Saturday, February 21, 2009

I am so Proud of My Little Brother!

Magician Jack Maxwell
Introducing Magician Jack Maxwell's new website:

Jack Maxwell is a magician without limits. The stunning effects of his magic will dance in your mind, while his charm takes audiences on a journey of wonder and amazement. Jack’s unbelievable sleight of hand and rapid-fire wit creates an entertainment experience like no other. Featured in Magic DVD’s, lectures, and workshops as well, as an author and inventor of magic, Jack Maxwell has mentored and trained many magicians from around the globe on new techniques and ways to improve their craft.

Jack’s love affair with magic started over 20 years ago with the support of his parents. In 2003, he opened “The Wizard’s Apprentice” magic store in Hollywood, Florida, making him the youngest magician to ever own and operate a magic store. With the growing demand of Jack’s performances, Jack is moving his magic store to an online sales retailer in order to free up the time needed to perform more shows.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day to everyone! I hope that your day was special! Myke and I usually don't really celebrate Valentine's Day. But Myke was home from work on Friday, he wasn't feeling too well. But he still took the time to use the cake mix left over from his day of baking with Dee Dee to bake me a cake! It's totally not on our diet, so I love the way its decorated!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Baking with Uncle Mykie

Dee Dee and Myke have made a habit of baking pretty often now, which is a good thing. They both love to do it and Dee Dee is getting really good at it. She does most everything on her own with only a little guidance and help and she loves the decorating part and is very good at it too! We're pretty sure that her favorite part is licking the spatula! Dee Dee and my dad came over the other night so that her and Myke could make cakes for Valentine's Day. Here's the pics and step by step video that Myke took!

To see the video series (yes series!) check out my YouTube channel. There are 11 videos - too many to post here! It's step by step cake making and decorating - and plenty of spoon licking! LOL

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Dee Dee's Grandma Hilda

Dee Dee never got to meet my mom - her Grandma Hilda. But sometimes we have to wonder whether or not she is more in tune with mom than we know or whether she is just getting stories and ideas from things we say and do. Occasionally, when visiting someplace, she will say "Grandma Hilda took me here when I was a little baby." I'm not sure how memories work or whether she has made up a memory or what that's about but we just leave it alone.

The other day, we went to my dad's house and he proudly shows us Dee Dee's new project. She has made a construction paper Grandma Hilda! She said that she doesn't want him to be alone and instructed him to keep this in his room so that when he wakes up in the morning he is not alone! No idea where she got this idea or anything! She even made a cardboard bed and paper blanket for "Grandma Hilda". Dad said that she is really intent on making sure that he is not alone and wants his help making a robot Grandma Hilda so that "he can have a wife".

I'll have to get a picture of this so that I can share it and document it here!

For today's catch up post, I have added pics and videos from Chinese New Year.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I'm Speaking About E-Commerce Optimization at PubCon

See Me Speak at PubCon South
I am honored and excited to be speaking about what I do and what I love at a national conference next month. I will be part of a panel on e-commerce optimization at PubCon South in Austin, TX March 11 - 13, 2009. I am thrilled beyond words to be able to share with others in the interactive marketing industry how I have changed my family's costume shop into the national and international online business it is today. Keeping on top of an internet business and staying on top of the search engine rankings (i.e. showing up in Google) is a tough job and the rules are always changing. The marketing aspect of it combined with the costumes that I love really keep me excited and on my toes at the same time. Working with my famliy is a blessing - and some days a curse; but I would not change it for the world!

I have attended two PubCons and another workshop put on by WebMasterWorld. I value and appreciate what I have learned and the contacts and friendships I have made. I can't wait to learn more, meet new people, greet old friends and, this time, maybe impart some of my knowledge too.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Why God Made Moms

These are some hilariously funny quotes sent to my by my friend Kim.

