SummerMash SF


Last night, July 15, 2008, I attended mashable.coms SummerMash SF, and the event was a smashing success! I went with my entourage, of course. That consisted of Angela.

SummerMash was held at the club, Mighty, in San Francisco. Mighty was the perfect spot for it, except for the tiny step you had to watch out for mid-floor! A DJ was spinning the night away for atmosphere, though no dancing occurred until the end of the night and it was scattered at best. Tables were set up around the room by the sponsors, which included Mashable(naturally), speakTECH, Sun Startup Essentials, Yoono, MySites, Pubmatic, Yuku, SocialRadi.us.com, and Stickam. Author, Rohit Bhargava, was also on hand signing copies of his book, *Personality not included, the ultimate guide to marketing with authenticity.

Many of the booths were handing out schwag! woo! I scored a nice big coffee mug from PubMatic, the leader in ad network optimization. A lazer and LED pen from, I think, SocialRadi.us.com. Sun Startup Essentials were giving away luggage tags and OpenSolaris and NetBeans 6.1 CD’s. Mashable was serving the drinks in their logo printed plastic cups that changed color with cold, kind of like a mood ring! Yoono.com handed out stickers and yoono blue armbands. My favorite score was a webcam given to me by adorable Steven Fruchter, CEO of Stickam.com. The webcam has a built in microphone and light!

The event invite on eventbrite.com had mentioned food and drinks included. My only disappointment of the night was that this did not exactly turn out to be the case. The only food available was a bowl of candy at one of the booths. Near the end of the night it was announced that the booths had free drink tickets to give away, but by that time I had my limit, since I was driving, and ended up giving them away.

All in all Angela and I had a fantastic time. I met and took pictures with many of the CEO’s, including mashable.com’s Pete Cashmere. (Who I voted for in Jane Porricelli’s blog on the hottest male blogger’s on the net: http://www.momgenerations.com/blogs/jane/index.php/2008/07/10/who-is-the-hottest-male-blogger-its-double-standard-time/) Pete didn’t win, but I would date him if he was 20 years older.

I was interviewed by Stickam.com about my soon to beta launch site, http://thesmartmomsnetwork.com and also about this blog. THAT was fun! I can get used to that! The interview hasn’t been uploaded yet, but I will post the link here when it is.

The night was fun and best of all I met some fantastic people. It was a great networking event. I payed $22 for my ticket, and $6 a piece + $1 tip for my two Mashable cups of white wine, but it was well worth it. If Mashable does another event in the SF area, count me in!

(And someone find out if Pete Cashmore’s father is single.)

More pics of the event can be found here: http://flickr.com/photos/mashable/sets/72157606202125941/

All pictures above can be clicked to enlarge w/further descriptions.

How to Tip in American Restaurants

Don’t you dare go out to eat again until you’ve read this. I mean it!

I used to be a food server or waitress. I’ve worked in casual dining at chain a restaurant (Chevy’s Fresh Mex) and I’ve worked in fine dining in the Napa Valley at Villa Romano Restaurant and in uber fine dining at Julia’s Kitchen in Copia. I have first hand knowledge of American tipping practices and I am about to share them with you.

By and large people tip well, but there are those few that are still clueless. They don’t know what is appropriate, how much to tip, or they just aren’t sure how much it should be. There are the ones that don’t go out often, maybe only on holidays, or maybe are foraying into fine dining for the first time. They can also be from a foreign country with different tipping practices than we have. This guide is for all of you!

Casual dining:

Poor service: 10% or less
Good service: 15%
Great service: 20% or more

Fine dining:

Poor service: 15% or less
Good service: 20%
Great service: 25% or more

What defines good service? Good service includes a polite server who is efficient. The server tells you any specials and takes your order, returns with your drinks in a timely manner, makes sure your drinks are refilled or asks you if you would care for another. They make sure you have the correct silverware. They check to make sure your order arrives correctly and that it is to your liking. If there are any problems or special requests they do their best to take care of them as soon as possible. Coffee and dessert are offered at the end. The check is presented and payment is taken care of quickly.

