Meat Fest: Franklin BBQ for Hieu's 30th Birthday

Hey everyone. I hope there's still people out there interested in my sometimes Phantastic life. It's been crazy busy as usual, but some of the busy has been been fun. At the end of February, my friend Hieu celebrated his 30th with what seemed like thirty pounds of meat.

Phuong, Wendy, The Redhead and I stood in line for 3 hours so Hieu could feast on his birthday meat. Funny enough, this is not even close to my first time at Franklin BBQ - it's actually my 4th. You can see the other Franklin post, and yes, I'm still vegetarian.

As others had their fill of BBQ, I had some potato salad, cole slaw, this tiny pie, and a Topo Chico.

There wasn't a moment when everyone didn't have BBQ in their mouth or on their fork. Except for maybe here when Wendy was trying to stab the potato salad

It was kind of intense

Phuong's nails looked fancy even when they were pouring BBQ Sauce.

Most people left with Meat Sweats, but everyone left happy and needing a nap.

Tickle Me Finley - Elmo Cake Pops


photo by Tina Phan

Last month, Benjamin Finley celebrated his second birthday. Like many 2-year-olds, Benjamin is obsessed with Elmo.


photo by Tina Phan

For Benjamin's 1st birthday I made him this Tony Chachere's tee. This year I one-upped myself, or maybe two-dozen-upped myself, with a small army of cake pop Elmos.



photo by Tina Phan

I'd been hoping for an opportunity to try out Bakerella's Sesame Street Cake Pops.


First Benjamin was a little scared to eat Elmo.


He got over it.


Eek. Chilled Elmo brains!

Benjamin is rumored to have learned how to say "Elmo Pop." I'm sad his dad, my friend Aaron, wasn't able to get a sound clip.


photo by Tina Phan

Cake Pop Success


I tried to take some shots of the Elmo pops myself. It ended up looking like Elmo went to Anthropologie, much like everything else I do.

IMG_9620 IMG_9615 IMG_9619


Andy Warhol's Birthday Party at the Mohawk


Last weekend I went to Andy Warhol's Birthday Party at the Mohawk.

Andy Warhol's Birthday Poster

Thanks to Trevor Ray Thompson for these great photobooth pictures. I met his sister that night. She has to hold reflectors and be in test shots, just like I do for lil Phan.

These guys were also there. Alex insisted that he hates Andy Warhol. I'm not sure how he got in.


Florent thought the guy on right was Lenny Kravitz.


Lana joined us as Andy (with Mylar balloons).

lana as andy 962510101_gXHrs-L

I think Florent should get the prescription version of those glasses. He looks fabulous.


A girl thought these glasses were my prescription glasses. I had to tell her they didn't have lenses.


This random girl kinda looks like me.

girl who kinda looks like me

Check out Trevor Ray's website for more pictures of the Andy Warhol Birthday Party.

Robots for Flobot

two bots hanging out on a ledge

My silly birthday celebration ideas tend to get passed at work.

We decorated Florent's decor-free desk with Play-doh sculptures in his honor. There was a time when he borrowed other co-workers' desk decor to seem more like a "real employee." Florent took a framed baby picture and pretended it was his child. Happy Birthday Florent! You get your own desk sculptures.

dehumidifier and buddha

There's a theory that he's actually a robot from France. This should explain all the robot sculptures.


Some sculptures were better than others.


It's great how much happiness $2 worth* of Play-doh can bring.

*Note: Play-doh was 75% off after Valentine's Day.

robots & mexican martini

That thing on the tofu robot that looks kinda like an anatomical heart is actually a habanero. You do remember Florent eating habaneros, don't you?

tofubot takes a seat

Flip Happy Birthday Crepes

Vanilla pastry cream & berries crepe from Flip Happy

I took two days off of work to celebrate my birthday this year. I started off the two days of fun at Flip Happy Crepes.

Flip Happy menu

I went with the three cheese savory crepe. Most bites were pretty good. A few bites were like cheesy spinach-y caramelized onion heaven. I wished all the bites were so magical. The three cheese didn't photograph so well.


