A Tale of 2 WAHMs

Ramblings of 2 WAHMs - Anita DeFrank and Kara Kelso. Partners in business discuss how we manage successful websites and young children at home.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

She's Making a List and Checking It Twice

The other day at Mommy's Helper Community message board we were brainstorming on what we were doing to get ready for Christmas. I did a bit of "thinking out loud", and realised I wanted to see my sales from Soy Wax Candles go up up up. Understanding I don't have a lot of time to work on promotion I've thought up some quick was to boost sales. Yesterday and today I got catalogs done and printed, along with order forms to go in those catalogs.

Then today I started making a list of past customers and will eventually include family memebers and friends that I'll be sending catalogs to. With Christmas comming up, now would be a perfect time to get these sent out.

I've also got a promotional material bookmarked because it's just too cute to pass up: http://www.treasuresfromdj.net/catalog.php?category=Scratch%20Off%20Cards
I know I want to send out discount offers with these catalogs, and those just seem perfect. Before I jump in to buying, I have to do some more thinking first. I might just use basic coupons that I'll print out here for this season, and those scratch offs at a later date. Might see how Christmas season goes first before I spend money on something like that (just call me cheap lol).

The rest of this week I'll be making plans to send these catalogs out and estimating on the total cost verses the return rate. Will post updates!

I need organization!

You can always tell when I've been busy. I get quiet. I often forget or don't take time to pop in here and post progress. Being wahm can really be difficult at times. I assumed that once the kiddos went back to school that I'd have a lot more time to work. Wrong! I still have my now 4 year old here. Last summer he was so much easier to deal with. This year is a different story. He's now more interested in my computer and wanting someone to do something with him all the time. He's not as content anymore by himself. This has been a lot more strain on me. Luckily, we were just given a computer the other day. I need to get that thing hooked up right next mine and let him 'work' too.

I've also noticed a huge influx of ideas and projects. I have so many ideas floating around and so many projects started ... I no longer know where to start now. So, over at MomMasterminds I've been busily working on a 'to do' list. This list will probably never go away as I finnish one thing and add 3 more. But, thats okay. This list has helped me a lot and has me re-thinking a lot of things.
First of all. Not sure if you're aware but I have total of 7 websites. Some are mine, some are partnered (with Kara of course) and 2 of them aren't even finnished! Okay, so is the problem not enough time or too many 'projects'. Well, I definitely think it's a little of both.
As I work on my 'to do' list, I'll also be quietly working on re-arranging some of my 'other projects'. MommysHelperOnline.com is my baby and will continue to be. I don't think any amount of work will ever change that. A few other things are my favorites but will never compare to that one. Then I also have a couple that I've totally lost interest in completely. I believe those 2 have some real potential in the right hands.
I've decided first of all it's time to hire some help with 2 of my sites. One being WahmStateDirectory.com and the other TriCountyClassifieds.com The classifieds site is something I've been wanting to do for a long time being something for my local area. First things first...I gotta finnish that site. I have a couple of ideas for some Halloween Promotions so I'd like to get this one finnished soon. For both of these sites I'm gonna be on the lookout for 'helpers' to work on a commission base. I have some thoughts running through my head but for the classifieds, I'd like someone that has some HTML knowledge. I can teach a few things but don't really have time for full-blown training. Eventually, the candidate for WahmStateDirectory.com may get into some basic HTML but..not sure yet.
So basically, in my ramblings ... at MomMasterminds.com I've learned that its definitely time to work on one project at a time. Today's project?? TriCountyClassifieds.com Wish me luck!

Monday, September 27, 2004

New Pages on RecipesForMom.com

Honestly I'm not sure what I was waiting on with that site. I guess I wanted to get some more ebooks done but that's just silly if I don't have other pages up first. I'm sick to death of formatting ebooks and always find some excuse to do something else, so I finally said to heck with it. What I did today was use the keywords I had already found several weeks ago and built 2 new sections with several new pages:
Low Carb Meals and Low Carb Breakfast Recipes.

I'm still not satisfied with the number of recipes on these pages, so I've put on tomorrow's to-do list to seek out more keywords. ;) I was pleased how quick and easy those pages were to do and can see it will be no problem building that site up to something large very quickly. :D

Spongebob Website Done

I admit this might be on the end of a wave since Spongebob isn't quite as popular as it use to be, but really this is for testing purposes only. I want to see if this website gets ranked at Yahoo in the same way it was when these pages were hosted at Mom's Market. I'm just happy the website is finished, and was amazed at how little time it took me to do it.

