’t feel like I show love every day of my life, let alone 7 days in a row. But this assignment was actually a perfect fit and very timely for me, as I‘m currently on my journey towards healing and self-love. And let me tell you, it’s been an interesting and tumultuous 5-year journey, but I finally feel like I’m starting to break through. So naturally, this made me deep dive into thinking about love languages and all the ways I give and receive love.

Day 1: Food for the Soul

Anyone that knows me knows that you can love on me with food all day, errrday. Like I will literally work for food. A few years ago, I did a small freelance job for some homemade banana pudding and cinnamon rolls. Call me easy, it’s fine – I’m totally okay with it.

So, I have 2 older sisters who I love and adore – even though they hated me when we were younger – but we’ll save those stories for another day. Well, they loved me with food today. It was a rainy day, so my sis G asked if I wanted ramen and I’m like “DUH.” We ate our ramen together and it was cute. And my sis D, who always shows her love by cooking, made these delicious little moist yellow cakes with chocolate ganache frosting. After I basically inhaled the one she gave me, I asked if she had more because I low key have glutinous tendencies. The thought of them going out of their way to think of me just made me feel special and, well, loved. And they probably don’t even know it. Then all this food stuff made me think of my parents who got COVID because of me. So, I checked in on them and told them I loved and appreciated them for taking care of me at their house when I was sick. I offered to postmates them food but they left me on read and never replied, so yeah. They hate me.

I also sprinkled myself with some love. You know those days when you feel like you radiate love and self-care, with your soul and skin on the glow up? Well, that was me on this day. Felt extra cute – great hair day, great vintage wrap sweater that makes my waist look snatched, great boots, blah blah blah. I even posted a selfie on my IG story – which is a super duper rare sighting. It was a whole “felt cute, might delete later” kinda vibe with no actual intentions of deleting later.

When I got home from work, I was really missing my husband. After Christmas, I got COVID and was quarantined at my parents. Then he got COVID while I was there – so we basically spent the new year alone and depressed and sick. And alone. I was craving his love and affection but he was still sick, so physically I couldn’t go near him. So, I put on a sexy nightgown that I got for Christmas and sent him pics. But you know, COVID things, so no real action was had. I just wanted to tell him that I miss him and his presence. And remind him how sexy I am… Felt cute, not deleting later.

Looking back, I can remember these days so vividly. And I know I remember them because I was mindful, taking both literal and mental notes, and just fully present.

So, with this challenge, a few things I’m asking myself are:

1. What do I want to achieve?

2. Why do I want to achieve it?

3. What do I expect to gain from this?

Can’t wait to explore this journey with you and share what’s next….until next time, byeee!

March 2023 Newsletters


Hi, my name is KIT and I know, I know…it’s a pleasure to meet me after all these years. LOL. “Who dis?” you ask? I am Be Smart Get Prepared® and Be Smart Get Prepared® is me. A brand personified. But don’t get me wrong. I’m not just some logo or catch phrase, but more of a statement. A message, a vibe – and on a broader scale, an invitation and a lifestyle. I was born in 1991, and after 32 years, here I am – thriving, living my best life, carrying on a legacy, and really just getting started.

You may have seen me in stores, online, or perhaps even TV shows or movies. Word on the street is I’m aesthetically pleasing, competitive, and dare I even say…the whole package. All that and a bag of kits (yes, I said kits, not chips). There are many moving parts to my story, so let me break it down for you.

The juicy part is… In the last 32 years, TRI has become one of the nation’s leading manufacturers of First Aid Kits and Emergency Preparedness solutions. As Be Smart Get Prepared, I span across multiple retail categories like Home, Outdoors, Pets, Auto and Emergency Survival – because you know, I’m versatile like that. I am full of innovation, insight, and style and can be found in stores or online. I’m designed with you, the consumer, in mind. We’re just a cute, curated selection of First Aid Kits made just for you. And not to brag or anything, but I’ve been living in the world’s largest retailers for 25+ years now. Catch me at Sam’s Club, Walmart, Amazon, O’Reilly, Kroger, Ralph’s, Food 4 Less, Walgreens, CVS, and so much more. My resume is long y’all, but I’m just giving you the juicy bits.

As much as I’d love to spill all the tea right here and now, I won’t. There’s so much more to my story, OUR story. Sooo BRB, stay tuned for next month’s schpeel about an immigrant with a dream, his wife, and the love of his life.