Featured Member: Jess Beauchemin

With a new year comes new ideas and projects. At PEERS we’re going to feature an individual member/business in between weekly blog posts or on the off weeks that our blog writer misses our meeting (I missed this week’s meeting 😦 ). Up first is Jess Beauchemin of JessBFit | Personal Training and Yoga. Since this is a new feature what I’m actually going to do this round is re-blog her most recent blog post about making room for change in your life.

“I’ve been so busy lately, I haven’t found any time for myself,” said me, last week. It pains me to hear these words from my clients, and somehow I let those same words slip out of my mouth. I’m not alone in this culture of busyness, where it seems we are able to fill up every single second of time with scheduled activities, chores, and appointments. Even when a moment is not scheduled, there’s something to do: get an oil change, clean the bathroom, make lunches for the week, wait on hold listening to classical music. There simply seemed to be no space in the day to just be. This left me feeling frustrated and lacking control in my own life.


The same phenomenon can happen in physical space. The basement gets filled with stuff you’re sure you’ll regret throwing out, your desk is lost in various piles of paper and things to do, the closet becomes a black hole for whatever you don’t put away neatly. Objects that may have been useful in the past, but are not today, still clutter your home. A lack of physical space can cause stagnation and congestion on a physical and mental level and prevent you from moving forward.

A lack of space in your schedule or your environment, it seems, can form a barrier to change. So then, how do you overcome this barrier?

Clear out your schedule

Clearing your schedule doesn’t mean canceling all your appointments next week and booking a flight to Hawaii (or does it?). You can take a less drastic approach. One way to fit in some self-care time is to book it on your calendar. This strategy has been particularly helpful for me, since I’m in charge of determining most of my work schedule. I’ve got a red block in my calendar that says “OFF” and you’d need a really good reason to get on my schedule then. You could schedule an appointment for something relaxing, like a massage, meditation session, coffee date with a friend, or an evening away from the kids. The local YMCA in Albany, Oregon plans events designed to address the latter. Parent’s Night Out provides inexpensive child care, with crafts and activities for the kids at the Y while their parents get some time off! It’s a brilliant idea.

Clean out your space

Reading this headline might make you cringe. That box of baseball trophies from when you were in elementary school? Toss it. Do you know how much stuff is in your house? In your car? In your office? Get a jump start on spring cleaning and start making some space right now. Have a yard sale, take a trip to Goodwill, or put a bunch of listings on eBay.

Recently, my friends Anthony and Rebecca set up a challenge for themselves: they committed to take 60 days to declutter their house in order to make space for change. I’ll let them tell you more. Here’s their clever video:

If you really do need your stuff, maybe you just need a better system of organization. Perhaps you could use a remodel or some simple redecoration. It’s amazing how a little cleaning and sprucing up can change the character of a space. For example, let’s say you’ve made a commitment to working out at home. You’ve even set aside an exercise room that has your exercise bike, yoga mat and other little workout gadgets. But the room is dusty, has unfinished walls, poor lighting, and also doubles as storage for your significant other’s massive record collection. You can barely motivate yourself to go in there. It’s no wonder you’re finding every excuse not to work out. Take some time to make the space comfortable, inviting, useful, and enjoyable. If you’re still making excuses, well, the environment may not be the issue.

To find more more practical examples of how to de-clutter your space, follow Anthony and Rebecca’s progress at Clean Up and Cash In. Or try the Australian blog 365 Less things.

Support change in your life by creating more space in your schedule and your environment. Take the time to create some space and notice what happens. I’d love to hear all about it.

What’s one thing you can do today to re-imagine your space or time? Share your tips, successes and comments below.

Resources to declutter your life

Clear Your Clutter, Find Your Life from Whole Living

Forget Time Management: Why You Should Practice Choice Management Instead from Entrepeneur

Managing Your Busy-Ness from Co-Support

If you would like to read more about what Jess is up to, the classes she’s offering, or general health & nutrition go to her webpage and blog!

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PEERS Meeting Jan 16th

We’re off to a strong start this year at PEERS and this blog is going to tell you all about it…

Our current president, Oni (Balance Point Acupuncture), started us off this morning with distressing news about some nasty flu bugs that are going around our community. But she also had some helpful tips for kicking it before it really gets your down… Acupuncture. When you very first start feeling yucky go straight to Oni’s office at Northwest Health & Healing Center for an appointment and she’ll help set you up to beat that bug! Tara from Jeff Mill’s State Farm announced that their office would no longer be open on Saturdays – insurance agents and their staff need time off too. 🙂 Peg O. (Citizens Bank) had some helpful tips for staying mobile AND staying secure. 1. Set your device to lock after a certain period of time to prevent unwanted access. That one will also prevent your from pocket calling people (very helpful). 2. Turn on wi-fi, location services, and bluetooth when not in use. It also helps conserve your battery life. 3. Do not store, text, or email personal information from your mobile device. Thanks Peg!

