Archive for December, 2012

2012 Year in Review

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Happy New Year’s Eve!

I’ve been taking a look back at the year that is coming to an end every year since I started this blog in 2008. So this is my 5th look back and I am so grateful that each year the blessings continue to flow.

This time, though, I feel a little different about my look back. Maybe it’s age that is affecting me. Or maybe it’s wisdom that comes with age. Or maybe it’s that as I watch my favorite show, the CBS Sunday Morning Show, while I write this and think about it’s look back at all those great and small, celebrities and the 300 military service men and women, and all the sweet and precious victims of the Sandy Hook shootings that left us in 2012, I am impacted by what is really important in life.

So that doesn’t mean that in light of sadness and serious issues, that we can’t celebrate our successes and blessings. In fact, I think that is the VERY time that we should celebrate them. But celebrating them with a sense of gratitude and a plan to pay them forward, now that is how it feels like I should celebrate them this year.

So here is a look back at a few of the many things I am grateful for in 2012 followed by my perspective on my responsibility to pay forward similar blessings to those in my life…

In January I turned 40! Yes, maybe that’s where all the wisdom is coming from :). But I think rolling into this new decade has marked me rolling into my best years to date. I am grateful for finally feeling good in my own skin and the excuse to help me lose almost 40 pounds this year!

And this first month of the year marked another great One Kings Lane sale for me!

In February, the Design Bloggers Conference bestowed on me their first ever Best Blog Award. Wow! What an honor. And I am thrilled that I will be presenting the 2013 award to the lucky winner and serving as Master of Ceremony for the Awards event at the upcoming Design Bloggers Conference in Los Angeles.

In March I launched my first Designer MBA camp, was privileged to be included in Susanna Salk’s latest book, and had a lovely and warm welcome as a keynote speaker at the Arizona Design Center’s Spring market.

April brought with it many blessings. First I spoke at the Design Leadership Summit in Marrakech, Morocco attended by 200 design and architect greats. My friend and fellow Arkansan, President Bill Clinton recorded a short video clip for me as part of that presentation. That was certainly a highlight of my year.

Traditional Home Magazine featured my Richmond Showhouse from 2010 in April.

And Southern Living featured an Entertaining Story all about Seersucker.

And I rounded out the month by being the reigning Style Spotter at High Point Market and the Keynote speaker in Chicago at the Visions Window Treatment Conference.

May was also full of excitement with 2 inclusions in the May issue of House Beautiful in both their regular color section and their “Designer Secrets” feature.

And May was the month I launched my first E-products with my Tobi Fairley Business Solutions Teleseminars and Video webinars to rave reviews.

June was full of dreams come true especially thanks to Traditional Home Magazine. First they featured my Hampton’s Showhouse from 2011.

Next they asked me to be part of their “Master Class” 15 weeks of design tips from top Designers.

 And then they invited me to join them on a trip to Scotland with the Scottish Textiles Industry. Traditional Home is always so good to me, but this year they leave me speechless on all they have done.

Another exciting bonus in June was finding my work included in this special issue of Southern Living called 100 Makeover Ideas.

July brought with it yet another One Kings Lane sale that was another great success!

Rolling into the Fall, At Home in Arkansas was kind enough to give me my 10th cover with their Family Homes Issue in August.

I also had fun press that month with Decorating Shortcuts Magazine

And this gorgeous feature in RedBook Magazine.

And I traveled to the Atlanta Market Center, America’s Mart for a fun talk called “Decoreat” with my friend Kathy Greeley all about our favorite Tabletop and Entertaining Design Ideas.

September brought my collaboration with Masin’s Furniture and Design in Seattle, and a fun talk at theIFDA Day of Design in Richmond, Virginia where my friends and the design community there treat me like family.

And an exciting milestone…Tobi’s Blog turned 4.

October brought more press from HGTV magazine.

And again from Traditional Home with a gorgeous Fall Entertaining Feature.

Speaking of Traditional Home, my “Traditional Home Room” in the Holiday House NYC Showhouse in New York City opened that month to rave reviews. Thank you Traditional Home for asking me to design your sponsored space!

Plus my team and I were honored with 3 ASID awards including 2 Gold and a Silver. And then I traveled to Gasden, Alabama for a great speaking engagement with the Antiquarian Society.

