Looking To Start Small Business But Not Done Having Kids Yet

Business By SSGirly Updated 24 Aug 2010 , 5:03am by _christina_

SSGirly Posted 22 Aug 2010 , 11:43pm
post #1 of 13

I am looking to start up a small business doing special occasion cakes. I have looked into renting kitchen space and all the rest of the legal stuff, but the one hitch I have is that I am not done "building" my family yet. My family (husband, parents, in-laws, etc.) are somewhat split on whether I should do it or not. I would love to ear from those of you who do this on the side and who have toddlers and/or are pregnant. Thanks

12 replies
Motta Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 2:53pm
post #2 of 13

I have a 4 year old and a 2 year old. Both are very affectionate and close to me. I tried to put the older one in daycare last year and he resisted every day but still attended (no choice!). It was extremely hard for me emotionally to leave him everyday when he was clinging to me and crying. Right now I have my MIL and mother helping with babysitting on an as-needed basis but that's soon going to stop because they are both getting older and becoming too frail.

I guess my advice is to think about how much it may or may not affect you emotionally to leave your children for the majority of the day. Some people can do it with no problem and for others it's harder. With motherhood, there is always guilt or regret somewhere because we can't do it all. Find out which situation you can live with.

pinkpiggie78 Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 3:22pm
post #3 of 13

Does NJ allow for home-based bakeries? I have a 3 year old and a 6 month old and started my business last year. I obviously can't take a lot of orders, but I am slowly building my business while I am at home with my kids.

SSGirly Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 3:45pm
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkpiggie78

Does NJ allow for home-based bakeries? I have a 3 year old and a 6 month old and started my business last year. I obviously can't take a lot of orders, but I am slowly building my business while I am at home with my kids.




NJ does not allow home-based bakeries, which is why I am looking into renting space. Like you, I don't plan on taking too many orders to start. Maybe just enough to cover my costs at this point (materials, rental fees, insurance). I'm hoping if I slowly build things now, I will be able to jump in once kids are in school. Right now I have a 1.5 year old, and I'll probably have another one within the next year or so. I do have family in the area, so that is helpful...

jillmakescakes Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 3:57pm
post #5 of 13

my extremely strong suggestion to you is to wait. I have two little ones (10 and 4--well, not so little anymore icon_cry.gif ) and it breaks my heart when I have to give up time with them to finish a cake. We had to nix a trip to a fun park last week 'cause I was too busy at the shop.

Take the next 5-10 years practicing, buying the supplies you need a little at a time, practice some more, buy more, practice more, buy more....Espeically since you are planning on being preggo in the future, it will be so much easier if you are only doing the occassional cake for friends/family. Maybe plan on one cake a month...focusing on a different skill each month.

This will allow you to enjoy the precious few years you have with your children when they are young AND still prepare for a business.

I know it is hard to wait when you have your mind made up (trust me- I hadn't planned on opening my business until 2011, we opened in 2009), but it makes it all that much sweeter when everything is paid for and your kids are old enough to give you 8 hours a day of work.

countrygirll Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 5:20pm
post #6 of 13

Hi all,
I am interested in starting up a small business myself but just not sure where to start. I do not have any children so therefore I am ready to go and start this business. I currently am employed 40 hours a week and would love to do a side business out of my home in Massachusetts. Does anyone have any information or website that I could look into? I use to decorate cakes for a local grocery store several years ago and also did them on the side, but let my small cliental slip away. I am starting to do cakes for friends and family but am afraid to announce because I am not technically licensed for it. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

thank you!
Countrygirl

jason_kraft Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 5:26pm
post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by countrygirl71

Hi all,
I am interested in starting up a small business myself but just not sure where to start. I do not have any children so therefore I am ready to go and start this business. I currently am employed 40 hours a week and would love to do a side business out of my home in Massachusetts. Does anyone have any information or website that I could look into? I use to decorate cakes for a local grocery store several years ago and also did them on the side, but let my small cliental slip away. I am starting to do cakes for friends and family but am afraid to announce because I am not technically licensed for it. Any help would be greatly appreciated.



Here is a link to info on the MA cottage food law:
http://www.townofcohasset.org/health/res_kit_brochure.pdf

If you will be advertising and selling cakes to strangers, it is critical to have liability insurance, and you should strongly consider setting up an LLC to protect your personal assets from lawsuits and business liability.

ncsmorris Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 5:29pm
post #8 of 13

Another way to look at it - if you didn't do cakes, would you still need a full-time job? I would. Therefore, I would have to take the kids to daycare/family's house either way (fortunately in NC we can bake from home so it's not so much an issue) so, for me, it would be cakes or some other job...not cakes or SAHM. If your situation does allow you to be a SAHM, it certainly does make for a more difficult decision.

pinkpiggie78 Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 5:44pm
post #9 of 13

I have no patience and couldn't wait to start my business. I love my children, but I am not happy if I am not doing something with myself besides cooking, cleaning and taking care of them. When I started, I worked part-time at my "real" job and did cakes at night/weekends. Then I got preggo and still did both until I was about 36 weeks pregnant. I stopped making cakes, but continued with my real job until the baby was born. I then took a 4 month maternity leave from both jobs and finally quit my real job to make cakes full time, which for me is still part-time. For me this is about 3 cakes a week, usually a multi-tier, and then two single tiers (give or take). I do most of my work in the evenings and some "little" things during the day while the baby sleeps. I know I am lucky enough to be able to do it out of my home, and probably would have waited if I had to rent space.

A good exercise might be to figure out what your costs would be on a monthly basis, since you want to just start to build a client base and aren't really concerned with making a profit. Then figure out what you want to charge and see how many cakes you will need to make on a monthly basis to cover your expenses. Then try to figure out how many hours you will be away from your kids to do those cakes and see if it is worth it. If you can go in on a Sunday and get a lot of prep work done while your husband is there with the kids (assuming he is off on the weekends) and maybe go in another night to prep the rest, maybe you will only be away from your kids on Friday?

SSGirly Posted 23 Aug 2010 , 6:15pm
post #10 of 13

Thanks Pink, that is a great suggestion. I am lucky enough to be a SAHM, so a few hours out of the house might actually do me some good icon_wink.gif

countrygirll Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 12:56am
post #11 of 13

thanks Jasonkraft for the link.

For those who have residential businesses, did you feel overwhelmed when you started?

Jenn2179 Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 1:18am
post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by SSGirly

Thanks Pink, that is a great suggestion. I am lucky enough to be a SAHM, so a few hours out of the house might actually do me some good icon_wink.gif




I have a 7 year old and 4 year old. I have been working out of my house for about 3 years and am moving into a shop. If you aren't done having kids I would wait because with you have to rent space and find someone to watch the kids I think it would just be a money sink for you at this point.

_christina_ Posted 24 Aug 2010 , 5:03am
post #13 of 13

I started my business just recently and I have 3 older boys and an 8 month old. And we're planning another. I started mine though, because like you I needed there to be something else and my DH was getting tired of me doing them for free and all the $ I was spending.

It is hard, but for me it is small and I am very happy with that. 2 to 3 small orders a week keep me happy, and honestly, sometimes a little stretched. I do my work at night or when my DH is home to watch the baby. Luckily he is very supportive of that. I don't plan to make a profit this year, I just want to cover my costs. I seem to be on my way to doing that so I'm happy.

I know once we have the new baby I won't be taking many orders at first. But once routines are established I know I'll be diving right back in. I'm just that way.

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