Peg W. from Pathfinder Travel wants you to know that vacations aren’t just for the summer time. She’s ready to help you plan AND budget the trip of a lifetime. Lori (The Thank You People) likes to think of herself as an unofficial non-profit. All the profits from the sales of her greeting cards are donated to actual non-profits in our community. So not only are you sending someone REAL mail (which is super fun), and supporting multiple local small business (Rice’s Pharmacy & Gift and The Book Bin), you’re also supporting worthy causes. All with a greeting card. Speaking of snail mail, Julie (Tobias Weiss Design) reminded us that the standard letter stamp rate will increase on Jan 26th to $0.49 and postcard stamps will increase to $0.34. Looks like it’s time to stock up on forever stamps before the rate increase. On a less pleasant, but just as important, note Ilene (A&S Accounting) is in full tax season swing. And even though the tax laws are constantly changing you shouldn’t let April 15th sneak up on you. Anne Fahy (Remax Integrity)had some handy real estate advice: Hire a professional, like Elaine (Simply Home Professionals) or Susan (Let’s Get Comfortable Interior Design), when remodeling your home. A professional’s eye will help ensure that your improvements won’t hinder a future sale.

Moving on to thoughts of spring Christine (Red Stem) says that NOW is the time to start planting your bulbs. Their up to 75% off at Garland’s Nursery! She also had a couple tips for better planting: Plant the bulb three times deeper than it is tall, use some chicken wire to discourage squirrels from digging up your bulbs, and plant in stages for continuous blooming. 🙂 Stefanie from Rice’s Pharmacy & Gift also want you to start thinking about spring as they prepare their gift inventory for Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, and warmer weather. And when that warmer weather finally gets here Chris at Valley Eye Care wants to see everyone in sunglasses. You only get one pair of eyes – take good care of them. Jess (JessBFit) is here to guide you into fitness so you can more easily enjoy that nice weather in your fancy new sunglasses. She’s promoting her Foam Rolling class at EcoFusion Fitness, as well as her yoga and personal training. If you’re feeling a little tuckered out from all that activity there’s no better way to pamper yourself than with a massage from Amy (Carefree Massage). Mmmmmmmmmm.

Amanda (Amanda Photographic) gave a reminder about voting for Oregon Bride Magazine – Best for 2014 award. It’s a wonderful way to show some love to the best wedding vendors in the state! Shelley (Alta’s Antiques & Collectibles) and Michelle B (Arbonne International) are both eager to start their new year with hosted parties. Both ladies have great products to share with you and your BFFs. Karen from KidSpirit/Girls On The Run is still looking for coaches, volunteers, and team sponsors for this year’s spring program. Girls On The Run makes a HUGE impact in the lives of girls in our community – the program has expanded to include Linn, Lane, Marion, Polk counties.

Two upcoming events in our community:

CIBA (Corvallis Independent Business Alliance) Membership Meeting – Wednesday January 29th at Valley Eye Care from 5:30-7:30. Non-members welcome. 🙂

Luna Fest (National Short Film Festival) – Saturday January 25th at LeSells Stewart Center 7:00pm. Click on hotlink for info and tickets. Girls On The Run will be there!

Michelle Volkert was our presenter today and we had A LOT to learn about carpet cleaning & restoration. After working in carpet cleaning and full fire, water, mold restoration for 13 years in Lodi (pronounced “low-dye”… just in case your were curious), CA Michelle and her husband, Nick, decided it was time for a location change. In 2008 they moved to Corvallis and immediately established VS Restoration – specializing in carpet, upholstery, and grout cleaning. Offering a high-quality service is very important to both Nick and Michelle. They do this best by keeping their business eco-friendly and by taking care of their customers AND employees. Having happy employees is key to running a business smoothly and passing that on to happy customers.

Offering both residential and commercial cleaning, VS Restoration is one of only two carpet cleaners in Oregon that is AAA approved. AAA members also get a 15% discount! With online scheduling Nick and his crew can easily service the Willamette Valley from Salem to Eugene, and Philomath to Lebanon. Now with 18 years in the industry Nick knows a thing or two about getting stains out of your carpet and how to keep them looking fresh. One key piece of advice is to never scrub when trying to remove a stain. No! Michelle says to get a CLEAN, DRY towel using it to blot the area and soak up as much of the spill as possible. …then call Nick and he’ll come finish taking care of it.


Call or schedule an estimate online to see what VS Restoration can do for your home or office space. Ask them about their “Stay Beautiful” program.

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PEERS Meeting Jan 9th

Happy New Year 2014


You may have noticed that our blog hadn’t been updated in several month (since April! Yikes!), but it’s a new year and we’re ready for blogging.

The new year comes with lots of new years resolutions from our PEERS members; not only for their own businesses but also for helping YOU keep yours. Our fitness guru Jess (JessBFit) is excited for her 2014 classes and outdoor adventures. Her favorite clients are people who are new to fitness or are returning to fitness after an injury. Speaking of fitness goals – Karen from KidSpirit/Girls On The Run is looking for coaches, volunteers, and team sponsors for this year’s spring program. Girls On The Run makes a HUGE impact in the lives of girls in our community – the program has expanded to include Linn, Lane, Marion, Polk counties. Peg O. from Citizens Bank is always looking to improve her own, and her team’s, customer service to keep local banking strong. Julie’s (Tobias Weiss Design) resolution for the year is summed up in one word: Simplify. …she’s starting her simplification by cleaning out her email inbox.

PEERS has several businesses in the health care realm and all of them are seeing big changes with the new year. Valley Eye Care, Heresco Chiropractic, Balance Point Acupuncture, Dental Office of Drs. Bugni, Laster, and Jensen, and Rice’s Pharmacy & Gift are encouraging everyone to review their new/existing insurance policy and become familiar with the changes. Rice’s Pharmacy & Gift especially encourages customers to call ahead so there can be time to make the necessary adjustments or updates. Tara from Jeff Mills’ State Farm Office says that the beginning of the year is a great time to review your auto, home, life, and health insurance policies as well – having adequate and understanding your insurance coverage is going to be a BIG topic for 2014.