In fine dining each coarse must be cleared and new silverware provided before or with the next course. Multiple courses are not served together unless the guest specifically requests it. Appetiser, soup, salad, entrée, dessert are the basics. Servers or wait staff may also “crumb” the table, either after each course or just before dessert, which consists of sweeping away any crumbs on the table with a small tool called a crumber.

Great service, well you will know great service without me telling you. Your server and wait staff are friendly and caring and attentive and makes you feel like a VIP. They make sure that your dining experience flows smoothly and that you don’t have to worry about a thing but enjoying yourself.

How do you calculate? Let me make it easy for you. A lot of people go with double the tax, if your tax in your area is around 7% this works IF you round it up, because obviously doubling 7% is only 14%, not 15%. That gives you 15%.  Taxes can vary from area to area so the best way is just to look at the check total and figure from there, people it isn’t that hard. Let’s take a $100 check. 10% means just drop a zero or $10. If you need 20% double that, you’ve got $20. If you need 15% take half of that or $5 and add it to the 10% and you’ve got your 15% or in this case $15. Let’s try it with a $50 check. 10% drop the last number so you have $5. Half of 5 is $2.50 so add that to the 5 and you have $7.50 for your 15%, and double the 10% or $5 and that gives you $10 for your 20%. I hope this helps.

My last word is on gratuity. Some places add the gratuity. They may do it with parties of 6 or more, or they may just add it to every tab. It never hurts to ask your server if you aren’t sure. If they do add gratuity, find out how much. If they are only adding 18% and your server deserves 20% or more, it’s always very appreciated when you add extra. You’re ALWAYS welcome to leave them more.

Do servers split their tips with the other wait staff? Yes, they do. At the last place I worked we tipped 5% to the hostess, 8% to the bartender, 10% to the food runner, and 15% to the bussers. That totals 38%. Some places tip out more, some places tip out less. So remember that, the tip you leave isn’t only going to your server, it’s going to be split up between all the people who helped to make your experience a pleasant one.

Servers work for minimum wage generally and so the majority of their pay, the way they support themselves, comes from your tips. Please be generous.

For more tips on eating out please see my other post: Ordering Wine in a Restaurant.

Ordering Wine in a Restaurant

Okay I am NOT @GaryVee, Gary Vaynerchuk,  but I have worked in fine dining and I can give you some very easy common sense advice. If you don’t live in the Napa Valley or a big city, here are some tips to enjoy wine in a restaurant.

Ordering wine, there are a few easy tried and true rules:

Oysters: Champagne or Sauvignon Blanc
Chicken: Chardonnay, aka Chard
Salads or Seafood: Sauvignon Blanc aka Sav Blanc
Pork, Duck, Lamb: Pinot Noir or Merlot
Beef: Cabernet Sauvignon, aka Cabernet or just plain Cab

All of these are subject to change depending on the wine. Personally, I think champagne goes with everything! I love all varieties of wine. There are good wines and bad wines in all varieties so don’t judge all chardonnays by one bad one.

If you have no, or limited, wine knowledge my best recommendation – is to ask the server for a recommendation. You can read magazines or websites or books and do research and find an amazing high rated bottle of wine and then get to the restaurant and find out they don’t carry that wine. If people are having a variety of dishes I will often times suggest a pinot noir, a light red. Your server or the sommelier will ask what type of wine you are looking for, what your price range is, and look at what you have ordered and make a few recommendations. Don’t go with the house red or white unless you are on a strict budget. This wine was bought in bulk by the restaurant and won’t have the best taste.

As a general rule white wine should be less than 5 years old. It is not made to age a long time the way most red wine is.

Once a bottle of wine is ordered, the server presents the wine to the person who ordered it by reading the label, then confirms it by showing the bottle. After they say, “Yes, that is what I ordered”, the bottle is opened, by the server, and a small sip is poured to the person who ordered the wine. That person must try the wine to make sure it is not corked, they do this by swirling the wine, taking a sniff, then taking a small sip. Corked wine smells musty and tastes of mildew. It’s not really necessary to sniff the cork. Once they have approved the wine, the server will pour the wine for the rest of the guests at the table, and lastly fill the glass of the person who ordered. At this time you make a toast and clink glasses!

You may request an ice bucket for champagne or white wine to keep it chilled.  There is usually no extra charge for this. 

