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Working from Whereever I may be…by Kelli of Our Milk Money.com

 by Kelli Shand

Working From Wherever I May Be… Besides allowing me to stay at home with my children, the second reason I started my internet business is that is gives me the ability to work anywhere in the world. With my laptop and cell phone in hand, I can carry on working just about anywhere.

I have such a strong passion for travel, just for travels sake, I now no longer have to cancel trips because of work. How fabulous! Next week, I have any opportunity to take my two young sons to Milan. My husband has a business trip to Italy (my all time favorite place,) for two weeks- nice hotel, meals, taxis all paid for by his company. And, my mom works for a major airline so our flights are next to nothing- we just show up at the airport and stand-by for any flight we want. My 4 year old is a seasoned traveler who has been to more countries in his short life than most would ever dream. On the plane he quietly colors, naps or watches movies. He adjusts well to jet-lag, sleeping in strange places, and foreign food.

How perfect!

So, what is the problem some might ask. One word. Jack. Jack is my 18 mo. old and hates traveling! I’m not even sure how he can be related to us. On a recent 5 hour flight to Atlanta, he was that baby that not only cried the entire flight, but the one that yelled with all his might, kicked your seat, threw toys down the aisle- for the entire 5 hours. I’m surprised we weren’t banned from flying again with that airline!

 Once there, he cried, misbehaved, would not sleep, and was generally fussy. The whole experience was one of the worst I’ve ever had. Both my husband and I said we’d never travel with him again. Since that month or so has passed since our last trip, the pain has slowly worn off and the horror has been a bit forgotten. The trip to Milan seems so enticing- this is after all my dream- to be able to work from wherever I might be. I’m just thinking that maybe that place is home! Stay tuned…….. 

Visit http://www.ourmilkmoney.com

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Culture Shock and the Stay at Home Parent by Ally Loprete/Our Milk Money

by Ally Loprete

Becoming a stay at home parent is like culture shock. At least, I believe it
is after you’ve already been a working parent in the corporate world. Had I
gone straight to staying at home when my maternity leave was over, it may
have been easier to adjust, but for me, it was culture shock.

Culture shock isn’t such a bad thing. We adjust, we always adjust, and most
of the time we realize AFTER the adjustment period that every electric zap
to our system, no matter how painful, was worth it. In fact, I am beginning
to see after everything I’ve experienced in the past 3 years, that in order
to reach a cleaner and clearer destination you have to wade through waters
of muck and filth. I like to call it the storm before the rainbow. I’ve been
using that analogy very often these past few years.

We had a “storm” before the rainbow while trying to conceive my son. 

 There was a storm when I and found a less than warm welcome back to work
upon my return from maternity leave, but then the rainbow appeared as I got
back into the swing of things and was recruited to a new department.

There was a new storm when my new department laid off our entire team just 2
weeks after recruiting me. The wind and rain were fierce with fear and
horror as we tried to figure out how to exist without my corporate income,
and once we realized we could subtract daycare expenses, and survive on
severance and unemployment, the rainbow emerged.

I had a #$^(*$ storm when I started my stay at home status and realized I
didn’t know how to care for my child because the terrible daycare I had him
in refused to tell me anything about the details of his day, his schedule,
what he ate, or when he slept. That was much like going through a 2nd
post-partum. My husband received many panicked calls from me that first week
sobbing, “We should just give him back to them. I can’t even take care of my
son as well as that awful daycare.”

What I didn’t realize is that the rainbow had already begun to form. As the
days wore on, I began to settle into this new culture. It began to fit me so
well, I wondered if I ever truly fit into the old culture of being a working
mom. My son and I began to bond more than ever, and I was amazed at how he
began flourishing. He never battled me on nap time, and it almost seemed as
if he was happy to go down, knowing that I would be there when he woke up.
My husband came home to a full cooked meal every night, a refrigerator
filled with food, and his laundry done. So the only thing left for him to do
was spend quality time with us until bedtime.

This was the culture I belonged to, and I decided that I was going to stay.
The rainbow that has filled our lives has burned so brightly since then,
that no storm has every come close to washing it away since then. I wonder
sometimes if others have this same rainbow in their lives, but they forget
to notice it because it’s always been there. Or maybe, there truly does need
to be a storm sometimes before the rainbow can exist. If we hadn’t struggled
to get where we are now, how would we know that it’s better over here? It’s
times like these that I am glad for the dark times, as much I am the bright
sunny ones.

Ally Loprete
Ally Loprete Co-Founder
ally@ourmilkmoney.com

www.ourmilkmoney.com

presented by www.motherhoodincorporated.com

Our Milk Money is Born!

Do people really know what it takes to be a stay at home mom?  I certainly never knew. I began to wonder if others would value the products that I am selling more just because of where they came from, and how it’s value is much greater because it means a mother can stay home and raise her son
herself, rather than send him to the only cheap daycare that was available while she worked in a large corporation- whose products may cost the same, but aren’t nearly as valuable.

As a stay-at-home parent, I found the internet to be a useful resource, espcially since shopping with a toddler was the last thing I wanted to do. With my new little idea, I began to try and find products that were sold by stay-at-home parents like myself. I figured it was good Karma, and I happily imagined some other cyber mom performing the same search and looking to buy from ME, simply because I was a parent.
I searched for hours, and with nothing, finally gave up. It seemed that finding a self-employed parent who sold my favorite shampoo was about as easy as shaving my legs with a tweezers .