In November my hospitality project, The Chancellor Hotel, that I  completed this Fall was revealed on my blog and subsequently featured on House of Turquoise.

And a VERY exciting relationship was formed with Olioboard that month as a sponsor of my Design Camps for 2012 and 2013.  I am thrilled to be working with Olioboard and can’t wait for all we will accomplish together next year.

Speaking of Camp Tobi, November also brought another A to Z camp but this time with amazing special guest speakers Scot Meacham Wood, Kathryn Greeley, Cheminne Taylor-Smith and a book signing with my friend Amanda Nisbet.

Then rolling into December, this last month of 2012, I was honored with more great press including this AMAZING feature on my InBox Interiors Service in Southern Living Magazine.

Plus this lovely feature on my Mom and me and our Holiday Decor in Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Ideas Magazine.

And HGTV gave me a beautiful full page in their “What color is this” section.

Then my year-long tour through the home with AY Magazine came to a close with an exciting giveaway to several lucky winners!

WOW. I am speechless when I see all these amazing features, memories of lovely friends new and old that I have met over the year, design awards, and exciting project reveals.

So here’s where the gratitude part comes in…Thank you so very much to the many publications and books that thought my work worthy of their gorgeous pages this year. I am so very grateful to each and every one of you and your teams who are so good to me.

An especially big Thank You to Ann Maine, Beth Brenner, and Krissa Rossbund at Traditional Home and all their team members who have been such a joy to work with and travel with this year.

Also a giant Thank You to Jennifer Kopf and Lindsey Beatty and their team at Southern Living Magazine who have been fantastic and fun and so kind to include me in so many lovely spreads this year. I am so appreciative!

I also want to thank each and every one of you who have had me speak at your events and who have treated me both like a queen and like family this year. I am so happy to have so many new people to call friends and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your hospitality and warm welcomes! I want to say a special thanks to my friend Cheminne Taylor-Smith, head of marketing at High Point Market, for having me speak so many times in your tenure with the market and for your genius idea of the “Style Spotters” and including me in such an innovative idea.

Next, I need to thank each and every person who attended my camps and purchased my information products this year. My consulting business has grown like wild-fire thanks to you all and I look forward to working with many of you more this year!

Plus a special thanks to all those who have been speakers and special guests at our camps this year including Cheminne, Scot, Kathy, and Amanda. As well as Phoebe Howard, Annie Selke, and Susanna Salk.

And how could I not thank the 25 AMAZING women that are part of my Mastermind Consulting Group. You are my inspiration. You make me want to get out of bed each day and go to work solving the problems of the Design Industry and creating new and innovative ideas for making our businesses and lives better. I am eternally grateful that you have helped me find my true passion! Much love to each of you.

I send out a sincere Thank You to President Bill Clinton who took time from his busy schedule to record a message of inspiration for the 200 designers and architects I was speaking to at the Design Leadership Summit in Morocco and for his kind words about my family and me in the video. He is a true inspiration to me and so many and for that I am very grateful!  And a thank you to Keith Granet, Meg Touborg, and Peter Sallick for asking me to share my “Moment of Inspiration” with the conference. It was a highlight of my year.

Tobi Fairley Design of Masins Bellvue

I want to thank the Masin Family in Seattle for entrusting their store lobby to me for the Diffa Glam Charity Event.  I can honestly say I have never met a family any kinder or more loving than the Masins. From the moment I arrived until the moment I left on both trips to Seattle, they treated me like I was one of them. I could have sworn I was in the South because their hospitality would rival any of it here! And I adored spending time with the youngest Masin family members too. The G-man became one of my biggest fans, and me his!

Another important Thank You is to Sheilah, the amazing owner of Olioboard and to Leslie Carothers who helped bring us together. I think our relationship is a match made in Heaven and it will be so much fun to give back to the design community with you more next year. Thank you for being a big part of our educational and inspiring events!

I can’t miss sending a big Thank You to my fantastic clients who allow me to create my vision in their homes and hospitality projects. I am so grateful for that privilege and I can’t thank you enough for investing in me.

And lastly, to my staff (shown here with design campers). What a unbelievable group of women (including my amazing mom), that I get to work with each week. Thank you for drinking the “Tobi Kool-aide” and buying into my vision to create Inspired Design, Inspired Businesses, and Inspired Lives. I couldn’t accomplish even a tenth of what I do without your help! And for that, I love you all!

