Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The BIG Apple

I LOVE LOVE LOVE New York City. Every time I go I promise myself I will go more often. My amazing sister, Karyn, lives in NYC and she was my tour guide. Heidi Parson and I left the Pet Show in Atlantic City and we had 24 hours until we had to meet our husbands again in Pittsburgh.  We crammed as much as possible into our day. Here's what we accomplished: 

*Dinner at Vinyl with Karyn and her friend Wade. Fabulous food, fabulous company, and the funnest bathrooms I've ever been in- themes like Elvis, Dolly Pardon, and The Beatles.

*Stood in line at the Lottery to try to get Tickets for WICKED- they were sold out and we didn't win the lottery, BUT we did get tickets and saw Priscilla Queen of the Desert. Even though our seats weren't great- it was a fun show with Great costumes, and fun music! 

After the show we meet up with Paul (another of Karyn's friends) who plays the keyboard in WICKED. Though we weren't able to get tickets for that show, we did get a personal backstage tour. He showed us all the "tricks" to the show, the costumes, props, sound room, effect room, and make up room. 

*Heidi had written a letter and was able to get us tickets to Live with Regis and Kelly. We had to wait in lines to get in and go through security, but it was all worth it. The show was Awesome- Regis was gone that day, but Kelly is the cutest thing I have ever seen. She is funny, professional, and friendly. The studio was much smaller than I thought it would be, there was only about 120 people in the audience! David Arquette was one of the guests that day- he was surprisingly bad. He seemed tired and didn't ever put a complete sentence together. Mark Rutherford was the co-host that day. Next time I'm in NYC I will try to get tickets for some more talk shows like this- great experience. 

After the show we were able to spend a few hours being "tourists." We took the Stanton Island Ferry to see the Statue of Liberty, saw the LDS Temple (didn't have time to do a session), went to Ground Zero, shopping at Canal Street, bought cupcakes from Crumbs, and ate Yummy crepes from a little restaurant in Karyn's neighborhood. My battery on my camera died, so I still need to get pictures from Karyn (however she is in Europe now), so it will be a few more days! 

Modes of transportation in 24 hours: we took a bus (broken seats, smelling, and hot) from Atlantic City to NYC, subway around the city, taxi to Karyn's apartment, bus to Penn Station, train from NYC to Pittsburgh. And of course we used our feet- I'm sure we walked more than 10 miles in one day! 

Thanks to my amazing sister and my friend Heidi for helping to make my 24 hours in NYC amazing. I am not wanting to wait another 6 years until I go back- it will be sooner! 

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Spotz Out

I have had many friends and family asking for more information about what Kirk is doing now, how the product is going, and what the product actually is for.... so here's the post that has been in the "making" for a while.

For the past two years my dear husband has been working with his brother (Nathan) to develop a carpet cleaner specific for pet stains. After lots of time, energy, and money to make sure this product not only worked- but was the best in the industry: Spotz Out was launched!

Two weeks ago we traveled to Atlantic City (and contrary to what I believed, Atlantic City is NOT the Vegas of the East Coast) for a large Pet Trade Show. We were nervous, excited, and anxious to know how the product would be received in the industry. Turns out, people LOVED IT! We wrote several orders at the show, meet with distributors, talked with Sales Reps who want to rep our line, and secured store space for the product in many more stores. Of course, there are lots of products that promise to remove smells, stains, and dirt from the carpet- the difference with Spotz Out is that it actually does what is promised. Rather than just using a "spray and dab" technique, we use an activator that loosens the spot, a brush to scrub the stain out, and a sponge like product that sticks to the dirt/stain/soil allowing it to be vacuumed right up.

Nathan drove all the way to Atlantic City from Lincoln Nebraska so he could haul the booth set up and the product. Kirk and I flew in with Brett and Heidi Parson- Brett is a partner with Kirk and Nathan (and a friend of mine from High School) and does the marketing for the business. We had a great time with them and enjoyed many late nights and great laughs. Heidi and I were also able to sneak away for a day and go to NYC- more about that in the next post!

Since we've been home from the H&H Backer Show, Kirk has been on the phone and computer constantly (when he isn't boxing and labeling products, OR running my business while I was out of town) increasing sales and working hard to make his business lucrative. I am so proud of him and am lucky to be married to such an incredible man!

Highlight of the trip: being able to watch Kirk as his years of hard work and dedication paid off.
Lowlight: staying in THE WORST hotel ever- Atlantic City Days Inn: 1 Star.

Kirk and I on day 1 of H&H Backer show. 

Nathan Stoddard, Brett Parson, Kirk Stoddard

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