"My family and I celebrate my birthday each year in a simple manner. We will usually go out to a local restaurant for dinner. I am the youngest of 8 children, so it is a large gathering when we meet. My parents are divorced now and my father has moved back to Mexico. One year I went back to Mexico to visit him. When I came back, it happened to be my birthday and a friend of mine met me at the airport and brought me flowers. Boy, was I surprised. Now I love taking my 8-year-old daughter out on her birthday. This year we went to Big Bear mountain and played in the snow, just me and her. She loved it. She made a snowman, a little snowman.
"Some years ago, I was working for someone else in their restaurant and I thought it would be better for me to own my own. So my brother and I opened this sandwich shop 13 years ago. It takes much of my time but it is worth it. We bought an existing shop but added some of our own ideas about items on the menu. We added shakes and smoothies. We also changed the name to Carmen's Bionicos & City Life Deli Sandwiches after our mom. The toughest part of opening up our own shop was learning to make the sandwiches the way customers wanted them. Our other problem was finding sources for all our ingredients. I do all our shopping for the meats, cheeses, breads, and fresh fruits. I shop at Jethro's and Costco."