Sunday, February 28, 2010

Young Goddess Day

March 20th is National 
Young Goddess Day!

And Womentorz is celebrating the ENTIRE month of March with FREE SHIPPING with your purchases of a Goddess Box!!!

Share how you spent YGD with your daughter for automatic entry into a giveaway 
at the end of the month!

National YGD or Young Goddess Day is a day dedicated to spending quality time with your Daughter(s) one on one.  We challenge you to spend at least one hour with your daughter on this day or sometime this month, connecting with her with NO distractions… no cell phone, no computer, no radio/ipod and no video games for at least one hour! 

Can YOU give her that?

Spring is the perfect time of year to promote such a Healthy Holiday for our daughters as it’s a season dedicated to the beginnings of new blooms, plants and flowers just emerging from underground… similar to our girls growing up right in front of us.  Need suggestions?

Go to the park

Take a walk

Go Fishing



Look through old photo albums

A scenic drive

Sound easy???  Most of us may do this on a regular basis, but how many of us turn off the outside world to solely tune into our daughters and listen?  That’s the challenge!


RaeCole is teaming up with Womentorz to promote this National Holiday, so be sure to write in at, post on our blog and facebook page or twitter us at @womentorz with #younggoddessday in the tag and tell us how you spent your YGD or maybe “invent” your own way to schedule quality time with your daughter.  All stories, suggestions or comments, automatically qualifies you in a giveaway at the end of the month!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Inventor Showcase: Bra Barrette

This is a very exciting time for Lara Merriam-Smith, the inventor of the Bra Barrette, as you will soon see her on QVC.  It's no surprise that she has hit the big time with this amazing product.  Unlike other products on the market, the Bra Barrette doesn't convert your bra to a racerback, but leaves inches between the straps, adding lift and support. 

Here's a look into how Lara's product came to be and some insight into what makes her so special:

Q. How did you come up with the concept of Bra Barrette? 

I was sitting in my chair grading my students papers, pulling up my tank top straps –again- and looked at the paper clip in my hand and wondered if I could use it to keep my straps in place between my shoulder blades.   I started bending that wire into another shape and eventually came up with the spiral design of the Bra Barrette. 

Q. What are the features of your invention that differentiates it from anything else on the market? 
There are actually three things that set us apart from other products: 1.  Its made from a flexible and durable plastic, all of the other products are either fabric or a rigid plastic, this makes the BB more comfortable to wear as it bends and moves with you.  2.  It was designed to be seen, so it can be used on tank tops, spaghetti strap tops and swimsuits, and can come with charms and crystals to dress up your straps.  3.  It’s available in three sizes, all of our competitors come in only one size, but I realized not all women, or outfits are created equal and multiple sizes are needed to make sure every woman can find one to fit them.

Q. Can you tell us how Bra Barrette helps your clothes fit better? 

The Bra Barrette provides lift and support to tired sagging bras, making you look and feel 10 pounds lighter!   It also keeps you looking professional by keeping your straps in place under clothing.   When you use it with a tank top or spaghetti strap top you can add a little bling to the back and create an eye catching new look!

Q. What was your experience like having your product manufactured? 

I  had an incredible plastics manufacturer I work with here in Bellingham who helped me through so many of the challenges.  My husband and I are the ones who spend most of the time adding charms and packaging the product   It will be interesting to see what happens now as I have some sales under my belt and I start looking for another manufacturer to take over all parts of production and distribution. 

Q. Did you encounter any problems, or was it pretty smooth process? 

Lots of little hiccups along the way, but nothing that wasn’t insurmountable.  I constantly reached out to resources available to me through networking groups (ewomen, biznik and other groups), SBA and SCORE to help me when I wasn’t sure what to do next.   Reaching out for help was the most important thing I could do when I wasn’t sure. 

Q. What or who motivates you through challenging moments? 

My end goal motivates me.  I want to get to a point where my business is moving forward and making enough money to pay the bills so my husband and I can have children and start living a life we design.   I recognize that may take years to achieve but my husband helps motivate me to keep working towards that goal.

Q. How do you juggle your business with family life and its daily demands? 

I am fortunate to not have to divide my time between kids and work.  While I look forward to the day I do, I am glad I started this business while the only time constraints were brought on by Beagle    I do still have other obligations to school work (I am working on my MBA) and I am starting to teach classes to other aspiring entrepreneurs to help them start their businesses and coach them through the challenges.   Balancing that with work is tough sometimes, but I keep organized as best I can and plan out my week so I know where my time needs to get spent.   I use a lot of action plans and structured to-do lists to keep myself on track and give myself breaks when I need them. 

Q. Do you have any hobbies or interests outside of your business? 

My hobby is to help other entrepreneurs, I enjoy the creative process and problem solving!   I also do some gardening, bike riding, hiking and when I can, I travel (I am a former Geography teacher!).  