The redhead took two days off to celebrate my birthday, too.

Flip Happy Crepes Berry Dessert Crepe

He ordered the berries and pastry cream dessert crepe. It tasted like a fresh fruit tart. He hates fresh fruit tarts; I love them. I think he should have stuck with chocolate. Since he didn't, I got to finish up his crepe.

Flip Happy finish

I've heard tons of great reviews of Flip Happy, the only complaints are usually the long wait. If you go to Flip Happy Crepes on an overcast Thursday around 11:00am when it it looks it's going to rain, there's almost no wait. I need to go back and try something Nutella-filled.


Diamond Sweater Day

Today was Diamond Sweater Day at work. Alex (pictured without diamond sweater) has an epic knitted sweater that he refuses to wear. So, for his birthday, I cut out a bunch of black and blue diamonds and had a bunch of people wear grey sweaters so we could recreate this famed "Diamond Sweater" with our own. After cries of "Kathy, I hate you! I'm burning that sweater" I like to think he accepted our shenanigans and had a pretty good work birthday.

*Note: This picture really over-represents the prevalence of women and Asian Americans in the company. Also, a few diamond sweater-clad co-workers were unable to be pictured here. There was overwhelming support of the Diamond Sweater and we hope to welcome its return in January 2010.

Diamond Sweater + Sombrero

This is the original diamond sweater, the one and only.



Phuong's 2+6 (not 8)

I've been super busy lately. The last month (actually, the last 2 months) have been full of birthdays, weekend trips, habanero video, Texas football, and a huge project at work. Sorry for the lack of daily blogs. I hope you can forgive me.

I went on a road trip to Houston for Phuong's birthday. It was a celebration of Phuong turning 26, Melissa's return to Texas, and a good excuse to have a high school girls mini reunion.

We started off with a lunch at Coco's Crepes where i had a whole wheat savory crepe full of roasted veggies and goat cheese with great wine based sauce. There were so many veggie choices, I had a hard time choosing. I'll have to go back to try on of their delicious sounding dessert crepes. Speaking of crepes, this reminds me that I still need to go to Flip Happy in Austin.



A dangerous left turn took us successfully to Phuong and Hieu's (mostly Hieu's) new house. As a shell, it was jaw-droppingly beautiful. Black lacquered wood floors. Cue the clouds opening to heaven music.


I can't wait to see how it will look once they've moved in (aka full of the other love of my life, furniture).

built by James

That afternoon was BYOC (build your own chair). Being a kind gentleman, James built us some IKEA Snille chairs.

After the ooohhing and ahhhing subsided we got pedis -- James even agreed to go with us, got dressed up, went out for Vietnamese food at Jasmine, where Wendy and Eric joined us. Known for serving Seven Courses of Beef, my path at Jasmine led directly to "vegetable dish."

We then confused ourselves with a few homophones and met a guy who sold hair products marketed to African Americans. NOTE: chances of finding Rain when you should be looking for Reign are rare especially when you've never seen or heard of such places. Also, designers need to make sign fonts visible from a distance. Scripts fonts are often less than visible.

I had a great time playing with some of my best friends. It was well worth the 6 hours of travel time. Happy Birthday Phuongies you'll get your present whenever I take the initiative to go to the post office.

Andy Warhol's Birthday at Mohawk


Out of several birthdays over the last 2 weeks, this one was by far the most pop-arty.

We mingled with hipster remakes of Andy and his Factory People. Lots of shiny pants, Edie Sedgwick look-a-likes, and one tall, ginger Lou Reed wannabe. I even took a shot at being Andy. This photo is by Erica Wilkins who had a blast laughing at me as Andy.

Will was pleasantly surprised by running into an old friend (and this old friend's even older parents) who were all making screenprints upstairs. They conned him into buying a t-shirt by PoorHouse Studios.

We made video art to the sounds of a good Velvet Underground cover band before calling it an early morning.