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EPnews -- from The Entrepreneurial Parent
a work-family resource for home-based entrepreneurs

February 9, 2000


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For easy reading, simply print out this newsletter.


The Funny Things EP Kids Say & Do!
EP Times -- "Beyond Schedule C" Spotlight
Making Money Matters --
What's Happening at EP
--EP of the Month
--January Contest Winner
--January Poll Results
--New Content
We Recommend
MORE Funny Things EP Kids Say & Do!

Editorial Note: EPnews is distributed the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of every
month. The Entrepreneurial Parent web site is updated on an ongoing basis
throughout each month -- feel free to check in regularly via the What's New
banner on our homepage. Welcome all new subscribers!



Sell your services to thousands of businesses from over 120 countries on It's FREE to register and FREE to use. is a global
marketplace, allowing you to interact with thousands of businesses seeking
your services. Come sell your services at NOW!



Submitted by EPnews Subscriber, NAEP member AND Winner of the January EP Gift
Basket Contest (!), Paula Aiello (mailto:[email protected]):

Last week, we received the final prints of my 18-year old's Senior Portraits,
taken in the traditional tuxedo and looking very dignified. When I put the
framed portrait on the shelf, my 4-year old son asked, "Is that Nathan when
he was older?" I laughed, "No, that's Nathan just dressed up." To which he
replied, "for Halloween?" I guess he wasn't convinced!

Why work at home? So you can hear the funny things your EP Kids say
throughout the day. Share with the EP Community something your child said
or did recently that made you smirk, giggle, or LOL. Send your submission
via e-mail to:[email protected]. And if you need a stockpile of smiles
to get you through your EP day, pick up your own heartwarming copy of Grace
Housholder's "The Funny Things Kids Say":

On those stressed-out EP days, you'll be glad you did!

"Beyond Schedule C"
© 2000, Lisa M. Roberts

As the ominous tax season approaches, many EPs turn toward their books (or in
my case, shoe box), to sum up the previous year's efforts in dollars and
cents. This annual ritual is not only to keep things clean with Uncle Sam,
but to evaluate the year's revenue, expenses, and in a word, "profit" --
which usually all shows up in black and white on a single piece of paper
called a "Schedule C." For many an EP who toils away day after day in a home
office to keep their professional career afloat while engaging in the primary
work of raising very young children, this can be a depressing task. But over
the years I have found that there are other meanings to the word "profit"
that are not associated with any monetary value at all.

In my book, "How to Raise A Family & A Career Under One Roof: A Parent's
Guide to Home Business," I go into detail about the rewards a home business
brings to one's sense of self, including challenge, diversity, independence,
professional growth, contact with like-minded professionals and domestic
freedom. While there's not enough room here to cover the topic in full, we
can briefly take comfort by referring to the Webster's Unabridged Dictionary,
in which the FIRST definitions of the word "profit" are: 1) proficiency,
advancement; improvement; 2) advantage; gain; benefit.

With this perspective in mind, how have YOU profited by working at home in
1999? Before you answer that question, consider the following:

---> New Client Relationships.
Have you picked up any new clients in the past year? Even if the initial
projects with a new client are small, if you've made a good impression by
meeting or exceeding expectations you've "advanced" your home business a
great deal. It takes time to build a trusting relationship with a client and
hopefully you're both in it for the long haul.

---> New Contacts.
Have you made a strong connection with any new EP peers online or in person?
Have you met and conversed with any other new business colleagues or
professionals in your field? How about members of the press or other media?
Every new contact can help you advance your home career in terms of
opportunities, public perception and personal support.

---> New Hard or Soft Skills Developed.
Have you picked up any new computer skills, sharpened your writing, or taught
a class for the first time during the past year? Here's where the term
"proficiency" comes in, another building block for that high
income-generating home career of your future...

---> New Business Skills Developed.
Did you research, launch or grow your business in the past year? Every day
you are self-employed you are "improving" your entrepreneurial understanding,
knowledgebase and competency -- all factors that are working together to move
you closer and closer to your financial goals.

---> Family Rewards.
Here is where the concept of "advantage," "gain," and "benefit" come into
play full swing. For those of us with an innate desire to put family first
and career a close second, no further explanation here is necessary -- just
give your loved ones a hug and a smile and thank them for sharing their days
with you!