The new year can also be a time for continued thankfulness. Elaine (Simply Home Professionals) will do the heavy lifting and the finishing details of your home improvement projects. She is thankful that her passion also allows her to work with wonderful new people. If you need help expressing your thankfulness to someone you can stop by Rice’s Pharmacy & Gift or The Book Bin for one of Lori’s (The Thank You People) cards. And if you would like something customized for someone extra special, Lori is happy to whip something up for you! …Or if you REALLY want to say thank you Amy (Carefree Massage) has gift certificates ready and loves giving people their first massage. 🙂

The rest of our members also have somethings they’d like you to know. Christine (Red Stem) is doing lots of designing while plants lay dormant and is taking reservations for fruit tree trimming later this season. If you’re looking for something new to do with you family Pathfinder Travel suggests “spending the night in a museum.” Contact Peg W. for details! Did you or someone you know get married during 2013? Amanda Photographic is excited because it’s time to vote for Oregon Bride Best for 2014 – this is a great way to recognize the vendors who helped your special day, well… special. 🙂 Nominees and winners are awarded by their industry peers later in the spring. Anne Fahy (Remax Integrity) is here for consultations for those who are interested in buying or selling. Let the Fahy Team take care of you 🙂 Before you bring Elaine in to do wallpaper removal and painting let Susan’s (Let’s Get Comfortable Interior Design) fresh eyes help you make the most of your space. And if there’s one thing that nobody can get away from it’s taxes and …dirty floors. Ilene from A&S Accounting is ready to get you on track with one, and Michelle V. from VS Restoration is ready to keep you on track with the other.

Lastly if your new years resolution involves being more social maybe you’ll want to host a party with one of our three home-party based members. Michelle B. with Arbonne International brought some yummy treats today from their nutrition line. Shelley (Alta’s Antiques & Collectibles) is available to dazzle you and your friends with vintage jewelry. She’s always on the hunt to add to her collection as well.  Finally our presenter today, Lora – an independent creative consultant with Initials Inc. has a full display of “happy, hip, and helpful” items for everyday use.

Lora was interested in becoming a consultant with Initials Inc as a way to fund her two daughters’ activities and trips to see family. She saw a 2011 article that featured Initials Inc as one of the top three home-party based business in the country; once Lora learned more about the story behind the founding of the company she was confident that it was right for her. “There’s only ONE you!” is the motto that drives the direct-sell company with 90% of their products available for free personalization (embroidery) and a wide variety of patterns available. Celebrating their 10th anniversary, to date, Initials Inc has been featured on Good Morning America, Food Network, Better Homes & Gardens, USA Today, Women’s Day, and more.

Lora showed us some sample items from purses, to insulated coolers, to organizing totes and inserts. Her new spring catalog is nearly ready, but you can see it early at her kick-off party! Saturday Jan 25th from 10:00am-12:noon (location) for fun, friends, games, and shopping 🙂 Be sure to ask Lora about their I-Care program.

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PEERS Meeting April 11th

Sometimes it’s challenging to get up a little extra early for our weekly PEERS meeting… but today was not one of those days. We were expecting THREE guests today, we actually had FOUR and they were each worth getting up for!

Our first guest was Chama Bovee of La Petite Beauxo. She brought some fresh-from-the-oven goodies for us, and was even kind enough to make them GF. Her biscotti and breakfast muffins were fragrant and delicious… I’m sure we all wanted to have her as our personal chef to wake us with such tasty aromas each morning. 🙂 Chama caters private events using local and organic ingredients whenever possible, bringing wonderful food to you and your guests.

Jessica Beauchemin, of JessBFit, is a certified personal trainer – whom I actually passed on her bike, while I was in my car… made me think, “Yea, I should ride my bike instead.” Like our masseuse, Amy, Jessica will come to you in your home or office to work with you in a space that is comfortable and convenient. She is also available for two classes at EcoFusion Fitness: Yoga for Newbies and Punk Rock Aerobics! You can follow her on facebook here to keep up with all of her awesome activities.


Our third guest, Courtney Hall, is the manager of mortgage lending at Citizens Bank. A good mortgage lender can make a huge difference when buying a home. As we climb out of the popped housing bubble and our market stabilizes, learning from mistakes and being smart with our finances is something Courtney can help with. Citizens Bank mortgage loan officers have extensive knowledge and experience in the industry; as well as process, underwrite, and fund most loans locally.

…four guests might not sound like much, but when your regular group is around 25 people adding four new faces is very exciting! Karrie Wuerch is a returning addition to Corvallis, after spending some time in Seattle, as the Director of Physician Recruitment and Relations at the Corvallis Clinic. Her position brings the most highly qualified doctors and specialists to the Clinic team, strengthening our community and quality of life.

Our group speakers today were Elaine Forrest of Simply Home Professionals LLC and Amy Peters of Carefree Massage. Elaine is a licensed general contractor here in Corvallis. She specializes in stripping wallpaper and color consultations. She took us through our impressions of different colors – how they make us feel and gave us info on the pros and cons of each color for the various rooms in your house. Every color is good at bringing out a positive emotion or response, but how you use that color can effect that response. Red, for example, is bold, rich, makes you hungry, and can add interest to a room… too much red and your room feels hostile, oppressive, and dark. Many people think that white walls open up a room, but Elaine shared that effectively using colors will actually do a better job while adding life and interest to your home.