Now we just waite and see before we try another site like this out.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

MHMM Ezine - Issue #47

In this week's issue of Mommy's Helper - Mom's Market Ezine:
(Can be read at: http://www.momsmarketonline.com/issue-47.html)

~ Notes from Anita and Kara
~ Featured Mom of the Week
~ Business Article - "How To Promote Your Business"
~ Business Topics from Mommy's Helper Community
~ Recommended Resource
~ Childcare Article - "How To Make Your Own Scented Stones"
~ Humor Article - "A Tale of Sick Kiddies"
~ Household Topics
~ Recipe - Meatballs & Cream Of Mushroom Soup

Read this week's issue at:


~Kara Kelso and Anita DeFrank~

Mom's Market Bartering Board has moved

Fact of the matter is, I just could not keep up anymore on the new requests for barters that come in every week. Mom's Market Bartering Board has been up for about a year now and was even featured on a local news in MN, but it's time to close the doors. Not to worry, you will still be able to post your barter requests at Mommy's Helper Community in this folder: http://www.mommyshelperonline.com/phpBB2/viewforum.php?f=53

Thanks to all of those that made the bartering board at Mom's Market such a success!

Fixing the Yahoo Problem

Well it's been over a month now since the Yahoo glitch took out Mom's Market. Realising it could be awhile before my 500+ page site comes back I started thinking of some ways to step around this problem and get to the income level I was at before. Why I didn't think of this idea before I don't know, but it smacked me in the face yesterday - breaking down the Mom's Market Shops into actual websites. Not ALL the sections, but several. There are a few things that worry me just a bit, like loosing a lot of backward links since all those shop pages won't all be linked together anymore. I could link them, but I fear the search engines may look down on that and think I'm trying to boost my rankings - so I just won't link them all together. I will, however, still have them linked to Mom's Market. It shouldn't make a real big difference, since when all those pages were optimized I really didn't expect them to have more than 2 or 3 backward links at the most.

Anyway, I am doing this very slowly just to test the waters a bit. Yesterday I bought a domain name and hosting from Anita for the Spongebob pages, and will be adding all the Nick and NickJr pages to that website. We will waite and see how that site does before I do any more or buy any more domains.

But really the main purpose of doing this is not only in hopes to see those pages back in Yahoo, but also to protect myself from further glitches. If one of these little sites goes down it won't be as big of a problem as seeing a large 500 page site go down.

I expect to have the first website finished today after the ezine goes out. :)

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Back To School Celebration Continues

The Back to School Celebration continues today and tomorrow, with more games, prizes, chats, fun!

Join us at:

Schedual of events for September 16th at the Mom's Back To School Celebration:

10am EST: Open Chat - Money Management

12pm EST: Shopping Hour

2pm EST: Open Chat - School Lunch Ideas

4pm EST: Shopping Hour

6pm EST: Open Chat - Quick Supper Ideas

8pm EST: Shopping Hour

Random prizes will be given away durring the day at any given time, so be sure to stop in!

See you there!

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Back To School Celebration Starts Today!

The party starts today, at 11pm EST.
Here's the list of events we have planned for today:

11pm EST: Open Chat - Time Management
1pm EST: Shopping Hour
3pm EST: Open Chat - Using School Events as Promotion
5pm EST: Shopping Hour
7pm EST: Open Chat - Fundraisers
9pm EST: Shopping Hour

We'll be popping in here and there to hand out prizes and even play a game or two. Hope to see you there!

Friday, September 10, 2004

Update on Fundraiser

Well, I submitted my Press Release to about everywhere online I could think of. One place though, needs a extra thanks. When I submitted to USANews.net I had made a mistake. I emailed them to find out if there was a way I could fix it. Much to my surprise {and rather quickly} I recieved an email back from one Joni Morton saying that it had already been fixed, my press release had been upgraded {for free} and that they were working on some other means of promotion. This was their way of helping too. Thanks USANews.net! We appreciate your support and help!

I've also picked up another helper/contributor along the way. Caryn of FitzByDesign.com had added to my list of return 'gifts' for donators. She added some free advertising on her site to each person who contributed.

I wanted to give these two a special thanks for doing their part in helping! It's greatly appreciated!

Thursday, September 09, 2004

What the heck do I want?