If your red wine is quite strong or has too much of a bite from the tannins, you can request that your wine be decanted. There is usually no extra charge for this.  This is done by your server and your wine is poured into a clear glass decanter, which gives the wine more air surface to breathe. This is especially recommended for red wines over 5 years old. Decanting the wine allows it to breathe and smooths out the taste. There is also a really nifty wine aerator tool that does this instantly, called the Vinturi Essential Wine Aerator.  I highly recommend it if you enjoy red wine!

Different shaped wine glasses are used with different varieties of wine. The general rule is that champagne is served in flutes, white wines in a smaller wine glass and reds in the larger bordeaux glass and the largest bowl glasses for the pinot noirs. This rule can change in accordance to the restaurant. Fresh glasses should be provided for each new bottle of wine unless otherwise requested.

If you bring in your own wonderful bottle of wine most restaurants will charge a corkage fee. This can vary greatly in amount from approximately $15 – $50 a pop. This fee is a charge for the service of using their glasses, which will need to be washed and hand polished, and the server opening the bottle and pouring the wine. On the higher end ($50) it can be cheaper to buy a bottle at the restaurant. If the corkage fee is a concern to you I recommend calling ahead to the restaurant and asking what their corkage fee is.

Most restaurants do greatly mark up the price of wine, it can be almost double what you would pay at a wine/liquor store.

Now you are ready to go out to a restaurant and enjoy wine! Cheers!

For more tips please see my other article: How to Tip in American Restaurants.

A Twitter Birth!

We had a Twitter proposal (see my other post, Twitter Marriage Proposal), now we have a twitter birth! And it’s a boy!

@ModernMatriach twittered her whole labor and delivery! follow along and share her pain and joy! (She chats with another twitter member, @cass also in labor.)

ModernMatriarch

ModernMatriarch cass – time them. duration and space between 05:51 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch first BP – 170/113 – that can’t be good. another reading in 5 min. 06:00 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch worried about Cass. You ok? 06:01 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch second reading – 164/106. Crap. 06:06 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch 3rd = 156/110. I 06:15 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch waiting… 06:31 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch looks like I’ll be having a baby tomorrow 07:03 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch cass is psychic 07:03 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch started some meds that are supposed to make me feel shitty 07:28 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch cervadil to go in. he’l break my water tomorrow morning 07:57 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch theyrw gonna give me sleepy meds. sent mike home for laptop. can’t live without it 08:33 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch omg. im gonna have another baby! 08:58 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web

ModernMatriarch @AFF – hells yeah! 09:15 PM July 09, 2008 from mobile web in reply to aff

ModernMatriarch sleepy meds..mmmmmm about 23 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch cervadil out soon. pitocin in at 7. epidural shortly after. about 18 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch slept ok. they started pitocin. the magnesium for preeclampsia makes me feel like ass about 16 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch @Cass – how are you feeling? about 16 hours ago from mobile web in reply to cass

ModernMatriarch @casscomerford WOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! COme today Lexi! about 14 hours ago from web in reply to casscomerford

ModernMatriarch I have laptop. I feel connected. Pitocin running. Contracting regularly but not strong. BP is better. COME ON BABY! about 14 hours ago from web

ModernMatriarch @casscomerford What’s the plan? Is there a plan? about 13 hours ago from web in reply to casscomerford

ModernMatriarch @AnglophileFF Not yet. I’m trying to ride out the pitocin as long as I can before the epidural. about 13 hours ago from web in reply to AnglophileFF

ModernMatriarch blogging while in labor. I need wine. 😉 about 13 hours ago from web

ModernMatriarch @NireRentip Thanks! Come visit me! about 13 hours ago from TwitterFox in reply to NireRentip

ModernMatriarch Labor blog: http://www.diaryofamodernma… about 13 hours ago from web

ModernMatriarch They upped the pitocin.. contractions coming stronger… about 13 hours ago from web