Friday, February 19, 2010

Women Owned Businesses Becoming a Target

I’ve never considered myself a feminist or a man hater by any means….and I’m still not.  The  reason why I’m sharing this is because of recent trends I’ve been seeing having a business that is clearly run by women and providing a service for women.  I have two other businesses, but one is where I work with predominately females and the other is owned with my husband who is the face of the company.  No one messes with him. 
I’ve noticed since the launch of Womentorz that there have been many situations where men providing a service have tried to charge me more than they would a male owned business because they think they can get away with it.  I know this because when I’ve called them out on price with comparisons.  They have either become defensive or reduced their price and say they are willing to “negotiate”.  Why didn’t they give me the fair price from the start?  It’s the same reason why most women know not to go to a car dealership by themselves.  Just try to visit a car lot by yourself and you will see a flock of salesmen head your way with high pressure tactics.
As women owned businesses it is very important to do our homework and obtain several quotes.  Don’t be afraid to question price and ask for references.  The reason why this trend is taking place is because these men are use to women trusting that what they are saying is fact and they think they can get away with it.  I’m not saying that all men in business are out to take advantage of women.  I’m just saying that women in business need to be diligent and somewhat untrusting until the trust is deserved.  I’m very lucky that the situations where I was taken advantage of didn’t ruin Womentorz because they really could have if I had not questioned their charges and left the relationship feeling cheated and powerless.  My bark is sweet, but when necessary the bite can be vicious.   Lesson learned the hard way!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Whittle Your Waistline Wednesday ~ Week 7

I am basking in the quiet - not a television or radio on.  I have situated myself upstairs in my bedroom in front of my eastward facing windows to enjoy the sunshine that is beaming in.  I am free to do what I need or want until 3:00 p.m.... After spending the past ten days in close quarters with my daughters, I am in need of a little break.  I am also feeling thankful that I can busy myself with this post while waiting on some very exciting news that we at Womentorz are hoping to share at some point today!

Today I am going to focus on taking good care of myself and treating my body well.  It is so easy to forget when we are in mom mode, taking care of everyone else and just throwing whatever happens to be there into our bodies without a lot of thought.  I am reminding myself today that I DESERVE to eat well and be the best possible version of myself and you should do the same.  Yes, it takes a bit more effort to, first, make a good choice and then follow it through.  What I know is that we're all worth it and will be better to ourselves and our families for it!

With that in mind, here's what I'm eating today...and I'm going to add the same kind of love as when I cook for others!

FIRST THING - You all know the drill by now!  Can you hear my Gram in your ear yet?  "Bubble Nose, get yourself a nice big glass of WATER!"

BREAKFAST - I have discovered a new and wonderful thing, especially for those of us (ahem) in our mid to late 30's/early 40's... Yo Plus Yogurt - go and get yourself some!  Today, in fact, I am actually still working on it, I made a protein shake with it.  So - in the blender:  6 oz. water, 1 container Blackberry Pomogranate Yo Plus yogurt, 1 scoop EAS Vanilla Whey protein powder and a few ice cubes if you like.  Blend and enjoy!

SNACK - In the spirit of cleansing and calming what I believe my girl Bethenny calls my "inner food voice" I am going to sip on some hot lemon water and crunch several baby carrots/cucumber slices.

LUNCH - Splurged yesterday at the store and bought a beautiful box of organic spring mix greens which I will top with a can of Albacore Tuna in water and a sprinkle of toasted pine nuts and a couple of cracks of black pepper.  Again - really trying to feel like the pure young thing I used to be (HA!), so I will be squeezing a lemon juice on my salad today.  A great dressing for this salad is any light balsamic vinagrette.

SNACK - 1/2 scoop EAS Vanilla Protein powder in shaker with  water.  Hot lemon water for sipping.

DINNER - I know I've posted this a lot - but it is just REALLY good for you!  Grilled chicken breast with steamed broccoli sauteed in garlic and a little olive oil....and I may just squeeze some lemon over this too!

LATE NIGHT SNACK - 1/2 cup 2% cottage cheese with black pepper

I am trying to avoid salt at all costs today.  I have not been sleeping well and I believe it's due to too much coffee and not enough thought about what I've been eating this week.  I am still maintaining the size that I lost, but I would like to lose another size before bathing suit season is upon us!

Today is a beautiful day and I hope everyone is enjoying it as well!  As Ro Wagner Tweeted earlier today "It feels like a good day for a happy dance." 

Let's all virtual pinky swear to be as good as we can to ourselves today okay?