Answers given by 2nd grade school children to the following questions:

*Why did God make mothers?*

*1. She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.*

*2. Mostly to clean the house.*

*3. To help us out of there when we were getting born.*

*How did God make mothers?*

*1. He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.*

*2. Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.*

*3. God made my mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.*

*What ingredients are mothers made of?*

*1. God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.*

*2. They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string, I think.*

*Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?*

*1. We're related.*

*2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's mom like me.*

*What kind of a little girl was your mom?*

*1. My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.*

*2. I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.*

*3. They say she used to be nice.*

*What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?*

*1. His last name.*

*2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer?*

*3. Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?*

*Why did your mom marry your dad?*

*1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my mom eats a lot.*

*2. She got too old to do anything else with him.*

*3. My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on.*

*Who's the boss at your house?*

*1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dad's such a goof ball.*

*2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.*

*3. I guess mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.*

*What's the difference between moms and dads?*

*1. Moms work at work and work at home and dads just go to work at work.*

*2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.*

*3. Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friends.*

*4. Moms have magic, they make you feel better without medicine.*

*What does your mom do in her spare time?*

*1. Mothers don't do spare time.*

*2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.*

*What would it take to make your mom perfect?*

*1. On the inside she's already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.*

*2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd diet, maybe blue.*

*If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?*

*1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that.*

*2. I'd make my mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it not me.*

*3. I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on the back of her head.*

Monday, February 2, 2009

Finally Found Pho in South Florida!

Since we have decided to adopt from Vietnam, we have been trying our best to learn about and immerse ourselves in Vietnamese culture. Since we love food, one of the things we have been in search of is Vietnamese food. Its not that easy to find in South FL. There was Sushi Takara, one of our favorite suhi places, which also had some Vietnamese dishes, however sadly it looks like the economy has gotten to them, they closed a few months ago after being open for at least the last 6 years that we had been going there. But until recently we did not know of any actual, authentic, Vietnamese restaurants.

A couple weeks ago my dad said he thought he noticed a Vietnamese restaurant in Pembroke Pines, when I was in the neighborhood, I took the time to check it out and returned a couple weeks later with Myke to check it out. The restaurant is called Pho 78 and is on the northeast corner of Pines Blvd. and University Drive.

This is a family run type place, very casual and very comfortable. There were lots of Vietnamese patrons in the restaurant, which is always a good sign that its authentic and good! If you have not had Vietnamese cuisine before, you have to check it out! It is very good, mostly mild dishes that are very healthy. I ordered chicken breast with rice, which was very tasty. Myke asked the server to bring him his favorite. After asking "Really?" the server said, "Ok, I will bring you the Pho I have every morning for breakfast!" He showed up with a big Pho bowl full of all kinds of meats and vegetables! Now that's what we call a good, hearty breakfast! If you don't know what Pho (pronounced fa) is, it is a big hearty bowl of broth type soup with meats, vegetables and noodles. Myke loved this Pho bowl and ordered it when we went back to the restaurant with my dad a couple weeks ago.

After we found Pho 78, we figured that was the only place around. Shortly after that, while driving home from work one night, I noticed a small sign on Commercial drive east of University Drive that said "Phuong Nam Vietnamese Cuisine". I was so excited! This place is much closer to our house than Pembroke Pines is! We went by Phuong Nam for dinner twice in the last week! Its really great! Especially with the cold weather, there's no better dinner than a hearty bowl of hot soup! At Phuong Nam, both times, I have had chicken noodle Pho. Its so good! Its a big bowl of broth with white meat chicken breast, vegetables and noodles. Pho comes with a plate of Vietnamese condiments that you can add to your liking: bean sprouts, limes, jalapeno pepper slices, basil leaves and fennel leaves. They serve Jasmine Iced tea, which is so nice and refreshing. This is also a family restaurant with a very comfortable and friendly atmosphere. Oh, and I forgot one of the best parts: at both these restaurants, a full meal starts at around $7!

So, we are so excited to have a great and inexpensive place to eat, but also very excited that Chianna will be able to experience familiar flavors of home! We hope that she loves it just like we do!

I also did a catch up post: Pryscilla's Baby Shower!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Fishing Day Trip to the Keys

My dad decided to plan a little get away day trip to The Keys to go fishing with me and Dee Dee. Dee Dee's other grandpa "Vo Vo" came along too and we had a very nice relaxing trip.

Goofin' around taking pics in the car.

We didn't really have a plan, just to find a neat place to fish and to get some lunch while down there. So we headed down on a beautiful day. The high was abut 74 and barely a cloud in the sky!

We stopped for lunch at one of my favorite spots: Sundowners in Key Largo. The food is great and you really can't go wrong eating with a view like this:

Here was our little fishing spot for the day:

Vo Vo did the best out of us and caught this fabulous beer can and sea weed!

Happy girl on the way home: