This link should show you a really big overview from all different kinds of applications that you can host yourself...as in on your own computer (if you have a web-server installed there), on a computer in your home network (if you have a web-server installed there) or on your own website/domain.
For the first two options, you could use software like: XAMPP (free, comes with the Apache web-server, PHP and MySQL database) There are many alternatives for XAMPP, take a look in this forum, as many have suggested alternatives or look for those on website: AlternativeTo.
With XAMPP or any of its alternatives, the following must apply: make sure that all the ports they require are available to them. Normally this should not be a problem, but if you happen to use Skype on the computer you plan to use as your internal web-server, port 80 is often claimed. Port 80 is the port web-servers require and it is best that you kill all running Skype processes completely and after the web-server has started successfully, simply restart Skype. Now your web-server and Skype work peacefully next to one other.
Some general information you should take into account when going through this list:
All these applications come with manuals on how to install them. Do not expect the DC crowd to know about any of these applications or how you should install them. Sure, the DC crowd can make very educated guesses, but you should go through their manuals first and ask on their forums about any problem you might encounter.
Also, it is possible that you find your ideal application can only be used on a Linux-based web-server. You seem to know how VMs work, so create one, preferably using a Linux server distribution, like Ubuntu Server, Debian, CentOS or OpenSuse. Whichever you prefer. Personally, I like Ubuntu Server 16 LTS, but the others are great as well. If you can, do not install any GUI system. This way you don't need to allocate much of your RAM to it.
Once you have created such a VM, start it and access it by using the SmarTTY software in your Windows installation (I use the portable version myself). Think of this software as a supercharged Putty in functionality. Any instruction in the (online) manual(s) you see in Windows can be easily copy-pasted into the SmarTTY session you have opened to your Linux VM. And that makes it much easier to manage a Linux server. To top it off, install in this VM the WebMin software. That will give you the option to fully manage this Linux server through your browser, so you really have no need for a GUI.
By keeping your VM this lean, you can get away with allocating only 4 to 8 GByte of storage space, between 512MByte to 1 GByte of RAM and only the bare minimum of video memory. You will hardly notice that this VM is running on your host computer.
With all of the above, you should be able to start on the journey of finding the self-hosted application(s) that suit your workflow best.
Some years a local friend put me in contact with XAMPP environment. And Apache. He was managing a forum with a free url until it was not free anymore. The same when i have problems with .tk free urls.
For a person with enough knowledge XAMPP, Apache and some free databases have infinite oportunities.
The software is free and open but the knowledge wasn't.
Are free now and free forever.
But the real freedom is knowledge.