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Motherhood is the New MBA

Shari Storm and I had been trying to get together for several weeks since we had been told by a good friend that we should get to know each other.  The day had finally come and we each had gone to different restaurants just blocks apart waiting for the other to show up.  Thank goodness for modern technology because she sent me an email and I responded that I was at the Red Twig.  Here response was simply, “Crap, I’ll be there in 2 seconds!”  I knew at that moment that I was really going to like this gal because that was my kind of response.  I was right and we had a delightful get together. 

To my surprise she had given me a copy of her book, Motherhood is the New MBA, towards the end of our meeting.  At the time I didn’t know what a real treat I had been given.  I just finished the book and I can honestly say it is the most entertaining, informative and true to life books I have ever read.  It is packed full of situations at work, in business and even in everyday life where the tools you have learned as a parent can translate in adjusting to countless situations we encounter. 

I found myself laughing, crying and cheering while reading this book.  I’ve read a lot of books relating to business, but have found myself struggling to finish each one.  This is the first time I actually looked forward to the next chapter and was sad when I came to the last page.   I haven’t had that feeling since I read my last Dean Koontz novel.  This book is so good that I’m having my husband read it to enhance his management style at work.  It became clear that many of the stories in the book fathers could relate to as well.

If you’re in the Seattle area, Shari Storm will be having a book signing at the Elliott Bay Book Company on Thursday, February 25th starting at 5:30 PM.  I know I will be there networking with wonderful women.

To read more about Shari Storm and to purchase her book, please visit   I highly encourage all of you to read this book!  It’s a must read!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Introducing Jim Debetta

Happy Friday everyone!  Womentorz is all about providing resources for our followers and members and supporting all of your endeavors.  We are partners with many consultants and entrepreneurs who will be invaluable resources for all of you.  Be sure to be a part of the next TeleTweetConference with Sarah Shaw scheduled for the end of March.  This is a free service she is providing and a wonderful opportunity for all of you to learn everything you could possibly need to know about manufacturing and bringing your product to market.  We will have a firm date for you shortly.

I would also like to introduce you to Jim Debetta, who will be an amazing resource for all of us.  I had the pleasure of meeting Jim early on in the birth of Womentorz and was very impressed with his knowledge and willingness to help women entrepreneurs and inventors.  He will be a frequent contributor to our blog and an invaluable resource. 

As a highly sought-after coach and mentor for aspiring inventors worldwide, his unique methods and experienced insight is transforming the way people "go to market" with their unique products and services.
For nearly twenty years, Jim has successfully launched companies and demystified the process of proven sales and marketing methods to world-renowned retailers while selling millions of dollars of products.

Whether you are just starting out or have an organized business with retail-ready products, Jim can help you develop a clear, personal plan of action that will help you to understand how to succeed in a very competitive retail environment and learn the ins and outs of how to land your products on the shelves of America's leading retail chains.

Jim is a Patron of the United Inventors Association, co-host of the weekly invention radio show Launch, staff writer for Inventor’s Digest, nationally recognized speaker and invention blogger, and has been featured in articles in leading publications and websites such as Entrepreneur Magazine,, and Newsday.

Please visit for more information about Jim and the services he provides.   

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Whittle Your Waistline Wednesday ~ Week 6

In an unprecedented WYWW move, I am in full HusbandjustleftforJapanforthreeweeks-theblizzardiscomingandthere'snoschooluntilnextTues-survival mode.  What does this means?  My friends, this means I am going to defer to the "desperate times call for desperate measures" way of thinking... Okay, okay, enough with the theatrics!  It all sounds potentially grim, but I am here to tell you that I am used to my husband being away and frankly, I run a tight ship when Mr. Fun isn't around!  It's an all girl party and in true preparation for a big storm, I joined in the melee at Target yesterday to stock up on "milk, butter and eggs" along with some fun crafty things to keep us (myself and my two daughters ages 6 and 4) busy.  I also happen to know that many of my neighbors don't have to go to work today because the entire state of NJ is under a winter storm watch --- it is entirely possible they could tromp on over for an impromptu happy hour later today!

Meanwhile - I'm not going to get crazy - I'm going to be real with you all and, instead of posting a menu, I am going to list the things that I believe I will be eating today.

Big pot of good smelling coffee ~ today's choice Chock-Full O Nuts City Blend - it's nice!
Fage yogurt with strawberries
Protein smoothies
Chicken noodle soup
100 calorie bags of popcorn (to go with the movie we will watch)
1 or 2 mini 3 Musketeers Dark Choc with Cherry (they looked SO pretty and you know I'm a sucker for marketing!)
Reduced Fat Wheat Thins w/Garlic Hummus (potential snow party snack)
1 or 2 moderate (i.e., not the giant size) glasses of red wine (this is really for medicinal purposes - you understand)

Hope the weather where you are is sunny, warm and Spring-like...I can dream can't I?  In all seriousness, this kind of weather only makes the coming of Spring that much sweeter!

