How God Gets Our Attention

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Discovering God's Plan

The month of May just zoomed by, as I was crazy busy with adjusting to summer vacation with the kids at home, my part-time job, and everything that goes along with that.

Honestly, I’ve been doing a whole lot of “looking in my house.”

How God Gets Our Attention

Thinking over the last six weeks or so—as I take a step back from the busyness of life—I see some clear markers of what God has placed under my nose to get my attention:

  1. I’ve been presented with several different freelancing/contract work opportunities that offer some exciting, long-term benefits.
  2. I’ve been “cut loose” of some responsibilities that had previously demanded a lot of my time (which would have hampered time I could spend on #1).
  3. My husband has some exciting things going on right now with his work.
  4. God continues to feed my soul, as we worship at a new church hearing awesome weekly messages, many of which have focused on the same ideas I put forth here: God has a unique purpose for you as part of his bigger story.

I also believe that God continues to prune and chip away at the peripheral things that don’t matter, in order to make room for the things that do. Of course, these things that he prunes include sin, but sometimes they also include “good” things.

It’s hard to say goodbye to things that are good but have become idols: relationships, comfort, predictability, smooth sailing.

Another thing I’m trying to learn is the difference between things that I enjoy and am interested in, and the things to which God is calling me. This is hard. Super-hard.

For example:

  • I’ve always enjoyed school and learning, and I’m a terrific student. I thought I’d be a great teacher.
  • I’m a terrible classroom teacher.

I love the whole world of Internet marketing and social media strategy. I keep trying to wiggle my way into these business endeavors, but I can’t quite find my niche. Right now, I’m trying to decide if I just need to persevere or if God is trying to turn me around. I think I’d be a great niche blog site owner—with a targeted “product” to promote and sell—but I’ve been trying to discover what that may be, examining everything from pantyhose to door knobs.

Nothing’s really working out. Nothing is presenting itself as viable. Nothing excites to the point of I can’t imagine myself NOT doing it. And the last thing I want to do is “force” myself into a business endeavor—committing time, money, and resources—when I don’t see or sense a clear affirmation of what I’m doing.

For now? I wait. I continue to turn over and move the rocks that God places in front of me. Maybe I’ll find something underneath one someday soon.

But if not, I do know one thing: casting aside the rocks in my path just clears more space for me to pursue God. A clean path to Christ guarantees a greater access to him.

And God’s plans for me far exceed anything I could imagine or pursue myself.

God’s plans for me far exceed anything I could imagine or pursue myself.

Photo Credit: CountryDreaming via Compfight cc

Competition Is Irrelevant When You Follow Your Passion

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Competition is irrelevant | God's passions, purpose for life, blogging, competition

I’ve had a blog (albeit, in several different forms) since 2008. I’m amazed by a couple of things when I look around at other moms with successful money-making blogs.

  1. Some of these bloggers have been online and working for a shorter amount of time than I.
  2. There are a dang lot of women bloggers, but it seems like there’s always room for more.

So what that means to me is this:

Don’t worry about “the competition” and work your tail off.

Regardless of your area of expertise …

If God’s calling you to something, it means that the competition is irrelevant.
Faithfully following his call, your message will be unique enough that it won’t get lost and it will reach those that need it most.

We must believe this, friends. It’s the “partner” message to the primary one of “look in your house” to find your priorities, passions, and provision.

Let’s consider this idea—something I’ve wanted to do forever: write and sell an ebook.

But I have to tell you that part of delay in actually doing it has been wrapped up in my thought patterns. I have a tendency to think that my efforts would be in vain: No one would benefit from anything I’d have to say. Would my ebook be unique enough to stand out against an already-full market?

Let’s interrupt those thoughts, though, and turn them around. What if I were to approach it this way: God has given me a unique set of experiences, skills, and passions. God has created a passion in my heart to write an ebook. If God wants me to write an eBook then nothing else matters.

It’s a lot more fun to go through life wondering, God, what will you have me tackle today? What awesome thing that seems difficult or awkward will you have me achieve?

So, look in your house to see what’s there, follow your passion, and then shrug off everything else that hinders you.