Amy gave us a demo on her daughter so we had the chance to observe what we could expect when getting a wonderfully relaxing massage from her. First “rule”: Don’t dive right in to the muscle. A quality massage has a looming pre-requisite, trust, without trust Amy will not be able to help a patient’s muscles and body relax and start healing. Sometimes gaining trust can take a few sessions so Amy makes herself very aware of her patient’s medical conditions (that would effect or be effected by massage), where they carry their stress, past injuries, and their preferences – like if they prefer the massage chair or table, mild or strong smelling oils, music or not. Needless to say we were all jealous of her daughter… just laying there all warm, getting a relaxing massage at 8:00am. Many of the PEERS members have used Amy’s services, as well as brought her into our offices for 10 minute chair massages for our staff, always with rave reviews and repeat appointments.




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PEERS Meeting : April 4th

Good Morning 🙂

Today was our monthly business meeting and it was clear that the couple weeks of sun has made us all Vitamin D crazy. …except that it’s soggy out today. Oh well, this is Oregon after all.

Amy {Care Free Massage} was in charge of the meeting today, since out President, Peg Obrist, is out of town. Amy shared with is the amazing difference even a 10 minute massage can make in a person’s day, mood, and brain chemistry. She can come to your home or office for appointments, or can meet with you at Oni’s {Balance Point Acupuncture} studio. Moving into Oni’s commercial she’s still offering the 20 minutes, 2 pins, for $20 special… which also comes with some light hand or foot massage. Acupuncture is a highly effective treatment for all the seasonal allergies that are starting to come around. Mary {Dental Office of Drs. Bugni, Laster, & Jensen} encourages everyone to go to their dentist for regular check-ups. Even if you know you need a lot of work and are worried about it, having a professional keep an eye on the health of your teeth, gums, and mouth is very important to your overall health. Lori {Thank You People} is in the business of encouraging people through greeting cards. You can find her cards at Rice’s Gift & Pharmacy and the Book Bin. Rice’s prides themselves on being very customer service oriented. Bonnie & Stefanie are there to ensure a positive experience and that you’re confident with your OTCs and prescriptions. Nadine {GF RN/RN On-Call} shared that NPR was airing a program on Applegate Meats, which uses no added antibiotics or hormones, and on the topic of “Are Antibiotics in Meat Breeding Super Bugs?” This program aired at 10am EST, but you can find it here. Need some new graphic design work for the new season? Julie {Tobias Weiss Design} is always bursting with ideas for your business! Amanda {Amanda Photographic} is excited to host a portrait weekend while she farm sits in Kings Valley over Memorial Day Weekend. You can find more information here. …a chance to pet bunnies, chickens, and a corgi included. 🙂 Chris and Maureen {Valley Eye Care} are also dealing with a lot of allergies related issues. Be sure that you get your eyes examined to be sure that it isn’t something more serious. As always VEC will reward new patient referrals with a $25 VEC gift card. Cori Ann {Heresco Chiropractic} is seeing a lot of “Spring Injuries” with people spending hours and hours in the garden, or getting a little over excited about playing outside. She strongly recommends taking it slow and easing back into your sunny weather activities… and drink plenty of water. Peg {Pathfinder Travel} says to never leave home without trip cancellation/interruption insurance! This insurance can help cover or refund expenses if you get sick or hurt before, during, or sometimes even after your trip. But it’s only available through a travel agent so go see Peg before hitting the open road. What’s one of the best things about summer? Yep, cooking outside! Susan {Let’s Get Comfortable Interior Design} is ready to create a beautiful outdoor kitchen for your to use and enjoy this summer. Shelley {Alta’s Antiques and Collectibles} can help you with spring cleaning… need to find a new home for some of your Grandma’s costume jewelry? Call Shelley. Dian {River Crossing Art Therapy} is getting ready to start another round of group sessions on April 23rd. Group sessions are 2 hrs and meet for 5 weeks. …it must be difficult this time of year for A&S Accounting. Ilene didn’t even get home until after 3am last night. But Tax Season calls and her office provides top-notch service to all of their clients. Karen {KidSpirit/Girls on the Run} will have her KidSpirit catalog online TOMORROW! She is also selling tickets (available online)for the Corvallis Half Marathon Pasta Feed that will benefit GOTR scholarships. Over the years Karen has maintained that every girl that wants to participate will get to regardless of if her family can pay for registration. Each girl is given a new pair of running shoes, a T-shirt, water bottle, and 10 weeks of 5K training & team building skills. Awesome!

Upcoming Events:

SATURDAY April 6th – Kaiwanis Pancake Breakfast 7:00am-11:00am Community Center 11th & Monroe, Corvallis. Nadine will be there cooking up GF pancakes and waffles!

SUNDAY April 14th – Feed the Needy Breakfast 11:00am-12:00pm (volunteers need to arrive between 10:00am-10:30am) Elks Lodge 9th & Grant, Corvallis.

For the business meeting we discussed ways to improve out blog and web presence …so get ready for more fun and helpful info. We also talked about how we, as a group, can connect better with each other. Years ago when the group was smaller we used to regularly gather for BBQs in our business’s parking lots, personal residence, and take trips to the beach together. Now that our group is bigger and busier we’ve decided to take a new pro-active approach to connecting and really learning about each other personally and professionally. So don’t be surprised if you see 2 or 3 ladies at lunch laughing and having fun. …that’s us. 🙂

Cori Ann also talked about how LinkedIn is making a come back in the professional world over Facebook. Here’s a quick blog post about what not to do on LinkedIn and how you can make the most of your account.

