Thursday, December 28, 2006

What A Year It's Been!

I hope you all had a happy holiday last weekend and were able to enjoy your friends and family. I personally had the best holiday ever this year! I had two great days of family and cheer, and my good friend, Robert Baxt, spent Christmas Eve and Christmas with us. He was the hit of Christmas day at my sister's house, performing impromptu magic for everyone! I especially want to thank all of you who sent emails, cards, and Christmas wishes from all over the world. I hate to take them all down, so I think I'll leave them hanging up until after New Year's Day. Thanks again; it really means a lot to all of us here at Hocus Pocus.

And what a year it's been! So many things have happened, so many things have changed. First, we moved from our old building into our new 10,000 square foot location, which has been a real blessing and enabled us to do so many things we could never do before and to be able to efficiently run the business and pack & ship packages out faster than ever! It even enables us to hold our First Annual Swap Meet & Get-Together just a few weeks away on January 20th.

Old location

New location

My daughter, Renee, moved back to Fresno this year after graduating from college and has a great management job in a formidable department store just as my oldest son, Cole, moved away to begin his college life. He was able to get into the college of his dreams, St. Mary's, and is doing extremely well there. My younger daughter, Aimee, went back to school and will graduate next year with a business degree, taking after her old man. And last, but not least: MAX! Starting high school this year and now, almost as tall as I am (6' 2"), it seems almost impossible to me that at one time, I could hold them all in my arms at a time where my first building was a mere fraction of what it has become. And next, one of the biggest changes of all this year (I almost didn't put this up as it is a bit embarrassing) was my recent weight loss of 178 pounds! Don't believe me? Check out the before and after image below:

Me before (top) and me after! The real magic trick!

I've never felt better, never been healthier, and have never had more energy than I do now. I feel like a kid again, ready to go out and tackle the world. It's the best thing I've ever done for myself, and everyone here tells me that I should be very proud of myself; it was no easy task, but one very much worth it! And I couldn't end this all without talking about the best thing in my life, my wife Betty, without whom none of anything I've talked about would even be possible!

As this year draws to a close, I find myself very much looking forward to the new year. 2007 promises to be one of the most exciting and successful years to date, and I have you all to thank for it. I couldn't end this without thanking you all for THIS year, 2006. Your continued support and friendship are the lifeblood of Hocus Pocus. All of you are truly the reason Hocus Pocus has become what it is today, and I will never forget that.

So, however you spend your New Year's, be safe and enjoy it to the fullest!

Until next time,


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