Photo Credit: Johan Larsson via Compfight cc

9 Ways to Use Other Bloggers’ EBooks to Grow Your Business

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homemaking, home office, home business, work at home mom, wahm, Christian wahm, Christian mom

If you spend even a day online, you will discover an eBook or two for sale. In fact, most of the bloggers I follow regularly have at least one eBook under their belts.

Writing an eBook has always seemed like an out-of-reach ideal that I’d probably never do. I mean, I reasoned, What in the world do I have to say that’s not been said before, I doubt I’d sell many (if any), and How do I get started anyway?

This week’s mega eBook sale, though, has really gotten my wheels turning—and is motivating me to write my own eBook. I hope you’ve purchased The Ultimate Homemaking Ebook Bundle (and if you haven’t, you should; read about this limited time special deal here). If you’re a mom, a wife, you live in a house or apartment, you have a home-based business/blog, and/or you eat food, I promise you’ll find something that will apply to you!

But I’m also hoping that the Bundle will give you some new ideas, like it has for me.

Consider all the ways you can use other bloggers’ eBooks in your business (I’ve listed my ideas here):

1. Get inspired to write your own eBook! Whether your niche is pregnancy or poodles, just reading through other bloggers’ eBooks will inspire you to write your own. Come to the collection with the mindset of looking for inspiration to write.

2. Teach an online (or in person) course, using an eBook as the required curriculum.

3. Give away books and/or the Bundle on your blog. (Make sure you read the FAQs about copyright restrictions before gifting an eBook.)

4. Find new business partners and mentors. These authors are some of the sharpest businesswomen online. Simply by reading their books, you’re peeking into their wealth of knowledge. Begin following them on their blogs and social media and expand your reach.

5. Research, research, research. Guess what? These books were created because they are book-worthy topics. These are the topics readers demanded. I’m sure each author came at her topic from a slightly different angle, but in the end, these are hot topics in each category. Find your niche category, study the eBooks there, and see what pops up for you. Hopefully, you’ll get new ideas for blog posts, articles, or a future eBook.

6. EBook review page. Once you’ve read an eBook, write a review. Create a separate page on your blog where you post reviews of several eBooks that you believe your audience would find helpful. Make sure you become an affiliate for each book and post your affiliate link with your book review.

7. Include specific books in a holiday gift guide. Create a gift guide, tailored to your niche. Suggest eBooks in the guide using your affiliate links in short reviews.

8. Launch a business from something you learn. Many eBooks are “how-to” guides. Learn a new skill or craft, or create a DIY project. Use your new “creation” as the first item for sale in your home-based business.

9. Create a Favorite eBooks podcast. Interview the eBook authors for a podcast specific to your niche.

So, what’s number 10? What ideas do you have to use eBooks in your business?

Image credit: MorgueFile.com

 

 

 

Awesome Sale You Don’t Want to Miss – The Ultimate Homemaking Ebook Bundle

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***This Bundle is no longer for sale.***

I can’t wait to tell you about this amazing deal coming up next week!

Get more than $600 worth of ebooks and ecourses for just $29.97!

Authors include some of the most popular bloggers in the “homemaking” niche (and I use that term broadly):

  • Amy Lynn Andrews at Blogging With Amy
  • SarahMae of SarahMae.com
  • Crystal of MoneySavingMom.com
  • Tsh of SimpleMom
  • Katie of Kitchen Stewardship

… just to name a few!

Now, I know that most of you are focused on business and/or work at home opportunities. In my opinion, the books included in the “Working from Home and Blogging” category alone are worth the price of the entire bundle! But we are also moms and wives and Christian women, too. This bundle covers so many facets of life that I promise you’ll find the majority of ebooks apply to you.

And if that wasn’t the best deal all by itself, the sale organizers have also secured “bonus freebies” from ten different companies that total more than $140!

So, check out the details from the sale organizers below. You can’t order until April 29, but I’ll remind you again to come back here and place your order.

Don’t miss this awesome opportunity to grow and learn.