ModernMatriarch why dont they let women in labor eat? soooooo hungry about 12 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch i mean, i know the reason but i’m stil so famished about 12 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch @Kristin : nada bc of meds. bah! about 12 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch almost totally thinned. next step = break my water about 11 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch just broke my water. um, eww. contractions getting stronger. epidural en route. about 10 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch epidural 1 = fail. epidural 2 = yay! Mike is blogging for me since I cant sit up. about 8 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch almost five cm. about 8 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch @Cass only the left side took the first time. EPIC FAIL. DO OVER. about 8 hours ago from mobile web in reply to cass

ModernMatriarch no progress except orange jello – woot! about 6 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch forgot to mention my OB had a family emergency. Have to have guy Ive never met in my bits al day and deliver Sawyer. about 5 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch @Cass You doing ok? anymore contractions? about 5 hours ago from mobile web in reply to cass

ModernMatriarch almost at 7 cm. Slowest. labor. ever. He’s too cozy in there about 4 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch 8 cm. Why won’t he come out? about 3 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch head is at 0 station. pressure is incredible. almost fuly dilated. about 2 hours ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch he’s here!! 1017 pm. weight n height pending. so iin love
18 minutes ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch 10:17 pm. 7 lbs, 7 oz. 19 1/2 in. — Morgan won the contest 8 minutes ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch baby is getting cleaned up. so happy its over and he’s here. only three pushes. i wanted him OUT! 6 minutes ago from mobile web

ModernMatriarch The birth post : http://tinyurl.com/58m74e about 4 hours ago from TwitterFox

ModernMatriarch Thanks to everyone who watched and waited with me. It was like having a support group in my room with me! Such a cool experience.
about 4 hours ago from web

My congratulations @ModernMatriarch! I’m so happy for you I can’t stop smiling!

Please see ModernMatriarch’ blog post (with darling pics) on her birth here: http://www.diaryofamodernmatriarch.com/

The Tax Poem

I didn’t write this.  I don’t know who did.  It was shared with me in an email by my friend Leo Martinez.  Most people don’t stop to think about all the taxes we pay.  I know I didn’t.

*THE TAX POEM*

Tax his land,
Tax his bed,
Tax the table
At which he’s fed.

Tax his tractor,
Tax his mule,
Teach him taxes
Are the rule.

Tax his work,
Tax his pay,
He works for peanuts
Anyway!

Tax his cow,
Tax his goat,
Tax his pants,
Tax his coat.

Tax his ties,
Tax his shirt,
Tax his work,
Tax his dirt.

Tax his tobacco,
Tax his drink,
Tax him if he
Tries to think.

Tax his cigars,
Tax his beers,
If he cries
Tax his tears.

Tax his car,
Tax his gas,
Find other ways
To tax his ass.

Tax all he has
Then let him know
That you won’t be done
Till he has no dough.

When he screams and hollers;
Then tax him some more,
Tax him till
He’s good and sore.

Then tax his coffin,
Tax his grave,
Tax the sod in
Which he’s laid.

Put these words
Upon his tomb,
‘Taxes drove me
to my doom…’

When he’s gone,
Do not relax,
Its time to apply
The inheritance tax.

Accounts Receivable Tax
Building Permit Tax
CDL license Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Excise Taxes
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Permit Tax
Gasoline Tax (44.75 cents per gallon)
Gross Receipts Tax
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Inventory Tax
IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Luxury Taxes
Marriage License Tax
Medicare Tax
Personal Property Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Service Charge T ax
Social Security Tax
Road Usage Tax
Sales Tax
Recreational Vehicle Tax
School Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
Telephone Federal Excise Tax
Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and Non-recurring Charges Tax
Telephone State and Local Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Utility Taxes
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax

Are we missing any here?

STILL THINK THIS IS FUNNY?
Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the
most prosperous in the world.
We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids.

What in the hell happened? Can you spell ‘politicians?’

Discuss…

Product Review ~ Blueberry Muffin Frosted Mini-Wheats

This product review has moved to it’s own blog! Find more at: http://lauralovesbest.com

I haven’t seen them advertised, but then I’m not a BIG tv watcher. I dvr a lot of shows and zip through the commercials, so maybe I’ve missed it. But, as I went shopping on Saturday and strolled down the cereal aisle, there it was! Blueberry Muffin Frosted Mini-Wheats! Now I love blueberries, and blueberry muffins, so I had to try it!