I knew there had to be someone out there, but if they were in the 647,005th page of an internet search, finding them would take a miracle. I murmured to myself how easy it would be to go to a site that listed all the self-employed parents across the country- and in that same fraction of a second, I knew that if there wasn’t one, I was going to create it.

I immediately called Kelli, a fellow mom who I’d recently met and bonded with on a playdate who I knew was also looking for a new business venture. I told her about my idea, and her response was, “That’s brilliant. Let’s do it.”
Our Milk Money was born.
Before I knew it, I was a business owner.  Funny. Now that I am here, I can’t imagine ever working for anyone else again. 

Ally's Jewelry Business

I started making jewelry. It was relaxing and fun, and I did my best thinking while working quietly with my hands. One day, while trying to copy an expensive necklace I’d seen in a magazine, I started thinking about the value of the jewelry I was creating. The one in the magazine was probably
over $200, and reproduced many times over so that many would enjoy purchasing and then wearing it.

Mine looked exactly the same, and cost me no more that $3 to make. I could sell it for $50 and still feel that I was over
charging. I started dreaming about actually selling my necklace and what that $50 would mean to me and my family. At that point, we were beginning to feel for the first time what it was like to be poor. Now that we were being deprived
of my previous salary, we had begun to experience a real financial shock to our once- comfortable lives.

We’d recently become conscious of every dollar spent in order to survive. So, an extra $50 would be such a nice bonus. I
wondered what $50 would mean to the department store that sold their expensive necklace. Pure pocket change, I imagined.
My thoughts took me to another place- would people buy my necklace over the store’s necklace if they knew I was a mom? What if they knew that I’d be able to buy milk and warm clothes for my son? I had to believe that if presented that way, and my jewelry was made as easily accessible to them,
they’d choose to support me and my family…all for just purchasing a necklace that they would have bought anyway.

Next week, see how Ally turns her business into an online business — not just for jewelry but for all work at home parents!

Check out her site at http://www.ourmilkmoney.com

Succeeding in Motherhood

So many of us have a desire to succeed in motherhood the way
that our mothers did.
I’d never understood until I became one, what a mom has to go through on a daily basis, and since discovering this, I’ve grown very passionate about this issue. Do not misunderstand. I love being at home with my child, but it’s the most work I’ve ever had in my life, and the notion that we don’t get paid for this, when just last year I actually had a decent income from
an office job that let me surf the internet 90% of the time from pure boredom… well, it just feels really backwards. 

The fact is the average American family cannot exist on one income, so women who have chosen to stay at home have to find a way to bring in a supplemental income IN ADDITION to
raising a family. Fortunately, we are growing faster and faster towards our future, and into an even more superior age of technology.

Because of the internet, we have been able to create even more opportunities for ourselves as parents and entrepreneurs.

Running a household is work enough, and the average stay-at-home deserves a nice paycheck for that alone. Running a business on top of that may seem near impossible, yet women across the country are doing it. They are getting creative, and they are making it work. They find a way, because they have
to.
I wanted to be one of those people. I needed to learn from them. But where could I find them? On my internet searches, they never popped up. Only people promising me I could find my way to happiness through multilevel marketing were coming up.  What should I do?

Tune in next week as we see Ally start her first business and what it leads to!

Check out her online business at www.ourmilkmoney.com

Log off from Your Home Business and Play

LOG OFF & PLAY

By Kelli

 I must remind myself at times why I started my own home-based business. Don’t get me wrong, I love waking up, having a coffee or two, leisurely checking my e-mails, listening to political debates on TV, doing a load of laundry (if I feel like it.) I don’t have to fight the traffic, dress in pressed clothing and answer to a boss. There are so many reasons why working from home is truly wonderful. But, the number one reason I work from home is to enjoy the day to day activities with my 2 boys. It is unfortunate though, that at times I forget. Many times I have felt frustrated by the interruptions of “Mommy please come play.” My boys see me here. I’m sure they think I’m glued to the computer. Too many times I have found myself caught up in my work, forgetting the reasons why I work at home. Of course there are deadlines and important meetings, but for the most part, nothing is too urgent that can’t be done after a game of catch or building a few sand castles. I am so grateful of this time with my boys. If ever I get too wrapped up in the computer working, answering e-mails, all things that can wait……. I think I’ll log off and go play.  

Me run my own company?

The truth is that I was angry that our society has become so dependent on certain conveniences that we can no longer support a family of 3 on one income.  Don’t get me wrong. I am proud of the strides we’ve made since the 1950’s where women were seen as unqualified to do anything but stay at home and be a homemaker.

Back then, the notion of a woman running her own company
was unheard of. Today, some of our greatest business leaders and CEOs are women, and it’s something to be proud of.  I certainly don’t want to take any steps backwards, when we’ve come so far. But then why are so many of us choosing to stay at home with our children when we’ve already proven to the
world that we are capable of so much more? It’s a simple answer, in my opinion.
It’s how we are built as women.
Where we once achieved great satisfaction in proving to society that the corporate world could perhaps, use a dash of the motherly instinct for a change…once we became actual mothers, nothing compared with the joy that was brought from “working” with our children. It was as if our lives had been empty before that moment in time, as if we truly were not meant for another other kind of life. Yes, we are capable of doing it all, and we’ve proven that to the world over and over again. But, when you get right down to it, nothing beats motherhood. It’s how we were built.

Next week, tune in as we hear more from Ally and her thoughts as she starts her business.

Check out her site at www.ourmilkmoney.com.