P.S. This is going to be my Mother’s Day present to myself this year. :)

~~~

From the sale organizers:

For 6 days only, more than 75 widely-known bloggers and authors in the homemaking sphere have joined together to offer 97 of their most popular eBooks and eCourses, valued at just over $600, for the incredibly low price of $29.97!

More than anything, our goal for this sale was for it to be, well… ultimate! We firmly believe that you will not find a more comprehensive collection of homemaking resources anywhere on the web, and particularly not in this price range. For this low price, you gain access to every single one of these resources, so that you can customize your own collection to contain exactly the ones you want and know you’ll use.

This library of homemaking helps include topics such as mothering, organization and cleaning, recipes and kitchen helps, home education, spiritual growth for both moms and kids, home décor and DIY, pregnancy and baby care, frugal living, health and fitness, and even work-from-home and financial tools.

To sweeten the pot, we’ve also teamed up with 10 companies to bring you over $140 in bonus offers, giving you an affordable opportunity to get products you’ll use and love for only the cost of shipping, or in some cases, entirely for free!

What’s Included in the Sale?

When you purchase The Ultimate Homemaking eBook collection, you will get instant access to any of the 97 eBooks and eCourses listed below.

PLUS over $140 of FREE Bonuses

Each The Ultimate Homemaking eBook collection comes with more than $140 of FREE Bonuses from 10 companies that we know you’ll love. More on these bonuses below.

Please note: This collection is only available from 9 a.m. EST on April 29th to 11:59 p.m. EST on May 4th. There will be no late sales offered.

Home & Property {Cleaning, Organizing, Decor}

31 Days to Clean by Sarah Mae @ SarahMae.com ($4.99)
Getting it Together: Your Guide to Setting Up a Home Management System that Works by Kayse @ kayse pratt ($3.99)
Pulling Yourself Together: Implementing a Cleaning Routine that Sticks by Becky @ Clean Mama ($10.00)
Simple Living by Lorilee @ Loving Simple Living ($2.99)
NOT a DIY Diva by Melissa @ The Inspired Room ($3.99)
One Bite at a Time: 52 Projects for Making Life Simpler by Tsh @ Simple Mom ($5.00)
28 Days to Hope for your Home by Dana @ A Slob Comes Clean ($5.00)
Organizing Life as Mom by Jessica @ Life as Mom ($9.00)
Clean Enough: Simple Solutions for the Overwhelmed by Jenni @ Live Called ($4.99)
10 Steps to Organized Paper by Lisa @ Lisa Woodruff.net($5.00)
Handmade Walls by Jamin and Ashley @ the handmade home ($9.95)
Easy Peasy Chores: An Easy-to-Use Chore System That Brings JOY Back Into Family Chores by Alina Joy @ The Good Old Days Farm ($17.99)

Educational Children’s Resources

Princess Training by Richele @ Under the Golden Apple Tree ($3.99)
The Armor of God by Richele @ Under the Golden Apple Tree ($2.50)
My Bedtime Learning Book by Richele @ Under the Golden Apple Tree ($1.00)
Think Outside the Classroom by Kelly @ Generation Cedar ($6.97)
Raising Rock Stars — Kindergarten Bundle by Carissa @ 1plus1plus1equals1 ($10.00)
The ABC’s For Godly Boys Curriculum by Lindsey @ Road to 31 ($8.00)
The ABC’s For Godly Girls Curriculum by Lindsey @ Road to 31 ($8.00)
K4 Curriculum by Erica @ Confessions of a Homeschooler ($15.00)
Write Through the Bible (print) by Trisha @ Intoxicated on Life ($5.00)
Write Through the Bible (cursive) by Trisha @ Intoxicated on Life ($5.00)
Balcony Girls (books 1 & 2) by Sandy @ Reluctant Entertainer ($19.90)
The Dig for Kids: Luke (Volumes 1 and 2) by Patrick, husband of Ruth @ The Better Mom ($5.98)
Music: An Essential Ingredient for Life by Ryan @ Resound School of Music ($6.99)

Budgeting {Finance & Time}

From Debtor to Better by Barry @ From Debtor to Better ($10.00)
Tell Your Time by Amy @ Blogging with Amy ($2.99)