And just like with any great Awards Speech :), I am sure there are so many people that have been a part of my life and my many blessings this year that I haven’t named. And so to each of you that I have encountered, that have been part of projects in any way from construction workers and subcontractors to architects and photographers…I thank you. To all of you who have been a part of my magazine features from lay-out to the written content…I thank you. And to each and every one of you who have said hello to me during my travels, have emailed me kind feedback, have left a blog comment, Facebook message, or Tweet…I thank you.

I get the honor and privilege to have SO many amazing people come into my life each year and each of you enrich my life more than you will ever know. You all are the reason that this is my dream job!

Now here’s my chance to pay all these blessings forward. I ask that you please support all of these people that have been so supportive to me.

Please hire designers, architects and other professionals for your next project. They are so worth the value and expertise they bring to your project. A great design professional will more than pay for themselves in money saved and mistakes avoided, so please invest in them.

Please spread the love when shopping for your home from the internet with Olioboard and One Kings Lane to retail home stores like Masins Furniture and our Camp Tobi Fairley sponsor Cobblestone and Vine. I hope you will invest in both so we keep them all alive and well in the coming year, as both online and brick and mortar shops all have so many wonderful things to offer us.

And when looking for Design inspiration, I know you will look to the web, but please continue to support all those amazing print magazines like Traditional Home, Southern Living, House Beautiful, HGTV Magazine, At Home in Arkansas and the many other publications that have been so instrumental in my career. Life just wouldn’t be the same without them.

And when looking for great design information and education, please consider attending conferences and markets like the Design Bloggers Conference, High Point Furniture Market, Arizona Market events, the Atlanta Market Center events and the Visions Window Treatment Conference. Each of these have fantastic content and will greatly benefit your business. And many of these have trade shows in conjunction, so feel free to shop away, purchasing gorgeous furniture, fabrics and home accents for your clients or yourself while you are there!

For more design inspiration and to give back at the same time, I hope you will visit Designer Showhouses and events like the Day of Design in Richmond when it comes around again in 2014 and also great showhouse events like Holiday House in New York that benefits Breast Cancer Research or the gorgeous tabletop design events benefitting DIFFA (Design Industries Foundation Fighting Aids) which are usually called Dining by Design and happen in cities all across the country throughout the year like the DIFFAGlam event in Seattle in the Fall.

And if you are looking for a Charity to embrace, there is none better than the Clinton Foundation. Their work in Africa, Haiti and right here in America is inspiring. Bill Clinton’s vision for helping others is second to none and supporting this worthy charity foundation would make a difference in lives around the globe!

Nothing would make me happier in 2013 than to know that I had some part in helping to support all these fantastic businesses, services, and publications that have been so kind to support me.

And now as 2012 comes to a close, one final Thank You. This one is for you. First, I thank you for reading this VERY long blog post. (LOL) But more importantly, I thank you for being here with me on the blog day in and day out this year and every year since 2008. Without you, I wouldn’t have this powerful platform for celebrating my successes, sharing my inspiration, my passions, my challenges, and my life’s journey. And without you and this “little blog”, my life wouldn’t be near as full.

You are a blessing to me and I want you to know that for that I am grateful.

Much love to you and wishing you many blessings, peace and prosperity as the door on 2012 closes and the opportunities of 2013 blossom. May next year be the year that all your dreams come true. And I will be here cheering you along every step of the way.

xo,


P.S. Now the FUN starts…so meet me back here starting tomorrow for a MONTH-LONG look at my resolutions, goals, plans, and dreams for the new year. I love a fresh start and I can’t wait to see you here in 2013! Happy New Year!

 

Mastermind Mojo: What happens when we put our heads together!

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Recently one of my Mastermind Members inspired me with this quote. It touched her heart, it touched mine, and it touched the hearts of our entire group. And that seems to happen a lot in our group. You see, there is a magic that happens in a group like Mastermind…I call it “Mastermind Mojo”. And that mojo is the exponential effect of having many great minds, hearts, and souls come together to dream bigger, live larger, love stronger, leap higher, and hold out the safety net for each other when we stumble and fall.

It is like nothing I have ever witnessed but I think it is the epitome of this other great quote I have heard for years but didn’t fully understand until now.

