Mother May I ...

050310FEATURE.jpg Mother May I ...
... Work with you?

Sure, you love your mom. But could you work side-by-side with her for a living? These local ladies take that leap of love and can call their mom "co-worker." Read on to find out what they do and how they do it.

Where would we be without mothers? We wouldn't have a planet (Mother Earth). We wouldn't have many nursery rhymes (Mother Goose). And we would be out much moral inspiration (Mother Teresa). But without a mother, some local ladies would be down a co-worker. That's right, three Tri-State mother-daughter teams bring you everything from hair cuts to cookies to boutique goodies, and here are their stories. 


A Cut Above


Diane Simpson, a hair designer at Michael and Company Salon, has worked in the beauty industry for 30 years, and she has so much passion for hair design that she just couldn't keep it to herself. So she passed this passion to her daughters Amanda and Jillian Simpson, who followed in her footsteps.


Now, the three Simpson ladies all work as hair designers at Michael and Company. But even though Diane was with the company from the start, this doesn't necessarily play a part in the pecking order. "Since the girls both are employed by Michael, we are co-workers — equal. They do not do anything for me. I am NOT the boss of them!" she says.


Instead, the Simpsons all agree that they learn from each other. "Working with my mom, I feel more comfortable about asking questions and finding better ways of doing things," Jillian says, and each of the ladies "has something different to offer," Diane says. 1209KROMBHOLZ.gif


So instead of adopting the mentality that three's a crowd, the Simpson stylists stay true to the motto that three heads are better than one. Diane's experience mixed with Amanda and Jillian's younger style makes for a knock-out combination, Diane says.


This mixing of talents comes into play in their on-site work too. The Simpsons often work together to transform the hair of a bride and her bridal party, and with their teamwork, the ladies are better able to feed of the others' energy. "It's an exciting day for someone, and that rubs off on all of us," Amanda says, so they critique each other to make sure that no hair is out of place when the 'dos are complete.


The contagious teamwork also spreads beyond the Simpson trio. "It's nice to walk into a job/career and be with family," Amanda says. "Not only do I have my mom and my sister, but every other team member has become like family as well. It's a great feeling!"


For more information about the Simpsons and Michael and Company, visit the company Web site at or call (513) 528-2588.


050310FEATURE2.jpgFamily Fashion


Amanda and Jillian aren't the only women who followed in their mother's footsteps. Registered nurse Mary Winkler's daughter, Jennifer McSpadden, also became a registered nurse, but then the two ventured into a new phase together. In 2008 Winkler and McSpadden opened Little Sprouts Boutique together.


A resale children's boutique, Little Sprouts allows Winkler and McSpadden to work in a family-friendly environment. Originally the two were interested in starting a franchise, but after much research, they decided that a franchise wasn't for them. Winkler and McSpadden wanted to be able to support local moms, so they opened independently owned Little Sprouts.


The mother-daughter team sells the products of local moms who make everything from greeting cards to hair accessories. "It's fun to be able to support local moms and allow them to be able to support their children," McSpadden says.


Besides selling products of local moms, Little Sprouts supports the local community with their outreach programs. The pair works with Matthew 25: Ministries by recommending that all interested consignors donate what Little Sprouts cannot buy to the local organization. "It's amazing how many people are willing to donate," Winkler says. While local, Matthew 25: Ministries takes those and all other donations to live out their global mission of "providing nutritional food to the hungry, clean water to the thirsty, clothing to the naked, shelter to the homeless, medical care to the ill, and humanitarian supplies to prisoners," according to their Web site.


Winkler and McSpadden decided to do their own part, with a more localized approach to helping the needy. Love, Serve, Bless is a ministry to help Tri-State families with kids 10 years old or younger. Every month, the women take nominations for a deserving family and by the 15th of the month, they select one family to receive $100 of in-store credit to Little Sprouts.


For more information about Little Sprouts, head to or call (513) 492-7909.


Just Enough Cooks in the Kitchen


Another team of a mother and her twin daughters made it their sole mission to help the needy, and it all started when 8-year-old twins Amy and Emma Bushman began volunteering at The Bethany House at just 4 years old.


050310FEATURE3.jpg"Amy and Emma began collecting items for the shelter kids from their friends in lieu of birthday presents for themselves," mother Alison Bushman says. Then Alison, Amy and Emma would bring the items to the shelter and prepare a breakfast for everyone there.


"Having this relationship with the shelter made it a natural fit to do something more for them when Emma came up with the idea of starting a business," Bushman says. So Amy and Emma became the co-founders of Bake Me Home, a non-profit organization focused on helping the homeless and disadvantaged and supporting family experiences. "I feel proud that we are getting together as a family and actually DOING something," Emma says.


To carry out their mission, the Bushmans have begun a couple different programs. The Tote Bag Program provides filled tote bags to families at The Bethany House. Included in the bag are most of the items necessary to bake cookies in addition to a Kroger gift card. Food stamps can't be used to purchase toothbrushes or tooth paste, so these items are included in the bags as well.


The Family Portrait Program provides people with family portraits. "We owe this heart-warming program to photographer Annette Bryant," President Alison says. "Her simple statement that she 'always wanted to do something for people who couldn't afford pictures of their kids' sparked the idea that we set up shop in shelters with a portable printer and donated picture frames."


No matter what program they're working on, though, working as a family has its benefits. "It doesn't take that long to contact each other when you live in the same house," Amy says. Beyond the easy access, both Alison and the twins have gained knowledge and experience through Bake Me Home. "I have learned that giving to others makes you feel really good," Amy says.




Top Photo

Photographer: Neysa Ruhl Photography
Models: Jillian, Diane and Amanda Simpson
Location: The McAlpin

Second Photo
Photographer: Neysa Ruhl Photography
Models: Mary Winkler and Jennifer McSpadden
Location: Little Sprouts

Bottom Photo
Photographer: Neysa Ruhl Photography
Models: Amy, Alison and Emma Bushman
Location: The McAlpin

Linda Palacios -

Linda Palacios is the editor of Cincy Chic. Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>

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