Later that night I had to open up the box and try a few as a snack! Yes! They definitely have that blueberry muffin taste! They made a great crunchy snack. Now I’m eating them with milk. It just adds a creamy milk flavor to the blueberry muffin-ness of them. It slightly dilutes the flavor, but not in a bad way. They soften up in milk but still hold their shape. We all have heard how important fiber is to our diet, how it can lower cholesterol, well Mini-Wheats have plenty of fiber, that’s for sure!

If you are a blueberry fan, you’re going to love Blueberry Muffin Frosted Mini-Wheats cereal. I do! Great for a little snack, great for breakfast! Yummy in your tummy!

Robert Mondavi

Robert Mondavi. I’ve had the pleasure of waiting on him and his wife and they were frequent visitors to the restaurant where I worked. By the time I waited on them he was in a wheelchair, and I never heard him speak. He was still an impressive man.

His wife, Margrit, was adorable! So friendly and charming and gracious! She reminded me a lot of Carol Channing with her wide smile and silver bob.

When the Mondavi’s came in for dinner Robert was wheeled in by a younger man and woman, who left after he was comfortable. Margrit took care of ordering and would attentively feed Robert and give him sips of champagne and wine.

A funny thing was they would usually bring their little white dog in it’s carrier. Dog’s aren’t allowed in restaurants unless they are seeing eye dogs, but what could we say? They are the Mondavi’s. Our Napa Valley royalty! Generally the darling little dog was good and quiet, but occasionally it would bark! All of the staff’s eyes would get big as we hoped that none of the guests complained. Sometimes Margrit would let the dog out and feed it under the table. One night as they were leaving and the younger couple had come to take them home, the man was pushing the wheelchair and the woman was holding the door and the little dog started running around through the center of the restaurant! Finally we shooed it out the door and the Mondavi’s were wisked away in their limosine.

We had a large event where the Mondavi’s were guests. I had to talk with the organizer and let him know that Robert was in a wheelchair as they had made no provisions for that and were unaware. They were under the impression that he was going to be giving a speech as well. I had to let them know that was doubtful unless his condition had changed since last I saw him. Margrit Mondavi had sat at Bouchon Bakery hand painting touches on all the menus as souvenirs for all the guests. They were such a lovely elegant touch. I am pleased to say I snagged one of the leftover menus at the end of the night!

Robert Mondavi died peacefully Friday morning, May 16, 2008 at his family home in Yountville, California at the age of 94. We were getting ready to celebrate his 95 birthday in June at Copia with a big event that included many of the world’s top chefs. The hope was that this event would continue in his memory. And what a memory he left.

Cheers to your memory, Robert Mondavi!

Lost at the State Fair

When I was four or five years old I went to the California State Fair in Sacramento, the state capital(I say this because people who should know that Sacramento is California’s state capital don’t seem to know this. I have had people argue with me, people I thought were intelligent even!) with my parents. I was going to go with my Mom, then decided to go with my Dad, I let go of my Mom’s hand, turned around to go with my Dad, and he was swallowed by the crowd! I turned around to go back with my Mom, and she had disappeared as well! Somehow I found the police or they found me, I can’t remember that part. The police were trying to take me to the police department and I said, “No! No! My parents will find me! We can’t leave!”. And they did. My parents had bought me this huge balloon that was one-of-a-kind. I can vaguely remember it, it was a really big white balloon with red and blue stars on it. Luckily, my parents spotted the balloon and found me with the policemen!

The moral of this story is: buy your kids balloons! Oh, and hold on to their hand tightly in crowds, that too.

Published in: on June 30, 2008 at 8:30 pm  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , , , , ,

