No Sleep Jams Everything Up

According to the National Institutes of Health, sleep deficiency can be linked to a number of health issues, including obesity.

I had the opportunity to meet with Scott Tassin of Cloud 9 Mattress Outlet. He shared their core purpose,

“Our MISSION is to get people sleeping well.”

This focus allows them to better serve our community with a quality product and great customer service.

What Makes You Different?  The most powerful difference is price.

My question to Scott was simple, what makes Cloud 9 different from other retail mattress stores? His answers surprised me. The most powerful difference is price.  This price difference comes about due to overstocks, mismatched covers and close out fabrics of well-known and new top brands such as Tempur-Pedic, Sealy, Simmons and Serta.  They sell many of their mattresses at 40% to 80% off of the price of other retailers in Northwest Arkansas. They also extend service discounts to teachers, police officers, first responders, medical personnel and the military.  Customers can also purchase furniture at a 10 to 30% discount.

What else sets you apart?  Team members are trained to be sleep experts.

While price is important when purchasing a bed, Scott said that the other major factor that sets Cloud 9 apart in the mattress market is their staff and compensation plan.  Each employee is more than just a sales associate. Before they hit the floor, team members are trained to be sleep experts, studying sleep habits and sleep solutions so their clients will get the right bed.

Speak of one more thing that is unique about you or your store?  Focused on client experience and job satisfaction.

Additionally, the sleep experts are compensated with bonuses based on how the store does, not on individual compensation.  This, Scott believes, improves client experience and promotes job satisfaction. Sleep experts are also encouraged to recognize their clients with a hand written thank you note.  Those sleep experts who have moved to new opportunities take their knowledge with them.  He proudly said, “We have never had an employee quit because they didn’t like working here.”

Scott and his wife B.J. relocated to Northwest Arkansas from Monroe, LA 15 years ago and opened their store, July 1, 2003.  Cloud 9 Mattress Oullet celebrated 14 years doing business in Bentonville and serving Northwest Arkansas this year.  I met with Scott in their store at 1208 SE Walton Blvd in Bentonville.

Scott says that most of their business is referral and repeat customers.  So, when you go to Cloud 9 Mattress Outlet, tell them Bex with Talk of the Town sent you!!

Catch the Sleep Tips available if you follow them on Facebook.  Click to Follow Cloud 9 Mattress Outlet

Talk of the Town TEAMMATE  | Bex Tracy, Rogers, AR | “Together we can and will do more; serve more!”  Theresa

Talk of the Town NWA   | a Welcome & Referral Resource serving our growing Northwest Arkansas region.  Our mission is to showcase people, places and things that matter in Northwest Arkansas; applicants for  Front Page News Articles  can let us know via email  (please include press release, press pass, contact information and pictures.)


Music is the Global Handshake | Welcome

Talk of the Town NWA takes great pride in welcoming newcomers to Northwest Arkansas. It is a delight and honor to welcome The House of Songs Ozarks to our community. The House of Songs or THOS opened its Austin house in 2009 coupling local and international songwriters in a 12 day immersion of collaboration and friendship. Believing that “Music is the global handshake,”  THOS participants blend their unique cultural and musical experiences to co-create new original songs. These songwriters are showcased for local residents free of charge at various venues. The Walton Family Foundation has helped to facilitate the opening of this second house in our area.

Welcome! The House of Songs Ozarks, Bentonville, AR

Troy Campbell, founder and president, says that the inspiration for THOS has been an expanding vision born after meeting Danish star singer-songwriter, Poul Krebs back stage at a New Orleans songwriters convention in 1999. After accepting an invitation from Krebs to join him at a songwriting retreat in Denmark, the expansion of this international connection continued.  In addition to the original Austin THOS, other THOS sponsored songwriting collaborations have been hosted in 13 other countries. Campbell  said that the name, The House of Songs, came to him in an instant when asked what he would call his organization.  He later found that the ancient Persian religion of Zoroastrian referenced “garo demana” or House of Song as the place where righteous souls would go. Of note, this writer in reading about Zoroastrian found that ancient high priests or Magi (possibly the wise men from the East) had associations with the Zoroastrian Religion.

