5 Tips For Mompreneurs


A little more than three years ago I was living in a New York City apartment, about to give birth to my first child and simultaneously launch a startup called  The Groomsman Suit. The thought of becoming a ‘mompreneur’ was exciting and completely terrifying at the same time. 

The responsibilities that come with children and family can often be a barrier for women who are interested in starting a business. The moment you learn that you are going to be a parent your priorities immediately shift. You think about what changes have to be made before the baby arrives, and what will it take to get there. Once the baby arrives, increasing expenses make it more difficult to leave a steady income to start a business of your own.  

At the same time, I believe if you have a great idea, unwavering passion and the ability to overcome adversity, then go for it.  Women should not be afraid to chase their dreams or feel limited in what dreams are achievable by also wanting a family. d

Whether you agree with Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In or Michelle Obama who famously said, “Women can’t have it all,” both women have done great things.

As a mompreneur, my co-founder and I generated $2.5 million in sales in 2018 and are projecting $8 million in sales this year.  It has not always been easy or perfect, but I am one of countless examples of women who manage both a business I’m passionate about and a family.

Based on my first-hand experience over the last three years, here are 5 tips for aspiring mompreneurs:   

  1. Have a solid plan with initial low risk: 

If you are debating the pros and cons of trying to start a business while managing a family, having a solid plan is important before taking the leap. I learned about Kickstarter where anyone could offer a product for pre-order. Since the launch of Kickstarter, thousands of successful businesses have received funding they needed to get off the ground and even grow into multimillion-dollar companies. This was the route we chose to launch The Groomsman Suit. It mitigated the risk of making a major financial investment and allowed us to measure marketplace interest.  If you have an idea and don’t know where to start, try to find a way to test it out with as little financial risk to validate the concept or product. 

  1. Find a Co-Founder who supports you in and out of the office: 

Finding a business partner can seem impossible, but the right person might be right in front of your nose; a good friend, family member, or colleague that you have work experience with.  While passion can override experience in many cases, it’s important to have a good understanding of the business you are getting into, what your strengths are and where you will need the most help. Most importantly, as a new mom, learning how to navigate this new lifestyle with added responsibilities, you will need someone who will cheer you on, push you through the tough moments and keep you on track. With the right partner, things will get done exponentially faster and get you to a point of financial freedom much sooner. When searching for a partner, consider who you trust and who in your network has the skills that you don’t but are essential to your business. In my case, my childhood best friend Diana was it. She had a business background and interests that complemented my fashion background.  

  1. Start with triple the money you think you need:  

Whatever you think it will cost you to get up and running, double it (triple if you can) but don’t let it get in your way. If you don’t have a lot saved up, I’d suggest trying to save up at least enough to allow you to cover your essential expenses for up to six months, preferably 12.  You don’t want money to be the reason you have to stop working on your business full-time since momentum means everything to a start-up. Just like a baby, it will require a LOT of attention and nurturing.  Fundraising is another avenue. It’s a lot less complicated than it sounds but more complicated than asking your family or friends to borrow some money.  But to do it the right way you need a lawyer.  If you have proof of concept and simply need funds to boost sales or get to the next level, this can be a great option.  

  1. Find a work/life balance that works for you: 

Owning your own business doesn’t mean that you will have more time to spend with your kids. If that is your primary goal, it may not be the best option.  However, you will have flexibility to spend your time doing things for the business, for your family, and even blend them a little (or a lot), like I do.  There will be times when one or the other will suffer, but you will find ways to make it work. 

  1. Define what success means for you:  

Some mompreneurs may want to be the next Ariana Huffington (mother of two) or billionaire Spanx founder Sarah Blakely (mother of four) and others may want to run a business that is rewarding but not entirely consuming.  Ultimately, it is good to set goals before you begin and determine what success looks like for you, no matter how big or small. 

Starting a business has many highs and lows but the simple act of starting a business is a huge accomplishment. My advice to anyone considering becoming a mompreneur would be to follow your gut, trust yourself, get a comfortable baby carrier, and find a friend to lean on.

Go for it, momma!

About Jeanne Foley

Jeanne is co-founder of The Groomsman Suit, the first e-commerce company offering stylish, high-quality suits and tuxedos men can own for less than the cost of a rental.

The core line is available in five styles and seven colors for just $194. TGS was co-founded by Jeanne and her lifelong friend Diana Ganz after Jeanne's personal experience planning her own wedding. With no other options to affordably outfit their groomsmen, she and her husband were forced to go the rental route only to be disappointed by the logistics, poor fit, and price. Jeanne’s fashion industry experience combined with Diana’s award-winning business background has proved to be a perfect fit.

 

Top Toys To Buy This Easter




Kids will jump for joy when they play with Jumping Jack™, the world’s cutest bunny! Spin the spinner to see how many carrots you get to pick from Jack’s bunny hill. One of the carrots will make Jack jump, but it’s a different carrot every time. If he jumps on your turn, you’ll win if you catch him. Or, extra rules let every player try to catch him when he jumps. 

If no one catches Jack, then the player with the most carrots wins. This delightful preschool game teaches hand-eye coordination, taking turns and quick reactions. From the makers of Gooey Louie, Barbecue Party, and Pop the Pig. For ages 4 and up. 2-4 players.
Game Contents:
  • 1 Bunny Hill
  • 1 Jumping Jack Rabbit
  • 12 Carrots
  • 1 Spinner
  • 4 Baskets
  • 1 Instruction Sheet

Get ready for buckets of fun with Mr. Bucket by Pressman Toy! Scoop up the balls that match your colored shovel and drop the balls into Mr. Bucket as he whirls and spins around the floor. Watch out – Mr. Bucket will try to block your ball with his hands and will even spit the balls right back out of his mouth onto the floor, creating tons of laughter and fun! Get all three of your colored balls inside Mr. Bucket first to win! Made with high quality materials, Mr. Bucket is the original moving chasing racing action game and will have kids up and moving around. Can you scoop up all your color balls and place them back into Mr. Bucket before he pops them out again? For 2 to 4 players, ages 3 and up.
Game Contents:
  • Mr. Bucket (some assembly required)
  • 4 shovels (1 of each color)
  • 12 balls (3 of each color)
  • Sticker sheet
  • Complete instructions
  • Requires 3 AA batteries (not included)

Our classic game of Charades is designed especially for kids to play and enjoy! With three levels of clues, kids of all ages can participate. Each card has a clue with a picture, so no reading is required (although the combination of the picture and its corresponding word reinforces early reading skills). Younger players can act out a toothbrush, a cat or a bumble bee! Older children can read the simple words and phrases and act out actions like eating spaghetti or playing guitar! This game is great for the whole family to play together as they try to guess the charade before time runs out! For 3 or more players, ages 4 and up.
  • Smaller version of the family favorite is great for travel!
  • Fun, active game gets kids moving
  • No reading required
  • 3 Levels of play
Game Contents:
  • 150 Charade Cards with 450 Charades
  • Sand Timer
  • Game Die
  • Complete Instructions

How exciting to be on safari, trying to find all your favorite animals… but hang on, one of them has wandered off! Be the first to spot the missing animal in this fun, frantic card game of observation and matching. Designed storage tin conveniently holds cards for future play. For 2-5 players, ages 6 and up.
Game contents
  • 56 Two-Sided Cards
  • Storage Tin
  • Complete Instructions

The #SNAPSTAR squad is a trendy group of besties ready to influence the world, together! Lola, Aspen, Izzy, Echo, Dawn and Yuki are united by their love of fashion, style, food, music and traveling!

Download the free Snapstar Studio app in the App Store for iOS and Google Play for Android and get creative! Use the green screen and doll stand included with your #SNAPSTAR purchase to customize the background and features of your #SNAPSTAR!

Stikbot is a poseable action figure that can stick to just about anything. They come in 5 two-color variations, so be sure to collect them all!

The studio pro comes with 2 Stikbots, 1 Stikbot pet, 1 tripod, 2 prop boxes (blue and green), and 1 green/blue screen stage. Where will the Stikbot Studio Pro take you?
Includes:
  • 2x Stikbots
  • 1x Tripod
  • 1x Stikbot Monkey
  • 1x Z-Screen Stage
  • 2x Prop Box

11 Things You Didn’t Think You Could Negotiate


Maintaining a budget is a lot of work but what if there were some opportunities to save in surprising places? With some simple negotiation tactics, you can work to lower expenses like college tuition, car insurance rates, and even monthly rent. Imagine paying less for the services and things you already use. Extra savings mean more money for areas that matter most to you.


If you need help with where to begin and what to ask, this infographic from Self Lender highlights 11 things you can negotiate to add more value to your life. Negotiations don’t always mean financial betterment either—keep your well being and happiness in mind, too. When it comes to the workplace, there are many benefits besides salary that can be open for negotiation. For parents, some of the most important ones are daycare reimbursements and work from home flexibility. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you deserve.


11 Things You Never Thought You Could Negotiate

Things to Look for (And Avoid) in a New Home



Are you looking for a new home? How would you know which house is the right house? Tired of living in apartments or living with your parents but don’t know how to buy a house? Had a bad experience buying a house and don’t want to repeat it? Well, here are some helpful tips to do when finding a new home for you and your family. 

Red Flags 

When looking for a new home there might be some red flags to watch out for. They might not necessarily be dealbreakers but helpful to determine what you are willing to fix up or just completely avoid. 

Touch Everything

That’s right. Get your hands on everything you can. That means turn on every faucet (even the bathroom’s showerhead), and flush toilets. Check the light switches, swing open the doors, slide up the windows. Are the appliances working? It’s good to confirm what works and what doesn’t. Being aware of the things that don’t work, helps you figure out what problems you willing to confront and plan to address the issues properly. 


Time to be Nosey

Get ready to sniff out any potential problems. Check to see if you smell anything unpleasant such as the sewage, leaking gas, cigarettes, and pet odors. Using your nose can help you spot any broken pipes. If you are looking at older homes, it's important to consider using this method of deduction. Using your senses beyond that of sight will help you pick the right conditions you want to live in.   

Don’t Trust the Nice Appearances? 

The house might look pretty on the outside and the inside. But be skeptical on appearances. It’s crucial to focus on the capability of appliances by checking if it is functioning well. Are the heating and cooling performance to standard? Also, keep an eye out for any loose wires. Regardless of how things look, how it works is more vital for a more lasting and satisfying experience. 

Got a Good Roof Over Your Head?

One thing we might forget to check (or scared to check if you are afraid of heights, that’s what husbands are for). Make sure the roof is made of sturdy material that can withstand the wind and hailstorms. Are there missing shingles? Notice if there are any gaping hole or some parts of the roof that possibly cave in one day. Preventing to get a house in a bad condition will save you tons of money.


Moving Soon?

If you live near Meridian, Boise or the surrounding Idaho cities, or plan to move into those areas, Eaglewood Homes can help you find the home you are looking for. Their homes are up to standard so as you inspect any of their houses, you will be left impressed. Everything turns on? Check. No bad smells? Check. Every appliance works? Check. Good roofs? Check. As you browse through our options, there is a good chance you will find the home you are looking for.

Get Her Hopping With Happiness This Easter!


Spring is in the air and everyone is getting into the mood with the warm weather and skin being exposed all around the globe. Treat your lover this Easter with a toy that tickles every sense. Whether it is her first personal massager or you are adding to a vast collection this toy is a cut above the rest. Take it in the tub, in bed, out on a wild spring time excursion or wherever your heart desires. 