In his groundbreaking book Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill spoke of the concept of a Mastermind Group by saying this…

“No two minds ever come together without thereby creating a third invisible intangible force, which may be likened to a third mind [the master mind].

And if you’ve read Think and Grow Rich like I have, you know what a genius Napoleon Hill really was! Consequently, most of my Mentors, Gurus, and Inspirational speakers who were inspired by Hill, run their own Mastermind Programs or have in the past including Tony Robbins, Brian Tracy, Ali Brown, and Lisa Sasevich just to name a few.

According to The Success Alliance, the Definition and Purpose of a Mastermind Group is this:

“Mastermind groups offer a combination of brainstorming, education, peer accountability and support in a group setting to sharpen your business and personal skills. A mastermind group helps you and your mastermind group members achieve success.

Participants challenge each other to set important goals, and more importantly, to accomplish them. The group requires commitment, confidentiality, willingness to be creative and brainstorm ideas/solutions, and support each other with total honesty, respect and compassion. Mastermind group members act as catalysts for growth, devil’s advocates and supportive colleagues. This is the essence and value of mastermind groups.”

Last year, you may remember my post on selecting a coach. And my tips are still on the mark whether you want to work with me, or a local coach or someone virtually. The key is just finding one and taking the leap.

My Mastermind program is the best of both worlds, Mastermind and Coaching or Mentoring. So you get the benefit of leadership, tips, tools and support from my team and me and you get the bonus of brainstorming, sharing, supporting, and loving the other members in the Mastermind group, which is one of the REAL values!! Long after you have worked with me, those relationships will still be in your life. It is bonding like none you have ever seen!

Recently one of my Mastermind Members asked me why we don’t promote Mastermind more on my blog or at the very least share all the amazing successes people are having and how we come together and lift each other up. Well that’s a good question and one I didn’t really have an answer for.

And I have to tell you…my consulting work, particularly my Mastermind Group, has become especially inspiring to me. I have been mentioning lately that I am working in my dream job. But it’s even bigger than that!

I feel like I have found my true purpose in life. And believe me nothing feels better than that! Isn’t that what we are all searching for in life…the answer to what our purpose is?

But with finding your purpose comes loads of responsibility. I now know why I am here on Earth and the obligation I have to use my talents, my gifts, and my knowledge to serve others. My parents and my church always told me to serve others…now I really know what that means for me. And what an honor it is!

But it’s not all responsibility…there is also a TON of reward. And I am so excited about the work we are doing with Designers and Creatives from around the country and the results they are getting that I just can’t wait another minute to tell you (and show you) through our new Mastermind Video Brochure. Talk about a reward!!!

You see..It’s like hitting your sweet spot. You know that feeling of a job done well? You know what it felt like when you aced a test in school? Or when you nail a presentation to a client? Or when you have your house exquisitely cleaned or a beautiful and tasty meal on the table? Well I am so honored to be working with many amazing women in my Mastermind group that are totally knocking it out of the park and that heart-warming, awe-inspiring, satisfying feeling is the one I get every time one of them have a success or a break-through. I have to tell you, I have never felt so fulfilled…not even when building my own business.

They say it is better to give than to receive and I am evidence that the saying is true!

I can only equate it to the way that you feel as a mom when something great happens to your child. It makes you so much happier than if the great thing had happened to you! So on a daily basis, one of my Mastermind Members fills me with joy, just like a proud Mama, at what they are doing, where they are heading, the leaps they are taking, and the courage they are showing!

So without further adieu…Here is our brand new, “hot off the presses” Mastermind Video Brochure for 2013.

http://youtu.be/iHKOxpauXTo

 

And if you are thinking about joining us in Mastermind this year, here are the monthly telecall topics for all next year. I think you might find them super-inspiring as well. And know that each of these will have a self-care slant to them, because if you read my post yesterday, you know Self-care=confidence and we want you to have to confidence to make the most of these calls…

January: Scheduling for Success: Keeping “The Best,” Cutting “The Rest”

February: Inspired Networking: Forging Authentic and Lasting Relationships in Your Professional Life

March: Does Your Personal Image Support Your Professional Goals? How to Integrate Your Self-­Presentation With Your Brand

April: Skill Boosters: Elevate Your Designs to Create a Product with Unquestionable Value

May: The Big Reveal: Strategies for Re-­Launching Your Brand and Introducing the NEW You

June: Concise and Confident: Creating a One-­Minute Pitch that SELLS!