Saturday, August 26 was the Open House for THOS Ozarks.  Guests were able to tour the house located on Southeast C Street in Bentonville.   The rooms in the house are each named for famous songwriters including Arkansas’s own Sister Rosetta Tharpe.

The event was hosted by Campbell and his wife along with Clayton Lillard who is the House Manager for the Austin House. Bernice and Bryan Hembree, organizers of the Fayetteville Roots Festival, will be helping to welcome the international guests as well as introducing them to local songwriters.

The first guests to the Ozark house are set to arrive September 7.  There will be a free concert at the The Preacher’s Son, 201 NW A Street in Bentonville on September 10 from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m as well as a screening of the documentary co-directed by Campbell along with Austin Tolin, Albert E. Brumley: Songwriter of the Ozarks. Campbell summed up his impression of Northwest Arkansas with a simple, “I had no idea.”

Click to learn more details about…The House of Songs

Talk of the Town TEAMMATE  | Bex Tracy, Rogers, AR | “Together we can and will do more; serve more!”  Theresa

Talk of the Town NWA  our mission is to report on people, places and things that matter in Northwest Arkansas; applicants for front page feature articles can let us know via email  (include press release, press pass, contact information and pictures.)

2 of 7 Sacred Secrets to Connection in Northwest Arkansas

I’ve spent a lot of time listening and paying attention to Newcomers to our growing region.  I’m willing to hear the hard stuff such as discrimination, diversity challenges, big trucks and rebel flags, the occasional couch on the front porch comment and so on…

My life’s experience has shown me that there are challenges in and around Northwest Arkansas – things that could be improved upon.  I would imagine all cities have such challenges, things they’d like improve upon, etc.  I hear you.  I heard you.  And I agree.  Now what?

Being heard is powerfully important whether a family matter, relationship matter, town hall meeting, business matter, etc.  Many times people can let go and refocus once they’ve been heard, acknowledged and respected.  All the sudden their mind-set shifts and they are able to focus on other areas where they can make a difference in their life and the lives of others…  Their eyes clear and they start to see the beauty, charm, character, culture and legacy of Northwest Arkansas.

Let us take that ONE step further – once I’ve heard a newcomer and they’ve shared their challenges thoroughly – we start the process of talking about what they DO LIKE here.  And then the mind-set swing starts to happen…

Since graduating from the Chamber of Commerce Leadership program 100 years ago I’ve been on fire for community and for Northwest Arkansas as a whole.  With that I’ve devised 7 Sacred Secrets to Connection in Northwest Arkansas.    I won’t share all of them because I save them for Newcomer Receptions yet here’s a couple for you to think about – for the rest of the 7 Sacred Secrets – I’ll see you at the NEXT Newcomer Reception!  Smile.

1 of 7 Sacred Secrets | Volunteering | Everyone can do something in Northwest Arkansas whether it be going out and literally volunteering, giving of your time and/or expertise or monetarily or ALL 3! list NWA non-profits complimentary so Newcomer can go research their passion – where they’d like to give back.  Helping others is a sure fire way of 1) meeting like minded people and 2) getting connected outside of work all the while – finding your passion.  It is highly likely you’ll meet your people – your tribe by volunteering!  Plus – it feels so good!

  1. Examples: You can find all of these and more on our website via NWA Non-Profits

A Blessing Bag is perfect if you are passionate about Foster Care Children

Saving Grace is perfect if you are passionate about contributing to causes that support youth and young women

Sharing and Caring of Benton County is perfect if you are passionate about making sure children have a great holiday

Soldier On Service Dogs if you are passionate about supporting veterans and companions of the four legged kind to support them

Click to Add your NWA Non-Profit

2 of 7 Sacred Secrets | Traffic | where else in the world will you go and people 1) wave and you don’t even know them and 2) let you into traffic!  I ask all newcomers to continue the charm, character, culture & legacy of niceness in traffic – if we don’t all that good stuff will get watered down and we’ll end up like any other city/metropolitan area.  Yeah – it’s just energy but it is very important energy and serves you well!  Remember it is one of the many things you LOVE about Northwest Arkansas!!

See you at the next Newcomer Reception – it is such a unique experience – you’ll love it and expand your circle!

With much gratitude,

Theresa | Founder | | 479.633.GROW (4769)


Restless and Discontent

Newcomers move here, are excited, usually have an exhilarating job awaiting them, or a business they are launching here, they head to work devoted to learning their new job or are excitingly starting the process of introducing their business.  After work they are unpacking and enjoying a nice evening at home – alone.  They repeat the process for about 6 months.  No biggie.  After that…as I understand it they can become restless and discontent!

Two days ago I got on the phone to visit with a gal about serving on our advisory board at What I said to her and what I’ll say to you today is this…

After approximately 6 months the Newcomer has the job down pat, is rocking and rolling, the apartment or home is in TIP TOP shape but they find themselves just sitting there again – some more – every single night and even weekends.

Okay, maybe they are brave and will take in a movie or two by themselves (no biggie), go it alone to a 1st Friday event or stroll the streets of a great farmers market – and it works for a bit.  Maybe even hang out with work buddies yet after awhile you miss having your own tribe.  I’m not sure what I’d do without my tribe of trusted friends that love me no matter what.  That tribe!  After about 6 months of not making real connections, not finding their tribe in Northwest Arkansas – they become restless and discontent.

Then they’ll SECRETLY start examining job options elsewhere – options that lead them to a bigger city, a more social atmosphere, people their age, even moving back to their home town, etc.  By the time – a year rolls around – they are out.  I should have capitalized that – THEY ARE OUT!  Retention and connection is a challenge in Northwest Arkansas and it is our responsibility to improve upon this – yours and mine.

My business friend said, “Oh my gosh – just last week we held a women’s retreat offsite from work and a beautiful black woman (that’s been with us for about a year); actually started crying and said she can’t get connected here.  Our company takes care of the executives pretty well yet everyone else is on their own – really.”

I said, “That’s what I’m talking about – I can tell you right now – within a week and a few phone calls I could have anywhere from 3-5 beautiful black women together for coffee or tea in support of your co-worker!  And further she’d know that if she showed up to Newcomer Receptions because we talk about it there.”

I get off the phone and turned right around and called one of my beautiful black business friends to get her opinion on a variety of different things… 1) is it okay for me to say beautiful black woman?  She said, yes. The politically correct way is African American woman yet who’s not okay with being referred to as beautiful black woman (we both giggled)  2) would you be willing to meet for coffee or tea if called upon?  She said, yes of course.  I ask her to send her impression of Newcomer Receptions, her take away and what she recommends regarding connections in Northwest Arkansas.

Carla shared this – “How I wish the Newcomers Reception would have been here 20 years ago.  As I too moved into this area with BIG DREAMS and HIGH HOPES only to find myself internally empty due to no connectivity. After trying to fit in here or there, I found the SECRET…….I took off my mask and stopped pretending to be this or that for acceptability.  I am unique, I am me and I belong!  The Newcomer Receptions are a benefit to people and to our community. It’s a real program for people who are tired of their mask.”

Carla Thompson (follow Divine Diva on FB: Designed Divine DIVA )

Divine DIVA, Founder

Author (I Believe I Am | Devotional Journal) & Life Coach



I talked one more of my beautiful black business friends and she sent this…Love these gals!

“The Newcomers Reception is crucial for African American Women coming into the Northwest Arkansas area. Not only will you be connected to like minded people who are genuinely open to helping you flourish in the area, but you will also be able to connect with other minorities.

Being an African American female in Northwest Arkansas has been hard, but the support I’ve gain from the Newcomer Receptions (yes I’ve attended often) has really propelled me in life and in business.”

Krystal Beachum, Author | For The Other 98% | The Ultimate Guide for Student-Athletes to Go Pro in Entrepreneurship

I hope you’ll pass this around, share and share some more because what we desire to be at  – is a liaison to your Company by furnishing complimentary tickets for you to GIFT to new hires, a liaison to the people of Northwest Arkansas, especially Newcomers moving here…

The truth is – the struggling Newcomer is NOT going to go into HR and say, “I’m really struggling – I can’t get connected here!”  However, if HR departments will make sure all new employees know about our complimentary Newcomer Reception (remember, we provide complimentary tickets for your company to gift to new employees); Newcomers will have supportive information and also our 7 Sacred Secrets to Getting Connected in Northwest Arkansas that we share at Newcomer Receptions, along with meeting some great people.