For sheer, concentrated power and unparalleled relaxation, no other cordless massager even comes close to the best-selling and world-famous LELO SMART WAND™ Large.

Groundbreaking Technology for Earth-Shattering Pleasure

The vibrations build on contact with your body and the intensity increases naturally

High-Powered yet Quiet for Indulgence Without Disruption


Relax and unwind with whisper-quiet vibrations

Cordless Design for Portable Power


The rechargeable SMART WAND™ does away with cables – you get all the power of mains charging with more manoeuvrability.


Thrill
Slow it down, speed it up, until your body shakes and your climax overwhelms you.​

Treat
Begin to explore yourself, your body, your senses. Listen to your body, guide your hands.

Tease
Let your anticipation build. Imagine teasing and spoiling yourself, how good it will feel.

Take a look at all the other amazing toys Lelo has to offer this spring and keep your intimate fire roaring all year long. 

6 bucket lists to help you live your best life



When you start to build a family you realize that your loved ones are the most important thing that’s ever happened to you. It really puts things in perspective and reminds you of what truly matters in life.




Bucket lists have the potential to do the same thing, and that’s why we love them! Making a bucket list lets you tangibly write down your life goals — plus, checking them is fun and rewarding. From making healthier meals for you and your family to starting your child’s college fund, there are a million things that could motivate someone to make a bucket list.




Not sure where to start? These printable bucket lists offer 150 ideas to get you started — but our favorite one is blank. Print it out and take time to explain bucket lists to your little ones. Help them fill it out with their own goals and dreams. Happy bucket listing!



Spring Cleaning Your Commute: Why Switch To Bikes?

It's no secret that for most people, the daily commute is a frustrating part of life. Paying for gas, paying for car maintenance, sitting in traffic, and more can all add up and take a toll on you. However, sitting in your car stuck on the highway isn't the only option for a commute. This spring, you might want to consider switching from driving to biking when you have somewhere you need to go.

Going Green


Bikes are by far the more environmentally-friendly way to commute compared to cars. Not only do bikes not rely on fossil fuels to run, but they're more environmentally-friendly to produce, too. Energy and resources that are used for the creation of one single car can be used for the creation of up to 100 bicycles. Additionally, the benefits of biking are greater with each person that switches to bikes for their commute. One of the reasons cars are so destructive to the environment is because they get stuck in traffic, reducing fuel efficiency. With fewer cars on the road due to people switching to a cycling commute, there are fewer total carbon emissions from people idling on the highway.

Saving Green


Not only can bikes help save the environment; they can help save your wallet too. Cars are expensive to own and drive, meaning that a lot of people simply don't take care of regular car maintenance and upkeep. In a recent survey, research found that an estimated 77% of cars were in need of maintenance or repairs. Bikes, on the other hand, don't require paying for gas, and parts aren't nearly as expensive.

It's also getting more and more rewarding nowadays to bike instead of drive, as various organizations and government programs are rewarding commuters for switching to biking with cash incentives. It's even possible that cycling to work could qualify you for a tax break, depending on where you live. This has been making cycling an even better option for those looking to save a bit of extra money.

Why Cars Can't Compete


When it comes to the daily commute, most people will default to driving as a primary means of transportation. However, cars simply can't keep up with bikes across the board. Cars are far more dangerous; there are approximately 6 million car accidents in the U.S. each year, with 3 million people being injured in those accidents annually. While there are some situations where cars are necessary and bikes won't do, such as longer drives, there are still better alternatives than driving your personal vehicle. Public transportation is a far more environmentally-friendly way to get where you're going, and can also be cheaper than owning your own personal vehicle. That being said, unless you're driving long distances to work every day, you'll want to consider swapping to a bike for your daily commute.

Cycling can be a green alternative to your daily commute that saves both your wallet and the environment. Would you switch to bicycling for some or all of your commute?