In today's society, where the barometer of success is too often measured by
one's annual salary, the preparation of an EP's "Schedule C" can be a
sobering affair -- and even a point of contention among family members. But
if you can keep your mind and heart focused on the broader definition of
"profit" as you gather together your business receipts, related utitility
bills, invoices and bank statements, you can retain a sense of pride in your
year's accomplishments -- regardless of what you pencil in on the bottom

(If you'd like to share how you have "profited" outside a financial
assessment from working at home in 1999, please write to us at
mailto:[email protected]. Let's share. And here's to a more "profitable"
2000 for all!!)

Lisa Roberts is the mother of four, Web Producer of The Entrepreneurial
Parent, LLC and the author of "How to Raise A Family & A Career Under One
Roof: A Parent's Guide to Home Business" (Bookhaven Press, 1997). Copies of
her book are available for purchase at: and
through Amazon, at:


Has anyone caught Oxygen's new commercial on prime time TV lately? What about
their new cable channel which just launched 02/02/2000? Don't forget to keep
your eye on -- there's so much more to come! Meantime, catch
Lisa's column at Oxygen's business & finance site,, which
runs Friday afternoons and throughout every weekend at:

The latest subjects are:

"Connectivity Solutions for the Home Office"
"Wanted: Helping Hands for a Home Business Owner"
"The Free Agent Workforce: What's It All About?"
"Love in the Afternoon" (coming up this Valentine's weekend)

Also, any time you'd like to ask Lisa a question directly, stop by her
message boards at:

Or stop in for her weekly chat, Monday nights at 10:00 p.m. EST, at:

All EPs are welcome!!


Being available to your kids and managing a career under one roof sounds to
many like the best of both worlds, but without pulling in some kind of income
what's all the effort for? OK, one answer is in the above editorial, but
still...Making Money Matters!

Let's hear how YOU earn your keep as an EP. (Please keep in mind that this
column is here to spark marketing ideas for the already-established EP, not a
venue to recruit aspiring EPs into a business opportunity, so no MLM or
packaged business opportunity submissions please.) To take our survey,
mailto:[email protected] with the subject heading "MMM Survey." We look
forward to hearing more about you!

This month Harriet Bitar, Owner of Redheads' Fancy Cosmetics -- a unique line
of cosmetics specifically designed for redheads and other fair-skinned women
-- shares her marketing tips with us. Harriet is an EP to one pre-teen and
one teen, and her contact info is:

Harriet Bitar
Redheads' Fancy Cosmetics
Email: [email protected]
Ph: (860) 426-7337
Postal Business Address: P O Box 413, Southington, CT 06489

1. In a 2-3 sentence statement, explain what your home business is about,
including your target market and "mission statement," and how your
"brainchild" was born.

Redheads' Fancy offers cosmetics to redheads, auburns, strawberry blondes,
whether natural or otherwise and those with fair skin, in colors right for
their unique complexions and coloring. While searching for a carreer which
would make an income and still allow me to be available to my children, my
gaze shifted to eleven tubes of lipstick which were promised to be my color
but had turned out to be good enough only for my daughter's dress-up box. My
research started with stopping redheads on the street to see if they fancied
the same, only to find that they did!

2. What are the most popular products and/or services you sell? How much do
you sell them for (or what's your hourly rate), and how did you find the
right price/fee schedule for them?

Redheads' Fancy features lipstick for $7.50, lip liner pencil for $7.50 and
nail polish for $5.50 for redheads and some blondes. I have just created a
new line of eye makeup: "Fairchild," a collection of mascara, eyeliner pencil
and brush-on-brow color all for $7.50 each, for all fair people, in shades
light enough for them. Even though I offer a unique product which has a
strong demand, I still want to keep it affordable. To price the items, I
simply looked at the medium to low end prices already out there in popular
cosmetics products and made sure that my products were comparably priced.
There are some rules of thumb to follow when pricing: double the raw goods
price or triple it, and I made sure that I could still do that while
maintaining the low comparable.

My most popular items are the "Fairest" shades of mascara and brush-on-brow.
Some of my customers say that finally they don't look like a raccoon with
too-dark eye make-up.