Have a great day!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Sizzling Business Dream Contest

Ladies, pick up your pens and start writing! The Sisters of Sizzle Talk Radio and Ladies Who Launch are teaming up to bring you a contest to provide one lucky launcher with a FREE Incubator Intensive Workshop in March. All you have to do is share your dream with us!

Launch your dream today. Tell us and Win!

If you have a dream of your own business or making your existing business even better, tell us about it … and you could win a spot in a Ladies Who Launch Incubator Intensive Workshop.

Everyone has ideas just sitting around, collecting dust in their mind. We think about our good ideas, daydream about them, and even take small actions toward making them a reality. But what if you could take your idea, your business, the life that you are living and make it BIGGER, more meaningful, successful and happy?  

The Ladies Who Launch Incubator Intensive Workshop helps every woman, regardless of what stage you are in … to get unstuck, move forward, take back your dream, build your business, refine your vision, grow what you have created, and connect with a community of resourceful, smart, inspiring women, just like you!  It is easy to enter!! Use the form below and tell us in 500 words or less about your business dream and why the Incubator would be helpful for you.

What about the Sisters of Sizzle? One lucky winner will  share their weekly incubator experience on-air with the Sisters of Sizzle every Wednesday for the month of March. That’s right it’s your 10-minutes of fame with the Sista’s. Come in to the studio or call in and give us the scoop! We want to know all about your incubator experience … what are you learning, what are your A-Ha! moments, and what are you gearing up to do! We are your biggest cheerleaders and we can’t wait to share with the world your big dream!

All entries must be posted by midnight on February 25, 2010.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Shark Tank Friday and A Story of "Hope"

Fridays have officially become the day to Tweet about our love for Shark Tank which airs tonight at 9/8 central on ABC - even if you can't watch, set those recording devices!  We've had alot of fun the last couple of weeks chatting under #womentorzluvsharktank while watching the show and the Sharks are taking notice!  Kevin Harrington is now following @GrimeOut on Twitter!  Weee haaa!

As many of you are aware, there is one woman who overcame much during her entrepreneurial journey and, when she finally got her shot with the Sharks, she made it look like taking candy from a baby.  Her name is Leslie Haywood and she is one strong lady!  I am unable to post the image here, so please go to to view an exquisite image and read The Story Behind the Powerful Image of "Hope".

We hope you'll help spread the word!  Looking forward to chatting tonight during Shark Tank!


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Whittle Your Waistline Wednesday, Week 5!

 With all of the exciting events looming just over the horizon, I am trying not to feel panicked about looking and feeling my best!  Sometimes, when I’m stressed I can sort of subconsciously sabotage myself.  I have worked hard to recognize that habit and turn those moments into something positive instead of taking a step backward!  The good news is, it isn’t as hard as I thought it would be!  I have also learned something really wonderful (for me anyway) – it’s OKAY to feel a bit hungry!  Who knew?  It’s almost sort of a relief like, hey – I can do this!  I know I have eaten properly and I don’t feel famished, just maybe that kind of hungry you get when you are getting ready to snack on something out of boredom.  Lemme tell ya folks, I am waaaayyyy to busy for any feelings of boredom these days!  So, here’s what’s on the menu today and, thanks to Jennifer Magee (Express Yourself Baby), I’m going to try a new recipe she got from Racheal Ray.  It’s sure to be Yum-O!!

FIRST THING – Big glass of water (by the way, for those of you following, yesterday would have been my beloved Gram’s 87th birthday…I sure wish she was here to see how things have turned out for me)  Also going to switch it up this morning and have a nice big cup of hot tea instead of coffee.

BREAKFAST  It’s gotta be quick today!  Protein shake made with 8 oz. (about half bottle) Bolthouse Farms Berry Boost Smoothie in blender with 1 scoop EAS Vanilla Whey and a few ice cubes

SNACK  Big glass of water and half of an EAS Edge Peanut Butter Chocolate Bar

LUNCH  3 egg whites (one yolk!) scrambled with a handful of baby spinach over 1 slice 100% Whole Wheat toast.  I garnish with red pepper flakes instead of salt, a little sprinkle (of salt) won’t kill you though!

SNACK ½ scoop EAS Vanilla Whey Protein Powder in 6 – 8 oz of water.  I just throw it in my shaker and go.

DINNER  Here is the link to what is sure to be a fabulous meal tonight!    Turkey Burgers with Cranberry-Pomegranate Sauce!  Jennifer said her husband loved them so much he thought they should have them for Thanksgiving this year!

SNACK Definitely going with 6 oz. skim or lowfat milk tonight to ensure a good night’s rest!

Hope everyone is having a great week!  I am seeing the fruits of my labor pay off and need to push through, past the point where I normally stop or get sidetracked – not this time people!!  Look good, feel good!  Couldn’t be more true.

Enjoy and share a recipe if you like!