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Home Office Weekly
Your guide to successfully living and working under the same roof!
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Home Office Weekly
is a Backporch Publishing site

Marcia Passos Duffy, Publisher & Editor
Author of
Be Your Own Boss

Home Office Weekly Profile: Maureen Kendall - Children's Clothing Online
Maureen Kendall
Little Ruler
San Jose, California

Year started business: 2004
Hours per week you work: 50 to 60
Happy at home index: (1 – miserable / 10 – nirvana)  8
Success at home index: (1-starving / 10-fabulously wealthy)  6

What kind of business do you have at home?
I sell children's clothing online...skateboard branded clothing for kids ages 0 to 6

What did you do before you started a home business?
Human resources consultant.

Why did you start a home business,
and why this particular business?
In 2004 we launched Little Ruler.  I saw t
he demand for cooler clothes for boys
when my two boys were born.  My
husband is an executive in the skateboard
industry and our boys were given
custom onesies and tees when they
were born with skateboards on them.
So many people would comment on
the garments that it inspired me to try
the line, and it has been a success so far.

What was your biggest challenge in starting your home business?
Getting our product noticed.  Since we are Web site only, we relied on product
placement on search engines in the beginning.  We have a great number of
customers who are repeat customers since our site launched.

What has been your biggest challenge staying in business?
I think because are products are unique and we hold exclusive licensing
agreements to our brands does help us succeed in staying in business.  Pricing the
garments on our line would be the only ongoing challenge.  Predicting how much
parents will spend on their children's clothing is getting easier.

What do you love about working from home?
The freedom of being my own boss.

What do you hate about it?
When I have a lot on my plate with Little Ruler and having to juggle being a stay-at-
home parent, i.e., breaking up fights between the boys!

How do you inspire or motivate yourself everyday?
I love what I do.  This is a project that Jeff (my husband) and I started together and it
is so fun to see it grow.  It pushes me to be a better and smarter business person.

How do you separate home life from your work life?
I take time to work out in the early morning...that is my time alone.  My husband
and I do dates where we discuss business and then dates when we are not allowed
to talk business.  Playing with my boys in the middle of my work day or reading
them a story helps me stay balanced.

Where is your office in your home?
Off to the side of my kitchen.  Very much a central location of the house.

What is your daily routine?
Wake at 5 or 5:30 a.m.  Workout. By 7 a.m. time is focused on my sons, breakfast,
ready for school, etc.  9:30 a.m. they are at preschool and I work until noon.  They
come home and eat lunch and play while I email, work, etc.  We interact during that
time until 5 p.m. when I start shutting off business, make dinner, bath time, dinner
time.  Bedtime for the boys is 8 p.m.  Jeff and I visit and hang out until we go to bed
at 10 p.m.  Then is starts all over again!

What is your biggest (or proudest) achievement so far?
Having my sons!  Being a mother is the best role I have served, it is the favorite
thing I am proud of.  Second is being a great wife and third is that I started my own

What are you working on right now to grow your business?
Handing off the shipment portion to a fulfillment house.  Freeing up that time will
grow our business immensely.

What advice can you give about starting a home business?
Make sure you have an idea of people or resources to help you when you need it,
i.e., babysitters, employees, consultants, etc.

If you had to do it all over again, what would you do (or not do)?
I would do a little more research on the products we carry.  We are now switching
resources and we are hoping it goes through without a glitch.

What do you do for fun when you’re not working?
Work out, Yoga, going out on our boat (during the warm season), read, spend time
with my boys (all three, husband included), and friends.

Click here to read more Home Office Weekly Profiles

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Profile written about you and your
business?  Write to the editor:
Maureen Kendall of Little Ruler, at her home office
Maureen and husband Jeff fulfilling orders for Little Ruler
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