Wow! Whatta question!
I just read a fantastic article called
Climbing Mount Profit - Starting from the Top By John Reese of MarketingSecrets.com. He asked one of the most simplistic questions there is


Needs to be said again, Whatta question! Think about it right now...What the heck do you want? Let me guess, you answered with the same type of answers I did too. You want to make millions OR you want to make lots of money. Well, welcome to crowd...thats what we all want! But, guess what? It's the wrong answer! {Yup, really it is...}

What John said made absolute and complete sense! You need to find a REAL goal {meaning an actual dollar amount} Do you have any idea how many times I've thought about this myself? Yeah, my goals have been "I want to make enough money to be 'comfortable'." "I want to make enough money so my husband doesn't have to work anymore and I do all the supporting." But, really, what is that amount? How much do I have to make for that to be feasible? "What the heck do I want?"

I have a feeling I know exactly why I've never 'set an actual amount'. I'm afraid of failure! I'm afraid to set that amount and time to accomplish it to find out...I failed. Well, guess what folks? Failure is a part of life. Deal with it. It helps you grow and makes you stronger. If I don't reach my goal this month...Guess I just have to try again next month. Obviously, what I did last month didn't work, so hmmm..guess, I'll change it and do something that does work! Great learning experience. The saying "Learn from your mistakes." wasn't started for nothing.

Sooo, thanks to that article I'll be stepping out of my comfort zone {of course I'm gonna start small, still gotta get over that fear!}. I'm going to set a new goal to make $1000.00 a month. {I'd like to almost pay the mortgage myself} In the article John also describes the next step. Don't just think $1000.00 a month ... break it down. Break that ultimate monthly goal to a daily goal. Surprisingly enough, when I broke that down to a daily goal...It's only $33 a day! Yeah, I think I could do that! Okay, so I'm cheating and starting tomorrow! (LOL!)

So, my challenge to you is to make your monthly goal {an actuall $$$ amount} then, if you need...dig out that calculator and divide that number by 30. Go ahead, I'll wait. Do it now!

Hmm...pretty attainable now isn't it. Feel free to post it here too if you'd like. If you're a little shy. Please feel free to email me at anita@mommyshelperonline.com and share. I'd love to hear it! Together we can do anything!

What the heck do you want?

Vendor Spaces Still Available

With less than a week left before the event, we still have a few vendor and sponsor spaces open. The cut off date to sign up is September 10th (that's tomorrow!), so be sure to grab your space real soon.

We have lots planned for this event - chats related to back to school, recipes, shopping hours, random games and prize giveaways, plus lots of networking!

If you need more details on the event, please visit:

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Finally! Everything calms down....

Just as I suspected, we are all starting to settle down a bit and work into a new routine. August was a nightmare, with things to do and places to be nearly every day, and some days were planned to the hour. After vacations, a new special someone comming into my life (which love is never planned, and will always throw you for a loop), and adjusting to new daily scheduals I feel like I'm finally getting somewhere. So here's how it looks like my days will be for at least the next few months:

Mornings - work as usual. Finally! I can get down to business again!
Lunch time - making meals, getting cleaned up, and taking my oldest to preschool.
Afternoon - mostly more work, but once a week a trip to the store. Quite easy when you only have one child that is still facinated with being pushed in a cart and watching all the people walk by.
After school time - Pick up the oldest from school, then it's time to clean up a few things and tend to my personal life.
Evenings are spent cooking supper, getting kids ready for bed, and spending time with my special someone.

While it's all still busy and sometimes a bit overwhelming, I feel better with a normal schedual again. Something I can count on and that rarely changes. Ahhhhh I almost feel relaxed. :)

Mother In Business Helps Hurricane Victims

Contact: Anita DeFrank
Phone Number: (717)436-8657
Event URL: http://www.wahmstatedirectory.com/american-red-cross-fundraiser.html

Mifflintown, Pennsylvania & Countrywide – Online work at home mom community is doing their share in helping victims from recent hurricane tragedies.

In efforts to try to do her share in helping victims of recent Hurricanes Frances and Charley, Anita DeFrank, owner of WahmStateDirectory.com started a fundraiser for the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.

For each directory listing purchased at WahmStateDirectory.com from Wednesday September 8th to Sunday October 31st ten dollars will be donated to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. To help boost donations DeFrank has also teamed up with business partner Kara Kelso of MomsMarketOnline.com and have thrown in lots of free advertising for donors and even a contest for the top state in donations.