Until next week…

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PEERS Meeting March 28th {Wow…it’s been awhile}

As you can see our blog has been on a little break for about two months. Wow how time gets away from us. This post will mostly be a re-cap of what’s happened over the last few weeks and we will resume our weekly – maybe twice weekly posting schedule with our business meeting next week.

The sun has started to peek its face out of the clouds and with the warmer weather comes exciting new business!

We had a wonderful visit from Julia Waterhous about a month ago with an update on her documentary project: “Don’t Waste People” about the waste pickers in New Delhi, India. She’s finished filming and hopes to have the documentary (90 min) ready to view by the end of June. Her goal is to have it aired on OPB, at festivals and universities to help affect policy making in India. Just 4 days later Julia left for Nepal to work with an NGO to deliver vitamins to women to help prevent birth defects. You can read more about what Julia is doing on her blog.

PEERS member Karen Swanger is in FULL Girls on the Run and KidSpirit swing. GOTR is always looking for additional donations to support their program and the scholarships that allows every girl to participate regardless of whether her family can pay or not. One way you can contribute is by attending their Pre-Corvallis Half Marathon Pasta Feed on Saturday April 13 5:00pm-8:00pm at the Benton County Fairgrounds. Gluten-Free options ARE available! More info here

Attorney Karen Misfeldt has spoken to our group twice, because it’s such a large topic, about the importance of Estate Planning. I’m not about to try to sum it all up in just one paragraph… but yes it is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT! You might be saying to yourself, “Hmmmm well I don’t really have a lot of money or stuff so I probably don’t even have an estate…” Turns out that it isn’t actually that difficult to have enough to have an estate, so odds are you do. Please speak with your/an attorney about how you can help protect your family and assets. More info here.

Our PEERS group also got to visit the office is new-ish member Dian Svendsen at River Crossing Art Therapy. Contrary to what the title might suggest art therapy is not therapy for artists… but rather therapy through art without the need to be “artistic”.

Dian hosts groups looking for personal and/or professional development; as well as individuals working through various stages and events in their lives. More info here.

And today we had speakers (new-ish member) Susan Binder and Jeff Mills (State Farm represented in PEERS by Tara). Susan is an interior designer with Let’s Get Comfortable. Her business name stems from the concept of making your home the place you want to live for a looooong time. 🙂 She recently hosted an event on “Building a Better Bedroom” to turn your place of rest into a ‘serene oasis’. In her practice being sustainable is a large priority; not only for our planet but also for your wallet. Re-using materials in the same or different room can make a substantial impact on your financial ability to improve your home and space. You can learn more about Susan and her interior design here.

Tara brought in Jeff Mills to give us a brief run down of long-term care insurance. With the Baby-Boomers beginning to reach retirement age the issue of long-term care and living facilities for them has come to the forefront of many peoples’ minds. In Oregon alone the average cost of an assisted living facility is about $205/day. Yikes! There are also a lot of misconceptions about how one might pay for such care so it’s very important that you speak with your insurance agent about options for yourself or a loved one. More info here.

That’s all for now… see you next week!

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PEERS Meeting Jan 17th

Happy Thursday everyone 🙂

We’re continuing to welcome the new year with new members, guest speakers, and big things happening in our businesses. Julie started our commercial time today by letting us know that her Tobias Weiss Design business is unique because she gives clients the files at the end of a graphic design project. Amy {Carefree Massage} reminded all of us that touch is very important to the general well-being of people, especially therapeutic touch like massage. Is one of your New Year’s Resolutions to exercise more? If so, you’ll want to ease back in to physical activity or you might end up in Cory’s office at Heresco Chiropractic. She shared that they regularly see a spike in exercise related injuries in the first couple months of the new year. Joni is switching gears a bit with Essentially Healed and emphasizing on professional business coaching for women. She’s going to use her essential oils and energy work as part of the overall wellness of her clients. New member Christine from Red Stem informed us that she uses both conventional and organic {what she call just good gardening} methods when designing or caring for your outside space. Now’s a good time to start planning those garden beds! Dian {River Crossing Art Therapy} shared a book “Just One Thing: Developing a Buddha Brain One Simple Practice at a Time” that focuses on 52 little things {one thing each week} that we can do to improve our lives. Yay! Maureen and Chris from Valley Eye Care had some news for patients with Diabetes. Firstly that Diabetes/obesity is the leading cause of a particular type of blindness, and most of the appointments made with VEC are considered medical under insurance plans, not vision {for patients with Diabetes}. Another new member, and interior designer, Susan is ready to plan and design rooms big and small 🙂 Karen just got back from the national convention for the Girls on the Run program. She’s looking for coaches and team sponsors so if you would like to volunteer for this amazing program get in touch with her stat! Anne {Remax} didn’t have much to share business-wise today. She has been working hard to pull together her daughter’s wedding. I call it “wedding planning brain”. Shelley {Alta’s Antiques and Collectibles} is always available to bring her bling to you for a home or office vintage jewelry party – 20% off for PEERS members. One of the many services offered by Peg at Pathfinder travel is making the most of your reward miles. Schedule a sit down with her and …oh the places you’ll go! Amanda {Amanda Photographic} will be at the LaSells Stewart Center tonight to photograph the Huaxia Orchestra from Henan Museum of China and the Shaolin Temple Kung Fu Team. This event if FREE… doors are at 6:45pm with the show starting at 7:30pm, but you better get there early. Peg Obrist from our local Citizens bank reminded us that there are many benefits to using a community bank. Citizens is an active member in the community, and, like the rest of us, pays taxes that stay here in Corvallis/Oregon. Ilene is taking appointments for filing your taxes at A&S Accounting. While you can’t file until the end of January, you can get your paperwork prepared and ready to go with Ilene and her team. Bonnie from Rice’s Gift and Pharmacy brought in purse organizers to show us. They come in three sizes and can easily be moved with all the contents when you want to switch bags. Nadine {Gluten Free RN/RN On-Call} also just returned from traveling to a conference. One of three conferences being held in Canada on Gluten Intolerance and Celiac Disease, Nadine plans to return to the Great White North to speak at the remaining locations. And Tara from the State Farm Office of Jeff Mills shared that the beginning of the year is a great time to review and update your insurance policies.

