How Ottawa Mommy Club’s Lyne Proulx juggles motherhood, full-time work and a popular parenting website
Lyne Proulx’s day begins well before the sun rises.
She rolls out of bed at around 6 a.m. to get her children ready for the day. Once she sees them safely off to school, she’s off to her part-time job at the City of Ottawa where she toils away until half past two.
It’s when she gets home in the mid-afternoon that her day really begins.
Proulx, 42, is the architect of ottawamommyclub.ca, a website aimed at Ottawa-area mothers.
“I call it a ‘one-stop shop’ for mothers looking for information in the region,” Proulx says.
The site offers articles and advice from an expert panel boasting professionals in a variety of areas, including doctors, dieticians and travel consultants, while featured “mommy bloggers” offer their thoughts on everything from recipes to back to school ideas.
Proulx was inspired through her work for the city, where her duties include coordinating the Infant Information Day, a program that informs parents in east end Ottawa about information and services available to them.
She noticed that mothers would repeatedly call for information, so Proulx decided to create a website that offers a variety of information in one place.
She launched the site in May and as of September, it has been visited almost 11,000 times.
But being an entrepreneur hasn’t been easy for the busy mom. The hardest part?
“Finding time,” Proulx says softly. “Finding time to do it all.”
It’s a battle many an entrepreneur has fought: the desire to run a sustainable business versus the needs of the family.
“You want to be successful in your business,” Proulx says, “You want to be a great mom and not miss any of the activities your family might be attending or participating in, so I think the juggling act of balancing it all is the biggest challenge of being an entrepreneur.”
In the beginning, Proulx found herself spending more time working on the website than she intended. She’d log on with the intention of doing a little work and would quickly become lost in e-mails and blog postings.
So she created a schedule for computer use that incorporates her needs with those of her family: Proulx uses the computer until it’s time to cook dinner, at which point her children use it to do homework. She keeps all of her files well organized and makes much use of her agenda.
Thankfully, she adds, she’s not in this alone.
“I have a very understanding husband who helps a lot.”
Her husband Guy, helps around the house, making sure the kids get to appointments and such so she can devote more time to the website.
It hasn’t been easy, but the rewards are worth it, she says. She enjoys being her own boss, but more rewarding is the gratitude from moms who visit her website.
And does Proulx have any advice for moms who hope to become entrepreneurs?
“Definitely make time for your family,” Proulx says. “Your family comes first.”
Author: Chris Hunt
Photo courtesy of Lyne Proulx