We want to champion small businesses and we’re starting with Mushy Mushy! Mushy Mushy are a relatively new business and flourishing thanks to owners Mark and Amelia and their hard work.
Here Mark tells us how he and Amelia keep a work/life balance while drinking lots of black coffee, cradling vegetables and propping their eyelids open with matchsticks.
Mushy Mushy provide quality weaning products and lots of advice, tips and recipe ideas to help you put good stuff in your little one’s tummy.
Generous Mark has given us a discount code for you to use too! Use code HOMEMADE at checkout here to receive a £2 discount – offer ends at midnight on Wednesday 22nd of April.
Why and when did you start Mushy Mushy?
Mushy Mushy started in our heads two and a half years ago, on the day we began weaning our son. We had so many questions with too many different answers from too many sources and a cupboard full of baby weaning accessories that didn’t work or weren’t needed. We care about what goes into our child’s body; we love good, wholesome food too and we know the effect that nutrition can have on health and mood. Originally we wanted a one-stop-shop of sensible advice and products but it didn’t seem to exist. Then we wanted to share our experiences and knowledge to save other parents time and worry. We also wanted a business that could operate from anywhere so that we could spend more time with our son. Mushy Mushy was the result and officially launched in October, last year (2014).
We think most parents can relate to this – a lack of time and sleep! It’s hard to fit everything into a day as it is but starting a new business whilst juggling work and family life has been hard. We’re passionate about Mushy Mushy though and have decided to take it slow and steady so that we do balance our lives with a good quality offering. Thankfully our supporters and customers have been ace at helping us with great suggestions and lots of positive feedback. It keeps us motivated even when our eyes are held open with matchsticks.
What has been your funniest moment?
Probably getting our photographer friend over to do our photo shoot, which involved cradling various bits of fruit and veg in our arms like little babies. Amelia alternately felt like a budget Nigella Lawson or a 1950s housewife gone wrong!
It starts way too early, and with the aid of a strong black coffee. We eat breakfast together and then one of us takes our son whilst the other goes about checking our sales, answering questions from parents, creating content for our blog and researching new products. It’s still early days for us so we’re doing nearly everything ourselves but also have the support of some of our awesome customers to test some cool new products we plan to add to the range.
Good question. We want to help parents put good food in their children’s tummies and make mealtimes fun and adventurous. We want to make parents lives a little easier with great tips and simple to use products that take away some of the guilt, fear and frustration. Once we’ve started making a little profit we want to give back to our community through a charitable programme around health and nutrition. On a personal level, we want the business to enable us to spend more time with our son and enable us to work from anywhere we choose.
How is your work/life balance?
Pretty good. It’s improving but like most business start-ups it demands a lot of our attention. We take time to smell the roses and we’re lucky in that our work is also our passion – we love cooking and we love speaking to mums and dad all over Europe.
Oh another good question. There have been a few but I’d have to say that when we received our first finished product sample through the post it was a “no way we’re actually doing this, ahhh!!” moment. Getting feedback from our customers saying they’re happy is always a proud moment – being a parent is a life changer, so we appreciate when people get in touch to tell us their thoughts. It’s not like they’ve not got enough to do, so to actually write to us and take time out of an already busy day feels really nice.
Get clear on your outcome but don’t be too fixed and firm on what your business will be. Our initial idea was slightly different to what we’re actually doing now so we think being flexible is important. Be willing to change course. Knowing your audience helps so take time to really understand your customers needs. And know that these days you don’t have to spank a fortune to start your business and it can be done around doing a job and looking after your kids.
If you own a small business or know someone who does then let us know in the comments below!