The Homemakers Guide to Creating the Perfect Schedule by Amy @ Raising Arrows ($4.99)
Your Grocery Budget Toolbox by Anne @ Authentic Simplicity ($7.99)
Finding Financial Freedom by Kelly @ Generation Cedar ($5.97)
Become a Frugalista in 30 Days by Susan @ The Confident Mom ($3.99)

In the Kitchen {Recipes and Cooking}

Crock On by Stacy @ Stacy Makes Cents ($5.00)
Real Food, Real Easy by various bloggers @ The Humbled Homemaker ($9.95)
Wholesome Mixes by Kristy @ Little Natural Cottage ($4.00)
20-Minute Meals by Leigh Ann @ Intentional by Grace ($4.99)
Restocking the Pantry by Kresha @ Nourishing Joy ($9.99)
Money Saving Mom’s Guide to Freezer Cooking by Crystal @ Money Saving Mom ($3.99)
Simply Summer by Kate @ Modern Alternative Mama ($7.95)
Do the Funky Kitchen by Laura @ Heavenly Homemakers ($4.95)
Real Food Kids: In the Kitchen plus 1 month access to select Real Food Kids eCourse videos by Wardeh @ GNOWFGLINS and Jami @ Eat Nourishing ($20.00)
Seasonal Menu Plans on a Budget: A Month of Meals from My Humble Kitchen to Yours by Diana @ My Humble Kitchen ($4.99)
Just Making Ice Cream by Marillyn @ Just Making Noise ($12.00)
The Curative Kitchen by Susan @ Handy Pantry ($20.00)

Pregnancy & Baby Care

First Bites by Hilary @ Accidentally Green ($9.99)
Confessions of a Cloth Diaper Convert by Erin @ The Humbled Homemaker ($9.95)
Stress-Free Baby Shower by Sara @ Your Thriving Family ($4.00)
Unbound Birth by Jenny @ The Southern Institute ($2.99)
My Pregnancy Journey by Mindy @ Simply Designs ($9.99)
My Buttered Life Baby Edition by Renee @ Made On Hard Lotion ($5.00)
The Minimalist Mom’s Guide to Baby’s First Year by Rachel @ The Minimalist Mom ($5.00)
Redeeming Childbirth: Growth & Study Guide by Angie @ Redeeming Childbirth ($3.99)

Holidays & Special Events

Festive Traditions by Jill @ Modern Alternative Kitchen ($7.95)
Holiday Mixes: Gifts in a Jar by Kristy @ Little Natural Cottage ($4.00)
Flourishing Spring by Michele @ Frugal Granola ($5.95)
Family Camping Handbook by Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship ($6.95)
Truth in the Tinsel by Amanda @ Oh, Amanda! ($7.99)
Plan a Fabulous Party by Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect ($4.99)
iPhone Photography: The Visual Guide by Alli @ Alli Worthington($9.97)

Spiritual Growth

Pursuit of the Proverbs 31 by Amy @ Amy Bayliss ($3.99)
The Best of Visionary Womanhood by Natalie @ Visionary Womanhood ($5.00)
God’s Word in my Heart: A Scripture Memory Learning Guide with Verses {all 4 versions} by Jenn @ The Purposeful Mom ($3.99)
Kept: a 13-Week Inductive Study on 1 Peter by Lara and Katie @ Quench Bible ($4.99)
Love Like Him: an 8 week Inductive Bible study on 1 Corinthians 13 by Lara and Katie @ Quench Bible ($2.99)

Marriage & Romance

Rekindling Romance by Jason & Jami @ A Biblical Marriage ($4.99)
Good Wife’s Guide by Darlene @ Time-Warp Wife ($2.99)
31 Days to Build a Better Spouse by Ashley @ Ashley Pichea ($4.99)
31 Days to Great Sex by Sheila @ To Love, Honor and Vacuum ($4.99)
Entangled: Recognize Your Emotional Affair by Amy @ Amy J. Bennett ($4.99)

Motherhood

The Heart of Simplicity by various authors @ The Heart of Simplicity ($9.99)
True Christian Motherhood by June @ A Wise Woman Builds Her Home ($7.00)
Hula Hoop Girl by September @ One September Day ($4.99)
When Motherhood Feels Too Hard by Kelly @ Generation Cedar ($4.97)
Mindset for Moms by Jamie @ Steady Days ($4.99)
From Cube to Farm by Heather @ From Cube to Farm ($2.99)
4 Moms of 35+ Kids Answer Your Parenting Questions by various authors @ 4 Moms, 35+ Kids Parenting E-book ($7.99)
That Works for Me! by Kristen @ We are THAT Family ($8.00)

Health & Fitness

100-pound Loser by Jessica @ Muthering Heights ($4.99)
Honoring the Rhythm of Rest by Danielle @ Domestic Serenity ($2.99)
42 Days to Fit by Brandy @ The Marathon Mom, Emma @ Real Fit Moms and Stacy @ A Delightful Home ($4.99)