July: Realign With Your Passion and Re-­inspire Your Work!

August: Align Your Key Players to Live Your Dream Job NOW

September: Tobi’s Top 10 Obstacles to Profit (and how to OVERCOME them!)

October: Finish Strong OR Get Back in the Game: Tobi’s Tips to Flourishing in the 4th Quarter!

November: How to Embrace GIVING and Invite ABUNDANCE in Your Business

December: Get Out That Horn! Celebrate Your Successes and Show Gratitude for YOU

If you want to know even more about Mastermind, I am having another Free Telecall to tell you all about Mastermind 2013 that will answer all your questions and concerns.

Join me Monday, January 7, 2013 to get all your questions about Mastermind answered!

To register for this totally FREE call, go here and sign up and you’ll receive an email with the call in details.

Or if you want to talk to some of our current members about their coaching/mentoring/mastermind experience with us, email us at info@tobifairley.com and we will connect you with one of those members.

As you move into 2013 if you want BIG results, I highly advocate hiring a coach or joining a Mastermind Group or BOTH! Whether it’s me or another coach, working with a good one is worth it’s weight in gold! I’ve had several that have helped me grow my business and my life to where I am today. I can assure you I wouldn’t be here without them. And I wish the same for you in 2013!

Here’s to your most profitable and peaceful year yet! xo,

 

P.S. Meet me back here tomorrow for my annual Year in Review. And then Tuesday for the beginning of a month long Goals, Resolutions, and Dreams kick-off! Happy New Year!

Self Care Saturday: Confidence is Everything!

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Hello Friends,

Here we are on my last “Self Care Saturday” of 2012. It’s been a great year and I think 2013 is going to be even better. As I wind down this year and look to the new one with plans, dreams, and resolutions, I have been thinking a lot about what it is that helps people achieve their goals and stick to their resolutions. And I kept coming back to one word…Confidence.

I never realized that a lack of confidence is such an epidemic in our country or even the world until I started coaching and mentoring others. It blows my mind each time I encounter a talented, beautiful, brilliant, woman that has so little confidence in herself. And this happens almost every week.

I also didn’t realize until recent years what a gift it is for someone, typically a parent, to give you the gift of confidence. I am one of the lucky ones with two loving and supportive parents that helped me believe I could be anything that I wanted to be and that have supported me emotionally, physically, and financially to help me get a great education and start my own business.

But what I find so often with my consulting clients is that someone in their life (or someone absent from their life) didn’t give them that unconditional love and support needed to cultivate an attitude of fearlessness and an unbridled confidence that each of us needs to make it out in our big, scary world! And often it is even worse…those that are supposed to love and support you actually planted many seeds of self-doubt and insecurity in your thoughts that you just can’t help but believe.

So as I set my resolutions for 2013, one of them will be to help others, as many people as I possibly can, to have this kind of love and support next year to reach their dreams.  I LOVE more than anything, building people up, showing them how amazing they are, and holding their hand as they reach for and achieve their dreams!

One of my Mastermind Members made me aware of Gwenyth Paltrow’s latest issue of GOOP that addresses a big player in this insecurity epidemic…Perfectionism.

I love giving people the confidence to NOT know it all. To NOT be Perfect. In fact, one of the best parts of life is learning, so helping people open their eyes and their minds to all the questions, all the possibilities, and watching as they try different solutions that work for them…Now THAT is what inspires me.

The funny thing about confidence, or the lack of it, is that most people know everything they need to know RIGHT THIS MINUTE to fulfill their wildest dreams. They just don’t think they do. So I am constantly reassuring those I mentor either through my consulting business, here on the blog, or even on Facebook and Twitter that you can stop searching for the answer, and just start listening to your gut and following your heart. They will lead you right where you need to go.

I think the easiest and most effective way to become confident is to just DECIDE. Yes, it’s that easy. Just decide that you don’t care what other people say or think of you. If you ask any of my Mastermind Members they will tell you that my VERY favorite saying of all time is this…”What other people think of me is none of my business!” And we remind each of them of this profound quote each time a shred of doubt creeps into their self-talk or their spouse’s feedback, or their mother’s opinion.

