Tips and Resources for Work at Home Moms

My Life and Kids has been up and running for more than two years now.

TWO YEARS – it’s hard to believe. (Read one of my very first posts right here.)

What started as a way for me to not go totally insane after I quit my job to stay home has officially become a part-time job. (You can read more about my decision to become a stay-at-home mom right here.)

Exciting things are in the works (that I can’t wait to share with you – soon, I promise!), but I’m definitely putting in 20 hours per week these days.

My blog has gone from a hobby to a business – and I’ve gone from a full-time stay-at-home mom (FT-SAHM) to a part-time, work-at-home mom (PT-WAHM). Which I guess also makes me a PT-SAHM, right?

Did you follow that lingo?

Yeah – I didn’t either.

With three little kids and a growing business, I thought I’d share my favorite tips and resources for work-at-home moms.

Are you a work at home mom? Here are tips and resources for work at home moms to help you work more efficiently and stay more focused while working at home.

Tips and Resources for Work at Home Moms: Schedule your Time

I have a strict work schedule that I do my very best to follow. Back in the good old days, all three of my kids napped every single afternoon.

It’s possible that I bragged about this.

Big mistake.

Because once my older two stopped napping every day, I had a huge wake up call as to how on earth I would get my work finished – without resorting to hours of television every afternoon.

Now I have certain days and times that I work.

And, otherwise, I am offline. Seriously.

Here’s a great post by Alison at Get Your Pretty On about how to create your work-at-home schedule.

Tips and Resources for Work at Home Moms: Ask for Help

Let’s be honest. I can’t work for 20 hours per week and take care of my three kids at the same time.

Well, if I plugged them in or ignored them for four hours every day, I guess I could. Maybe… But probably not.

If I did, I’m pretty sure that something like this would happen:

Are you a work at home mom? Here are tips and resources for work at home moms to help you work more efficiently and stay more focused while working at home.

Luckily I have an amazing mother-in-law that is a huge help and oftentimes available to watch the kids if I have an impromptu meeting or a conference call or an urgent deadline.

I also have a babysitter that comes one afternoon a week. You’d be amazed how much work I can accomplish in a short amount of time when I know that I am paying someone to watch my kids.

And – as much as I like to pick on Even Steven – he’s extremely supportive of helping me carve out time on the weekends to catch up or encouraging me to head to a coffee shop when he gets home from work so I can get something accomplished.

Are you a work at home mom? Here are tips and resources for work at home moms to help you work more efficiently and stay more focused while working at home.

Here are some great tips from Babble for WAHMs – including getting help!

Tips and Resources for Work at Home Moms: Create a Work Space

Are you a work at home mom? Here are tips and resources for work at home moms to help you work more efficiently and stay more focused while working at home.

This was a tough one for me.

For the longest time my desk was in my family room – so I could hop on the computer any time there was a lull in our day.

It didn’t take long to realize that I was getting on the computer all the time. And then there was the time that the baby jumped on my desk and broke my computer.

Are you a work at home mom? Here are tips and resources for work at home moms to help you work more efficiently and stay more focused while working at home.

Now I have a desk in the upstairs guest room. It helps me focus and stick to my schedule – no more hopping online whiles the kids are playing. Now I only work when it’s my designated work time.

My work space is pretty blah, but here are some lovely offices that might inspire you to get to work!

Tips and Resources for Work at Home Moms: Invest in the Supplies You Need

Once you decide to launch your business – or turn your hobby into a business – you may need to invest in a few items that are going to allow you to work as effectively and efficiently as possible.

It might be a new computer or a snazzy desk. It might be some software that would allow you to complete things faster or some training that would help launch you to the next level.

I invested in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones – since I’m oftentimes working at home while the babysitter is here with my kids. I’m available for emergencies, but I can’t hear anything I don’t need to.

I also found out pretty quickly that I needed a scanner and copier – to go along with my printer. This HP Photosmart Printer is doing the trick.

And one of the handiest things I’ve purchased is my Acer Chromebook. I often find myself with 45 minutes before I need to pick someone up from preschool – not enough time to run another errand, not enough time to go home – but just enough time that I could get some work done if I had things with me.

Because of the nature of the work I’m doing, tablets are not efficient for me. Responding to emails are cumbersome, designing images is next to impossible and everything seems slower. And lugging around my monster 16-inch screen laptop is not an option. Ever.

Which is why I’m loving the Acer Chromebook. It’s the size of an iPad, but it’s a laptop – complete with a keyboard and Google Chrome already installed.

Are you a work at home mom? Here are tips and resources for work at home moms to help you work more efficiently and stay more focused while working at home.

I can answer emails, design images and do just about everything I need to do to work quickly and efficiently. And it fits in my purse! Oh – and it boots up in less than 6 seconds. Seriously.

