My name is  Ruth Olbrych, and I am the President of Antiques by Zaar, the online company my husband and I founded in 2000, to import and sell Chinese Antique Furniture.

“President” is the title on our corporate documents but  frankly  I am much more comfortable with “owner/operator”….mostly because it is how I saw my role… as doer.

Anyways, with my husband’s return to the corporate world this past year, I have been put in a place where my leadership was required, should this business continue to not only exist, but grow.

 And here I am at the end of this year… feeling like I did when my first born turned 1. Yes, under my care and my love, my child did much more than merely survive…he thrived…and I, after this full year can pronounce, Yes, I CAN do this….let’s rock on!

But before doing so I would like to take a little space  to acknowledge the many things/people that have been part of my evolution this 2010….

…. My Brain…for  it  stretched  itself to learn skills that seemed impossible in the past….be it managing the technical side of my online persona or crunching numbers.

….the many online venues/social media available to direct people to my website and put myself out there, Facebook, Twitter, LinkdedIn, and this blog….costing TIME but not $$$$.

High Point Design Center and WITHIT…organizations I am proud to be a member of and appreciate so much the people that they attract and which I can call “mine”.

….Vanderveer Imports, Bellascenda and Kat Burki…all who have joined with me in High Point, as part of my new ZAAR Design Center.

….Jeff Moore, my sales associate/warehouse manager/showroom designer etc etc etc  in High Point. She is me when I’m not in NC, and more…and I couldn’t have a better representative for my business, or friend.

….Nancy Strojny, my SCORE counsellor, who believes  in Antiques by Zaar, and offers guidance, advice and friendship.

….West Express, my High Point landlords, and shippers, and Metropolitan, another shipping company I rely on. Between both companies my customers don’t only receive their furniture, they receive it well.

Ruth with Sandy Jenifer...Happy customer since May 2002!

….And what would a business be without customers? I am so blessed….for those that I’ve had long lasting relationships with and continue to shop with me, for those that are new to my world and are finding their way to shop with me, and for those that have no need to fill but continue to promote Antiques by Zaar to their friends and collegues.

…and Finally, in another vein, i am grateful for the Gift I have for being self employed, and thereby have the latitude to be available to my Family…be it taking trips to Singapore and Australia to visit my daughters, move my 3 kids in/out of their respective places of residence for the school years, or to be present to extended family as we celebrated  the  lives of those who had untimely passings, namely my brother in law and sister.

Yes, so much to be grateful for and so much to anticipate as we enter this New Year/New Decade.

I THANK YOU ALL for being part of my world, by virture of the fact that you’re reading this I consider you such 🙂 …. and look forward to sharing more throughout this 2011.


P.S. And if you care to share what you were grateful for in 2010 I would LOVE to know.