Mompreneur Profile: Moms on Wheels
Introducing the Women Behind Moms on Wheels
There are few things more fulfilling than doing work you love with a good friend. Chris Murray and Carrin Meadows have done just that with their business, Moms on Wheels.
Friends since the first grade, Chris and Carrin are both single moms with a combined six kids, ranging in age from six to fifteen. Both are graduates of College of Saint Mary. Chris has a degree in nursing; Carrin has an MBA. Both women used to be working moms and don’t like to remember the cyclone of working their day jobs and then coming home to their second shifts of cleaning, cooking, running errands, and somehow trying to squeeze in quality time with their children with everything else that was going on. In the fall of 2009, they started Moms on Wheels and began working with clients in the metro area.
With complementary gifts and strengths, these two women also complement each other’s vision when it comes to the business. Chris, with her nursing background, likes to help elderly or disabled clients with their errands and busy working parents who need another set of hands to manage their households. Carrin likes to help out small business owners with their back-end systems, including invoicing, bookkeeping, and website maintenance. So what do the two Moms on Wheels do all day? They run errands, they shop for groceries or gifts, they house-sit, they wait for the repairman or for deliveries, they take care of your pets, they get the car serviced for you, they keep your business website up and running, they courier packages…and much, much more.
When I asked about their marketing, Chris and Carrin agreed that the majority of their business comes from word-of-mouth referrals from current clients. They also have a website and are active in several online forums. They’re working on a Facebook fan page and have some other marketing ideas in the works.
What do they like about running their own business? To them, it’s all about the diversity. Each day is different and brings its own to-do list, set of challenges, and set of accomplishments. One day they could be running simple errands for a client, and then the next they could be helping another client figure out how to clean out a hoarder’s house…and then the next day could be filled with invoicing and website updates. Plus, Chris and Carrin can structure their work schedules and to-do lists around their children’s needs and schedules. If one of them has kids home sick, the other Mom on Wheels can take over for that day. Over the summer, they even found little ways for their older kids to help out with the business to earn rewards.
Advice for Fellow Mompreneurs
Chris likes to stress that it’s important to keep your life balanced. And this isn’t just a “once and done” sort of thing—it’s constantly reassessing and rebalancing to make sure you’re not overloading in one area. She also points out that it’s important not to put in too much capital. Be flexible. Adjust to the unforeseen. You can’t plan for the unknown. Both of these moms feel that it’s important to set a good example for your kids by going after your dream—but they also realize that it’s important for your kids to see you having fun with what you’ve chosen as your career.
Having both grown up in Papillion and living here for most of their lives, they can’t imagine living anywhere else. Their family is all here. Omaha’s the perfect size—small-town niceness with lots to do still. And so many activities to do with the kids!
Some Favorite Moms-on-Wheels Hang-Outs
- Platte River State Park – While Chris and Carrin and their kids like to do anything outdoors, they named this park specifically. And I have to agree, it’s a great one to go hang out for the day. Plus, PRSP has two towers, and the wood one is especially scary to climb when it’s windy out!
- Alpine Inn – Chris and Carrin giggled when they talked about taking their kids up there for dinner and watching the cats and outdoor animals feast on a large tray of chicken bones while they ate their dinners inside.
- Tiny Town Village at Nebraska Crossing Outlets (in Gretna) – Their little kids have so much fun riding the train and playing on their equipment. And it doesn’t hurt that it’s close to shopping either!
- And, I just have to throw a little shout-out here—both Chris and Carrin commented that they were more than happy to meet me for coffee at the Scooter’s in Elkhorn, so I’m including that one on the list here, too!