How To Become A Successful WAHM – Our History

Ahhhh … where did it all begin?  I feel like I’ve been trying to work at home successfully my whole life!

When I found out I was pregnant with my first child, I knew right then that I wanted to stay at home with him.  But, how could I as a single mom?  (Read my personal story here.)  So, a great friend of mine proposed starting an in-home daycare.  Perfect!

We started the paperwork, researched the how-tos, found an apartment rental that didn’t mind if we operated there, and even found a toy store that was going out of business.  All of it hinged on getting a small business loan from the bank.  We were denied and our months of excited planning just went down the drain.  If we had been persistent and not let that stop us, I’m sure we could have made it work but we felt so defeated that we walked away at that point.

My ideas of working from home were put on hold but I never stopped thinking about it.  Every time I had to leave my little boy crying at the daycare window, I would dream on the way to work.  Every time friends of mine talked about their day with their kids, I would research another idea.

Shortly before my son turned five, I met an amazing man and we fell in love.  After we were married, we started talking about homeschooling!  My dream would finally become a reality!  Our first daughter together came very shortly afterward and I’ve been home ever since.

Of course, going from two incomes down to one really made a difference in our budget.  So once again, that drive to work at home was awakened.  I borrowed books from the library, I spent hours researching online.

I don’t remember each and every avenue I tried but there were many.

Like the time I tried to become a freelance writer for greeting card companies.  I enjoy writing and thought it would be a perfect match.  It didn’t happen quickly enough for me, so I moved on to the next get-rich-quick idea.

Grants.  You know … free money that you never have to pay back?  Wouldn’t that be nice … if it were true?!  Oh My!!  Did THAT end up to be a horrible situation!

To make a long story as short as I possibly can, I looked up grants online and signed up on a couple of websites.  A few days later, my phone rang and it was a company that had something to do with grants – I don’t remember all the details.  He began trying to prove that he was legitimate and that I should give him my bank account information.  He gave me the routing numbers on my check as “proof”.

I hung up quickly thinking that would be the end of it.  Then, my phone rang again!  He was mad and mean and I ended up giving out the number but had to go through a verification process before they could use it and I hung up during that.  Then, my husband got home and he picked up the phone as it rang again.  He told them what he thought of their operation, we rushed the kids to the neighbor (we had three at that time) and drove to the bank to stop whatever damage I had done.  It all turned out fine, but it was scary there for a little bit.

We also tried to invest in penny stocks.  My husband actually really enjoyed doing this and was quite successful at it.  We made a cross country move about five months after we began with the penny stocks and didn’t ever get the chance to pick those back up.

Since the move, it stopped being about making *extra* money, but about making any money at all!  My husband is a (fantastic, top-notch, very good) carpenter and with the housing market the way it is and just the economy in general, he hasn’t had much work.  He is not the type to just sit there and let life happen to him.

We had many many midnight brain-storming sessions trying to figure out what the best avenue was.

At that point, all of our efforts turned toward the web.  We were reading about so many people making at least a part time income, we just had to try it.  After some research, more brain storming, some training and more research, HomeGrownMommy was born!

We have learned so much from building this site and the few others that we have … like NaturalHealthTutoring (with a Coconut Oil subdomain and a very popular Breech Baby page), DSBStudents, FalconDesignStudio and a bunch more that are definitely not ready for advertising.  We have now turned our attention to creating sites for others with FalconDesignStudio.  My husband’s name is Falko which means falcon in German, hence the business name of Falcon.  Having a website for your business is so vitally important in this day and age, we want to help those hesitant small business owners to finally take the plunge.

I do the selling, he does the building – we’re an awesome team!  I manage kids while he works, he manages kids while I work.  I love working with my husband.

Right now, we’re doing mostly cold calling and word-of-mouth to friends and family.  I am constantly trying to learn better ways to earn business and build relationships with customers.  He is constantly learning how to build a better site.

We’ve made two sales so far and have several prospects.

Okay!  I’m done talking about me … what about you?  What ideas for making money have you tried?  Celebrate your successes, admit your failures – let’s learn together about the best way to *get ‘er done*!!!  Please leave your comments below.

8 thoughts on “How To Become A Successful WAHM – Our History

  1. Jennifer, Great post! I am right there with you! Still praying to stay at home while DH goes to school! I am working on starting up a Christian jewelry business. I will be making witnessing bracelets that tell the story of salvation. Just getting started but very hopeful we can fill a need.

    Thanks for all your encouragement, and I am praying for your success!

    Love,
    Susan

    1. Thank you so much Susan! Thank you for being such a good friend (both online and off!) and for praying for us! I’m praying for your efforts as well – that all your hard work will pay off as soon as possible!

      Jen

  2. You are so not alone in your story. I remember being pregnant and thinking…..omigosh, I want to be a stay at home mom, but how can we afford it? I felt panic and began to search on the internet for some kind of opportunity. Oh, look, you can get paid for online survey’s—-yes, I made that horrible mistake and had to cancel my credit card. Stupid Stupid Stupid. Then I found an excellent company that I loved working for (products are fantastic) but found that it was difficult to keep people signed up in the company and I spent more on leads than I did on getting paid. I tried it for 2 years and felt like such a failure. I was very active with one small child and a new baby at the time. I was exhausted. I eventually quit due to so much frustration. I have now spent the next few years figuring out how to become an entrepreneur and do it the right way. Obviously there is still a lot more to learn, but I’m able to stay at home with my youngsters and make a go of it. The best part is, I’ve turned what I learned into helping other moms do the same.

    1. WOW! What a great story! Thank you so much for sharing your experiences! That’s exactly what I’ve hoped for – lots of ladies stopping by to share their successes and their failures. I really appreciate you adding to the conversation.

      What are you doing now that is working? I’d love to hear all about it!
      Jen

  3. Hi there! 🙂 It’s been a while – I just happened to stop by and really enjoyed all the things you’ve been doing with your blog.

    Kudos to you and all your business efforts to be able to stay home with your kids! I love hearing about moms fighting for the chance to be there for their kids.

    Best of luck with the website design work. It made me think of something, if you haven’t already considered it: I was surprised by how much freelance work is advertised on craigslist, of all places. You might be able to pick up some local customers for your website design there. Just a thought.

    Take care,

    Misty over at HomeschoolBytes 🙂

    1. Hey there Misty!! Thanks so much for stopping by – it reminds me that we should do another guest post for each other!!

      We’re really excited about the possibilities! Thanks so much for thinking of adding that suggestion! We will definitely check that out as well.

      Hope all is well on your side of the internet!!
      Jen

  4. Definitely – let me know when you’d like to exchange some guest posts. And I enjoyed the carnival you just hosted – thanks for the nice write up!

    I haven’t been putting a ton of time into blogging lately. I’ve actually been having fun working on finishing a fantasy novel I started umpteen years ago, but had trouble squeezing writing time in between the 5 kids and family life. So now I’m writing late at night 🙂

    I’m kind of excited about the prospects of indie (independent) e-publishing that is just coming into its own and will likely try that method when/if I finally finish it.

    There are lots of opportunities available and I enjoy tinkering with them.

    Take care!

    Misty

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