Hello! I’m Mindee Doney, the inventor of Boogie Wipes™ and owner of Juicebox Idea Consulting. I was thrilled and humbled to be a judge of this year’s event! After spending a weekend visiting your websites and Facebook pages, reading the nominations and comments from your friends and fans, my heart needed to send a quick note to everyone. I hope you will enlighten me. 🙂

As different as your businesses and your stories are, seeing them together proves that you….WE!….are all cut from the same cloth. One of my favorite comedians said “You are not truly a Woman until you push out a kid and have them stomp all over your dreams.” It’s funny, sad and true how much having kids changes us, makes us take a long look in the mirror and inevitably becomes a “sink or swim” defining moment for most of us. Instead of throwing up your hands in overwhelmed defeat at the challenges of raising kids, you have all taken the skills your learning as a Mother and applied them to starting a business. You’re truly striving for your potential above and beyond what was ever expected of you. Many of you have overcome huge health and wellness obstacles to start and maintain your businesses. All of you are full of tenacity, ideas, creativity, and resourcefulness because that’s what it takes to be a healthy Mompreneur in the opinionated world we live in today. All of you clearly want more out of your life. High Five!

So, I did the judging according to Dawn’s requirements and scoring system and also added a brief comment for each of you specific to what I discovered in a short review of your company. Having been in all of your shoes on some level during my own 12 years as an entrepreneur, I felt a burning desire to communicate a few questions that kept coming up for me. The chief cause of failure and disappointment in life and business is trading what you want MOST for what you want at the MOMENT. Aligning your expectations of yourself and others can ensure you are making the most of every day. Please, take these thoughts with a grain of salt. There is NO right or wrong answers, only an awareness that I believe will help your happy meter. Listen to your heart and you will know if the intention is meant for you or not.

1. Did you start your business for fun and distraction or to make money? Sure, “both” is a fine answer but one of them MUST be more important to you than the other. Pick one to guide your decision making. You will see a significant shift in how you spend your time and your fulfillment level when you accept why you are really doing what you do. It will help you decide if you should spend your morning cold calling sales leads, drawing up new designs or pinning and tweeting again.

2. Do you want to do what you did today 10 years from now? Many of you have a business 100% based on your presence in it EVERYDAY! Many entrepreneurs want the option to someday be sitting on a beach while they make money. If that is you, what are you doing today to make that happen? What revenue streams can you create (product, partnerships etc..) that can sustain income when you are not available? What can you teach others to do? Yes, it’s a gradual process but it must never be far from your mind if that’s your goal.

3. How much are you relying on your MOM persona to make your business succeed? It’s a nice angle in the appropriate setting but at the end of the day, people don’t pay you for your product, time or help because you are a Mom, they give you their hard earned money because you have a tool they feel they need to solve a problem. Remember not to lay the Mommy story on to thick. Of course, it has a time and a place and is great for PR. Just keep it in check.

4. Is your work & life REALLY balanced? Mine never was and never will be. Sometimes life is all about work, sometimes it’s all about kids and family. ACCEPT WHERE YOU ARE! If you are in a stage where you are working 50+ hours a week, it’s all about YOU and your business right now. Give yourself an amount of time you are willing to live that way, communicate with those you love about it honestly and straightforward, stop apologizing for it. Set your boundaries, and reflect often on why you have chosen that and what the consequences and rewards are. Only YOU control how you feel at the end of the day.

I appreciate you taking the time to read my reflections. I have personally struggled with success and failure in my businesses and my life often and find my own sense of purpose in trying to help others discover their best life like many people helped me. I wish you all the very best in your pursuit of joy in your businesses and your home. Be Well, Dream Big, Live Simple

Mindee

Reach me @ mindee{at}juiceboxconsulting.com

Jessica Welsch and Stephanie Williams are sisters and co-owners of The HopeFULL Company. In addition to being mothers of two young children, the pair is on a mission to help kids eat more whole foods.

Their newest product, The BellyFULL Kit, helps parents make nutritious and delicious frozen whole food pops at home with their kids. They also offer a kit called The HopeFULL Gift Pack that is used to make nutrient-dense frozen food pops for people having trouble eating due
to illness.

Their secret to maximizing time as mom entrepreneurs is to get up before the kids do. “It’s not always easy getting up early, but those extra couple of hours before the kids get up really helps us get ahead,” said Welsch.

They admit that being moms and business owners is a challenge and finding a way to balance the two is an even bigger challenge. “We love our work, so sometimes it’s hard to turn off the computer or take a day off! We make a point to schedule time for ourselves, and we make quality time with our families a priority – time where we are present and enjoying the moment,” she said.

