Sunday, January 24, 2010

Procrastination = Update!

I have no idea how it is already January 24 - How did that happen?

I'm sitting in front of my laptop, looking at the 525 unopened emails in my inbox, feeling slightly overwhelmed, and wondering how I'm going to make it all happen.

For those that are curious, the response from Shark Tank was greater than we ever imagined. Just a few stats:
1) We were the #2 most searched term on Google on Friday, January 15. We were #3 on Saturday.
2) Web traffic increased by 5500%.
3) We nearly tripled our sales in 2009 in 1 week.
4) We have received thousands of emails since the show. Tim & I are trying our best to personally respond to each one.
5) We now have people knocking on OUR door, versus us begging them to answer theirs.
6) Our little company finally has legs!
7) For anyone curious, we talk with BC & RH (our investors) at least a few times a week. The deal was real - and they are amazing mentors. With these partners, however, comes a huge level of accountability. It's a good thing, for sure, but it's also new for us!

Meanwhile, I'm still working full time. I am very lucky to have a supportive company - I had to take a few days off just to handle some of the response, but I'm back at it full time tomorrow. I really do enjoy my job - especially all of the people I work with.

Then there's the house I am building. I haven't mentioned much about it on this blog, but let's just say it's a project. I'm lucky enough to have amazing contractors that make my life easy, but there's still been so many big decisions to make. This past weekend I finalized my exterior paint colors; over the past few weeks, I've finalized plumbing, flooring, roofing, siding, textures, tiles, countertops, cabinets, windows, decking, etc... Today, I picked out some new paint colors and painted the front of the house to test them. (ETG came over and said they were perfect for me - yay!) As I stepped back and surveyed the house, I was overcome with this feeling of pride and accomplishment. I can't believe that I am building my very own house!! I can't believe that in 2 months (hopefully) I will move my stuff into a house that I created nearly from scratch - in exactly the way I wanted it - without compromising a thing. It's so exciting!!!

So, amongst all of this huge stuff going on, what did I opt to do this weekend? I headed to San Antonio with Joe, his best friend Frank & his wife Nicola. We had a blast - albeit I'm still recovering from too many nachos & alcohol - but it was so worth it. I managed to go over 24 hours away from my laptop, and actually enjoy a real mini-vacation for the first time in a long time.

I'm also doing my best to stay in close touch with my friends. Breakfasts + lunches + dinners + phone calls... I have the best support group I've ever had. I owe my sanity to them! My awesome parents are finally coming to visit me next weekend, and I'm so excited for that!

One more thing I should clear up - I am officially NOT doing Ironman this year. When I signed up for it last June, I had no clue my life would be as full as it is. For me Ironman is about setting goals, striving for something big, committing to yourself... I'm happy to say that I feel like I can check that Ironman box off my life to-do list, and if I want to do it again - it will be there. But for now, I can't happily fit it into my life.

I wrote last Friday of being scared that I was peaking... of course that was silly, even if I felt it. I guess peaking is just what you make of it. If I end up failing at all of what I have going on right now, at least I know that I get the chance to experience it all.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Some thoughts before tonight...

I'm only 29 years old, but I have learned a few things during my life. One of those things is that it's not every day that you end up on TV. National TV. National TV doing a reality TV show.

As many have pointed out, "thank goodness you're not on the Bachelor, and at least on a show where you use your brain!" Good point.

Anyway, I am sitting here looking at the clock. In 5 hours, tons of my friends will join me at a watch party and will get ready to see the show. In 5 hours, 15 minutes - my heart might jump out of my chest when the intro music starts. Just a warning. I most likely will look just as I did on the commercials!
There are so many thoughts running through my head right now... and I want to be able to look back and remember them when this is over... so I figured I would write.

First, my parents are amazing. I write that all the time, but it's not enough. They are supportive and caring and intelligent and wonderful and frankly, just amazing. I am devastated that they won't be with me tonight to watch the show. (However my longtime dear sweet friend Jenna will be watching it with my dad in Atlanta since he's on a work trip, and my mom is covered with her friends in Dallas.) The thing that has been the most fun about this experience is making them proud. They don't care what the results are, they care that I took a chance and went for it. So, to be able to make them proud... in such a way that I can hear the excitement in their voices... it's just awesome.

Second, my friends are equally amazing. People are coming out of nowhere with help, ideas, contacts, resources, words of encouragement, etc... Every time someone clicks "like" on my facebook status updates, I can't help but smile and feel so blessed. Everywhere I turn, someone is offering to help me. I feel obligated to mention a few that have gone way above and beyond the call of friend duty and surprised me to no end. It's hard to single anyone out, but there are a few very specific people who have really amazed me. Carrie B came to Interbike with me - free of charge - just to see the sites and support the business. Most recently, she has become a PR maven for me. Jeff B has done it too - coming up with ideas, spreading the PR, lending his time and expertise. Then there are people like Mike & Dionn who just listen to the craziness of running a business and offer up advice, or don't, and they are always on target. And then, there is the person who gets to (has to?) hear it all, every day, via email/text/chat/in person/and back again. (Well, he gets to deal with most of my issues, not just related to my company, but that's another story.) Multiple insane asylums can thank Chris for having one less inmate in Austin. :) Five years ago he told me, "one day I'm going to say 'I knew you back when...'" and that simple conversation has been a motivator ever since.

Third, I've been thinking about how I got to this place. Seven months ago, I didn't have much on my horizon. I admit it - I was scared not to have a plan. Seven months later, my awesome boyfriend & I are stopping by my "new" house that I'm in the process of rebuilding on the way to the viewing party for my national TV debut for a company that just by way of being on this show has more potential than ever. So how did I get here? I think I just opened my arms to the world and said "what have you got for me? I'm ready!" (Well not physically of course, but mentally. Mentally I did do that.)

Fourth, I'm scared. I'm scared that I haven't take full advantage of the opportunities I had. I'm scared that footage of me falling down on my bike will air on national TV. I'm scared that this is it for me - that I get my 15 minutes of fame - and it will all be over. I realize this is pretty silly, but I don't want to peak at age 29, dammit!

So fifth, and most important... I am here. I'm taking it all in, relishing the experience, and not predicting how the next seven months will turn out for me. I am happier now than I have ever been in my whole life, and I am thankful for every piece of it.

So... there you have it. The basketcase mind of a soon-to-be-washed-up reality tv contestant. ;)

Stay tuned for more...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


One of my very best friends wrote this:

"If you're living life by moving forward,
The wind won't always be at you back, you can't always be on the downhill side.
The path taken may be rocky and sky's full of rain.
But no matter where you turn, the earth will always be beneath your feet and the sun will always shine."
January 10, 2010

And it's friends like him that remind me the sun is always shining. :)