73 Things You Might Not Know About Me…

1. I can dance.
2. I can dance and teach Polynesian dancing. Yes, that means Hawaiian hula, modern and ancient (kahiko), Maori, Tahitian, and a bit of Samoan.
3. I was president of a non-profit organization for 5 years. Ka Ohana O Na Huapala(the family of friends with much love), a non-profit Polynesian cultural group.
4. I love cats, and other animals too, but cats the most.
5. I used to manage a store called Nautilus Tropical Fish and Gifts.
6. I know a lot about taking care of aquariums and the names of most fish.
7. I was beaten up and robbed while working there.
8. I owned my own business for 20 years. I was a Mary Kay Cosmetics Consultant and I had up to seven consultants on my team.
9. I went to Dallas, Texas and Annaheim, California on Mary Kay business trips.
10. I’ve used Mary Kay Cosmetics religiously since I was 19 years old. (Thank you Trudy Ball, now my consultant!)
11. Pink is my favorite color.
12. I collect odd things in pink. I have a pink tool kit and extension cord. I have a large collection of pink depression glass.
13. I know the names of most flowers. I used to be really interested in gardening and read a lot of books. I like planting flowers, gardening.
14. I like to cook and bake.
15. I have over 50 cookbooks. I used to collect them.
16. I used to bake bread from scratch regularly when I was a teenager.
17. When other people wanted to grow up and be doctors and lawyers, I wanted to grow up to be a mom.
18. I took ECE (Early Childhood Education) classes at Fairfield High School to prepare myself to be a mom.
19. I LOVE being a Mom. I believe that I’m not going to be president of the United States, but that the most important thing I’m going to do is be a good parent.
20. I took square dancing lessons as a child.
21. I took bowling lessons as a child.
22. I took swimming lessons as a child.
23. I took ice skating lessons as a child.
24. I took piano lessons as a child.
25. I’m not really good at any of the things I took lessons in as a child.
26. I had a secret code way of writing messages with one of my best friends, Kathy White, in high school. I still remember most of it.
27. I was facinated with witchcraft in junior high school/freshman year of high school.
28. I used to have a palomino pony named Comanche when I was a child and lived up in Issaquah, Washington.
29. We had a creek, May Creek, that ran through our property and I saw salmon spawn.
30. I lived on the side of Tiger Mountain and used to play in the woods.
31. I know how to fish, but I don’t like to eat fish with fins. Yuk!
32. I do like shellfish! Crab, clams, lobster, shrimp, I’m not sure about oysters…I’ve had them smoked and they were good. I’m scared to try them raw.
33. I like to sing. I was in choir through most of grade school and in Acapella in High School. I know the words to a lot of songs.
34. I took knitting lessons at Michael’s Craft Store in Santa Rosa, but I really haven’t practiced. I can crochet a great baby blanket though!
35. I love time travel romance novels. My favorite is Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.
36. I love to read. As a teenager I would read romance novels all night until the sun came up and I had to get ready for school.
37. The guy I was in love with during high school, and sometimes dated, was killed in a car crash during my junior year.
38. I like to take pictures. I’m starting to enjoy photography more and more.
39. I love flowers, I love the colors and the smell.
40. I work for the school district with special ed children, mainly autistic children.
41. A few nights a week I work at a fine dining restaurant, thought right now I’m between jobs.
42. I have two intelligent amazing children, girl -19, and boy – 22, they both still live with me.
43. I had a huge wedding, 500 people, a band, my polynesian group performed, I was married to their father for 13 years, actually maybe it was 15 by the time the divorce was final, but those don’t really count.
44. I am a serial entrepreneur. I have 4 websites planned!
45. My first website is thesmartmomsnetwork.com. I’m on my third developer…
46. In Feb. 2007 I founded and am Senior Partner of RW Investments. I run it non-profit. It is an investment club for women.
47. I’m 4 classes away from getting my AA in Liberal Studies.
48. I graduated from the Sacramento Entrepreneurship Academy (SEA) in 2005.
49. I used to work at Chevy’s Fresh Mex in Fairfield, Villa Romano in Napa, and Julia’s Kitchen in Copia in Napa.
50. My parents live two blocks from me and don’t drive anymore, so I am their chauffeur, and I don’t mind at all! They did it for me, now it’s my turn.
51. I write poetry.
52. I have family on my dad’s side in Washington State, and family on my mom’s side in Tennessee. No other family besides my parents and kids and I here in California.