Momo Challenge Advice For Parents



If you’re a parent, hopefully you have heard of the Momo Challenge by now. It’s a dangerous “suicide game” that targets children on social media. Some say it’s just the latest internet hoax while others argue it is in fact very real. Either way: it’s an important reminder that parents need to stay on top of their children’s online and social media activity.

 

Vinay Saranga M.D., a child psychiatrist and founder of Saranga Comprehensive Psychiatry, offers this advice for parents:    

 -        Keep an eye on what your kids see online: When today’s parents were growing up, the only strangers and dangers they had to watch out for were those in front of them. Social media and the internet are a whole other world and parents needs to be vigilant about what their children are looking at, who they are talking to and what they are doing online. Limit what your kids do on their mobile devices and insist that they only engage on larger screens that you can easily see.  


 

-        You have to enquire: Even if your children are well-behaved or you think of them as the perfect kids who would never get into trouble, you still have to talk to them. Don’t just assume everything is okay or that they aren’t engaging in anything dangerous. You need to be the one to bring it up at the dinner table and educate them about staying safe in today’s online world. Ask them who their online friends are, what games they are playing, what they are viewing, etc.

 

-        Teaching common sense: It is the job of every parent to instill basic common sense into their children. Let them know that if they encounter something like the Momo Challenge, it is fake, they should tell you about it, close the page or take a screenshot and report it to the police or proper authorities. Teaching kids how to spot danger, scams and other bad things is a lesson they can carry with them for life. 


 -        Do a mental health check: Just as you would keep an eye on your kid’s physical health, all parents need to stay on top of their children’s mental health. Unfortunately, as we’ve seen from the Momo Challenge, the online world is not all fun and games. Childhood anxiety, depression and online bullying are very real issues these days and must be addressed promptly and properly. Teach your teenagers that if they encounter a friend or classmate who is suicidal, to report it immediately or to call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.


 

-        Check privacy settings: As parents, you can control the privacy settings on your children’s devices. Make sure they are set to the strictest levels. Don’t forget to check the settings on all phones, computers and tablets. In addition to the actual devices, remember that many social media platforms also have their own set of privacy settings that you can control as well. There are also standalone software products that can help keep your kids stay safe online. 

 

-        Age appropriate guidelines vary: There are all different guidelines for when kids should be allowed to dive into social media and the online world. The best advice is to take it on a case-by-case basis. Generally speaking, the longer parents can delay, the better, as this gives your kids more time to mature. Keep in mind that your 10-year-old might just be more mentally mature than the 12-year-old down the street. 


 -        Watch the time: Just as you would limit how much TV time your kids get, parents must limit the amount of computer or online time their kids get, too. Encourage your kids to engage more in physical activity, more in-person playtime with friends, sports, books and educational activities. Online and social media time should be limited and reserved for when everything else is done or as an extra special treat. 



5 Tips to creating a custody agreement with your ex



Good parenting should be an important aspect of every child’s upbringing. Even if you are not in good terms with your ex due to certain reasons, it is important that you find a way to be in good terms so that your children are not affected negatively. Although your ex might not have been a good spouse to you, understand that they can still be the best parent.

Your children need to have frequent and continuous contact with both you and your ex. They need your love to grow into responsible and happy people. Here are tips to creating a custody agreement with your ex whether you are separated or going through a divorce that will assist you.


Understand that it’s about your children’s welfare

Divorce or separation can cause a lot of emotional turmoil resulting in people focusing too much on their own pain and needs. This can make you forget to cater for your children’s needs. The custody is neither about you nor your relationship with your ex, but about your child or children. Though it might be hard for you to co-parents, your child needs a good upbringing within a healthy environment. Set aside your ego and pain and determine what is best for your child.

Set realistic goals and commitments

When setting goals, commitments and activities, be realistic about your own schedule and commitments. Do not let your fear or insecurity get in the way to a brighter future for your children. Take a look at custody as an arrangement that will serve your child, enabling them to make the best and remove any emotions you might be feeling.