Dr. Laster was our guest speaker today. He is represented in this group along with Dr. Bugni and Jensen by their wives Janelle Bugni and Mary Jensen. Dr. Laster recently-ish moved to Oregon from Texas and couldn’t be happier with the decision… and we’re glad to have him in our community. Today he talked about two topics: 1. Laser Therapy and 2. Obstructive Sleep Apnea. First the lasers {because lasers are cool}. The practice of Drs. Bugni, Laster, and Jensen can use the Biolase Epic 10 Diode Laser for a number of dental issues including healing persistent gum disease, reducing bacteria and tooth sensitivity, and help with the progressive elimination of cold sores and apnthous ulcers. It can also be used for pain relief in the joints and temples. Laser surgery has no scalpels, blood, or stitches which leads to a faster recovery time. Hooray for lasers! Second Dr. Laster talked about Obstructive Sleep Apnea {OSA} which is a stopping of airflow at the nose or mouth for at least 10 seconds while you’re sleeping. This lack of airflow causes a loss of oxygen in the blood and cause serious, sometimes fatal, issues if it goes untreated. OSA is cause by the epiglottis falling back and blocking the airflow, interrupting your body’s chemistry cycle. ~85% of OSA patients have airway blockage happening behind their tongues – which we learned today are a lot bigger than they look on the outside – and that this only gets worse with age as our tissue and soft palate get softer. There are two peaks for OSA, first from ages 0-4 and again from 55-59. Children are likely to have their tonsils taken out while adults, if OSA is left untreated, tend to die from related complications including 65%-80% of stroke victims. In the past people with OSA were stuck with using a continuous positive airway pressure {CPAP} machine that forces air into your mouth and nose through a mask while you sleep.



Many people still use the CPAP, but it comes with its drawbacks – it can be difficult to travel with, it’s bulky, etc. For those with mild-moderate OSA Dr. Laster can fit them with a Mandibular Advancement Device {MAD}. They kind of look like mouth guards or bite plates, but they are precision instruments that hold the lower jaw forward moving the soft tissue away from the airway. Amazing!
Example: Mandibular Advancement Device

Example: Mandibular Advancement Device

How they work...

How they work…

Dr. Laster also gave us some info on sleep hygiene, you can find it here.

Until next week…

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PEERS Meeting January 10th


We’re so happy to be back after a break for the holidays 🙂 Today was our first business meeting of the year, and there was a lot to talk about. …but first we started with our commercials. Maureen from Valley Eye Care informed us that when a patient opts for Lasik eye surgery all of their pre & post operation care is done right here in Corvallis (surgery is performed in Portland). Peg Welch is stepping into a busy time of year for Pathfinder Travel with couples and groups booking their off-season trips as well as booking early for the prime-season locations. Dian {River Crossing Art Therapy & Counseling} is accepting new groups and individuals for both personal and professional development sessions. Amanda {Amanda Photographic} announced the official beginning of Wedding Planning Season. Most vendors book 6-12 months in advance so start your planning early! Stefanie & Bonnie from Rice’s Pharmacy & Gift are already gearing up for Valentine’s Day. They have a wonderful selection of chocolate and sweet gifts. Karen {KidSpirit/GOTR} had her first day of gymnastics yesterday for kids 2+ yo. It’s also fundraising time for the Girls On The Run program – if you’re interested in sponsoring a team, being a Sole Mate, or running buddy contact Karen stat! Nadine {GF RN/RN On-Call} was excited to announce that she has her first international speaking conference booked in British Columbia. Great job Nadine! Also if you or someone you know is suffering from an idiopathic condition, stop by her office to see if you have a gluten intolerance/Celiac Disease. Elaine {Simply Home Professionals LLC} is here to take care of staging your for-sale home. Her favorite thing to do is strip wallpaper so give her a ring when you’re ready to remodel. 🙂 We’re very excited today to welcome two new members: Christine Moon from Red Stem. Christine offers landscape design & maintenance. Right now is a great time to start planning your new layout or garden. Also Susan Binder with Let’s Get Comfortable interior design. Susan offers the full gamut of design services. 🙂

Today we missed Corey from Heresco Chiropractic, Tami from University Honda, and Tara from the State Farm Office of Jeff Mills. We’re also sad to say good-bye to Lora of Initials Inc. …but we’ll still she her when she visits for guest speaking!

As you might imagine most of what goes on in a business meeting isn’t appropriate for a blog post. We reviewed our by-laws and discussed what types of business we’d like to see join our group this year.

  • restaurant
  • hair stylist/barber/salon
  • communications/technology
  • cleaning service
  • bookstore
  • florist/garden retail
  • coffee shop
  • exercise/gym facility
  • seamstress
  • vet
  • plumbing
  • non-profits

If you know Corvallis area woman with one of these businesses we encourage them to check out the information on this page and contact our President Peg Obrist {Citizens Bank} to schedule a visit.