Healthy Homemaking by Stephanie @ Keeper of the Home ($12.95)
Personal ePlanner by Jennifer @ ListPlanIt ($5.00)

Beauty

Frumps to Pumps by Sarah Mae @ SaraMae.com ($4.99)
The Cottage Mama’s DIY Guide by Kristy @ Little Natural Cottage ($4.00)
Simple Scrubs to Make and Give by Stacy @ A Delightful Home ($3.99)
The No Brainer Wardrobe by Hayley @ The No Brainer Wardrobe ($7.99)
Embracing Beauty by Trina @ Trina Holden ($9.00)
Reuse, Refresh, Repurpose by Kristen @ The Frugal Girl ($3.99)

Working from Home & Blogging

Your Blogging Business: Tax, Talk and Tips by Nikki @ Christian Mommy Blogger ($4.99)
The Bootstrap VA by Lisa @ The Home Life {and Me} ($12.99)
How to Grow Your Blog and Manage Your Home by Jacinda @ Growing Home ($4.99)
How to Have Your Cake and Eat It, Too by Mandi @ Life Your Way ($12.00)
Simple Blogging: Less Computer Time, Better Blogging by Rachel @ Small Notebook ($8.00)

Ecourses

Learning in Love: The Preschool Years by Renee @ FIMBY ($7.99)
Homeschooling from the Heart by Renee @ FIMBY ($7.99)
Grocery University by Carrie @ Colorado Bargains ($24.95)
Vibrant Living Strategies for Moms by Lisa @ Well-Grounded Life ($59)
You Can Do This! The First Five Steps to a Real Food Kitchen by Laura @ Heavenly Homemakers ($5.00)

PLUS, You will receive FREE Bonuses from these companies…

A FREE Two-Month Membership to Fit2B Studio, where their wholesome workouts for the whole family are tummy safe and particularly target Diastasis Recti (split abs). ($19.98 value. No shipping restrictions.)

A $15 store credit to TruKid. With products like their aware-winning sun care, they are dedicated to providing all natural skin and hair care for kids, babies, and now pets. ($15.00 value. Standard shipping applies. International shipping available.)

Your choice of incredible natural products like sea salt and clay for FREE. Choose from the Redmond Trading Earthpaste Bundle ($24.90 value) or the Facial Mud Bundle ($26.90 value). (Standard shipping applies. Continental US only.)

Your choice of a FREE heirloom sourdough starter or FREE yogurt starter from Cultures for Health, the leading supplier of starter cultures and supplies for making cultured and fermented foods ($12.95 value. US & CAN addresses only. Standard shipping applies.)

Your choice of: a FREE 3-Month Subscription (for new accounts) or 30% off a One Year Subscription. Plan to Eat is an online menu planner that uses your recipes, scheduled for the days you want them. ($15.00 value. No shipping restrictions.)

A FREE Culinary Herbs Assorted Seed Pack Check just in time for spring planting from www.wheatgrasskits.com, a living whole foods company. ($11.95 value. Standard shipping applies to all US states and territories- no international shipping for seeds.)

Get $10 off Union28′s original “my husband rocks” tee. Their marriage apparel lets you celebrate your spouse in style. ($10.00 value. Standard shipping rates apply. International shipping available, but free shipping only available within USA.)

A $10 store credit plus 1 FREE lip balm from Bee All Natural. Their whole body products nourish and heal, and are made using only the highest quality, food grade, organic ingredients. ($13.49 value. Standard shipping applies. International shipping available.)

A FREE 2 oz. bottle of your choice of liquid herbal formula from TriLight Health. They specialize in fast acting, great tasting natural herbal remedies. ($12.95 value or more. Standard shipping applies, within the USA only.)

Your choice of 3 FREE ePlanners OR a 3-Month FREE Membership to ListPlanIt, whose mobile lists will help to organize your life. ($15.00 value. No shipping restrictions.)

The fine print:

Bonus Offers

  • Each bonus offer can be redeemed once only per eBook Bundle purchase.
  • For each bonus offer, transaction numbers or proof of purchase may be required at the time of redemption.
