Why don't you just -insert home based creative business here- - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 42 Old 01-02-2010, 05:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ever since I started telling people I was planning on being a stay at home mom I've been getting advice on starting a little business. Why do people keep telling me this and when I am I suposed to get all this done?

Granted I did study graphic design at one point with the intent of doing it from home but my training is now ten years out of date (they still taught paste up!). Yeah, I like to sew and my mom keeps telling me to sell slings. I'm the only person she knows who uses them so she thinks it's original. LOL

I know a bunch of stay at home moms with creative businesses. More power to them! My WOtH job crushed my creative spirit and I just don't see how having to draw or sew etc is going to get my juices flowing again. The one thing that sort of peaks my interest is using my research on historical toys to make toys to sell to reenactors. However, that crazy CPSIA law keeps me from chasing that dream for now.

The time issue is huge. My sister is working on a jewelry making business and she spends a good chunk of her weekends at craft fairs. That's family time. I'm doing this to have more time with my family.

Thank you for letting me vent. It seems like 2 solid weeks of family get togethers and I'm just sick of the kind suggestions. Now I can't sleep.
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#2 of 42 Old 01-02-2010, 10:31 AM
 
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I got this a lot, too. I'm certified in massage therapy, so people used to ask me all the time when I was going to start "working on the side." Five years and three kids later, they've stopped asking.

I think it reflects how little parenting is valued in our society. "You're JUST raising kids??" It's annoying, sad, and frustrating sometimes, but I know how important my job is, so I try not to let it bother me.

Another example - my sister is a SAHM to six kids under 5. She had triplets this past June and has three older children (all under 5 years old). She was an attorney before she had kids. My FIL was here for Christmas and asked me whether my sister "was back at work yet?" I practically fell out of my seat. Are you kidding me??

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#3 of 42 Old 01-02-2010, 01:49 PM
 
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Yeah, I get this too. MIL keeps asking if I am going to go back and be a teacher when my kids are older or do some computer work on the side. Right now, I feel my hands are full with a 7yo DS on autism spectrum and 4yo DD and being 36 weeks pg with #3. I DON'T KNOW what I am doing 5 or 6 years from now!

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#4 of 42 Old 01-02-2010, 06:52 PM
 
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I get asked about freelancing all the time. And occasionally, I even freelance. What's nice is that, once the project is done, it's done and I can not work again until I want. Then, when people ask, I say I "occasionally pick up freelance work." But in truth, I'd rather stay home and stay focused. I hate the deadlines and pressure.
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#5 of 42 Old 01-02-2010, 07:32 PM
 
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Yeah it's annoying. They don't tell daycare workers or teachers about awesome side job opportunities- why do they suggest them to us?

I had a home based business, and it's awfully stressful and hard to swing if you're the primary caregiver and your partner works long hours.
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#6 of 42 Old 01-03-2010, 12:27 AM
 
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I would love a creative side job or something I could do from home to make some money. My daughter is almost four and likes being near me and not interacting or even on her own for several hours a day (the rest of the time it's pretty intense). I WISH someone would put me on to something I could do from home.
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#7 of 42 Old 01-03-2010, 01:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Masel View Post
I'm doing this to have more time with my family.
I would just tell them that, with a quizzical look on my face, like "Hello? How is that a good idea??" and repeat the exact phrase over and over until they let the issue drop.

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#8 of 42 Old 01-04-2010, 12:18 AM
 
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I just tell them that I have one full time job already I don't need another!

><> I'm a Christian, knitting, sewing, cooking SAHM to the fearless adventurer Jack born 11/08, and  a  USCG wife
And we are joyfully awaiting a new addition in April 2011! <><
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#9 of 42 Old 01-04-2010, 01:02 AM
 
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Hi OP....I'm a WOHM but I'm on a "work/life balance" program at work which technically allows me flexibility to to do work at home when needed. Gotta say...that's the funniest thing I've ever heard of...not in a humorous way but in all due sarcasm...ha, ha.

I have to give my hats off to all the WAHMs out there...cause I don't know how they do it! Having a young child, I find it impossible to work at home. Maybe its a personality thing...maybe its a time management or parenting kind of thing...I don't know. I know that I can't get anything (as in work related) done at home. My attention is totally on DD during the periods that I'm at home.

