- EPnews -- from The Entrepreneurial
a work-family resource for home-based entrepreneurs
- Volume 3, Issue 2
April 28, 1999
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A WORD FROM OUR SPONSOR:
For EPs, the Web is Working.
Thanks to the Internet, many thousands of
parents are operating successful, satisfying businesses without
their family life. In fact, the climate for starting a successful
business has never been so favorable. The Internet is helping
indirectly, as well, by creating exciting new ways to purchase
services. Take health insurance, for example. Remember when you
needed to be
part of some huge organization to get affordable group rates?
Well, EPs no
longer face such barriers. Thanks to a company called HealthAxis.com,
get web-direct group rates, and buy your health insurance online!
HealthAxis.com eliminates the bureaucracy (and the costly agent,s
commissions) and passes the savings on to savvy EPs. Go to
spend 30 seconds to get a free ClickQuote, and
then apply online. And make sure to tell them you read about
it in EPnews!
The Funny Things EP Kids Say & Do!
- EP Times -- An Editorial
What's It Worth?
Making Money Matters
What's Happening at EP
- NAEP Membership Diso Lt Reminder
Note to New Subscribers: EPnews
is published and distributed on the second
and fourth Wednesday of every month. The Entrepreneurial Parent
is updated every weekend; look for new content on
THE FUNNY THINGS EP KIDS SAY & DO!
Submitted by EPnews Subscriber,
Jenny Waizecker (mailto:[email protected]):
My 4 1/2 year old son was talking
with his friend. They were trying to
decide who was taller. After agreeing that the friend was taller,
replies (matter-of-factly), "Well, my pockets are bigger."
His friend agreed, and they went
off to play. :-)
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
with the subject heading "A Funny Thing My EP Kid
Said (or Did)". 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
Funny Things Kids Say" @ http://en-parent.com/familybooks.htm.
stressed-out EP days, you'll be glad you did!
TIMES -- AN EDITORIAL
"Letting Spring In"
© 1999 by Lisa Roberts
Imagine coming home from an afternoon
errand to find that every bed in your
house has been made with fresh clean sheets, every window washed
glass pane is clear, every floor swept, scrubbed and polished
to a shine.
Imagine that this was all done for you without any guilt strings
without hint of hard labor or begrudging comment, without barely
of effort. Imagine the sense of cleanliness and rejuvenation
such a moment
This is what springtime feels
like to me. In the home outside my house, the
ground has all fresh coverings, the air is crisp and clear, the
shrubs hold new light and life...and all this has sprung up with
whisper of effort! It's truly a miracle, and even in the midst
news swirling around the country and the world, it's hard *not*
hope blowing in through nature's wind.
So with hope to lead us, blue
skies to cheer us and fresh air to cleanse
our thoughts, let's try pledging our spring "time"
to renewals on all
fronts. As a community of Entrepreneurial Parents, this pledge
will help us
loosen the mud of negativity that can form on dreary days that
horrendous news, and keep us moving forward toward the light
RENEWAL #1: Clean some business
slates. The spring is a great time to wrap
up those lingering business projects and clear the way for new
you know what's weighing heavy on your To Do list -- scratch
them off once
and for all by either spending a few late nights in a row or
dropping them altogether through a re-prioritization of your
spring time to meet or delete business goals, save the summer
the next school year's business agenda, and the fall for launching
RENEWAL #2: Plant a garden with
your children. Take time to smell the
roses...and plant new ones! To usher in each new spring with
sense of affirmation, design a perennial garden with your children.
Watching the plants take root and then blossom in the same spot
is redeeming and replenishing for all.
RENEWAL #3: Date your spouse.
February may be billed as the month of
romance, but just about all who know love know that the months
pull more heart strings than any other. Start a new hobby, take
course, or have a private dinner once a week -- whatever you
do it together! There's no time like the present time to restore
strengthen your marriage, so express your intentions today.
RENEWAL #4: Rejuvenate your body,
mind and spirit. One way to carry out all
three at once is to exercise...outdoors. There's nothing like
fresh air to
clear the mind and brighten the spirit, whether you're taking
stroll or an ambitious mountain climb. So leave the gym, the
and the running machines behind and take to the sidewalks, bike
wooded trails to get your heart pumping. For a great piece of
and advice on this very subject, check out the April Stress Management
column, written by EP Volunteer Desiree Scales, at
Whether or not you live in a
part of the world that is experiencing the
natural renewal of Spring, this is always a good time of year
and reflection. Tonight, crack your bedroom window open and let
the night air
cool down your worries. Allow some fresh thoughts and fresh dreams
to ease in
with the breeze.
