Perhaps you recall a dog named Hank who ate my favorite necklace almost exactly a year ago. I tweeted about it through my tears. There was no replacement available because the necklace had sold out or been discontinued or whatever. I don't remember the details, only that they hurt.

Well, the person I am married to has had a saved search on eBay for months, and guess what? I'm now the proud owner of a replacement necklace. I think it looks even better than the original.

Seriously, Vince Chao is a saint among humans. Can I get an amen? I think yes. Yes, I can.

I'm a little late. Nonetheless, Happy Father's Day to Vince Chao, the MOTHER of all daddies. (Hee.)

As I am officially back from vacation, I'll return to posting actual content this week. I have a lot to share! Excitement. Please read that in a French accent.

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AuthorAB Chao
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Ladies and gentlemen: are you tired of hearing me talk about the beach? I am very sorry. I am going to say a few more words about it. And I am going to show you a lot of pictures. And also I am going to tell you about our insanely amazing beach house, which you should try to rent for yourself. If you can't get it, it's because I have rented it again.

First, let's start with the Instagram photos I took while we were there.

Well, wait, first, I guess I should tell you about the group we went with. It was me/Vince; Al, Chris, and Marlo; Pamie/Jason; and Maggie/Hank. Madeleine not included, sadly.

OK. Instagram. Here we go.

Pictured: Vince and Hank on our specially-ordered canvas rafts, which were awesome. Hank had never been on a Gulf Coast beach vacay before, and was a little afraid of the ocean. He acclimated in record time. Also pictured is Maggie, on another raft waaaaaaay back there. See the red-headed dot? You got it.

Here is what I did every day: put my toes in the sand and read books.

Here is another thing I did every day: wear scarves and bikinis and get a tan.

Here is a thing Allison did every day: drink wine, wear caftans, and pretend to be smoking.

Our house was on the bay side of Perdido Key. In my whole life I had never stayed on the bay side of things, and now I will never stay elsewhere. Our house, which was a) bright green, and b) octagonal, featured a full bar downstairs, hammocks, Adirondack chairs, crab traps, a kayak, a pier for fishing/jumping off, an outdoor shower, picnic tables, a swing, and some other things I am not remembering but were awesome. There was also a crazy little boat house (pictured above) that we thought at first was a sex room, but actually held more cots and fishing paraphernalia.

The door to the shower. $1.00.

One of the wooden posts in the bar featured license plates from previous visitors. There were several Alabama plates with Auburn tags that distressed Allison greatly, as she is a life-long Alabama fan.

The end of the pier had steps down to our own private little beach. In the late afternoons, we watched jellyfish float by and helped Hank catch hermit crabs. Does that sound idyllic? It was.

Have you ever wanted to see Chaos in bathing suits? WISH GRANTED.

Jason looks on as Maggie and Hank get real excited about hermit crabs.

Marlo was ready for the beach at ALL TIMES. Let's not talk about the fact that she was totally not into the beach at all. A girl has to be presentable, doesn't she? Yes.

Having little Hank there reminded me of all the years when Mad was there with us, all excited about nets and sand crabs and whatnot.

After the kids went to bed each night, the adults gathered at the bar for drinking/fighting/singing/games.

This past week has convinced me that Perdido/Orange Beach is better than any other place in Florida. Actually, it's better than any other place in the world. You want to come next year? Let's GO.

(Pictures by AB Chao, Pamie, and Maggie)

As I said before, last weekend I was in New Orleans for Mom 2.0 Summit. I co-hosted an entertaining panel with the lovely and delightful Helen Jane, where we talked about quick and stylish entertaining, and demonstrated a few tips for making your snappy appetizers look real pretty for your blog. We also served wine. We also made a lot of jokes about nuts (see above).

HJ, who is much better prepared for these kinds of things than I am, has put together a little recap of the photography tips we shared, here. And if you are interested in the slideshow we used, see here. Thank you for your cooperation.

I stayed in New Orleans a few extra days to do some local-client-related work, and finally arrived home Wednesday night. But as Vince, Eliza, and I had signed up a while back for the Crescent City Classic, I found myself in the car again two days later, headed back to NOLA. Which was fine with me -- we took the opportunity to do some poolside lounging at one of my fave hotels. Like ladies (and gentlemen) of leisure.

If you have never had a Pimm's Cup poolside at the Windsor Court in New Orleans, well, I urge you to rectify that situation immediately.

These two think they're pretty fancy. We ended up not leaving the hotel at all until race time the next morning, which was also fine with me.

The race itself was exciting and crowded and hot and ended with free Abita. Our times were all terrible, but who cares? We got fun times and nice tans.

The upshot of the previous weeks of hedonism is that I now feel kind of puffy and gross, so today I am starting a week-long detox. This cleansing diet will include lots of water and tea, and things made with kale and raw almonds, and probably rage and despair.

I'll be back tomorrow with an Easter recap you won't want to miss! (Just kidding. It will mostly be pictures of crawfish.)

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AuthorAB Chao
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I hope y'all attended a NYE as fun as this: img_2773 img_2767 img_2766 img_2758 img_2868 img_2750 And now, a short list of things I'd like to accomplish this year: 1. Run more miles in less time. 2. Always have printer paper/clean towels/champagne in the house. 3. Kick ass in ping pong. 4. Quit buying so many jeans. 5. Try to be nicer about people's hair. 6. Get a new car. 7. Give an old car to a licensed teenager. 8. Transition this site to a portfolio/blog. 9. Learn how to make pinch-pleated curtains. 10. Take a leap that scares me. Happy New Year! Unrelated: please call me if you can do pinch pleats.