"Lawyers, I suppose, were children once." Charles Lamb.
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#10 of 42 Old 01-04-2010, 04:19 AM
 
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Originally Posted by berry987 View Post
I think it reflects how little parenting is valued in our society. "You're JUST raising kids??" It's annoying, sad, and frustrating sometimes, but I know how important my job is, so I try not to let it bother me.

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#11 of 42 Old 01-04-2010, 10:09 AM
 
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CatsCradle, I had that option, too...technically. It was accepted by my supervisors, and they were great, but it was clearly not accepted by all my coworkers, and since I was part of teams for my job, it just didn't work. Also, conference calling for meetings and locking myself into a bedroom for an hour and a half at a time didn't really work with the at-home concept, and I don't do my best work when my kids are here demanding my attention. My dh works on the road a lot, which makes me solo parent for weeks at a time, and the whole thing would often become simply too much for one person.

I am realizing that I really *like* taking care of the family as my job.
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#12 of 42 Old 01-04-2010, 11:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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You know I think what aggravates me about this is that they considere my creativity only suitable for pin money. Like I couldn't make any real money. Grrrrrr. When I have time and energy again I want to do it right.
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#13 of 42 Old 01-05-2010, 12:59 AM
 
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I was a nanny and then teacher in my pre-baby life, so a lot of people assume I want to watch kids in my home now that I am a SAHM. My DH had even mentioned it several times.

I keep explaining that watching kids in our home would (to me) void the point of me BEING a SAHM. I would be stuck in my house, I wouldn't be able to take DD to story time, playdates, pool, library, LLL, etc. The entire reason I wanted to be a SAHM was to do fun things like that and if I took in extra kids, I wouldn't be able to do those things.

I told DH if we needed money, I would much rather go back to work teaching and make twice as much and have adult interaction than be stuck at home all week.
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#14 of 42 Old 01-06-2010, 11:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by CatsCradle View Post
Hi OP....I'm a WOHM but I'm on a "work/life balance" program at work which technically allows me flexibility to to do work at home when needed. Gotta say...that's the funniest thing I've ever heard of...not in a humorous way but in all due sarcasm...ha, ha.

I have to give my hats off to all the WAHMs out there...cause I don't know how they do it! Having a young child, I find it impossible to work at home. Maybe its a personality thing...maybe its a time management or parenting kind of thing...I don't know. I know that I can't get anything (as in work related) done at home. My attention is totally on DD during the periods that I'm at home.
When I worked from home (several years, ranging from 10 to 20 hours a week) I only did it while my DH or a babysitter was here. I agree, it's too hard - and, I think, unfair to the children and to the employer, to try to do both at once.

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#15 of 42 Old 01-07-2010, 03:34 AM
 
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My FIL does this to me EVERY time I see him. He keeps asking me what my next door neighbor, who is a sahm as well, would charge to watch my daughter?! He also is always full of job ideas for me. It is really sad that people don't understand that this IS my job. It is my life, and it is my DREAM. GASP! Why would any woman chose do this? Ugh, makes me want to bang my head against a wall. lol

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#16 of 42 Old 01-07-2010, 03:36 AM
 
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This happens to me too

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#17 of 42 Old 01-07-2010, 03:53 AM
 
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I get it too! But I would love to do something of the sort, we'll see when DS is older...

Dirt worshiping, creatress Mama to Rowan and Alden - home birth loving, no circ, no vax, extended breast feeding, cloth diapering, baby wearing, cosleeping

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#18 of 42 Old 01-07-2010, 06:32 AM
 
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I'm already getting comments and I havent' had the baby yet. I had just moved in with the man (after relocating from across country) and planned on getting a regular ole job when I found out I was pregnant. Didn't make much sense to do something permanent at that point...and I do not intend on letting anyone else watch my peanut while I go out to work. I told my mom I was strapping the baby onto my body and finding whateve work I can that will allow me the privilege of taking care of my own child myself, and she's the only one who's been supportive of that.

Everyone else is all full of helpful "suggestions" on what I should do and how I should do it, most of all the man's mother. Who I want to strangle sometimes with what comes out of her mouth.