Lisa Roberts is the mother of four, Web Producer of The Entrepreneurial
Parent and the author of "How to Raise A Family & A
Career Under One Roof:
A Parent's Guide to Home Business." For more info on her
book, go to
by deB Sechrist
Back when I was a single parent
on a very tight budget, my microwave oven
just stopped working. As you can imagine, it was a disaster.
something I used on a daily basis and could not afford to replace.
the local repair shop brought the dismal news that it would cost
much to repair it as it would to buy a new one. Learn to live
without it? I
wasn't willing to do that. ;-)
So I decided to see if I could
figure it out myself. First, off came the
cover. On close inspection of a fuse, I couldn't tell for sure
if it was
burned out, so I removed it and headed for the appliance store.
spending the $4 for the new fuse and installing it, the oven
work. I checked the power cord and connections to all the parts
seemed fine. Then I checked the door latch assembly, which was
plastic affair that was made to catch on to another plastic set
door. I pushed down on the latch and it didn't move down enough
the way it should. I tightened a loose screw holding the assembly
tested the oven. It worked! I had just saved myself over $100
and had my
Since then, I decided to take
on the challenge to fix things myself
whenever I can. I've repaired lamps (replaced the power cords),
(soldered a loosened control button connection), ceiling fans
pull switch), my computer track ball (shored up a glued plastic
hinge with a flexible eraser), toilets (replaced the flush mechanism),
plumbing leaks (replaced washers), video games (cleaned contacts
pencil eraser), and light fixtures (replaced the ceramic assembly
rewired the fixture).
Over time, I've picked up a lot
of tips and learned many procedures from
the DIY shows on cable TV such as Discovery or The Learning Channel
don't have cable, check your PBS listings). The shows offer random
and very concise, clear explanations of how to repair many common
appliances. A local library might offer books or videos on home
community colleges or high schools often offer courses in electronics
auto repair. Check your community news to find retired plumbers,
carpenters, electricians and appliance repairmen who will repair
complicated items but charge less than the service centers and
I wouldn't recommend trying to
repair anything that's still under warranty
or covered by a service contract, as you'll void the warranty
the appliance yourself. And I wouldn't recommend trying to repair
electronic until you've had some professional training -- many
an electrical charge that could injure you if not handled correctly.
it's something you'd have to throw out or have someone repair
can use it, there's usually no harm in trying to fix it yourself,
can save yourself money if (when!) you succeed.
Armed with a basic tool kit and
an intrepid spirit (which you already have
as an EP!), you'll be able to do things you never thought possible!
very satisfying to be able to fix things yourself, and you'll
with the money you'll save not having to repair or replace the
things you use every day.
deBorah Sechrist is the mother of three, Webmanager of The Entrepreneurial
Parent and owner of deBweB, a web design business. Find out more
MAKING MONEY MATTERS
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
income what's all the effort for? Making Money Matters! This
week Brian and
Lois of Brimar Lodge, located on the Tutukaka Coast of New Zealand
the bottom of the world <g>) shares their marketing tips
with us. You can
reach Brimar Lodge at 1890 Ngunguru Road, Tutukaka Coast, RD3
Nthld., NZ, Ph: 64-9-4343951; Fax: 64-9-4344951, URL:
http://www.slatertrust.co.nz; Email: [email protected]
1. In a 2-3 sentence statement, explain what your home business
We operate a fairly large Bed
& Breakfast, called "Homestay Lodge" from our
home called "Brimar Lodge."
2. Tell us a bit about your latest
marketing campaign. What marketing
efforts have you noticed yield the greatest results, and why
do you think
they do so?
We have been in this business
now for 7 years, and initially we advertised
only in the popular accommodation booklets. This type of marketing
totally inadequate and so we branched out to advertising in sporting
magazines dealing with sea-based activities, such as scuba diving,
fishing, kayaking, etc. Such advertising increased our visitor
about 50% and we found that we received a greater percentage
divers than any other type of guests. They came from all over
the world and
proved to be very interesting folk.