3. What are *your* favorite products and/or services? Why do you like to
sell them?

My personal favorite is the "Fairest" brush-on-brow because I now have
eyebrows. My brows are naturally very fair, barely visible and this is just
the right shade for them. I love selling all the products because I've found
a comradery in other redheads that I only wondered about. They all seem
grateful to me for discovering these colors for them.

4. Tell us a bit about your marketing campaign. When did you start noticing
your first sales (after which marketing technique), what marketing efforts
have you noticed yield the greatest results, and how do you make your first
contact and subsequent sales (via online, phone, fax, mail, face-to-face)?

Because mine is such a different kind of business, I got coverage from the
press. As the newspapers began featuring Redheads' Fancy in their columns,
the phones began to ring. The newspapers were by far the biggest pull but
the coverage was short-lived. I have placed ads in ethnic magazines and have
set up a display at their festivals to target my market, which also worked
for a while. I find that one has to take every opportuntiy to get the word
out and it has been a combination of avenues which is working for Redheads'
Fancy. The Internet has been great.

5. Any additional comments are welcome.

Be watching my website for "Fairchild." Since the line is new, it will take
a little while to get it onto the site. Customers may give me their snail
mail address for a "Color Selection Guide," my catalog, which has the lip and
eye make-up colors on it. They may order from that.



1.) New Feature -- "EP of the Month" (!!)

Karen Murray, "The Coupon Lady"

Background: One of our NAEP members, Anne R. Wenzel of,
recently submitted an idea for our web site & community that we think is
terrific. She said, why not highlight an "EP of the Month" so we can all be
inspired by an entrepreneurial parent's success story?

Shortly afterwards we received an email from Karen Murray, also known in her
local community as "The Coupon Lady," who happened to tell us a story about
how she approached a local grocery store owner to see if she could offer one
of her "coupon classes" in his store that would be free to the community and
to him. This very sharp grocery store owner saw in Karen an innovative way to
enhance customer service, and gladly signed her on -- in fact, HIRED her to
teach 6 classes per year and THEN asked her to become his "Consumer
Advocate." For the past year, Karen and her new "partner" have teamed up to
spread the word about both of their entrepreneurial enterprises -- they go to
different civic groups, PTO's, church groups, etc. where Karen will be
introduced as the store owner's "Consumer Advocate" and he then asks for
suggestions from the groups as to how he could make his store what they
wanted. (Imagine a grocery store owner that asked for the CUSTOMER'S input??)
Their local community LOVES the concept. As a final nod to this duo's sharp
PR intuition, they have agreed that Karen stay connected to the store as an
independent contractor so that she represents the people, not the store, and
their community knows it.

Talk about a success story! And one after the heart of our own deB -- who
recently put together our new "Frugal Resource Center" in addition to writing
her monthly "What's It Worth?" column on time & money-saving tips :-).

Sooo...come check out what Karen Murray, our very first "EP of the Month,"
has to say at:

FYI, as of now on, we plan to select an EP each month from our new member
forms based on unique and successful business practices (from names to
PR/advertising to niche markets) and offer them a FREE Profile Page at the EP
Showcase. So spread the word among your friends and let's build the EP
Community together -- along with our collection of success stories!

2.) EP Gift Basket Contest

We have another winner! Paula Aiello of San Ramon, CA was randomly selected
to receive our January EP Gift Basket. Here are some words from Paula, and
the items she has selected:

"Many thanks to the EP community and especially to the contributors for my
January gift basket! I'm proud to be a charter member of NAEP, and I'm
counting on EP to help me keep my balance in 2000 as I juggle my family life
(4 kids, ages 4 to 18 + my wonderful husband), my law practice (I'm a
California attorney practicing probate, estate planning, and elder law), and
my "personal" life (is there such a thing?!) ... Let's hang in together!"

The gifts I've chosen are:

Busy Woman's Planner: BOOK TOTE/PURSE (BLUE) ($34.95) -- donated by Susie
Ph: 800-848-7715 (orders only) 805-644-3151 (regular line), Email:
[email protected]

Moms Network: MOVIE PASSES ($16) -- donated by Cyndi Webb,, Email: [email protected]

E-Scent-ials: NATURAL HEALING BATH BAG ($2.50) -- donated by Jeralynn Burke
and Linda Faust,, Ph: 847-298-3474, Email:
[email protected]

Organized Times: OFFICE ORGANIZING 101 BOOKLET ($5.50) -- donated by Debbie
Williams of, Ph: 281-286-9512, Email:
[email protected]

Babycakes Designs: 8X10 PAINTING FROM PHOTO ($40) -- donated by Susan
Swingholm, Ph: 713-349-9718, Email: [email protected]

THANKS AGAIN :-). Paula.