Welsch said that they encourage patience when talking to new or aspiring business owners. “It doesn’t happen over night! We’ve also learned that just like parenthood, it takes a village. There are many wonderful resources out there for women entrepreneurs. Legal Corps, Women Venture, SCORE to name a few. Reach out, network and make connections. Most importantly, have fun and enjoy the ride!”

The HopeFULL Company can also be found on Twitter, Facebook and on their blog.

In the month of April, Boogie Wipes is asking you to take the pledge and save a sleeve. At random, 1,000 pledges will be chosen to win a Save the Sleeve kit!

1. Do you promise to always carry your Boogie Wipes?

2. Do you pledge to always keep your hands clean and away from your face?

3. Do you pledge to always wash your hands or use hand sanitizer?

4. Do you pledge not to be a nose picker?

5. Do you promise to save your sleeve for emergencies?

If you do, you could be an official Boogie Kid! Click here to take the pledge and enter for your chance to win!

 

HMMMMMM. Color my walls with lights? What do you mean…? Well, who says you can’t have any color you want in your room whenever you want it. Just because you have decided today that you want to have the bedroom be a shade of green. What makes you think you will want that color next month.  

We live in a world of constant change.  

We love the idea of new! But we can’t always afford to just change it because we don’t like it today. Most of us save for that “rainy day” project or we plan for months and ponder over is the play room going to be blue and red or maybe I should do it all yellow. 

With this new concept of lights instead of paint you can do whatever you want whenever you want. You design the room today and you think the best color is a shade of red, but then in a few weeks you’re not feeling that color anymore and you want to change it to a pale purple. GO FOR IT! It’s your room and your lights! You can do whatever you want. 

Does this concept seem foreign to you? 

It may, but we can certainly walk you through the process and if you are interested in doing this type of “painting” for your kitchen? theatre room? kids’ playroom? or maybe even your master bedroom suite?

TriState Nursery Painting can help and guide you every step of the way. Give them a call at 609.954.4018 and get an estimate for your custom made baby room! You can also visit them online at their website, or on Facebook.

 

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer. Her business, Mind over Clutter, started six years ago and works to help clients de-clutter and organize their homes and offices. She prides herself on getting donations to charities and hard to recycle items to environmentally friendly depots.

“I set up systems in their space that fit their lifestyle and personality,” she said.

The main thing Stobbe likes about being self-employed is the ability to self-manage her life. “It gives you the flexibility to begin your day and end your day to suit the client and your family needs. You can plan ahead work with school holidays. You can employ your children and help them to learn about what
you do and why it is important,” she added.

When starting a new business, Stobbe encourages women to pick something they love. “If you pick a business that is your passion you will enjoy the long hours and all the new things you will learn running a business. I took my time starting my business and waited for the right time for me so I would not be
overloaded and burn out.”

Mind over Clutter is marketed via their website, networking groups, speaking engagements, the publishing of educational materials and collaborative alliances.

According to Stobbe, she helps people get their mind in the right place; to put their things in the right space. Visit her online at Mind over Clutter.

 

Announcing the 2013 S.T.A.R. Mom Entrepreneur

We are SO excited to announce the winner of our 2013 S.T.A.R. {successful, tenacious, accomplished, remarkable} Mom Entrepreneur Award! Market Mommy wanted to honor an awesome mom for her continued dedication to her business and her family! Our judges did not have an easy task; we had a ton of exceptional nominees!

Our goal was to honor a leader; someone who is balancing her business and family in a creative way. We asked moms to tell us what sets them apart from the thousands of other mom entrepreneurs, why they are determined to succeed, how they’re helping others and what they’ve done to show the world that they’re confident, remarkable and steadfast!

Here is a snippet from the winner’s nomination form::

“Judi is an inspiring woman. Rather than just preaching positivity, she embodies it. She has taken the simple idea of a love note from mom and turned into something bigger, bringing smiles to thousands (and maybe even millions) of children across the US, Canada, and other parts of the world. In addition to be a wonderful business leader, Judi is the mom of two beautiful teenagers and consistently helps her kids follow the path of kindness. With Lunchbox Love for Kids, Judi is working to create a kinder, happier world for all of us.”

We are overjoyed to announce that Judi Willard of SayPlease is the 2013 Market Mommy S.T.A.R. Mom Entrepreneur! Visit her at the following channels and see why we think she’s such a strong example of entrepreneurship.