Now don’t get me wrong, you definitely need the love and support of those special people your life. But you don’t have to take their opinions as the gospel. You can kindly and sincerely thank those people for loving you enough to give great advice. And then you can only take the advice that fits with your goals and dreams and be grateful to them for sharing it with you!

But hear me out here, because this may be the most important thing I will say today. I am giving you permission to leave all other advice behind, without saying a word, without making the giver feel bad or stupid, and without ANY guilt attached to not taking it. In fact don’t even tell them that you didn’t. Just treat them with love and appreciation and then give that same courtesy to yourself. No beating yourself up. No tearing yourself down. No strings attached. You are the ONLY person who needs to love your decision. ONLY YOU! PERIOD!

Take pride in being uniquely you. And find others to surround yourself with that appreciate your authenticity while you slowly and quietly move away from those that don’t.

And surround yourself with people who will stand behind you with a smile, ready to catch you if you fall while you push yourself to do those things that are most frightening to you.

But remember that so often the things we fear aren’t really that scary. And if your biggest fear is being wrong, then you shouldn’t be scared at all. Everyone is wrong, every single day, hundreds of times. We’ve got tons of practice at it. So why should we fear it? What would happen if we embrace it. If it becomes our friend? And if each time we are wrong, we remind ourselves that we are one step closer to getting it right. What if we think of it as a blessing because we now know one more thing that won’t work, so we can move on to the things that will?

So if being wrong is no longer scary, and we surround ourselves with people who will catch us when we fall, then what dreams can we NOT reach. If we tear down all the walls of doubt and insecurity, there is no way we can fail!

And if we even redefine what it means to be happy and successful.  And if we can just decide to change our attitudes and in turn change our lives, then we can be happy and confident every day. It’s that easy…we write our own standards and we write them so we can achieve them. We don’t set ourselves up for failure but rather set ourselves up for ultimate happiness and success!

And if ultimately we learn to love ourselves through our successes and our failures. If we learn that neither of them define us, but that we are great people through our ups and our downs, then a bad moment, doesn’t become a bad day, doesn’t become a bad life. A bad moment is just that…a bad moment and since it only lasts a moment, then how painful can it really be?

So then if we have the confidence to do what we love, be who we are, and put ourselves out there fully and embrace it, no one can ever tear us down. If we reveal all our “secrets” and embrace our passions, then no one has any power over us because we have nothing to hide. And when we are truly happy with the person we are, just the way we are at this moment, no matter what our weight or the size of our bank accounts then no one can hold us back.

And yes, sometimes insecurity will still creep back in. But you will now recognize it as someone you used to know. And you can embrace it. And then you escort it right out of your life with a smile!

So if your dream for 2013 is to Stand Out…I’m here to tell you that YOU CAN DO IT with confidence! My dream for 2013 is to be the source of strength for many people just like you. I want to help many phenomenal individuals and entrepreneurs really stand out, embrace their unique niches, and make money with their talents.

And if this all seems bigger than you, don’t worry. It starts with just one tiny step. One tiny moment of knowing you are Strong. You are Brave. You are Smart. And that one moment will lead to the next, and the next.

So start today. Believe in yourself because I believe in you!

And I think you are beautiful. So I can’t wait to see you have the confidence to Be You!

And on this Self Care Saturday, promise me that you will do something for yourself today that will make you love yourself a little bit more than you did yesterday. Because when we take care of ourselves we are at our best. And when we are at our best, we have more confidence. And confidence breeds more confidence. So ultimately self care=confidence!

And I am giving you permission today to practice self care! And to practice confidence. Because practice makes perfect. :)

Be sure to leave me a comment on how I can help you have more confidence in 2013. I’d love your feedback as I plan my blog content for next year.

Happy Saturday!

xo,

P.S. Be sure to meet me back here daily to hear more about my plans and resolutions for 2013. It’s going to be exciting!
Tobi Fairley Life Solutions

Grateful for Power and a few Thank you’s!

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Wow! It’s been like a war zone around here. Arkansas is definitely not prepared for 10″ of snow over a layer of ice!