From the existence of this thread, I suppose the comments won't be stopping anytime soon. You all have some good suggestions on how to reply. I just hope I don't get too testy and start yelling at people! Nurturing a child is the most important thing any woman or man can do...why don't people understand that anymore?
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#19 of 42 Old 01-07-2010, 01:46 PM
 
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That's what I got from my MIL. She does day care out of her home, and she's good at it and enjoys it for the most part. When I quit my job and became a sahm she urged me several times to do daycare. I think I actually laughed out loud the first time. Didn't mean to be rude but daycare is the last thing I would do. I was having a hard enough time adjusting to motherhood with my own child, dealing with impatience and feelings of inadequacy. Why in the world would I take in other people's children??

FIL used to run a foster placement agency and they frequently had foster kids of their own. They urged me to do that, as well. I don't think they ever understood what a bad idea that was. Sometimes I felt like I was a step away from having my kids taken from me and put in foster care! (I have better perspective now. I was no where near that bad off.)

Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#20 of 42 Old 01-09-2010, 02:17 AM
 
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I've been a SAHM for 8+yrs now. During that time I did go to nursing school to get my LPN, I took the majority of my classes part-time or less... lots of 1 class this quarter type of thing until I got into the year long program. For me it was important to have a skill to fall back on should anything ever happen. I plan to get my RN in the future. I get asked alot when I "plan" to get a job. More so now since DD2 is 4 and we have no plans for more. If the right part-time day shift at a drs office job came along then I would take it.


I have alot of friends that are SAHMs and have side businesses. One is a hairdresser make-up artist, another sells avon, another marykay, another does Maleluca and another is a yarn dyer/knitter etc... To each their own. I'm not a seller and while I love to sew, needle felt, wet felt and just about anything fiber related I don't want to make it a job.


When DD1 was 3mo-10mo old I did crochet hats wholesale for a online baby shoppe. I made about $900 during that time and that was fun. I did it mostly snuggling with my baby in my lap.

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#21 of 42 Old 01-09-2010, 10:19 AM
 
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So, I just very suddenly got called back to my work. And, suddenly being in this position of having (sort of) home-based work, I am having a lot of feelings in both directions. I'll share.

Pros:
1. It's exciting to know I am valued to the point of being their first call.
2. They have built a position with the intention of fitting it into my life and my priorities, knowing by my actions that I WILL sacrifice work for home when push comes to shove.
3. I have the autonomy to decide when and where to work, and I will not be a high-output employee.
4. I will once again be getting my "own" little paychecks, and since I am working around family needs, childcare will not be consuming half to 2/3 of it.
5. I really, sincerely like many of my colleagues and now will get to see them with some regularity, and not only over lunch dates.
6. Working outside the home does somehow give me a sense of license to sometimes slack off at home and not feel too guilty about it.

Cons:
1. I can't see the future and do not know how this arrangement will work when spring rolls around and my home workload picks up.
2. I run the risk of alienating colleagues with what they might perceive as "special treatment."
3. I don't get benefits.
4. I have a lot of responsibilities already, and successfully adding work to the mix will require ingenuity, commitment and cooperative family support.
5. I know already I will not do as good a job around here as I would like to.
6. I will run the risk of having my workload steadily increased until I am back to my former levels and losing my grip.

That's enough to think about for now. There are a lot of good reasons to not work outside the home with children.
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#22 of 42 Old 01-12-2010, 12:40 AM
 
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I use to get this A LOT! I do a lot of crafty things and every project is greeted with, "you could have a business selling that." Knitting, quilting, making baby clothes, jewelry and a bunch of stuff I can't even do.

But my favorite comment is when people say something like, "oh, DD must have a ton of stuff you made." Nope. When would I have the time? I'm a SAHM!

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#23 of 42 Old 01-12-2010, 01:27 AM
 
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Heh. I get that from DH. I do actually freelance a little (writing), but now I'm learning to sew and whenever I manage to construct a reasonably decent-looking tote bag or baby dress or whatever, he cheerfully says "You should sell those!". Whereupon I remind him that my skills are dubious at best, and that he probably doesn't want me taking fifteen or twenty hours a week out of my current schedule to start up a sewing business. I think it's just his way of being encouraging or complimenting my sewing/abilities/potential financial worth... it's a little odd, but it doesn't bug me unduly.

