Monday, September 26, 2011


So, I’m going to take a moment and vent just a tiny bit.  It seems to me that not enough people believe in reciprocity especially when it comes to building relationships whether business or personal.  It’s happened to me, you help out a fellow business owner or friend promote their business and what do you get in return, a cursory “thank you.”  Well, I overheard a conversation recently about just that, someone doing something nice for someone else with nothing in return, and I wondered why reciprocity is not the norm.  Don’t get me wrong we should all do nice things for others without expecting anything in return, but when you’ve given all you can and reciprocity doesn’t exit, seriously, what’s that all about?  Don’t people believe in Karma?

I read in someone’s tweet that this world is erected upon the principle of reciprocity.  Neither a drop of kindness nor a speck of evil will remain unreciprocated.   Something to remember! Done venting. ;)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


S. Carol Dougal & Lari I. Diaz

On September 15th, 2011 I had the honor of being one of five panelists for  a WBDC's 25th Anniversary Entrepreneurial Women's Conference Panel Discussion.  There were about 70 women who attended the "Launching Your Own Business: From Dream to Reality" discussion.  You couldn't be in the room without feeling high levels of positive energy that formed from all of the excitement.  

Lari I. Diaz & Meg Herman
For those of you who may not be familiar with the Women's Business Development Center (WBDC), it is a not-for-profit organization that assists women who are looking to start or grow a business by offering them counseling, education, encouragement and support.  I have been fortunate enough to have met many wonderful women who have come together over a Wisdom, Wine, & Cheese Introduction and Networking Event as well as the JumpStart Series whom I still am in contact with. One of the most inspiring women at WBDC is Ms. Meg Herman, Director of Entrepreneurial Services.  Ms. Herman continues to encourage me to do more, to be more, and to lead by example.  I owe her a huge THANK YOU for giving me support when I needed it most. 

It is no great surprise that there was more than 2000 people (mostly women) at the WBDC's 25th Anniversary Luncheon celebrating all the hard work and passion that both Ms. Hedy Ratner and Ms. Carol Dougal have put into this amazing organization.  Speakers congratulating Ms. Ratner and Ms. Dougal were many including Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and Mayor Rahm Emmanual.  

Carol Dougal & Hedy Ratner

CONGRATULATIONS Ms. Hedy Ratner & Ms. Carol Dougal!!  The dedication you have placed in the Women's Business Development Center will never be duplicated or forgotten.  

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Have you ever walked into a home were you felt comfortable and at peace by your surroundings?  Definitely better than being in a home where it feels cold and unwelcoming. I ask because I’ve gone on a quest to find what makes a home comfortable, inviting, and relaxing.  I’m searching for the ultimate gathering place where friends and family feel an unmistakable connection to the home and the people that live there.

As the owner of a cleaning service, I have been invited inside many homes, and many of them are indeed comfortable.  Yet, there are but a few that as soon as you enter the front door you forget the outside world.  You believe that you are in a place of wellbeing, security, and belonging.  Where the sounds of the home are minimal and soothing.  Where every piece of furniture and color envelope you as part of them. It’s like being in a space where you feel not like a guest but part of the family. In a book by Richard Webster titled “101 Feng Shui Tips For Your Home,” the author gives us tips on using feng shui to create an environment that allows us to enjoy more harmony, balance, and success in our lives.  I picked out my 7 favorite tips to share with you in that you can too create a comfortable, inviting, and relaxing space in your home. 

  1. Keep your home in the best possible condition.  Keep it clean!  The health of your home relates directly to you, your health, and the health of your family.
  2. Avoid clutter.  Make a concentrated effort to discard anything that you are not using.
  3. Make sure that your front door is as welcoming as possible.  You want people to be encouraged to visit, and by placing flowers on each side of your front entryway you encourage ch’i (the universal life force), and raise the spirits of your visitors.
  4. Your kitchen should have an airy, spacious, and friendly feel no matter how small.  Keep it well stocked with food and you give the impression of abundance. 
  5. Arrange furniture so that people can move freely around a room without feeling as if they are undertaking an obstacle course.
  6. Place mirrors throughout your home.  There isn’t such a thing as too many mirrors just as long as they are kept clean.  Dust and dirt reduce the effectiveness. A mirror in your dining room symbolically doubles the amount of food on the table, and doubles feelings of well-being and enjoyment experienced in this room.
  7. A family pet provides love and happiness ultimately creating harmony and contentment. 

It’s true that today we are more aware of the effects that our environment has upon us.  It, therefore, makes sense to incorporate feng shui in our home.  I for one want to keep my home as a place where I can go to relax, to be in harmony with my environment.  Here’s to my ongoing quest!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Since posting the article "My New Obsession", I've received several inquiries on Tillandsia's.  For this posting, I wanted to write a few fun facts on Tillandsia’s and how they differ from other plants.  I hope this answers many of your questions or curiosities.  ;)
  • Tillandsia's are named after the Swedish physician - Elias Tillands.
  • Tillandsia's are members of the Bromeliad family.
  • They grow on anything, they hang from anything.  
  • They grow upside down, right side up, or sideways.

  • They grow on tree trunks, branches, shrubs, cacti, rocks, and cliff faces.
  • They're root systems function to hold the plant stable, and not to absorb nutrients.
  • There are over 550 different Tillandsia species.
  • There are two major types of Tillandsia's:  those with hard leaves, and those with soft leaves.
  • Some but few are fragrant.
  •  It can take years for them to grow and mature.
  • Sizes vary.  Some are about an inch in height while others grow over 40 inches tall.
  • Flowers tend to be tubular and range in color from purple, blue, white, pink or yellow.
  • Reproduction is by seeds or by offsets called "pups".
  • A single plant could have many "pups".

If you would like more information on Tillandsia’s or would like to make a purchase, send me an email at