The pink banner that curls around the fa?ade of Yolanda's Specialty Cakes calls to mind the creamy fondant streaks that grace many of the eponymous owner's specialty confections. Though Yolanda Amaya has been perfecting her craft since 1977, many locals are just beginning to hop on her train of sweet treats thanks to readers of the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, who voted her shop the Best of the Best in 2010. On-hand consultants help brides- and grooms-to-be select the perfect theme for their wedding cake, and decorators spell out birthday greetings with swirls of icing. Yolanda and her bakers sculpt cakes into a variety of shapes and styles, from tiered towers to wearable quincea?era dresses.
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At Lifeguard Roofing, technicians extend a tradition of quality forged by their parent company, Brushstrokes Painting & Remodeling, as they bolster curb appeal of homes and commercial buildings with maintenance and installation of roofs, gutters, and siding. As preferred contractors for Owens Corning, the team backs up replacement, repair, and maintenance services for roofs with a manufacturer's warranty. They also perform complimentary inspections, applying keen eyes to the integrity of each shingle or metal sheet and ensuring that the archers guarding against invading Mongols are well fed.
A charter member of the MLS, the San Jose Earthquakes played their first four seasons as the Clash before claiming the MLS Cup in 2001 and 2003. Though the team moved to Houston in '05, the franchise was reinstated in '08, bringing professional soccer back to the Bay Area. Buck Shaw Stadium serves as the team's current home, though a new stadium will shoot skyward in 2014, complete with luxury suites for fans and exhausted referees alike.
The friendly tool experts at Direct Tools Factory Outlet help customers to negotiate the store's huge inventory of new, reconditioned, and factory-blemished hardware from brands such as Ryobi, Homelite, and Milwaukee. Items are priced at a reduced rate, giving purchasers extra money and a brand-new stockpile of hardware to construct a time machine to go back and impress an early hominid with a Dirt Devil Scorpion 7-amp hand vacuum ($29.99) or a factory-blemished Ryobi One+ Lithium-Ion compact drill ($127.99). Each product carries a warranty of at least one year, even the reconditioned items, which had to get back in shape with pushups and burpees to earn their warranty ribbon.
Garage doors rarely inspire passion, easily taken for granted as they dutifully trundle up and down to admit cars. People generally only notice them when they stop working, which is where David Miller and his father-in-law come in. They run EZ Lift Garage Doors, earning a living making sure that garage doors run smoothly and stay unnoticed. "I love running businesses, and my father-in-law has 20 years behind him in the garage-door-repair industry," David says. They continue to maintain, repair, and replace garage doors all across Houston while preserving the air of a family-run business.