Happy Mother’s Day 2013
May 12 2013

mothers-day-rosesAnother year has passed and another Mother’s Day is almost over.  Apparently my Happy Mother’s Day 2012 – Keep Up The Good Work post had several hundred views the last few days via google searches.  I still find that “greeting” card I took a picture of and put in that post humorous in an ironic kind of way…not even sure that makes sense or not.

This Mother’s Day, we find ourselves living in an extended stay hotel for a couple of weeks while we wait for our new home to be ready.  We’ve already had several friends over to eat and swim with us. Our new home was supposed to be ready in January, and we are crossing our fingers & toes that we will be able to move in soon.  So many amazing things have happened on this journey and invariably they involved wonderful people with big hearts who have gone the extra mile to make this transition as smooth as possible given the other unexpected changes in my life.  I really can’t thank some of these people enough.  I’m pretty sure I’ll be a grandmother with some of the best First World war stories ever!  🙂

So today for Mother’s Day, my son played soccer, the kids did their homework, they took me to Firebowl for lunch where mom’s ate free, we saw The Croods, they went swimming in the heated & nicely shaded hotel pool, they took me to Macaroni Grill for dinner (using gift cards the buyer’s of our house gave us), and they listened to me 90% of the time without me having to repeat myself multiple times.  All in all I’d say it was a very good day with the only downer being me having a cold.

I told the kids that I would share the fortunes (or statements) from the fortune cookies we chose at Firebowl in this post, so Happy Mother’s Day and here they are :

  • Embrace change, don’t battle it.
  • Don’t be so critical and overly concerned about details.
  • Don’t worry about losing. If it is right, it happens.
  • Drastic means are not as necessary as you think.
  • Hard work pays off in the future, laziness pays off now.
  • Good character is more to be praised than outstanding talent.
  • Help people reach their full potential.


Author: | Filed under: mom, mother, mother's day, movie reviews, parenting, working mom, working mother | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Something wonderful is about to happy
Apr 17 2011

No, that’s not a typo.  The fortune from the cookie from Twin Lion Chinese Restaurant said “happy” not “happen.”  For those who have followed my blog for a long time, you may recall my numerous fortune cookie posts.   My last one was based on a fortune that said Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence.

It’s been quite some time (3 weeks) since my last post on the Strengths Finder book, which surprisingly garnered several comments.  Time has flown between work, kids, my consulting work, homework (my kids and mine), housework, planning the summer camp schedule, birthday party planning, taxes, driving, friends, food poisoning (not from Chinese food), attempting to sleep, oh and eating!

A couple of other fortune cookie fortunes I received are “Happiness is not a reward, it’s a consequence.” and “Financial prosperity is around the corner.”

So until I have a chance to post something of more substance, may something wonderful “happy” to you!


Author: | Filed under: Just For Fun, random stuff | Tags: , , , , | 5 Comments »

Business Is Like War; Easy To Begin But Hard To Stop
Nov 2 2008

The title of this post was inspired by a fortune cookie fortune.  For those of you who are new readers, I did some posts a while back using fortunes from fortune cookies as blog titles.  I thought this one was particularly appropriate given how challenging entrepreneurship can be and given the state of our economy.  But here’s the interesting part, the fortune cookie actually read: “Love is like war; easy to begin but hard to stop.” 

I felt myself nodding knowingly inside when I read it.  How true it is in relation to both Love and Business.  How relatively easy it can be to start a business or fall in love.  We tell ourselves, it’s just an idea/romantic feeling…let’s see where it goes.  One thing after another happens and if you don’t chicken out (or the playing field of potential significant others or stable jobs doesn’t pull you away), you find yourself: 

Business Love
Exploring ideas Dating
Incorporating your business Being in a committed relationship
Raising funds Getting engaged
Hiring people Getting married
Raising more funds Buying a house
Releasing new products Having kids
Hiring more people Hiring domestic help or losing your mind
Taking longer to break even Taking longer to adjust to life with kids
Laying off people Hiring a marriage counselor
Feeling an air of desperation Experiencing a mid-life crisis
Closing up shop or going bankrupt Getting a divorce
Becoming profitable and self sustaining Living happily ever after!

No one goes into business or marriage believing that one day it might ‘stop’ or end.  Yet, 80 to 90% of the time businesses (e.g., technology start-ups, restaurants, retail shops, side businesses) fail or barely break even, and last I heard 50 to 60% of marriages end in divorce and that rate has been increasing over the years.  So much so that venture capitalists are actually funding sites like Divorce360.com and Agreed Divorces.com.  They should also fund a site called ShutDownYourBusiness.com! 

Stopping a business or a marriage is not easy.  You get up every day and say to yourself: “Something will happen to make the business work.  I’ll get funding.  I’ll get that next customer.  I can’t stop now!”  You coast in your marriage thinking “I’ll keep myself busy and things will get better or make more sense.  We’ll  make it work for the sake of the kids.”  Many times it does get better (after the sleep deprivation wears off) but sometimes you end up like Archie Bunker and Edith Bunker or other such couples who can’t stand each other but stay together because they don’t know what else to do.  Or you end up a bitter, washed up individual who finds yourself going through the motions because you have defined yourself as an entrepreneur yet you could never build a sustaining business.  You then end up feeling that life is unfair and you never got your well deserved lucky break. 