SayPlease

Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Instagram

And, here’s a little more about her company from the nomination process::

Say Please was co-founded by Judi Willard in an effort to bring more positive words to children. Their core product, Lunchbox Love for Kids, are the original lunch notes and include heartfelt messages on the front and fun trivia & jokes on the back.

As the winner of the 2013 S.T.A.R. Mom Entrepreneur Award, Willard receives all of the wonderful prizes supplied by our sponsors listed here.

SILVER STARS

We had a feeling that there would be a large number of excellent nominees and we were right. So, we are glad that we reserved the right to name up to 5 Honorable Mentions, aka Silver Stars. Our judges have chosen::

Oreet J. Schwartz :: SharQui – The bellydance workout®

Mistie Lucht::  Playground Pointers

Kay Green:: My Precious Kid LLC

Dr. Daisy Sutherland:: Dr. Mommy and Friends

Jennifer McClanahan-Flint::  Food on our Table 

We do want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their nominations and offer a sincere congratulations to every nominee. You all are amazing women and doing amazing things in this world! Kudos to you! {You can view all the nominees on our Facebook page}

 

By Chelsea Duggan

Think back to Junior High when what mattered most was Johnny Melturheart at lunch. You noticed he always sat at a specific table, ordered French fries without ketchup (rebel), and drummed his orange pencils on the table in what would surely be labeled as ADD now. You might not have realized it at the time, but you were profiling Johnny as a future client. You knew his likes (popular girls and detention) and his dislikes (you). Remember, a niche is the exact person you are trying to reach. Let’s think in terms of opposites. Generic is cooking, niche is French onion soup, generic is French fries, niche is truffle-coated-parmesan chips, generic is demographics (like age), niche is specific (I’m 29 – I swear!)

Finding your niche is exciting because you’re uncovering a little bit more about yourself. Let’s drink this in a step further.

Next time you’re grabbing your caffeine of choice, spend a few extra minutes at your table and look around the room. Free write what you see and pull together a profile from this. Is everyone drinking frothy iced coffee or are there a lot of tea leaves and biscuits? Imagine who these people are, what they want to do, where are they headed and why. Will they be back? When? How come? Why not buy their next cup in exchange for a quick chat in hopes of uncovering the answers to a few of your questions. Plus, it’s not nearly as scary to chat with a stranger as it was to be caught looking too long at Junior High Johnny. Channel your inner anthropologist as this is a great beginning to your research. Push your glasses up and head to the bookstore for a look at niche magazines – interior design, cooking, or beat boxing. Which tribe is yours and how can you solve their problems? How can you make their life better, easier and more fun?  Now turn all of this research into part of your business through Pinterest. Collect images of what your potential audience likes and grow it. Parlay a pin into a post and keep building your content from there. Your tribe will grow and take shape. You’ll start to connect with like-minded souls whose problems you care about.

Finding your niche may take some real time, research and hard work. It’s easy to feel like the sea is too big. However, I’m confident that when you cast your line of business to your tribe you’ll be rewarded in ways you couldn’t have ever imagined.

Chelsea Duggan:: An entrepreneur, parent and advocate for early childhood development through creative education, Chelsea Duggan is the Founder and Director of Milestar Babies. This innovative online resource enables busy parents to have an influential impact on newborn children, up to three years in age. Chelsea’s background in education – a passion she shares with her two children, so they themselves can enjoy a lifelong interest in learning – is at the center of Milestar Babies. That commitment to excellence starts with shared moments and teacher-designed lessons, which parents can further customize, so children can discover, synthesize and pursue their own discoveries. Chelsea believes that every child is an amazing individual, who deserves to learn at his or her own pace. This kid-tested, parent-approved philosophy is Chelsea’s distinctive concept, complemented by the convenience of the Internet and her dynamic site. A graduate of Northwestern and a member of the Chicago Women Entrepreneurs Network, Chelsea welcomes the opportunity to interact with parents and children throughout the nation and the world.

Michal Chesal launched Baby K’tan, LLC in 2007. Her business offers baby carriers and accessory items.

Chesal, a devoted mother of three, graduated in 1994 with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, and spent two years studying abroad. She then served as the Director of Academic Affairs for an overseas university. Michal also spent three years as an equities trader, specializing in risk management and technical analysis for a New York firm. For the past few years leading up to Baby K’tan, she had been the sole proprietor of a regional marketing firm in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. On a volunteer basis, Michal assists in chairing events that promote advocacy and acceptance of the special needs community. Additionally, she serves as an active board member on numerous children’s advocacy organizations.