This contact with scuba divers
increased our personal interest in the
sport, and for the first time we became aware of the wonders
of the "Poor
Knights Islands" which lie just 20 odd miles off the Tutukaka
Because of this interest we made friends with several dive operators
had Web sites on the Internet. They reported phenomenal increases
bookings, so naturally we started our own Web site. Then of course
learned that it was necessary to register with search engines
in order to
be noticed by the "punters." Even with all this elaborate
expense we only experienced a marginal increase in our visitor
the first few months, and even then we were unsure of the exact
the increase. In other words, we felt a little doubtful about
of this new medium.
However, soon we decided that
our visiting friends (guests) deserved a
regular follow-up about the area and about the sporting activities
the medium of a monthly e-mail newsletter. What a reaction! Bookings
started to flood in after the first few newsletters. It may be
regular contact keeps us at the forefront of our friends' minds,
turn results in referrals to like-minded folk, or maybe the hot
link to our
URL held in our "signature" helps, along with the links
to local dive
operator URL sites.
Whatever it may be, we are certain
that the change in our throughput came
when we started to consider our visitors as "friends"
rather than as
3. Any additional comments are
Now, through the added medium
of EPnews, we aim to make *new*
friends...because "making friends" now matters far
more to us than "making
Have a question? It may already
be answered in 1 of the 16 EP Expert Q&A
pages now up and running! Check them out at
(follow the "Q&A" links). If your question
isn't answered there, then send it to: [email protected].
We'll be glad
to help you out if we can!
From our EP Cyber/Copywriting
Q. Joe, I have a proven marketing
process on video that shows companies how
to increase their business by 50% without increasing their spending.
guarantee it will do what I say or I'll refund their money. I've
pages of testimonials about this proven process -- about 60 so
suggestions for an ad headline or tag line?
A. Beetle, your video sounds
terrific. I mean it. I read your question
three times and thought, "Beetle should run his *question*
as a headline!"
But since that might be too long, here are some quick ideas:
"How to Increase Your Business
by 50% -- Guaranteed!"
"How to Spend No More Money Yet Double Your Business --
"I Guarantee to Double Your Business -- or You Pay Nothing!"
"At last! New Method Can Easily Double Your Business --
Those are off the top of my head.
Another idea is to take any one of your
testimonials and run *it* as your headline. Testimonals can be
and anything in quotation marks tends to get noticed very quickly.
testimonial-headline might do the trick for you.
And here's yet another tip or
two for you: Go read anything by John Caples.
He wrote classic books on how to write advertising, including
"How to Make
Your Advertising Make Money," which might stimulate your
thinking. And read
my own book, "The AMA Complete Guide to Small Business Advertising,"
contains a chapter on 30 ways to write headlines. Finally, pick
up a copy
of "Reader's Digest" magazine and scan their article
titles. They know how
to write headlines and you might get inspired by reading a few
Hope that helps.
All the best,
Joe "Mr. Fire!" Vitale is the author of "CyberWriting:
How to Promote Your
Product or Service Online (Without Being Flamed)" and many
other books, as
well as the owner of a home-based copywriting service. To learn
Joe and get free marketing tips, go to http://www.mrfire.com;
to ask him a
question, go to http://en-parent.com/Experts/exp-vitale.htm,
and to get an
automatic reply about Joe, write to [email protected].
As parents, we are all stunned
and appalled by the tragedy last week at
Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Before the issues
(gun control, the proliferation of violent media, school security
fade away from national attention, WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND that you
opinion to your elected officials. With the Internet, it's easy
now to find
government offices and who represents you, track votes by your
Congress, and express your position on matters imperative to
parents. Go to:
My Government: Making it Work
Also, WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND that
you take a close look at the "entertainment"
inventory your children have collected -- from video tapes to
games to favorite Internet "bookmarks." While violence
media may be just the tip of the iceberg of concern, this tip
is sharp and
is relatively easy to purge from our individual homes...
Work life, home life " most of us do our best to juggle
the two. But a
growing number of Americans are choosing a different path. They're
telecommuting, working at home, and starting their own businesses
"normal" work life for the freedom, financial reward,
and family time they
couldn't find at the office. Sound rosy? Check out this month's
Value America Live! as we examine the Small Office/Home Office
world...featuring "How to Raise a SOHO Family" -- an
EP excerpt article!
And don't forget to check out
ValueAmerica's main site -- home to the best
products from over 1,200 brands you already know and trust.
ValueAmerica.com is your one-stop Internet source for everything
you need "
delivered directly to your home or office.
for great values on everything from computers to vitamins and
WHAT'S HAPPENING AT EP
If you're reading this newsletter
in the early Wed. a.m., come take a break
and chat with Lisa at womenCONNECT.com! -- Join WCC's Live Chat,
April 28, 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. EST Topic: Small Office/Home Office
working from home and entrepreneurial parenthood with Lisa Roberts.