  • All bonus offers are free gifts from the bonus sponsors, are their sole responsibility to provide, and are subject to availability.
  • All bonus offers expire at midnight on May 19th, 2013 (2 weeks from the last day of this sale).

General

  • It is your responsibility to download and back-up your purchase within the 1-month download time-frame. With proof of purchase, we can renew download links up until August 1st, 2013. After this date we will no longer have access to the books and will not be able to provide any new links to download.
  • Due to the nature of this sale, there will be no refunds available. However, we would invite you to read our Frequently Asked Questions page to learn more about the file types, the download process, how the bonus offers work, etc.

Please note: This collection is only available from 9 a.m. EST on April 29th to 11:59 p.m. EST on May 4th. There will be no late sales offered, so make sure that you get your bundle right away!

Particularly for those wanting to read these ebooks on their mobile devices (iPhones or iPads, Android, Kindle, etc.) you will want to learn more about the file types, how to download them correctly, and how to transfer them to your device.

This post includes affiliate links, and I make a portion of the sale of each ebook bundle. Thanks for your support of this site!

Lacking Motivation? 4 Tips to Pull You Out of the Rut

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file9311239553069Most of us are susceptible to the temptations that bog down our momentum when it comes to starting or growing a new business.

Poor time management skills, procrastination, and self-doubt creep all around us. Before you know it, you’re paralyzed, de-motivated, and your great plans for a creative project or a new business endeavor are dead in the water.

Do you look around and mutter, “I should be doing that” or “I need to get going with my next project”?

Here are some practical tips to get you moving again so you can get back to productivity and enjoy some progress:

1. Discover (or re-discover) your passion.

If you aren’t usually living/working/playing in environments in which you love, you’ll quickly become bored and apathetic. Doing what makes you feel alive is crucial to productivity.

Get started ===>> Download my free ebook, 5 Easy Steps to Discover the Home-based Business That’s Perfect for You, for help.

2. Learn something new.

Read a book, take an online course, or attend a class at your community college. Regardless of what you learn, I promise it will spark something inside of you.

Get started ===>> Join Kelly McCausey for any of her amazing online courses, including the Stretch Yourself Challenge, which begins May 1. (I just completed her Power of a Focused Business course and I learned so much. I am now going to be working with her as a blogging intern during the next three months—which brings me to #3.)

3. Find a mentor and/or mentoring group.

I can’t tell you how much I’ve benefited from the support of online friends who have the same goals as I do. Whether it’s been maintaining a workout routine or learning about blogging best practices, my online groups have motivated me and propelled me forward. In fact, I was able to apply for the upcoming internship with Kelly after having participated in a group coaching opportunity this spring.

Whether you want to move ahead with a hobby, a business, or a new skill set, find someone who is a few steps ahead of you and soak up everything you can from that person. Barter with them: trade their mentoring for your skills.

Get started===>>I wholeheartedly recommend the Solo Masterminds group. Lots of smart business women hang out there. It’s a terrific place for asking questions, getting guidance, and making valuable connections.

4. Make sure your spiritual house is in order.