Tips and Resources for Work at Home Moms: Set Goals

When you’re turning your hobby into a business, take it seriously. Set goals. Connect with other people that are starting out. Learn.

This is a great Pinterest board to follow for entrepreneurs and small start-up businesses.

Pinterest Board for Mom Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners

And if you’re a blogger, this is where I store all of my tips and tricks to help grow your blog

Pinterest board for bloggers

What would you add to this list?

I received an Acer Chromebook and HP Photosmart printer from Staples. All opinions are my own.

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About Anna Luther

Hi, my name is Anna, and I'm here to share my stories, make you laugh and help you feel better about your crazy, messy, fabulous life.

23 thoughts on “Tips and Resources for Work at Home Moms

  1. Great tips and I am still learning how to balance everything that is for sure. But you are right to set limits and I am trying to do better at this (I swear!).

  2. Thanks for the advice! It hit home when you said you were on the computer all the time…and recommend a dedicated space/work hours. I need to take your advice!

  3. Super helpful post. My “office” is in our dining room, but I am honestly thinking of transitioning it back upstairs since like you I tend to hop on the computer for just a “quick minute” all day long. I think having work hours is huge.-Ashley

  4. I, am in fact, reading your blog and listening to a webinar for work while my toddler is watching cartoons on Netflix. Darn webinars at 7:30 am!
    I had a half-time nanny for awhile and worked in my bedroom (no guest room… we have four kids!) and then I starting taking my toddler to daycare. That has made all the difference in the world.

    Except for these 7:30 am webinars. Grr.

  5. I work from home (4 full days of week) while my kids are in daycare/preschool. There’s no way I could focus while they’re home.

  6. As a blogger who has been at it for a little over a year. I am not following the steps to make this more of a p/t thing. Including getting my youngest in a pt preschool (mornings only). I’m a little nervous that even with him in p/s I will still only have little time to get things done when it all comes down to it.

    On another note I am really curious to know what was the defining moment that changed your blog from a hobby to a p/t business. Do you have any tips on how to attract sponsors? Did you reach out to them, etc. I would love to see a post on once you have a following and traffic what to do next or how to take your blog to the next level. I’m ready to dig my heels in and make this a p/t business as well. THX Lesley

  7. I was actually looking into the Acer MacBook. But I’m not really for macs, I’ve always been a PC kind of girl. But it’s a laptop so that might be better for me.

    What kind of storage does it have? And what would a negative be?

  8. Thanks so much for sharing your insights! It’s easy to forget sometimes that it really is possible with the right amount of planning, dedication and support (thank goodness for MIL’s!)

    I wish the work space issue was one that I could address earlier on, but since we have a 2 bedroom home currently and baby bear is about to infiltrate the spare room, it’s the family room for me too, at least for a while…

    Loving your blog by the way – Can’t wait to check out more! Have a great day!

    http://www.theblossomingbbump.com

  9. I hear ya, Lesley! Two of mine are in preschool some mornings, and I rarely have time to accomplish anything during that short window. 🙂 I think the defining moment for me was a talk that my husband and I had last November. He basically said, if this is going to be a hobby, then you need to scale way back and have it be a hobby. If this is going to be a BUSINESS, then treat it like one. Have work hours. Have a schedule. Invest some money in a design and a babysitter or whatever. That flipped a switch in me, and once I started looking at it like a business and saying, “I’m working” – instead of trying to sneak in times to blog – everything fell into place. (I’d also highly recommend the brand focused Bloggy Bootcamp!) And Content Brew at MomComm!

  10. This is the Acer Chromebook – it’s a PC (I’m a PC gal too). It doesn’t have much storage – it’s primarily known for it’s super fast loading time (seriously – on and ready to go in 6 seconds or less) and how small it is. I can write blog posts, check email, use social media, etc – but anything that requires a lot of storage – you’d need to use a thumb drive or a cloud or something. This is a perfect supplemental laptop – or great if all you use your computer for is surfing the web.

  11. Thanks so much. My husband and I have had that exact talk as well. Now I ‘ve made the first step to have my work hours by getting Jude in morning preschool 5 days a week. Up until then I have been doing the exact same, no schedule, blogging whenever I can sneak a minute. Thanks again

  12. I found this post so helpful, Anna. Time management at home has always been a struggle, but at work I am pretty organized. Shifting my mind and my workspace may help me start looking at my time differently. Thanks!

  13. Congrats on 2 years!!! And just excuse me while I ignore your advice while typing on my laptop in my living room…

    Seriously though I have set work hours now and can get things done so much more efficiently. Great tips!

  14. These are some awesome tips that every wahm needs. My lo being just 1+ yr old, I find it hard to balance work and home life, but we are getting there. It feels good to work for myself.

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