I finally got my power back on last night at 7pm after 50 hours without it and my office and some of my staff still don’t have power.  It’s pretty miserable but I had my gas fireplace and gas range through it all so we could at least warm up a bit and eat hot meals. Many people didn’t even have that. So I was certainly counting my blessings through it all!

It’s so interesting how something so pretty can be such a strain. I guess the old adage “Be Careful What you Wish for” is true here because many Arkansans including me were wishing for a White Christmas and boy did we ever get one. And we certainly enjoyed it for a while. We just didn’t think about all the problems that would come with it.

And though I made some awesome memories with my family and my neighbors, I am definitely grateful to have my power back. I have never been so happy to be able to do laundry, clean the kitchen, do dishes and mop the floor! It’s funny how many of the things we complain and moan about on a daily basis, we suddenly are happy to do when we see what the alternative looks like!

But I don’t want to get back to normal life without thanking a few very important people who are risking their lives to make many Arkansans lives better. All the men and women who work at Entergy and all those linemen who have come from neighboring states to help get us back in business, Thank you from me and from so many Arkansans who appreciate all you are doing for us.

Thanks to the AWESOME guys at Cowling Cook Electric who worked with me to hook up a generator last night so we could at least have a few lights, a space heater, and an electric blanket! Ironically our power came on just 3 hours later, but it could have been a REALLY cold night had it not been restored. These guys would were our heroes for warming us up! And for those few hours of light and heat before the power was restored, they definitely put a smile on the face of my daughter and me.

Thanks to Kenny and Craig who work for my parents and drove a generator and lots of gasoline all the way up from South Arkansas yesterday and while they were here carted off my dead Christmas tree and garlands! Even my dog, Harley was happy to be inside with the generator running yesterday afternoon.

An no matter how picturesque this snow was, my family was starting to get tired of it and ready for some REAL food! Thanks to my sweet mom who sent groceries up from her town 45 miles away because Little Rock grocery stores were mainly closed due to no power. And even if they were open, they had very little on their shelves and weren’t selling any perishables. That chili I was able to make last night made my family SO happy! And thanks to my Aunt Helen who had filled our freezer this Fall with meals too. We ate most of her cooking before the freezer thawed out. So those meals were life-savers!

And thanks to Thomas and Tom Wallace, hubby and father-in-law of my team member Brooke who were super knowledgeable about all my generator questions and who magically connected me with the electricians who came to my rescue! It would have been warmer sitting in these chairs than the ones in my house without that generator after the 16 degree weather the night before.

I know there are many other heroes working tirelessly to make the situation better for all those who are freezing cold and can’t even take a shower because it’s too cold to get out of it and you can’t even dry your wet hair! So if you are out there helping Arkansans restore their lives back to normal this holiday season…Thank you, too! You are putting smiles on the faces of the elderly, children, and pets all over our state!

And now that I have power back and can keep my Mac and all my gadgets charged, I’ll be blogging all weekend (that is if I can keep my daughter entertained and smiling like she with her BFF above). It’s almost time for my annual year in review and my 2013 resolutions and I will be crafting them over the next several days. So check back often to see what all I am up to. Hopefully it will be all the inspiration you need to kickstart the New Year!

Happy Friday and I hope you are warm and cozy like Izzy Fairley and me! And if you aren’t, I’m praying you will be really soon.

xo,

P.S. If you are working on your New Year’s resolutions and plans this weekend too, be sure to consider my upcoming Designer MBA camp and my new E-coaching service. Both are GREAT options for making 2013 your most profitable and prosperous year yet! I hope you’ll join me for one or both of these exciting consulting options! Trust me, they will change your life! Just watch our new video brochure to see what I mean. xo, Tobi

Snowed-in and powerless!

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Let me tell you, we have had record-setting couple of days of weather here in central Arkansas! A snow thunderstorm? A blizzard? Yikes.

We are accustomed to mild winters and sweltering summers. So I’m learning lots of new things about what it takes to stay warm and happy through DAYS with no electricity and no way to get out and do ANYTHING. Did I mention we are not equipped to handle  SNOW THUNDERSTORMS? Well, until now that goes for the highway department and for me!! But we are making the most of it (i.e., Lots of family snuggles!).

For more peeks at my winter wonderland, follow me on Instagram (@tobifairley) and on Facebook: facebook.com/tobifairley!

Stay warm and appreciate that electricity a little extra for me!!

Xo,