I know that God takes us all through various seasons for only his reasons. Our family has been on a “wilderness wandering” for about three years now. Our beloved church of ten years closed in 2010, and the church we attended since then was never a good fit. Because of scheduling conflicts, I had dropped out of my women’s Bible study, and my own personal study and prayer time had become quite neglected.

At the beginning of 2013, we finally sought out a new church and have been attending there since the first of the year. Being back in a truly spiritually-edifying environment weekly has drastically improved all facets of our family life—inlcuding my renewed energy around business and creative projects.

This point is not something mechanical or something that I can explain from a technical perspective. It’s faith, of course, but, I believe it’s absolutely vital to operating a successful business.

Get started ===>> Make sure you’re worshiping weekly in a biblically-sound, gospel-centered church. Pursue God daily with personal Bible study and prayer.

What gets you moving again when you’re in a rut?

Mom, Are You One of the 62%?

Infographic: New MomsI recently read an article that featured all sorts of stats about mothers, expenses, and employment. (Image courtesy of: CreditDonkey)

When our first child was born in 2003, we were in a comfortable financial situation—no debt, healthy monthly cash flow, and a cushy emergency fund/savings account. I had always wanted to be home full-time with my kids, eventually pursuing part-time freelance writing work. It all seemed more than manageable.

We were fine living on my husband’s salary and my meager few thousand dollars a year.

That was until the twins were born in 2005.

I don’t have to tell you that with twins, everything is double: more diapers, more onesies, more gear. We had tons of help (with finances and resources), but we quickly blew through our stash of cash and (unfortunately) piled on the credit card debt.

We’ve been digging out of that the last few years, as we’ve both increased our incomes. But now, we’re facing the preteen/teen years with out-of-control appetites, $100 athletic shoes, and orthodontics.

Kids are expensive. (Sigh.)

As a mom, I know you’ve got to be facing the same types of challenges in your own family. According to the article I read:

  • the average cost of raising a child to the age of 17, is $235,000
  • of working moms, 74% work full-time, 26% work part-time
  • of working moms, 62% prefer to work part-time, 37% prefer to work full-time

I find these numbers interesting. If I’m interpreting them correctly, there’s a whole lot of working moms working full-time who would prefer to be working part-time.

I’m here to tell you that it can happen for you. I wholeheartedly believe that when you tap into your God-given passions, your priorities will come into focus. As you work your priorities, the provision appears.

It’s not hard to get started in your pursuit of the opportunity that you can turn into a successful home-based business. I’ll let you in on a little secret: God has left clues for you everywhere.

Just look around! What has God placed in your heart that motivates you? What do you love to do? How has he already given you the skills, passions, objects, and equipment to move forward to follow his call?

Maybe you love children and find them running in and out of your house all summer long. What about beginning a day camp or starting a kids’ birthday party business?

Maybe you have a great eye and love taking photos. Take a few classes and offer family photo sessions initially for low cost or free in exchange for the experience, referrals, and to build your portfolio.

Are you unhappy with your work situation? Would you like to have your own money-making business but aren’t sure how to begin?

Start by looking in your house because there you will find your passions, priorities, and provision.