53. My Dad was in communications with the Air Force for 22 years, he retired when I was five. Then he worked for Boeing making airplanes in Washington, then ended up retiring from the Fairfield Post Office as a mail carrier. My Mom taught kindergarten, worked as a cashier in restaurants, worked in a post office in Alaska, had a business called The Happy Hangers with her friend Cathy Miller where they did wallpapering, then had Mary and Gerry’s Yesteryear Antiques with her friend Mary Miller(not related to Cathy). She retired after working in the office at the mobile home park we live in.
54. When I was married we had two houses, the second one was huge, two story, four bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a huge backyard that we put a barked in play area for the kids with a swingset and fort and playhouse, and a huge fenced in oval doughboy pool. We lost that back to the bank, my ex talked me into declaring bankrupcy right before he asked for a divorce. Now I live in a 3 bedroom, 2 bath mobile home. Just for now. I’ll have a nice cozy house with a fireplace again soon, just wait and see! When all my sites are done on the internet…I’ll be the next big thing!
55. My son started taking college classes in eighth grade. He took Intro to Programming, CIS 1, and Into to Networking. I took all of these classes with him. He also took Fencing, which I didn’t take with him. He was in Acadeca, Academic Decathalon his senior year at Fairfield High School. He went to Europe for three weeks and visited Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and the Czech Republic. He attended the San Francisco Academy of Arts University for one year, and was going to major in Computers, New Media. He wasn’t sure if this was really his life’s passion, so he dropped out to re-evaluate. He’s worked at Hot Topic, H & M, and currently at Barnes and Nobles. He loves to read.
56. My daughter was in Honors and AP classes. She was on the Yearbook Staff as Asst. Editor and formed a Knitting Club. She is attending the local community college completing her general ed. She graduated from the Hex Makeup School with her certificate in Makeup Artistry. She has worked for her father re-stocking at the commisary and currently is working at PVE (Paradise Valley Estates) in food service and freelancing as a makeup artist.
57. I took 3 semesters of Ballroom Dancing.
58. I have no fear of public speaking. None. A stage? A mic? A camera? I’m READY!
59. I’ve never colored my hair.
60. I pull out the gray hairs that show! I may have to start coloring it soon.
61. I have very long natural fingernails, but rarely paint them.
62. For some reason I have scissors in almost every room of my house. I just recently realized I do this!
63. When I was four or five I got lost at the California State Fair.
64. I started talking very early as a child, at 9 months old. Even before I could walk. By the time I was 12 months old I was talking in complete sentences and singing songs.
65. I did some modeling. I modeled shoes for Darlington’s. I modeled for a couple of friends who were photographers. One had an old fashioned photo booth and he used my pics for his display.
66. When I was in high school I volunteered at the S.P.C.A. Sometimes I was there by myself. Sometimes I had to supervise the bad kids who were sent there to do community service. That was a little scary. That’s why I quit.
67. I was in a pageant. I didn’t win but I was a fair hostess for the Solano County Fair.
68. While I was a fair hostess I got to ride in a helicopter!
69. I’ve been on TV! It was a local channel that filmed the school board meeting. The principal at my children’s school asked me to teach some children a Hawaiian song for multicultural week. I had to get up in front of the school board and introduce the children and explain what the song/dance was about. It was fun!
70. Chocolate is my favorite food, especially dark chocolate. Next favorite is Chicken Kiev.
71. I love to exfoliate! Buff, scrub, pumice, loofah…i adore it all!
72. I had viral menengitis when I was three and lived in Goose Bay Labrador. I almost died.
73. I was adopted. (see other post)

Keep to the Right People!

get out of the way!  move to the right and park!Rrrrr! Rrrrrr! Rrrrrrrr! You hear the emergency vehicle noise and you move over to the right and stop. Well that’s what you are supposed to do, but last night as I drove home from Barnes and Nobles not everyone was with the program. All the cars in the right lane where I was pulled over to the right and stopped, but three cars in the left lane pulled to the left and stopped! I was rather incredulous and I’m quite sure the ambulance driver felt the same. The ambulance with sirens screaming had room to go through the middle, but I think he was so annoyed at their lack of protocol that he stopped behind them and waited for them to get a clue and finally move to the right.

Just a reminder, remember and follow your safety rules people! If you hear emergency vehicle sirens, move the the right and park.

Be warned! Next time I’m taking pictures!

Photo credit for the emergency vehicle above goes to my dear friend, the extremely talented photographer – Photos © Frank Lazeski
Anphog@aol.com.