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PEERS Meeting December 6th

Good Morning Corvallis
The first meeting of the month is our business meeting and we started this chilly December meeting with our 30-second commercials. It’s the season for end-of-year sales and our group is no exception. Shelley {Alta’s Antiques and Collectibles} is having a BLOW-OUT SALE with items priced at $5 each or 2 for $8. Corey from Heresco Chiropractic is offering $25 off a first visit. Whether it’s pain, numbness, or tightness Corey can straighten you out. With the new year approaching Tara {State Farm Office of Jeff Mills} reminded all of us that life insurance can help secure a families financial future. Amy {Carefree Massage} has gift certificates available for stocking stuffers… don’t forget that PEERS members get a sweet little discount. 😉 Chris {Valley Eye Care} and Mary {Drs. Bugni, Laster, & Jensen} reminded us that most of our health insurance will renew come January. Don’t forget to get the most of your policies before they reset. Ilene at A&S Accounting is getting ready for tax season, if you’re ready better get a head start and bring your files in early. Lori from the Thank You People is excited for the Holidays. All the Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and Thank You cards that are getting sent out bring cheer to our whole community. Are home renovations part of your new years resolutions? Contact Elaine with Simply Home Professionals for a consultation. Lora {Initials Inc} has the perfect personalized items for the loved-ones on your shopping list. Check out her catalog here. Julie {Tobias Weiss Design} teased us today with an announcement that the new logo is ready… but we can’t see it until next week. Do you know what your Oxygen saturation and heart rate is? Nadine {GF RN & RN On-Call} has a handy tool to get a quick reading; see her at her Downtown office for a consultation. Bonnie & Stefanie brought a tea sampler basket from Rice’s Gift & Pharmacy. They also have accumulative holiday specials starting Dec 11th. Woo! The 2012 Hondas are on sale and Tami at University Honda is ready to take you on a test drive. Stop by the 9th Street dealership before they’re all gone. Anne {Remax Integrity} has $10 off coupons for the Toland Tree Farm in Albany as a thank you for a great 2012! Joni {Essentially Healed} missed our Holiday Social on Sunday due to the flu, but with help from her essential oils – Flu Bomb – she was right as rain in a day. Awesome! Karen from KidSpirit & GOTR brought partnership packets for the 2013 Girls On The Run season. If you’re interested in supporting this wonderful cause contact Karen at her office. Dian at River Crossing Art Therapy Counseling offers a complimentary 30 minute consultation for individuals.

Today we had a guest speaker, Erik Rau, from the Benton County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO) to talk about hazard preparedness for families and businesses. Our area is susceptible to a few particular natural disasters: flood, winter storm, forest fires, and the looming BIG earthquake. The BCSO is responsible for planning and aiding in the event of a natural disaster; instead of having a different plan for every kind of event they have laid-out a base plan for the issues in common with all natural disaster events. Communication is the most important and often the most difficult hurtle during an event. How many of us have LAN lines? More importantly a LAN line that isn’t attached to your cable or internet… a good, ol’ fashioned, plugged into the wall, corded LAN line. Most of us rely solely on our cell phones, email, or facebook for communication and this presents a major problem when there’s a massive power outage lasting even a few hours, let alone days or weeks. Finding and having access to hard LAN lines will not only ease the burden on cell networks, but are also more stable and robust than cell networks. One of the simplest things you can do to help yourself during an event is to have phone numbers and contact information – especially at least one that is outside the area – physically written down in a safe, accessible place.
A lot of people think they’ll make a plan or kit when they have more time or better supplies. The BCSO encourages everyone to make a plan and basic kit right away since we never know when or where a disaster might strike. Buying ready-to-eat meals might seem like the easy and practical solution for food, however that can actually cause more issues and drive down moral. Purchasing more of what you regularly eat for your pantry is often easier, healthier, and better for your positive outlook. Foods like oatmeal, peanut butter, and cheese are easy to prepare and go a long way.
Some more information on communication… A hand crank radio that has the NOAA frequency can be your best friend. Newer ones also have an outlet that you can charge your cell phone with. During Hurricane Sandy 30-40% of the cell towers were out leaving 60-70% to handle the enormous load of panicked callers. Texting is often a better solution than calling since texting uses less bandwidth and doesn’t require that you hear the person (if you’re in a noisy area). Calling someone outside of the disaster area is also helpful for the cell networks and you’re more likely to get through. There is a developing emergency alert system for cell phones that will text everyone in a specific geographical area. Check with your service provider if you’d like more information about this system.
A quick bit on natural disasters with respect to businesses: If a business location experiences a fire and has to close for any length of time 40% of them will not re-open. Ouch! Disaster recovery is one of the most difficult things a business can undertake. Making sure that you know your insurance policies and that you’re adequately covered is critical to your business’s recovery. If you’d like more information on hazard preparedness check out these sites: www.earthquakecountry.info and the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety at www.disastersafety.org.

Upcoming events:

GF Emergency Preparedness | Sat Dec 15th 10:00am-11:00am | Darkside $25
Nadine will present how to put a 72-hour emergency kit together and what to do if you are separated from those supplies.