~~~

If you want to know more about discovering a home-based business that’s perfect for you, download my free ebook that walks you through the process and offers you 65 business ideas you can start right away!

Interview With Alyssa Avant, Author of FaithLeaps

Alyssa
FaithLeaps

 

Today I have the great pleasure of being the host on Day 7 of the Virtual Blog Tour for FaithLeaps: The Christian Mom’s Guide to Passion, Purpose and Profits by author Alyssa Avant. On the last stop of the tour, Alyssa visited Rosann Cunningham’s blog at Christian Supermom.

Below is the great interview I did with Alyssa about FaithLeaps.

Why did you write this book? Alyssa

ALYSSA: I was inspired to write this book several years ago, as I was attempting to navigate the overwhelming journey of working from home.  I had taken a “leap of faith” and quit my part time job and really needed to make an income from home.

Through trial and error, I found my way, but wished I would have had a guide or friend to help me along the way. There is also the issue of passion and purpose, which ultimately is what this book is about.  Yes I talk about working from home and ways to do that, but a stronger theme throughout this book is finding one’s passion and purpose and ultimately profiting from it (not necessarily financially).

What are the two or three main ideas you hope readers take away from FaithLeaps

ALYSSA: There are several main ideas that I hope readers will take away from FaithLeaps.  One of those is that we are all created by God with a God-given passion and purpose.  It is important, I believe, for us to identify and explore that passion and purpose.  Secondly,  I hope that readers will take away from this book that God enables us and can work through us to help us to accomplish our dreams and desires.

[Read more...]

Announcing FaithLeaps Launch and Online Book Study

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Bible study | Christian moms | Christian business

FaithLeaps is a brand-new book from Christian mom and entrepreneur Alyssa Avant. I’ve had the pleasure to receive an advance copy of this book for review.

I gleaned many insights from the book, but I think the most beneficial—and one that has the tendency to slip away from mind first—was that God made me who I am. God gifted me in certain ways. He gave me skills and talents. He has ordained my circumstances.

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Just Tearin’ Down My House—as Usual (The Wise Woman Builds Her House)

wise woman scripture Prov 14.1

wise woman scripture Prov 14.1

One of the Bible verses that stays with me through thick and thin and good times and bad is this one:

The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.

—Proverbs 14:1 (NIV)

I think I like it because it’s appropriately convicting, yet practical as it offers concrete instruction.
What does it assume? It assumes several things:
  • a woman’s sphere of influence is her house (household)
  • a woman can act foolishly or wisely
  • a woman’s work, tone, words, and countenance are important to her home and family
  • a woman’s actions will strengthen or destroy
I’m not trying to make any blanket statements about where or how a woman chooses to work. Whether you are working outside the home full-time or part-time, working a business at home, working full-time as a stay at home mom, or doing any combination of the above, you have a profound and primary influence on your house.

Desperately Seeking Passion

Desperately Seeking Passion

finding passion, purpose, and profits | God's passions, purpose for lifeMy daughter had a school project due. We headed to Michael’s, which is, of course, a requirement for all school project creations.

Something about that day’s trip was different for me. I don’t know. I’ve shopped in Michael’s hundreds—maybe thousands—of times. But that day, I was nostalgic. I longed to trim photo edges with scallop scissors. The glitter paper begged me to take them home. The sticker sets sprang to life and struck me as immediately useful. The beads, chains, hooks, and stones convinced me that I could make gorgeous jewelry. I even had to restrain myself from reaching for the latch hook rug kits.

I’ve always thought of myself as a “crafty” person. At one time, I was a pretty serious scrapbooker. I’ve wanted to learn jewelry making and quilting for years now.

But realistic, hard-working me has stuffed down these passions in favor for the more practical activities of the day: work, laundry, and errand-running.

But it occurred to me that crafting is one of my passions. Yes, that’s right.

My name is Mary and I am passionate about scrapbooking.

And cooking. And healthy/green/organic living. And keeping my family organized. And following a budget. And writing. Of course, writing.

But I’ve stuffed down all these outlets for creativity, talent, and skill. Most of the time, I believe, I’ve told myself that I don’t have time to do X because I need to be working and making money. And truly money has been a concern throughout the last few years, but I wonder how many times I’ve allowed it to become an excuse, even after its legitimacy has long passed? After that, my mind  has played over and over the mantra: “that’s silly; that’s not valuable/profitable/important; go do something to make some money.”

What passions have you pushed to the side? Has it ever occurred to you that since God has gifted you with those passions, he will and can use them to invigorate and deploy you to actually use them for his glory and your family’s good?

That’s what been running through my brain lately: all of these passions that I have used to describe myself over the years—scrapbooker, chef, family manager, green, writer, reader, teacher—were put there by the Creator himself. How might he use me through my passions to bring him glory and bless my family and others?

What about you? Would you like to wake up your passions? I’ve decided to lead a small group study for a new book, Faith Leaps,  that I just finished by my friend and Christian mom entrepreneur Alyssa Avant. The details of the study are still being ironed out, but I believe we will all read through the same chapter(s) and then discuss those online, probably on a weekly basis.

Will you join me? Will you invite your friends? Leave a comment so that I can gauge interest, and I’ll be in touch soon with more details.

Together let’s take leaps of faith to discover how God will profit our passions and purposes.