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#24 of 42 Old 01-12-2010, 02:43 AM
 
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Thank you for posting! I'm glad I'm not the only one who has to hear these, "great ideas that wouldn't be very difficult at all and would supplement our income so nicely while making me feel fullfilled and accomplished".

Sure, I'd like to indulge in some hobbies more often (or at all really) and would love to make money in the process BUT if I made that a priority (or did it in my "freetime" as people like to suggest I'd be hugely overworked, overtired, and not able to fully give to that or parenting. If other people can make it work with harmony then more power to them, thats awesome. But, I'm not too interested in piling more on my plate right now!

I'm sick of, "oh, so and so does this and rasies 9 children, while maintaining a farm of disabled animals, volunteering at a children's hospital and food bank, knitting blankets for homeless shelters, running reiki healing clinic from her garage, selling home made candles, dancing in a local production of Fiddler on The Roof, sewing sweaters for cattle with mainge, AND training for a marathon.... I bet you can do v, w, x, y, and z easily!". STUFF IT!

Now MY rant is over. Thanks, I needed to get that one out. Hope you find a good combat for this attack. I haven't figured out a comeback or answer that leaves me feeling like I've come out on top.

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#25 of 42 Old 01-13-2010, 05:09 PM
 
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When DD was about 18months I did decide to do a home-based business, for me, it wasn't worth it. I felt like I wasn't giving either job the attention it deserved. I would get frustrated with DD for not letting do my other work, and it just ended up becoming something that wasn't our parenting plan.

However, I totally understand getting that question about "not working." FIL's new wife (who never had kids) asked me several times or made underhanded comments about returning to work when DD was only 3months old. (but she also told me when I was 8months PG that I needed to be cleaning to the bathroom at FIL house if I was going to be staying there once a month, but thats another story)
My favorite comment was from a male friend when I told them I was doing the at home business, "Good you'll have something to do besides sit around at home all day" WHAT!
So now if people ask about returning "to work" I just say I'll think about it once kids are in school and change the subject, its not worth debating with someone that isn't going to get it.

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#26 of 42 Old 01-13-2010, 05:31 PM
 
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I'm sick of, "oh, so and so does this and rasies 9 children, while maintaining a farm of disabled animals, volunteering at a children's hospital and food bank, knitting blankets for homeless shelters, running reiki healing clinic from her garage, selling home made candles, dancing in a local production of Fiddler on The Roof, sewing sweaters for cattle with mainge, AND training for a marathon.... I bet you can do v, w, x, y, and z easily!". STUFF IT!


While homeschooling... and running a dog rescue... and working with foster kids...

Mom, wife, full-time student.  And tired.  DH, DS#1 (9/99) and DS#2 (9/09), and 2 dogs.

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#27 of 42 Old 01-20-2010, 12:59 AM
 
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Another example - my sister is a SAHM to six kids under 5. She had triplets this past June and has three older children (all under 5 years old). She was an attorney before she had kids. My FIL was here for Christmas and asked me whether my sister "was back at work yet?" I practically fell out of my seat. Are you kidding me??
I am falling out of my chair.



On a side note, this thread is making me laugh because I have been suggested at least a dozen jobs that "you could do at home!". My favorite was making greeting cards. I am the least crafty person I know. It makes me laugh only because I feel such a rant coming on about how I do have a full time job raising these tiny people in my house.

Mama to A 8/05 and S 11/06
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#28 of 42 Old 01-20-2010, 03:02 AM
 
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My favorite was making greeting cards.
What is it with that? My mother's even suggested that to me. "But Mum, I never even give greeting cards, I write the name on the brown paper wrapping." "But I'm sure you'd be good at it!"

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#29 of 42 Old 01-20-2010, 09:55 AM
 
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...and I'll tell you from the position of working now from home, you can't win on this. If you do pick up something, you'll get the same looks from some folks.
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#30 of 42 Old 01-21-2010, 12:25 AM
 
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oh gosh. Every time I give a gift that I have cooked, canned, baked, or any kind of handicraft, I get comments. It is going to drive me bananas. Why is the answer "I do it because I LOVE it" not sufficient?

><> I'm a Christian, knitting, sewing, cooking SAHM to the fearless adventurer Jack born 11/08, and  a  USCG wife
And we are joyfully awaiting a new addition in April 2011! <><
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