Julie Lyles Carr: So Who Wants a T-Shirt?!?

Friday, February 6, 2009

So Who Wants a T-Shirt?!?

tshirt1editWe had such a great response to the Homeschool Boutique Giveaway a few weeks ago that Tracy, the owner of Homeschool Boutique, offered to let me host another giveaway.

Yep, I am officially psyched! (...and yes, I graduated from high school smack dab in the middle of the '80's....you should just be glad I didn't use the word 'stoked'...)

I thought it would be an added bonus to get to know a little more about Tracy and her homeschool experience and business. Like many of you, through the years I have worked little cottage industries alongside my home scholars, and I always find it interesting to see how other families have incorporated schooling and working together.

So without further ado, meet Tracy...

So Tracy, you've been homeschooling for five years. What do you love
most about homeschooling?
I love the time with my kids. One of my proudest moments was teaching my 9
year old to read. I'm not sure why that's such a source of joy for me,
but it is. I like setting educational goals with my kids, and then
helping them reach it, not under pressure, but under love. It gives me
and them a great sense of accomplishment.

What is your biggest challenge in homeschooling?
Teaching different grades, with different learning styles and different
personality types. I still haven't gotten used to that.

How was Homeschool Boutique born?
Homeschool Boutique started out of sheer frustration. Trips to the store
during the day routinely ended with, “Why aren’t your children in school.”
We decided to make t-shirts that said, " Yes, I'm homeschooled. Yes, I'm
socialized. Yes, I had class today." Those are the infamous questions
homeschoolers everywhere are asked often. This shirt is now our best

Where do you get the ideas for your products?
My kids and myself. If there is something I do or talk about a lot I
figure I'm usually not the only one talking or thinking about it.

How do you balance working from home with your homeschooling
It's tough. I'm still learning how to balance it all, I guess this will
be my work in progress. You will find me at my desk with the youngest kids
bag1on either side of me doing school work many times a week.

Do your kids get in on helping out in your internet businesses?
Yes, they do. My 6 year old hangs out with me a lot so she is responsible
for making sure all packaged items get into the car. Well, every now and
then, I will find a package that should have been shipped out a week prior
in a closet or basket where she stopped to get her coat or shoes on. My
9 year old does all the packing and labeling. She does an excellent job at
it, we've only had 2 mix ups so far.
My 14 year old is learning how to set up auctions for the auction sites I
sell on. He's my lifter, and he's responsible for my Facebook account.
My 15 year old is responsible for my Myspace account, and picture taking.

Any words of wisdom for other moms out there, both homeschooling and
not, who are interested in running internet based businesses?
Yes, I will have to say just do it! We moms tend to want everything to be
just right before we do anything. Get your idea together and take a step
of faith.
Don't apologize for being a mom when you are in business,
have fun and enjoy the ride of entrepreneurship it's nothing like it in
the world.

Tell us a little about your affiliate program.
My dream when starting this business was to start a business that would
help me earn some money, and help other homeschooling moms to earn money
while being at home.

I first added an affiliate program which is a pay per sale program that
pays 10% of each sale you bring to Homeschool Boutique. We have since
added wholesaling to the site.

Homeschooling has increased 74% in the past 8 years with an estimated 2 to
2.5 million homeschoolers nationwide this is a huge opportunity for
growth! Homeschool Boutique is proud to be the first homeschool apparel
company to offer other homeschooling moms an opportunity to take part in
this fast growing industry.

Tracy will be allowing me to giveaway the item of the winner's choice.  Remember, Tracy also has great bags

and other items on her site not specific to homeschooling, so even if you're not a homeschooler, you can still enter!  Simply head on over to the Homeschool Boutique, do a little window shopping, then come back here and let us know your favorite item by way of leaving a comment.  Also, if you Twitter about the giveaway and/or mention it on your own blog, I'll throw in another chance or two for you to win.  Comments will close at 9 pm CST Tuesday evening, with the winner announced on Wednesday, February 11. Now get to window shopping!

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