Do you want to win our next EP Gift Basket -- filled with $100 worth of
donated prizes from EPs that YOU select? As an EPnews Subscriber, you're
automatically eligible to enter! Just go to the following URL and take our
next poll:

"What is your favorite way to save time or money for your business?
(Household frugal living tips welcome ONLY if they're very original!)"

Aspiring minds want to know! Go share at:

And see what our Contest Sponsors are offering this time around at:

NOTE: We Need New Contest Sponsors!!

We're moving this contest from a monthly to a bi-monthly to give our Contest
Sponsors longer exposure on our site. If you'd like to donate a product or
service and spread some good will among the EP Community AND a good word
about your business, please contact us at mailto:[email protected]. We'll
be happy to include your full contact info & link to your site on our Contest
Sponsorship page (even after your prize has been selected, your info will
remain on the page); and when your prize is selected we'll also run your full
contact info in EPnews. Come join us!

2.) EP January Poll

We polled over 165 EPs during our January contest and learned a great deal
about the plans and problems members of our community face. Again, the
question was:

"What is your No. 1 business resolution for the new millennium?"

Here were some of the results:

Top 10 Resolutions (in order of popularity):

1. To make more money
2. To be more aggressive w/ sales and marketing
3. To get organized!
4. To (finally) launch a business
5. To work harder/ be more productive/ buckle down
6. To offer better customer service
7. To make better use of the Internet
8. To get a better handle on time management
9. To cut spending
10. To have a better work-family balance

Editor's Pick of Favorite Responses (Please note -- author names are withheld
because we forgot to ask permission to quote on our form. In future
polls/contests, we will have an appropriate box to check so you can get
credit for your quote if you want to!):

The Most Relevant Resolution to EP Life:

"To walk out the front door when I want to knock off work, tell myself I'm
going home as I walk around to the back door, enter and sing out, "I'm home
kids, I'm all yours!"

The Most Passionate Resolution:

"Organize, Organize, Organize!!!" (3 separate entries came in exactly this

The Most Specific Resolution:

"To broaden the area in which I teach my couponing classes from 1 town to 5

The Most Articulate Resolution:

"Up to now, my business has been dependent upon my time for its growth and
income. My goal now is to build revenue streams that will generate income
beyond my time."

The Most Inspiring Resolution:

"To be happy with doing as much as I can do in one day."

The Most Bizarre Resolution:

"To not wear ankle booties."

Other Favorites:

"To take more risks. I have to admit that since I started my company, which I
am so proud of even if it is fairly small, I have pretty much done things the
safe way. The New Millennium has given me courage to give my whole company a
new look."

"My number 1 business resolution for the New Millenium is to take time out to
draw up a business plan. I have plenty of business to draw a salary and be
profitable. I may have to turn down work unless I hire one or two
telecommuting employees. I need to focus on the most profitable ventures to
ensure cash flow to be able to pay and provide benefits for my employees.
I've been able to wing it for the first 9 months, but I don't think I can get
away with it any more."

"To spend more time working during the day, instead of at night! zzzzzzzz....
This will make my family very happy (especially my husband), and I will be a
more productive EP because I can rise early, exercise and be very "together"
during regular business hours instead of while others are sleeping."

"To simplify and streamline my time while cutting my stress level due to
having too many balls in the air all the time. I plan to do this by focusing
my energies on the really important things while cutting out time-wasting
activities as well as reducing activities that may be worthwhile but aren't
among my top priorities. I also plan to say "no" more often."

"To cut expenses while increasing profits, hiring more qualified people at a
higher hourly rate to avoid the rapid turnover of finally trained employees,
to put more time and efforts into marketing, trying new ideas, and not
working so many hours a week because life is so short. (If I could do even
one of these resolutions for the year I would be happy!)"