This chat is sponsored by ValueAmerica.com -- don't forget to
SOHO special edition e-zine at:
Also, for those of you who are
subscribers to Home Office Computing, you
may get a kick out of seeing Lisa & her gang as the featured
Design" profile in the May issue, distributed this past
mission? A Childproof Home Office.
Lisa and deB are thrilled to
welcome two new EP volunteers who will both be
serving the EP Community directly...EP to EP! JERALYNN BURKE
is our new "EP
Discussion Forum Moderator" and SUE PILLER is our new "Membership
Development Leader." Both Jeralynn and Sue are charter members
National Association of Entrepreneurial Parents (NAEP) -- you
their EP Profiles at the EP Showcase --
-- come take a look!
As the Membership Development
Leader, Sue Piller will be spearheading
membership drive efforts for both EP and NAEP. She will also
EP members and offering "tours" around the EP site
to help orient new
members. You'll be hearing more about and from Sue in the near
As the Discussion Forum Moderator,
Jeralynn will be leading and moderating
the threads of discussion at both the message board at our site
now merged as one), and the newly-revised EP listserv at onelist.com
is being introduced for the first time to our newsletter subscribers
today!). Since both features deal with discussions involving
EP to EP
contact, these two forums dovetail nicely together and Jeralynn
to offer her support to all those in the EP Community who wish
communicate directly with each other.
On our end, we're very excited
to publicly introduce the EP discussion list
to our community. Unlike this newsletter mailing list (EPnews),
enables the staff of EP to share "news" about the Entrepreneurial
site as well as essays, articles, inspirational quotes, Q&As,
etc. with our
subscribers, the EP discussion list will provide our community
to intelligent, supportive, well-moderated threads of discussion
themselves. This is where you'll be able to share your daily
and triumphs, recommend your favorite business tools, and form
colleague contacts. It's also where you may occasionally explore
concerns and opinions regarding responsible parenthood in light
To subscribe to the EP discussion
list, go to:
We'll see you there!
Have an opinion or idea about
EP? Let's hear it -- mailto: [email protected].
look forward to hearing what you have to say!
NAEP MEMBERSHIP DISCOUNT REMINDER
Time is running out on the EPnews
Subscriber Discount for Charter
Membership in the National Association of Entrepreneurial Parents
this is THE LAST REMINDER!
NAEP, a "real-time"
community and career resource for the 15-million strong
who are pursuing home-based careers while raising their growing
will be officially launching to the "real world" in
May & June of this year. This is YOUR LAST REMINDER -- the
discount cut-off date is May 1,1999.
SPECIAL EPNEWS SUBSCRIBER DISCOUNT RATE:
DISCOUNT: Join as an EPnews Charter
Member of NAEP and you'll receive a
25% discount off membership dues. That's just $33.75 for the
first year, or
$45 for a 2-year membership (after May 1, 1999, membership dues
will be $45
for the first year, $60 for two years, and $25 for renewals after
MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS: NAEP benefits
include a Profile Page at the EP
Showcase, an EP product, Annual Membership Directory, a brochure
developing a local support group of EPs, and more. (See
for a complete listing of NAEP
TERMS OF DISCOUNT: Orders must
come in before May 1, 1999 to get the
discount, and you must already be an EPnews subscriber BEFORE
NAEP Charter Membership. Just add the line "I am an EPnews
under the question "What would you like EP to offer, both
online and off"
on the application form <http://en-parent.com/member2.htm>,
so we can apply
the discount when we process your order. Only those orders that
above instructions will receive the EPnews Subscriber Discount
MONEY-BACK GUARANTEE: We are
so sure that membership in the National
Association of Entrepreneurial Parents will meet (and hopefully
your needs that we are even offering a 30-day money-back guarantee
membership dues. You have nothing to lose, so join today!
to order your Charter Membership in NAEP
The Entrepreneurial Parent, LLC
is not engaged in rendering legal or
financial advice. If expert assistance is required, the services
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
to: [email protected] for permission.
© 2000, The Entrepreneurial
Editor: Lisa M. Roberts
EP Webmaster: Deborah Sechrist
POB 320722, Fairfield, CT 06432; http://en-parent.com
Ph:/Fax: (203) 371-6212, Email: [email protected]
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