She is now devoting her time to her new baby, Baby K’tan, LLC.

Chesal’s oldest son, Coby Joshua, was born with Down syndrome in December of 1999. Coby’s birth and disability presented the need for her and her family to create an environment for him that would facilitate his development and provide the extra stimulation he needed for optimal growth. In addition to his developmental delays, Coby was born with hypotonia (low muscle tone) and was adversely affected by carriers that placed his legs in excessive abduction (legs spread too far apart). It was disheartening not being able to carry him in a forward facing position as used in traditional baby carriers. Not only did she want to hold Coby closely and show him the world, she wanted to do it appropriately. Never completely satisfied with the carriers on the market, she and family friend Isaac Wernick created Baby K’tan.

Chesal agrees with other mom entrepreneurs that it is difficult to balance family and business. However, even though difficult she finds a way to manage. When asked what advice she would give other mom entrepreneurs or those aspiring, she said, “Go for it. Don’t hold back because of fear of the unknown.”

Baby K’tan is marketing mainly through social media and organic marketing. To learn more, visit their website or find them on Facebook and Twitter.

Thanks for stopping by! Founded in June of 2009, Market Mommy® is an online marketing resource for mom business owners that shows you how and where to market your businesses.  Market Mommy® offers a variety of low-cost {and free!} services to help moms on a budget.

Market Mommy® provides links to great advertising opportunities, offers free marketing advice and tips via the blog and e-newsletter. Mom-owned businesses are advertised for free on the blog and in the directory. A free, interactive forum is also available.

Some of the site’s services include marketing consultation, copywriting, graphic design, printing of marketing materials and much more. They also offer affordable advertising opportunities. Everything that we provide to our customers is low-cost and practical.

Right now, we’re highlighting some great mom-owned businesses in our Spring Product Preview. They are:

Join us at Young Living! New Distributors (excluding $40 Start Living Kit) and new customers placing an order of $100+ will receive a copy of Reference Guide for Using Essential Oils! 

As a mom, I wanted to be there for my children but still be able to contribute to our household income. Today, I earn a higher monthly income than most professionals working 40+ hours and get to work around my family at home. www.2ndincomespecialist.com

Rise Above Life and all of its difficulties and challenges with downloadable, inspirational art. Join the community and share your story!

Oliver’s Labels carries awesome clothing labels and more for kids and their families. We are the only company that has the exclusive Found-It tracking system which is a FREE online Lost-and-Found system. Great packages available ranging from pre-school packages to summer camp packages.

Be sure to visit the prize page and sign up to win our $600 advertising package!!

By Prerna Malik

Have you ever had one of those days when just nothing gets done and everything goes wrong?

Yes, I thought so.

All of us, mom entrepreneurs, have had days when we wish we could just rewind and start over. While we can’t do that, what we CAN do is start our workday right so that things flow smoothly and you don’t end up feeling overwhelmed and burnt out.

Here are 4 ways to start your day right:

1. Plan Your Day the Night Before

That’s right. To start your day right, you must end it right. Don’t wrap up your workday without writing down the top 5 things that you need to do the next day. Download my free daily planner to help you get started. That way when you sit down to work in the morning, you already know what needs to be done.

2. Knock the Toughest Task Off First

You know what productivity experts say about eating your frog? What they mean is finishing your toughest task early in the day. Doing that ensures that you’re motivated to power through the rest of your to-do list and knowing that you’re done with something tough makes you feel SO much better about yourself.

3. Make Time for Me

Before you get engulfed by your to-dos and chores, take out 10 to 15 minutes to just sit and be. Make it non-negotiable “me-time”. You could use these minutes to meditate, read a chapter from a book, sip a cup of coffee in peace or just listen to music and center your thoughts. Having uninterrupted time for yourself is a sure shot way of giving you an energy boost for the entire day.

4. Focus, Focus, Focus

Focus is your best friend. Regardless of what multi-tasking advocates may say, when you want to start your day right, you don’t want to be flitting between doing the laundry and answering emails or writing articles and talking to a neighbor. You’ll not get half as much done and you’ll end up frustrated that you’ve lost precious time. Not a nice way to start your day.

What is your number one challenge when it comes to starting your day right?

Author of How to be a Work-at-Home Mom: The Happily Ever After Guide to Leading the WAHM Life, Prerna Malik is a business blogger, social media expert and work-at-home mom coach who shares smart solutions for busy work-at-home moms and juggles multiple businesses with baking cupcakes with her daughter.