"My number One Business Resolution for the New Millenium would be a little
phrase I like to call "follow through." So many times a project idea is
brought up in a meeting, and the concept is unlike any we have ever thought
of. Most often, those kinds of ideas take long to develop with lots of time
and energy. Anyway, if the company would just invest the love that a
creative project needs to grow, we would be a most powerful business. But
sadly, most mouthed ideas fall through the cracks and never mature to a
successful reality. So as we enter into the new millenium, the way we follow
through with things needs to change. And it will! For sure!"

New Content:

Tax Season is in full swing. If you're a telecommuter, can you use the Home
Office Deduction? When you start a new biz, do you have to get a Federal ID #
or stick with your SSN? Our EP Tax/Finance Expert, Jan Zobel, has this and
other answers to pertinent tax questions at:

Are you looking to use your administrative skills in a work-at-home
arrangement? Find out what ideas Nancy Collamer, our EP Part-Time Career
Expert, has for you at:

Your Business Articles:

7 Golden Rules for Working on a Shoestring Budget by Kimberly Stansel

12 Fabulous Resources Every Bootstrappin' Entrepreneur Should Know About by
Kimberly Stansel

Seller Beware (an article on collecting fees due) by Janet Attard


We are very pleased to introduce and recommend our new sponsor of The
Entrepreneurial Parent for the month of February --! eLance makes
it quick and easy for you to buy and sell services with people and businesses
from around the world. Thousands of people from over 120 countries now use
the eLance marketplaces for web and graphic design, software development,
business services, research, data entry and much more. Buyers and sellers use
eLance to find each other, to negotiate the deal and even as a platform for
delivery of the service.

Did you know that EP turns down advertising dollars every week from
work-at-home "business opportunity" companies? While we recognize that many
are legitimate, we feel strongly that the best shot EPs have at a
long-lasting home career begins not by buying into someone else's business
plan, but by doing the self-assessment needed in any job/career search.

At, you'll find legitimate companies with specific projects in
mind that may match your specific skillset. Again, take the link and see for

Get your name published and win a free book!

Hello fellow parent,

Elizabeth Pantley here - parent educator, mom of four and author of Kid
Cooperation, Perfect Parenting and my newest book: Hidden Messages (available
Sept 2000). I'm in the process of writing my fourth book. This one's really
fun - or shall I say FUNNY! It's a look at the side of parenting that
mainstream parenting books don't cover - the goofy, the hilarious, and the
embarrassingly funny. I NEED YOUR FUNNY STORY! If you want to share your
moment in my new book I'll publish your name and give you a free autographed
copy, too. If I use your story in my book, I'll add your name to it like
this: Mary B., mom to Jessie and Kayla, Tennessee - and I'll send you a
personally autographed copy. If I don't use your story I'll still say thank
you with a discount certificate off the price of the book. Please send your
story to me at: e-mail: [email protected] or by snail mail at: 5720 - 127
Avenue NE, Kirkland, WA 98033-8741.

PLEASE NOTE: Our own EP Expert, Grace Housholder, also collects funny kid
stories for her weekly e-mail column and books. She's the one who inspired
us to do our own "Funny Things EP Kids Say" column. To receive the delightful
and original weekly "Funny Kids" e-mail column send a blank message to:
[email protected], and to contact Grace,
mailto:[email protected].


Let's close up this e-zine with another LOL!

Submitted by EPnews Subscriber Wendy Brown (mailto:[email protected]):

One evening my family and I were sitting in the living room, and we were just
beginning to watch the video, The Lion King. My two-year old daughter looked
at my husband and me and said, in complete earnest, "Wait a minute. Do lions
and tigers and birds really talk?"

(My husband and I were laughing so hard that we couldn't even answer her for
the first couple of minutes...)


The Entrepreneurial Parent, LLC is not engaged in rendering legal or
financial advice. If expert assistance is required, the services of a
licensed professional should be sought.

This newsletter may be redistributed freely via the Internet. Re-publishing
of separate articles for your print publication needs approval first; write
to: [email protected] for permission.

© 2000, The Entrepreneurial Parent, LLC
Editor: Lisa M. Roberts
EP Webmaster: Deborah Sechrist
POB 320722, Fairfield, CT 06432;
Ph:/Fax: (203) 371-6212, Email: [email protected]

Community email addresses:
Subscribe: [email protected]
Unsubscribe: [email protected]
List owner: [email protected]

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