Exchange custody in open environments

Due to the nature of most separations and divorce proceedings, things can get nasty. Make your child custody agreement in a safe place. If you are meeting your ex, ensure that the meeting is held in a well-monitored public place. Give your ex an adequate notice at least a couple months to be aware of your plans.

Choose a custody arrangement that benefits your children

Your custody agreement needs to accommodate your children's ages and needs. Along with these it also needs to accommodate your family schedule, you and your exs’ career and social commitments, academic and extracurricular activities as well as childcare arrangements and the distance between the parents' homes. Some of these activities will differ from one child to another, especially if you have more than one child.


Communicate effectively

For child custody be successful, you need to communicate well with your ex. Find a method of communication that works for both you and your ex. You can make use of tools like Google calendars, icalendars, hire an attorney or even use sites that will assist you. Sites such as OurFamilyWizard.com offer joint calendars, expense logs, and common document storage, among others, that record a non-modifiable record of your communications. See this review to help you in deciding between Custody X Change or Our Family Wizard and determine the best fit.

Also, remember to find out more about the custody agreement process. This is because some custody or visitation agreements have geographical limits. Once you have created a custody agreement, do not violate it at any point.


4 Benefits to buying RC products for your kids



Nobody would entertain the thought of having dull kids who are afraid to socialize with others while at school. A vibrant kid is a joy to be around with. They are happy, and their grades in school improve when their play is exciting. If you want such kind of a kid, then you need to support their play by providing the necessary toys that they need. Avoid investing so much in indoor games and buy toys that spark creativity and thought. They render kids inactive and also inhibits their interaction with other people outside the house. Instead, it is advisable to buy them remote control (RC) cars to play with when they are free. Consider looking into the market for RC helicopters for beginners, and these will provide your child with a good experience, to begin with. The following are some of the benefits that your child is set to reap if he/she spends time outside with RC toys:


1. Improved competition

The will to become the best is honed from a young age. A kid who plays with RC products is highly likely to become more competitive than one who hasn’t experienced the thrill that comes with using the toys. With the equipment, the kid also has an opportunity to play with other kids as well as adults. This process is crucial in the development of a competitive attitude that the kid will translate to other areas such as their studies.




2.  Better hand to eye coordination

Many kids who love playing PC games are known to develop an excellent grip to eye coordination. This skill is even learned better when playing with RC toys as the experience here is now real. Unlike in video games where everything is imaginary, the setting is real when using RC toys. Incidents that are synonymous with video games such as crashing are experienced in reality when playing with an RC toy. This, therefore, leads to an improvement in the speed of the kid’s responses. It also ensures that they develop a sense of responsibility that is absent when playing PC games.


3. Socialization

Social life is an important aspect that leads to better growth for kids. Antisocial kids are less expressive, and this leads to problems such as stress and depression. With RC toys, the social bit of the kid is improved as he/she has to interact with others while playing the game. Also, RC toys provide the child with an opportunity to compete with others from other places. From this kind of experience, the kid’s mental state improves, and this is imperative in raising their performance at school.


4.  Outstanding fun

The thrill that comes with racing at breathtaking speeds as you compete with others is unexplainable. Your kid deserves that moment where they can wear themselves out while having fun. Also, the experience of driving a toy that simulates the real object is exciting, and the kid may develop an interest in the future of becoming a rally driver, pilot, or engineer.

RC toys are the future of gaming. In a world that everything is almost getting overtaken by the use of computers, RC helicopters are the way to ensure that fun is achieved without the need of staying indoors. RC toys are also the way to provide your kids with a playful atmosphere that you can also join in and make it more fun.


Children And Screens Encourages Children To “LOOK UP” As They Enter The New School Year

Summer break is almost over, and children around the country are getting ready to go back to school. It’s an exciting time, but it can also ...