Buy Local First Holiday Contest | Thru Sat Dec 15th | Participating Businesses
BLF Fall PostersmF

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PEERS Meeting November 29th

Fair warning this post is going to be a little bit of a novel… get ready for some amazing local info and events. 🙂

Today is the 5th Thursday of the month which means it was an OOPS (O.ther O.ccupations P.rofessionS) meeting. We still started with our 30-second commercials, which were focused on the upcoming holidays. Amanda {Amanda Photographic} announced that this Saturday at the Spirit of Christmas Bazaar is your last chance for holiday portraits (more info at the bottom of the blog post). Anne with Remax Integrity is pleasantly surprised that properties are moving so well during the rainy season. Looking to buy or sell? Talk to Anne. Joni’s {Essentially Healed} enrollment special for $100 – and receive $50 in credit – expires tomorrow 11/30. Bonnie & Stephanie from Rice’s Pharmacy and Gift are excited about the 8 Christmas trees they have fully decorated in the store. Rice’s is also hosting weekly specials until Christmas that won’t be pre-advertised. Better stop in. 🙂 Julie {Tobias Weiss Design} is busy working holiday greeting cards and calendars, but not too busy for your custom orders. Shelley {Alta’s Antiques and Collectibles} is ready to show off some of her vintage holiday jewelry and has time this month for a home/office party. Tara from the State Farm Office of Jeff Mills is hiring! A full-time customer service position is open at their 9th street office. An insurance license is not required, but encouraged. There are only 33 days left in 2012 and Maureen {Valley Eye Care} would like to see some of that flexible spending money go to a new pair of glasses or contacts for the new year. Tami {University Honda} has launched her referral program: $50 to you or a non-profit of your choice when someone you referred purchases a new or pre-owned vehicle. Awesome! Amy {Carefree Massage} says that it’s the most wonderful weather for a relaxing massage… perhaps by the fire? Mary & Janelle from the dental practice of Drs. Bugni, Laster, and Jensen are here for all your general dentistry needs and are accepting new patients. Ilene is already gearing up for tax season and it’s no wonder that with her excellent staff A&S Accounting is the place to be. Peg {Citizens Bank} shared about another local business’ holiday specials… see more info at the bottom of the post. Lora {Initials Inc} is excited for January Party’s DOUBLE reward points. Contact her asap to book your post-holiday party. New-ish member, Dian from River Crossing Counselling, is designing new programs for both individuals and small groups to work on personal and professional development. Nadine {Gluten Free RN & RN On-Call} shared that 51% of Celiac patients present with neurological disorders and limited or non-existent GI tract symptoms. Karen {KidSpirit & GOTR} has a few more weeks of Girls on the Run registration and is getting ready to start gymnastics (2+ years old) and archery (2nd grade and up) with Winter Term. New member, Corey from Heresco Chiropractic wanted to remind everyone that her office is open on Saturdays with long hours during the week.

When we have an OOPS meeting we have the opportunity to talk about other jobs, hobbies, and non-profits that we work with. Each person gets about 5 min to talk about their topic. Shelley and Tara are on the board for the upcoming Heart of the Valley Birthing Center. They are hosting their first major fundraiser on New Years Eve at Harris Bridge Vineyard in Kings Valley (map). There are only 40 tickets at $100 each. The event is scheduled from 8:00pm-1:00am so get ready to ring in the new year with excellent food and wine at the very adorable Harris Bridge Vineyard. Ooh and there will be prizes, including a 1 week stay in Coasta Rica!

Harris Bridge Vineyard

Nadine shared about the Mid-Valley Health Care Alliance rally that is coming up on February 4th in Salem. The USA pays the most for its health care, but is ranked 37th (ouch) in quality and accessibility. MVHCA is working towards a better future for our state and country’s health care. More info here.

Amanda gave information about a newly available event space in Corvallis. Life Community Church (formerly the Church of the Nazarene) is a high capacity venue with full amenities. Starting with the approx 1,500 person capacity sanctuary; this venue has ample parking, full projection, stage, and sound equipment, several offices for monthly or per diem rent, industrial kitchen, and coffee cafe in the lobby. Life Community also hosts many community events to supports non-profits in the Corvallis area. More info here.

Life Community Church

Corey is a member of the local Lyon’s Club and they’ve started their annual See’s Candy sale. Located on the East end of the Albertson’s shopping center Corey and her Lyons will be there Mon-Sat to raise money for new glasses for those in need until Dec 24th.

Peg shared about special holiday hours at Real Deals. Normally only open Thursdays (10am-6pm) and Saturdays (10am-5pm), Real Deals is opening their doors for the three Fridays (10am-3pm) before Christmas. They’re also hosting some special events: Dec 4th Girl’s Night Out 5pm-8pm and “Redeem ‘No Peeking Envelopes” on Dec 13th, 14th, & 15th.

Upcoming Events:

Winter’s Eve | Nov 30th 5:00pm-10:00pm | Big tent on Madison between 2nd & 3rd. Tickets: $45 ~ Benefits the Corvallis Assistance League www.alcorvallis.org

Trunk Show | Nov 30th 4:30pm-7:30pm | Irenes’ Boutique 221 NW 2nd St.          Featuring Karen Keller – Pyrus Design & Megan McQueen – La Petite Vie

Enjoying the Holidays with Food Intolerances | Dec 1st 10:00am-11:00am| Darkside $25 Nadine will share her secret tips for a successful holiday season. 

Spirit of Christmas Bazaar | Dec 1st 10:00am-3:00pm| Life Community Church      Amanda is hosting a Portraits with Santa Booth to benefit local non-profits. She will also be available for those last minute holiday family portraits. 

Buy Local First Day | Dec 1st All Day | Participating Corvallis Businesses

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