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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

InspHERational Woman: Laura Torres

Laura Torres
Torres Productions
Website Design & Video Production

When it comes to women in business, especially women starting businesses, I get excited!  I find myself wanting to learn all I can about what they're doing and how they got started.

I had the pleasure of sitting down with Laura Torres, founder and owner of Torres Productions, a couple of months ago.  Laura's used to being the one to conduct the interviews--this time, she was on the other side of the camera and recorder.  

During our conversation, she shared so much about how she started her business and overcame obstacles along the way.  Here are a few of the many bits of knowledge I gleaned from my time with Laura Torres of Torres Productions.   

When Laura first moved, she took the time to get to know her new community before launching her business.  She did research and, ultimately, saw a need in her city that she could help address:  
From my research, there was a lack of web presence and professionalism on the web and in video production.  In the video production world, client satisfaction and customer service has sort of gone out the window.  I want to bring that back.

Laura developed a plan to help launch her business: 
If you have a phenomenal plan, you can make anything happen.  Once I know what I want to get done, it’s really hard to stop me from finding a plan and getting it done.  My goal was to go door to door to 33 small businesses a day.  Not sell them anything, not be a bother, but to say “Hey I’m new in town, here’s my business card. Just wanted to meet and greet. I don’t want to waste your time. Thanks.”  33 businesses a day; it was exhausting and grueling, but my goal was to have about 100 in 3 days.  I was hopeful that something out of that would happen.  Even if my business card stayed in their desk for 10 years, at least I made an impression and got myself out in the community. 

Laura faced challenges along the way, but she learned to change her mindset to help overcome them:  
The first two years were the hardest.  They were the hardest on my heart, the hardest on my head.  They were the hardest because I wasn’t seeing much movement at all.  It was the most discouraging feeling because I felt like I was failing myself.  I watched a documentary about turning failure into success and it made me realize that maybe I need to fail before I can succeed.  Maybe I need to learn what the lowest of the lows is.  After two years, I told [my husband,] Erik that I was going to stop.  I haven’t told many people that because it’s really personal.  It’s allowed me to grow to where I am now.  I learned it’s ok to stumble and fall.  I actually started applying for jobs and the week after I started applying, I got an email about producing a commercial for a business and that’s when things started coming in almost weekly. 

Shortly after producing her first commercial, Laura was asked to produce a major project for the Conventions & Visitor's Bureau and Economic Development Council of Clarksville, Tennessee which included over 32 interviews:  
I'm so grateful to Robin Burton for that opportunity.  After that project, many businesses [I interviewed] came back and asked me to do work for them also.

What helps keep Laura inspired:
A lot of inspiration has come from my husband, Erik.  He’s a big, big factor for me moving forward.  In the beginning, there was so much self-doubt.  Whenever you do anything there’s always going to be a little self-doubt and you may ask yourself  “Can I really do this?”  Every time I’d get to the point where I’d think:  “maybe I shouldn’t do this" or wonder “am I getting in over my head?”  He would reel me back and say:  "You thought of this originally.  If you think it, you can do it."  Erik has helped me immensely. 

Some additional words of wisdom from Laura:  
I believe every day you should be learning something new.  The way the internet and technology changes, it’s unbelievable.  On an hourly basis, it’s changing so quickly.

There’s no dollar amount you can put on networking.  I foster every relationship.  Whether a good relationship or bad, There’s something to learn from every encounter.

One of the biggest goals for Torres Productions is to ensure customer satisfaction while providing quality customer service and producing high-end products at affordable prices.  

Torres Production wants to make the ordinary extraordinary:  
If a customer asks for a commercial about hand wrenches, I want that customer to be so amazed by it that they go back just to watch it.  So that, not only does [the commercial] achieve the purpose of selling the product, but it’s done so well done that they come back to it over and over.

Laura, thank you so much for your time and words of wisdom!

You can learn more about Torres Productions here and stay up-to-date on their latest projects here.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

A Work In Progress...

My chair makeover is still a work in progress.  I have another coat of paint to put on it and then a nice finish.  Oh...and 3 more chairs to complete.  But I wanted to share a brief update with you all.  If you cross your eyes, you can get the idea of what the chairs will look like hahaha.

I hope you're all having a great Thursday so far!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Weekend Rundown: A Chair Makeover

Happy Monday to you all!  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  Ours was pretty good.  It was a hot one but a good one.  I had a photo shoot...

We did a little hiking as a family...

We visited Nashville...

We watched the final World Cup game after church...

AND I finally started my chair makeover project that I've been putting off of 3 months now.  Can you guess which fabric I ended up using?  Let me give you a hint..I used to have nightmares about clowns growing up and I avoid them like the plague hahaha.  That made it easy for you, huh?  

I'm looking forward to a good week!  How about you?

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Thai Citrus Shrimp Salad

A few weeks ago, my sister-in-law, Sara, shared a link to a website full of a bunch of healthy delicious looking recipes (thanks,again, Sara!).  There were a few that caught my eye--including this one.  If you click on this link, it will take you to the website.  BUT don't be surprised if you can't find the Thai Citrus Shrimp Salad.  Why?  Because it was originally the Thai Citrus Chicken Salad.  I changed it up because I accidentally left the chicken in my car and only had shrimp on hand to replace it.  I also exchanged the papaya for pineapple because I just didn't like the way the papaya I purchased tasted.  I think it turned out to be pretty dang tasty!  I had a friend over for lunch and we thoroughly enjoyed it.  So, here is The Foreign Domestic's take on the Thai Citrus Chicken Shrimp Salad...


For the Salad: 

1lb of shrimp
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup Napa cabbage, shredded (I took a shortcut and got the bag of pre-shredded cabbage)
1 cup red cabbage shredded (I took a shortcut and got the bag of pre-shredded cabbage)
1 cup pineapple, cut into tidbits
1 cup carrots, shredded (I took a shortcut and got a bag of pre-shredded carrots)
1/2 cup daikon, shredded
1/4 cup green onion, minced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil

For the Dressing: 

1/2 lime, cut into wedges
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 to 1 jalepeno, or to taste


  1. Sprinkle shrimp with salt and pepper, and add minced garlic.  Set aside for a few minutes
  2. Over medium-high heat, heat a skillet or pan and add olive oil
  3. When oil is hot, add shrimp and cook, turning occasionally until fully cooked.  Remove when done. 
  4. Squeeze juice from a wedge of lime on the shrimp and set aside to cool. 
  5. In a large bowl, mix together the rest of the salad ingredients (red and napa cabbage, carrots, pineapple, daikon, green onion, and cilantro).  Set aside. 
  6. In a small bowl, combine all salad dressing ingredients and mix together. 
  7. Pour dressing into a blender, and blend until emulsified. 
  8. Add shrimp and dressing to salad and mix to combine.  Serve with a lime wedge.


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