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28 December 2011


 December 28, 2011

So last year I did a post about looking back, thinking about what has happened, taking stock, and reflecting. This year I ask you to join me in reflecting back on what this year has brought for you.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What’s the big idea of this year?
  • What am I most proud of accomplishing this year?
  • How did I stretch myself this year?
  • Did I accomplish my goals this year?
  • What’s the bottom line of 2011?

Please answer these in the comments, or write your own post and link to it in the comments. I’d love to learn more about what YOU accomplished, and how YOU stretched yourself this year.

What’s the big idea of this year?


The Biggest Idea of 2011: PARTNERSHIP!  

I preach it to nonprofits all the time, and this time I took my own medicine!

Thank you to Pam Slim and Desiree Adaway for their Partnership Playbook (which is available through Pam Slim’s website, and also through Fundraising Rockstars). It taught me so much! 

I am most proud of the partnerships and relationships I have built with fellow nonprofit bloggers and internet entrepreneurs, including Steve Havelka, Pamela Grow, Desiree Adaway, Jessica Journey, Mary McCalalane, Tony Martignetti, Phil Cubeta, Joe Waters, Jules Brown, Alexandra Peters, Mark Schaefer, John Haydon, and others.

And I’m happy that I’ve kept my relationships with my friends in other parts of the country; Irene Konev, Amy Sample Ward, Rebekah Shubin, Sabrina Gogol, Zach Archer, Ealasaid Haas, and others.

How did I stretch myself this year? How did I grow?


Fundraising RockstarsThis year I learned all I could about launching a product, and then I launched Fundraising Rockstars with the help of Steve Havelka, Desiree Adaway, Pamela Grow, Jessica Journey, John Haydon, Sandy Rees, Joe Waters, and others! And it went so well! And it made me reach out to more people than I would have otherwise.

It emboldens me to try this again next year!

Wild Appeals fundraising android app

Creating Apps for Smartphones!

I stretched myself by creating three android apps to help people in their fundraising offices and I’m about to come out with iPhone versions of them.


I stretched myself in the area of copywriting, and read not just blogs but books about this subject, and it has really paid off for me.

I stretched myself in the area of daily writing, and to date I’ve written over 250,000 words and 216 days straight on  I find myself not struggling so much with what to write, because it comes more naturally.

Blogging has actually become easier since I started my private writing every day. I find that I think through writing, and I process through writing, and if I’m not writing, it’s almost like… not thinking as much.

Creative Writing!

I stretched myself by writing poetry more diligently in 2010 and I’m still doing it in 2011! Hoa Nguyen and Larry Fagin have been instrumental in this process, and thanks to their prompts, editing, and feedback I almost have enough for another book. Everyone writes for someone specific to read it, and I confess, when I write poetry, I write to them.

New Encaustic Painting Techniques!encaustic in austin texas

I stretched myself by offering encaustic classes in subjects I had never taught before, subjects such as encaustic and photography, accretion technique, and encaustic glazes. I’m looking forward to offering Encaustic monotype classes in 2012!

I also stretched myself by doing more art blogging, and creating a series of encaustic painting online classes. Crazy!

Calling up radio shows!

Even though I was scared, I called up radio shows and asked to be interviewed about my book, and I actually got quite a few interviews!

Liveblogging a conference!

I was asked to write blog posts for different corporate blogs, including DonorPerfect and CharityHowTo, and asked to liveblog a conference for the first time. Thank you to DonorPerfect to asking me to liveblog for you!

Going Gluten-Free!

We started this in January. This shift has helped me accomplish so much.

  1. Saving money. I don’t spend money eating out anymore.
  2. Eating well. When I eat, I eat fresh, organic and wholesome foods.
  3. Breathing more easily. I don’t feel so out of breath. I can stand and teach a two hour art class without feeling wiped out.
  4. Full of energy! I have been biking so much, and I’ve had the energy, I think, because I went gluten free.

If I attempt to eat gluten now, it sits in my stomach like a rock, and makes me feel sluggish, like I can’t think straight, and even depresses my immune system. I cough, and feel gross for a couple days.  So I know this shift has been good for my health. I encourage you to try it, even for a week, and see how you feel.

Did You Accomplish Your Goals?

In 2010 I took a public speaking course from Communispond. It rocked.  I had the goal to start a professional speaking career, and I actually accomplished this goal in 2011.

In 2011 I spoke at the Center for Nonprofit Organizations, Texas Association for Nonprofit Organizations, Board retreats,Young Nonprofit Professionals Network, the Ginac Group, Texas Business Women, The City of Austin,, BigAustin,  BioPharmaInstitute, and I’ve had speaking engagements every month booked from April onwards. It’s looking even more packed for 2012, and I love it!

I learned so much more about appeal letters, about getting sponsorships, about managing volunteers and finding new donors, because I started to teach these subjects. Even though I already knew a bit about them, it REALLY motivated me to learn.

Did you discover something about yourself?

get Wild

Yes! Being Wild! It’s kind of my thing! You’d think that would have kind of been obvious, but it wasn’t. So I started and stopped a social media business, and started another one.  Treyz Social Media was okay, but it wasn’t really my brand. Wild Social Media is actually my brand, and it makes more sense! And also it works with the title of my new book too. The Wild Woman’s Guide to Social Media.
I like writing more when I can illustrate too. I got featured on Mark Schaefer’s Business Grow Blog, with my little ebook that I wrote and illustrated called Twitter for Monkeys.

Anything else that surprised you?

More Nonprofit Journey!

I got hired to be the part time development director of the Austin Civic Orchestra, and helped them by researching and applying for lots of grants, helped them do two appeal letters, researched where they could find sponsorships, and helped with creating a marketing process for each concert. 

There’s always a way around

Because of the record heat in Central Texas (7 months of 100+ temps and no rain), I biked at midnight a lot from June to October. And I’m still biking, here in December, and I just got in from outside, covered in rain and dirt. After 8 months of practically no rain, this feels perfect. Healthmonth is helping me with this! I highly encourage you to check this out!

Bottom Line on 2011

I stopped trying to get other people to pick me.

I picked myself.

How about you? What did you do in 2011? What are you proud of? What did you learn? Please, leave a comment.

5 responses on “Will You Look Back With Me on 2011?

  1. Elizabeth says:

    Marzine, yes there always is a way around! We live in cold winter Canada, and I discovered how enjoyable it it to hike and run outside when it’s cold out side. The snow adds an extra dimension of added resistance, and the cool weather completely tops running in the heat. Down 15lbs as a result. Also strapped on my back pack and put 20 lbs of weight in it…. what a difference that made. My new favorite way to get in shape! Enjoyed your blog today, and I’ll see you on Twitter :-) All my best,


  2. Mazarine says:

    Right on Tanya! So proud of you!

  3. Bottom line for 2011: I completed a huge task in fundraising and planning for a month-long site visit trip to Kenya and Malawi this year. Then I did the visits and put together reports. I learned so much about traveling in Africa and visiting international groups and I have many new ideas for next time I go. I continued to expand my knowledge about non-profit management and self-promotion. I continued on my path pursuing faith and a state of gratitude.


  4. Mazarine says:

    Thank you Deb! I really appreciate your kudos! :)


  5. Deb says:

    wow – what an amazing year you’ve had! congratulations!!