I know this post might sound depressing, but these are the odds you are playing with when you start a business or marriage.  Many entrepreneurs will fold up (and have already started to) their businesses due to tough economic times (no funding, no customers, etc.).  They will use the bad economy as a welcome excuse for not making it.  It is, after all, a justifiable/less ego-destroying way to explain to people why your business didn’t make it.  

And by all means, take the opportunity to wrap things up if you can (for your and your family’s sanity) because it is going to be tougher than normal for a while.  However, at the same time, the opportunities (volunteer help, cheaper resources, less competition) for being creative will be abundant. 

The next few years are going to be interesting.  Companies/marriages may fall apart because the changing economy ends up being the straw that breaks the camel’s back.  Or they might outlast the downturn and be stronger on the other side.  Many successful entrepreneurs have emerged from down economies and their success is surely a prerequisite for the economy turning around and thriving! 

I, for one, am glad to be living in this day and age.  In no other time in history (or probably not in any other country) could I have done what I’ve done, tried what I’ve tried, say what I say, write what I write, do what I do, or dream what I dream without being squashed. 

What do you think? Is Business and Love like (the US war in Iraq)? Easy to begin but hard to stop?

Author: | Filed under: entrepreneur, entrepreneurship, fundraising | Tags: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

A Dream You Have Will Come True
Jul 30 2008

Photo by Sandy Blanchard
Yes, the title of this post is yet another fortune cookie fortune that I got at lunch at P. F. Chang’s yesterday.   And yes that means my brain is too tired from working two jobs, taking care of kids, and pretending to be a being a good wife to come up with my own titles. 

I will eventually get around to my next post on the painful great lessons learned about Search Engine Optimization, but  in the meantime you can go back and read my What They Don’t Tell You About SEO posts Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 to get you primed and ready for Part 4!

So back to the fortune cookie title ‘A dream you have will come true.’  I’m wondering what dream it might be referring to?  Does it mean night dreams or day dreams?  Does it mean it will come true if I play the Lucky Numbers 3, 56, 32, 38, 25, and 42 that appear under the fortune?  Or does it imply that if I learn how to properly say the word “Peach” (i.e., tao-zi) noted on the back of the cookie in Chinese that it will come true? 

Then I started wondering if I even have dreams that I want to come true?  Being an avid dreamer at night, I often wish for dreamless, deep sleeps since I dream about work, life, kids, etc. while I sleep.  I don’t have scary dreams, just boring, mundane, every day life dreams where sometimes I happen to come up with some solutions to problems but that mostly leave me wishing for more sleep when I wake up! 

So if a dream is a wish and a wish is a dream, I wish for some nights of dreamless, uninterrupted-by-kids sleep.  Oh and I also dream that I will be able to change the world by helping others discover their potential to change the world! :mrgreen:

How about you? What is your dream?

Author: | Filed under: Just For Fun, random stuff | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Look Forward to a Great Fortune and a New Lease on Life!
Jun 25 2008

Photo by: Unknown – could not find link to original creator

So continuing on the fortune cookie blogging escapade, I recently got a fortune (for some reason I eat at a lot of Chinese restaurants) that said “Look forward to great fortune and a new lease on life!”  Of course I saved that one.  I still have a few others on my home office desk that are a little more realistic, but who’s to say a great fortune and a new lease on life isn’t around the corner for me! 

I can definitely say that a new lease on life is definitely in the process of happening just by the sheer fact I’m doing something different day-to-day than I have before.  Whether it’s a good lease or a bad lease depends a lot on my landlords. 😉

The Austin American Statesman (the main newspaper for Austin) mentioned my new position today in their Up The Ladder are in the business section.  They happened to use a picture of me that’s probably 7 or 8 years old which was when I weighed 10 to 12 lbs more than I do now.  (Of all my New Year’s resolution goals, I have achieved the ‘lose 5 lbs’ goal and ‘take yoga classes’ goal but I’m still working on all of the rest – Sigh). For a more recent picture of me, you can check out the page where I show the articles I’ve co-written on the topic of success and entrepreneurship or even the About page

If you were too lazy busy to click through the Up The Ladder link above, my new day job is running Operations for the Austin Technology Incubator (ATI).  I am acting as the COO/CFO of this small organization (5 to 6 full time employees) that is part of the University of Texas at Austin (and yes subject to the positives of great HR benefits yet at the same time monumental bureaucracy).  It’s a very unique initiative in the university because it supports 15 or so technology companies by helping them get to market, find funding, and build their professional support network. 

The companies get access to student help, consulting support from the directors, flexible space allocation, senior advisors/talent, discounts from ‘incubator friends,’ etc.  ATI is supported by rent and membership fees it collects from the companies as well as grants it receives from various government related entities that are interested in creating companies (thereby jobs) and furthering technology related initiatives in the Austin area related to Wireless, IT, Biotechnology, and Clean Energy. 

My job duties are varied but include helping make sure operations run smoothly internally, the companies are supported, and we have enough money to continue providing a great service to Austin technology companies and the Austin community in general.  I’m most excited about the potential to help entrepreneurs – it can be a lonely/tough job and having been there, done that, and doing it, I believe I can at least share my experience and contacts. 

Now working for the University does not lead to great fortune, but I’m open to it offering a ‘new (and different) lease on life!’

Author: | Filed under: entrepreneur, entrepreneurship, working mother | Tags: , , , | 7 Comments »