She's a mompreneur and a mom who literally ROCKS!
As the founder and CEO of the ultra-hip parenting and child consumer healthcare company UpSpringBaby.com, Julie Jumonville is a mom you should definitely have on your radar. We caught up with Julie recently and got the skinny on all things UpSpring:
momlogic: How many kids do you have, and what are their ages?
Julie Jumonville: I have two amazing kiddos: Grace, who is 10 years old, and Reece, who is 7.
ml: What's your secret to balancing work and family time?
JJ: I started my own business in order to create balance, and I am able to achieve balance in most cases. I think my secret is "Wacky Wednesdays" -- where the kids cook dinner and we talk about the week ahead, who is traveling and why, and let the kids ask us any questions they want. If they are prepared and involved in the business, then they get excited when I am flying to Toys "R" Us headquarters for a big meeting. I have also been known to take Grace on sales calls as well.
ml: Tell us about how UpSpring Baby came to be. What was your inspiration?
JJ: I am an engineer by training, but have always been an entrepreneur and inventor. After having Grace, I was matron of honor in my sister-in-law's wedding and I was still nursing Grace. I wanted to be able to have a glass of wine and enjoy the celebration, but not pass any alcohol to Grace. This is when my first product, Milkscreen, was born -- and very shortly after, the start of UpSpring Baby.
ml: What's the hottest baby product that new moms need to know about this year?
JJ: I love all the new compression garments, like Belly Bandit and our own Shrinkx Hips. I think it is great that people are recognizing the benefits of compression and binding to help moms get their prepregnancy bodies back sooner.
ml: What makes UpSpring Baby different from other online retailers?
JJ: UpSpring Baby is actually not only an online retailer. We supply Shrinkx Hips, Milkscreen and Walking Wings to over 7,000 retailers in the U.S., including Target, Babies "R" Us and many amazing independent retailers worldwide. We are different because we have products that are not me-toos that meet true unmet needs for parents and their children. Our products are so innovative that our retailers always want to know what is next.
ml: To you, what does it mean to be a mom who ROCKS?
JJ: A mom who ROCKS is one who follows her ultimate passions and nurtures herself and her family at the same time. My entire family is very involved in UpSpring Baby, so it is not just a job but a passion for my family. I came home from a business trip where we were trying to raise money for the company, and my son handed me $20 and said he wanted to buy some shares of UpSpring Baby. My family has learned so much from my experience with UpSpring, and it should infiltrate their education and experience to decide what they want to do in life. I also carve out two to four hours every week to hang with my dear friends -- and now, fellow bandmates. I am in an all-mom rock band called "Covergirls," and we get together every week to jam out.
ml: What advice do you have for other moms who want to follow in your mompreneur footsteps?
JJ: ASK FOR HELP! When I got started, I found a company that had better distribution and operations and asked these other mompreneurs for help and introductions. Eventually we merged companies to form UpSpring Baby.
ml: Tell us about your band. You are literally a mom who ROCKS!
JJ: My daughter Grace has been in a rock band for four years now. All my girlfriends came to hear her play, and we looked at each other and said, "Let's do it!" We hired a famous Austin musician, turned my living room into a band room with instruments from Craigslist and now we have our own band. We have played two official gigs, including the famous Continental Club in Austin. It is truly the best thing I have ever done. We actually rock out and sound pretty good! We have learned by ear and have no musical training. I highly recommend this to any mom out there.
ml: Besides your own mother, who is a mother you admire -- and why?
JJ: I admire and look up to my mother-in-law, Karen Jumonville. She is a nurturing woman who has put her family first and given me the best gift I could ever dream of, which is my husband, Jeff. She taught him the importance of being an involved and loving husband and father, and this has enabled our happiness and success.
ml: How will you spend Mother's Day?
JJ: My sweet kids and hubby always cook a fantastic breakfast and serve it to me in bed. We will then head to Lake Hills Church and finish the day with a round of family golf. I think we are going to dress up in costumes while we play golf this year. The perfect day!