By Sarah Cavanaugh
Carleton Place is a town of industrialists, of artists, trailblazers, visionaries and entrepreneurs. In a community burgeoning with young families, mompreneurs are setting the town ablaze with creative innovation and intuitive services. These women are not just finding a way to earn money and spend more time with their families but are also seeing gaps in the current market and filling a need. They are using creativity and innovation and leveraging the power and popularity of social media to set an example for a whole new generation. They are a group seen visibly in the community donating to fundraisers, volunteering and offering encouragement and support to their fellow mompreneurs.
As we head into a season of gift giving let’s focus on supporting this group of business folks in the community.
Do you need a Christmas card, New Year’s Party invite or unique birthday card? Melissa Mason’s M&B Paper Crafts offers unique handmade cards, exploding box cards, banners and invitations individualized for the customer and their event. Custom cards are $5 each for a 5×7 card with envelope which is on par or less than most of the mass-marketed store bought cards. Mason and her husband moved to Beckwith Township two years ago and she is now a stay-at-home mompreneur with a beautiful 18 month old daughter. A hobby crafter, she decided to handmake her daughter’s first birthday party invitations and décor – after a post on a Facebook mom’s page garnered a lot of positive attention, she decided to make her hobby into a career. For more information on custom décor banners (at only $1.25 per letter/graphic) and other offerings visit M&B Paper Crafts at facebook.com/mbpapercrafts.
Not sure what to get that “hard to buy for” person on your list? Kaitlyn Moyes may have just the answer! Her company Joy-Filled Gift Baskets aims to fill houses, offices and hearts with personalized handcrafted gift baskets. As many other parent-run company’s, Joy-Filled Gift Baskets started when Moyes was home with a newborn. She spent time exploring local businesses with her new baby boy and realized that finding personalized items and gifts for family and friends can be tricky. Harnessing her own creativity and seeing a need in the gift giving market she set off to create the perfect gift baskets for her customers. They are completely customizable, contain useful items and are geared to any budget or occasion. To see examples of her beautiful work or to order yours visit www.facebook.com/Joyfilledgiftbaskets.
Have you met Bree (Breanne Rheault)? The genius mom behind our very own children’s salon – Munchkin Chops. A licensed hairstylist, this wife and mother found herself looking at the end of her maternity leave and dreading going back to work and leaving her babe. Having worked in a children’s hair salon previously she decided to start her own in her home and Munchkin Chops was born. It’s a fun exciting home-based salon. There is a car chair to sit in, a TV, Xbox and a play area for siblings and waiting customers. Her mission is to have fun and make your child’s haircut a pleasant experience. With newly added services for moms and dads (ranging from $20-30) why not give the gift of a new family ’do? For more information and a full list of services and prices check out her page at www.facebook.com/munchkinchops.
Does someone on your holiday list have the need for legal advice? Jenna Deforge moved to the area with husband a few years ago. A paralegal, she spent a few months applying to different law firms in Ottawa and Perth but no one was hiring. She had done a market analysis of the area and saw a clear need for her services. In February 2013 she opened an office of her own in Perth. Life happened, as it does and Deforge made the tough decision to close her office and work from home. It ended up being a positive move for her family as she is also able to be a full-time mom to two boys (2.5 and 7). Her firm Corrective Justice Legal Service offers services to most of Eastern Ontario in small claims, landlord and tenant board and traffic tickets. For more information visit them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/CorrJust.
When she’s not crafting or working at a local hospital this mom is doing her best at being a mom and being the fun wife her husband married. Katrina Dagenais started a home-based vinyl design company, CKP Designs, as way to explore her creative side. It was a hobby that quickly turned into something more. Dagenais’ designs can be found in a handful of stores in Carleton Place, Almonte and Gatineau or you can visit online (www.facebook.com/CKPDesignsOttawa) to arrange your custom order. Perhaps one of her custom mugs, signs or shirts would be the perfect pick for someone on your list?
What about a one of a kind wood sign or growth chart, pyrography art piece or essential oil education? Face painting for a party? Kate Mountenay is a mom of all trades. A mother of four who hails from Almonte, Mountenay spent almost 10 years in Australia where she met and married her true love. They returned to this area 16-months ago and three months ago she started Down Pinery Road.
She uses Ontario-grown and milled White Cedar from a local family owned and operated mill and locally sourced beeswax to finish most of her products. She also offers essential oil workshops and owns Freckleberry Face Painting with her husband. Face Painting services start at $75/hr and they take bookings 6 months in advance. You can find out about all of these great products and services at downpineryroad.com and freckleberry.ca.
Have an animal lover on your list? What about the gift of some Pet Care Services? Tracy Larock relocated to our area four years ago with her husband and son. Wanting a country life with a big yard for her big dog and small son to play in, Carleton Place offered the perfect setting! Even as a little girl, Larock was an animal lover and so once her son started Junior Kindergarten she thought it was time to turn her passion for caring for pets into a career. Little Wet Noses Pet Care was born! Larock offers dog walking, Cat and Puppy home visits, pet waste removal, home care services and will be adding pet sitting, dog training and pet photography in the future. Her dream is to one day house a dog rescue for our area. Her services are very reasonable starting at $20/half hour and would make the perfect gift to the animal owner on your list!
We have creative and artistic genius in some local handmade favourites like Waffle Kisses (www.facebook.com/WaffleKisses), Four and Twenty Blackbirds (www.facebook.com/FourTwentyBlackbirds) and 3rd Life (www.facebook.com/3rdlifeDesigns). You won’t go wrong visiting these ladies online stores whether you’re shopping for a baby or a granny – there is literally a one of a kind gift on these pages for everyone!
There are so many talented mompreneurs in our midst that there is no reason that you can’t complete all your shopping right here at home. These women work hard to balance being a parent, a friend, a partner and a business owner and it is clear that they all have such a passion for what they do.