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.

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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...]

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.