Me Time: Just for Women

Personal Development

Be your own boss
Raising a family and having a full-time job outside of the home can be incredibly stressful. That's why some moms opt to work from home and start businesses that they can control.

New Windsor mother of three little ones, Jennifer Brunell, was searching for something that would make money and let her be at home with her children when she began her at home business, Bright Creations. She says, "I was working full time but had to leave the job to take care of my children. I was missing work every time one of them was sick or needed me. It just wasn't working out."

In an effort to find something that she could do when she was off "mommy duties," she realized there was a ton of demand for customized products that she could make right from home. "I started with an order of custom glasses for a friend. That friend told a friend and it grew from there. Pretty soon, I had tons of orders."

For other moms looking to leave the nine to five hustle for an at home job, Brunell suggests finding something that you enjoy and searching for some sort of demand.

"I always enjoyed being creative and making things with my hands. I love seeing people use the products I work hard on."

Further your education with an online class
Making sure your child gets the best education is one of your biggest priorities. But why isn't your education as important?

This year, find something that is just for you, and expand your horizons by enrolling in a class that you are interested in.

Dutchess County mom and Hudson Valley Parent's director of consumer development Pamela Perry has done just that. Recently, she signed up for an online class through her local community college.

Online classes are perfect for busy moms because they can be completed at your own pace. "I put in hours to complete my course when I have time. There is a deadline when the class should be completed," says Perry, "but I can do it at night once my kids are in bed or whenever I have the time to dedicate to the lessons."

Advances in technology have made online classes more collaborative than ever. Many classes offer options to video chat with a professor or even other classmates.

Classes can be helpful for moms looking to expand their opportunities when it comes to their career or just learn more about something that has always interested them. Perry says, "I picked something that will help me in my day-to-day happenings at work, but also something that I have always wanted to learn more about."

It’s time for a mom-date
Gather your favorite group of mom friends for a night full of fun, creative expression and some much-needed wine! One of the biggest trends sweeping friend groups across the Hudson Valley is a paint-and-sip night.

Studios hosting paint-and-sip parties are popping up all across the Hudson Valley. Moms can book a party in advance and come together for some wine and to create art. Projects include seasonal paintings
and allow for customization.

Caroline McDonald, mother of four from Newburgh, says that these evenings with friends give her a chance to unwind, get a night away from the kids and let her creativity flow. "I have always enjoyed art and do-it-yourself projects," she says. "The subjects are simple enough that anyone can follow along, but they allow more advanced artists to really express themselves at the same time."

Whether you love to paint or have never picked up a brush, these nights are great for any mom looking for a new, exciting way to get out of the house and enjoy some me time. McDonald says, "My friends and I have made it a tradition to get together every few months. The project is different every time, so it's always interesting."

READ MORE: Make new mommy friends! 10 step guide to mommy-dating

Become a blogger-mom
Looking for a way to express yourself? Blogging might be worth a try!

Hudson Valley Parent's newest travel blogger Erica Higgs also has her own blog that documents the adventures of her and her family (especially her adorable daughter Abigale). She says, "I love putting my own voice into things and writing about all my adventures with my daughter."

Higgs started blogging when she first had Abigale. "As a first-time parent of a very precocious child, it was like therapy for me to write about my experiences," she says.

Higgs has advice for moms who are tentative about starting a blog or think they might be too busy. "It isn't easy running a blogging business, a photography business and being a wife and mom to a three-year-old," she says. "I try to make a schedule and stick to it. I write some content in
advance, so I always have content ready and record thoughts for
other blogs constantly. That helps."

Follow Higgs and her family's adventures at HVParent.com/Adventures-Of-Abby-Girl.