Then they will know…they have options and can reach out for help.

Real change starts now.  And it starts by being proactive.  Unfolding your arms and embracing a bigger vision – is important.  Your share makes a difference here, your business listing makes a difference, HR and management in our corporate and business offices, simply being open and sharing about Newcomer Receptions makes a difference, realtors make a huge difference by giving complimentary tickets, personally showing up to help host newcomers at Newcomer Receptions makes a huge difference – opening up your mind, getting out of self, taking action makes a HUGE difference.

The action we would like for you to take today as you read this is to truly PUT PEOPLE FIRST, think of “the person struggling” – first – and email, call or text today and ask “how can I help?”  That would make a difference.

Hospitality – it is time and everyone needs to find a way to contribute to the bigger picture – which is connection and honor within “our” Northwest Arkansas – yours and mine.

With much gratitude,

Theresa | Founder | | 479.633.GROW (4769)

Newcomer Receptions | a community event where leaders, business professionals & loyal locals gather to welcome those NEW to our region!  Details & RSVP information:

Newcomers Guide to Northwest Arkasnas

Appalled, Shocked and Dismayed in Northwest Arkansas

Last year I met a newcomer that is what “she described herself as” a white woman yet of Hispanic decent; when we first met I believe she had been in Northwest Arkansas less than six months – and – she was appalled, horrified, shocked, dismayed, stressed and outraged.  I noticed it on twitter and reached out to her…

If you’re reading this – we (you and I) have more work to do in this community – our – Northwest Arkansas.  There’s a lot to be done regarding Newcomer support in Northwest Arkansas!

Being from San Diego landing here in Northwest Arkansas was culture shock as she described it and as many describe it.  The challenges had to do with overhearing many people speak in a derogatory way about her Hispanic culture – remember – she’s looks white and many spoke freely in her presence , other challenges included big trucks, rebel flags, terrible driving and traffic situations to mention a few.

I chose to spotlight her story at Newcomer Reception – in the raw.  I was and am truly grateful she was willing to be so brave and again really vulnerable in a public venue like our Newcomer Receptions.  Following her brave heartfelt share she handed back the microphone and my only words were…I’m so sorry this has happened to you here and that it has caused you to hurt.  Then I turned to the audience and said, “When we know better – we can do better!”

Later that next week we met for coffee and let me say “being heard” is so incredibly powerful because she seemed softer and I encouraged her to seek and focus on things she loves here.  Today she is a vibrant community leader and a loving, caring, beautiful woman, wife, bonus mom, friend, neighbor and professional – yes she got back to her true foundational core.

Together – we can do more.  I don’t want to come across as NWA fairy Godmother or anything yet – the work we do at is very important.  Further we need your support to keep going, growing and making a difference.

I was inspired to write this today because yesterday I got off the phone after hearing the shared story of a beautiful black woman that has been here a year and found herself in tears at an offsite work meeting.  She broke down and cried because she hasn’t been able to connect here in Northwest Arkansas.

Look for that article next (link at bottom of page) and learn more about what is possible if the Newcomer just knew we we’re available on such a personal level.  Not everyone needs support – many do great.  If you’re a newcomer and struggling pick up the phone and call us 479.633.GROW (4769) or attend a Newcomer Reception then we’ll have a tea or coffee later.  A sit down visit (smile).

Please share both of these articles so businesses, services and HR departments can better understand the void we fill.  We are able to make a huge difference in this community as connectors, consultants, coaches, mentors and more…  Support, retention and connection is our amazing gift to this community by means of and the work we do as a service and the individual attention and conversations we are willing to have with Newcomers is powerful in our growing region.

Day before yesterday I called a client who works for a prominent supplier in Northwest Arkansas.  The conversation took a spin about a beautiful black woman struggling to get connected in Northwest Arkansas…click to read full story

With much gratitude,

Theresa | Chief Inspirational Office | | 479.633.GROW (4769)