“When disaster strikes, the Red Cross is on the scene providing emergency shelter, food and counseling. Donating to the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund enables the Red Cross to meet the urgent critical needs of victims of this and thousands of other disasters each year.” Says the RedCross.org website. “Donating a little bit of time and money to help fund this program is the least we can do.” Says DeFrank.

Quoting DeFrank: “The work at home mom community is a close group of mothers in business who are there to help each other out. Lots of us have friends and some even families that have been hurt by this disaster. With a fundraiser like this; we can show our gratitude to the American Red Cross and do our share of helping the families in need.”

WahmStateDirectory.com can be found at
http://www.wahmstatedirectory.com . Full details of the WahmStateDirectory.com American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fundraiser can be found at http://www.wahmstatedirectory.com/american-red-cross-fundraiser.html

Friday, September 03, 2004

New Affiliate Marketing Magazine

In my search for an offline magazine (one that I didn't have to print out or have to be sitting in front of my computer to read) I had come across a free issue offer from Revenue The Internet Affiliate Marketing Standard. I received my free issue the other day and was thoroughly impressed. As a matter of fact, I've already subscribed too ;). In reading just a few articles in this one issue I've already learned so much! I've learned some of the best ways to pay for placement in search engines, how to utilize any traveling I do to start the viral effect on my business, some of the best ways to "ebay", some interesting tips & tricks to affiliate marketing, and was able to learn whats new about "affiliate marketing land" plus way too much more to list here. And honestly, I've only read a couple of the articles. If you're looking for an "in print" publication (especially about affiliate marketing)...I highly recommend checking this one out. Feel free to browse around their site (link above). You can even read the cover stories online ;)

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Blog curiosity increasing

I knew it was only a matter of time until even more people would be jumping in on the blog bandwagon! I've said it before but blogs have been around for a very long time and have been used for a wide-variety of uses but now it seems blogging has entered a whole new level. I'm starting to see more and more work at home moms use their blogs for a venting space, business purposes, and just plain ole fun (gotta do that once in a while too!)

I've found reading other's blogs just as fun and interesting {Hint: They can also be a great learning tool too} as visiting message boards. Of course blogs can't and won't replace that because those are for a whole other reason with a sense of community and friendship. I've been adding blogs left and right to My Yahoo! page and doing a quick run down each day. Again, a nice thing about this feature is you can do a quick look at the title and maybe even a few lines of each entry and make a quick decision of wether or not to read. (Have I mentioned I adore that feature?)

The funny thing is all the people I had first mentioned blogging to .... I heard "Why?" "I don't have anything interesting to say." "Why would people want to read my 'ramblings'" "I'm too busy." And now those same people are saying "Wow! I'm blogging! What fun!" "I'm really enjoying this." "Blogging is addicting!" Can I say ... I told you so?!?! Have you reaped the benefits yet? Those nice little backlinks? Hmm..maybe you've made a little sale from a product you recommended? Made any new friends? Any new newsletter subscribers? Need you ask for the benefits?

Although, for every new blogger out there, there's still one more brave sole who says "What's a Blog?" I say brave sole because you often find them popping in on a message board topic where 10 people are showing off and talking about their blogs and post the question. Kara and I had written an article recently "What is Blogging" I've decided to create a whole new section at Mommy's Helper all around Blogging. I figured, what the heck ... I've got Online Party Information Network & Affiliate Marketing Information Network ... Why not go with my next "hobby". Stay tuned for Blogging Information Network ...

Getting in the groove again

In this week's issue of Mommy's Helper - Mom's Market Ezine we discuss vacations, schedules and getting back in the groove of working again as summer slowly comes to an end...

~ Notes from Anita and Kara
~ Featured Mom of the Week
~ Business Article - "Did You Take a Vacation This Year?"
~ Business Topics from Mommy's Helper Community
~ Recommended Resource
~ Childcare Article - "How To Start a Toddlers' Playgroup"
~ Humor Article - "The Clothing Monster"
~ Household Topics - Vacations and Scheduals
~ Recipe - Halloween PopCorn Balls
~ Featured Event - Mom's Back to School Celebration

Read this week's issue at:

Free Tables at Networking Event

Well, Anita and I have gotten way in over our head with "stuff" to do, so we decided yesterday to make the tables at the Back To School event free. Yup you heard me right, FREE. No charge, although we are asking for prize donations and a little advertising. We'd like to see this event be the largest this fall, and have a great time meeting lots of different people (and of course, doing a little early christmas shopping plus learning new things as well!)

For more info on how to get your free table, see the home page of the Back To School Celebration: