Happy Mother’s Day!
Hi! I’m Elise Kline, and I just started my summer internship here at Ash & Rose. You'll see me popping up in the blog a lot in the next few months!
Today is Mother’s Day, so I thought it would be great to interview Ash & Rose co-owners and mother-daughter team, Nea and Mary, about what it’s like balancing raising two babies while running a small family business.
From left to right: Sophie (23 months), Nea (Grammy), Mary (Mama), and Jack (6 months).
After speaking with both Mary and Nea, I learned that working with family isn’t always easy, and they've had their fair share of disagreements (as mothers and daughters do), but working on Ash & Rose has been so rewarding for both of them. Nea says, "It’s a very satisfying partnership. I enjoy watching my daughter thrive in areas that I’m not as strong in - and vice versa.”
Mary: “We’ve created something together that serves both of our lives and helps us serve the greater community too.''
Nea: “We get to spend all this time together doing something creative, fun, and interesting. We’re very fortunate.”
Mary explains that when they work together they can achieve something greater than they could on their own. They both told me that the key is in defining clear roles within the business, giving each other space, having good communication and really appreciating each other.
The scene underneath Mary’s desk recently has been a little...distracting. And a little messy. But very cute!
Mary explains that there are a lot of benefits to mom-entrepreneurship, such as having a flexible schedule. For the first few months of each of her babies lives, she was able to bring them with her to work every day, something not many moms have a chance to do.
Mary: “Being with my babies 24/7 wasn’t easy, and it meant slowing down my work at a time when I felt ready to grow the business more quickly, but I’m so grateful that I got to have this really special experience with my kids.”
So, if you’re thinking of becoming a mompreneur, take it from Mary: having a flexible schedule and being able to spend more time with your kids is truly something to cherish. There are also plenty of challenges that come with feeling stretched too thin, like you can’t give the business OR your family the full attention they deserve, but Mary assures us that it does get easier. Her advice for new mompreneurs?
“Go easy on yourself, and just take it one day at a time. Once your kid gets to that six month mark, it’s SO MUCH easier. Just know that the beginning is the hardest part, and you will figure it all out soon enough!”
Mary says she’s been able to lean on Nea and other local family for lots of support. For Nea, becoming a Grammy has been “Pure joy. I can care for the grandbabies part-time and I get to say no when I don’t want to!”
As a new intern with Ash & Rose, and a daughter to my own superstar mom, I am grateful and honored for the insight into balancing family and career that Mary and Nea have shown. They’re not only incredibly strong and inspiring business women, but also super moms! After my internship here I know that if I want to be a mompreneur someday, I can look back on this experience for motivation!
I hope, whether you are a daughter or a mother or both, that Mary and Nea’s story inspires you too.
I also encourage all of you to check out the online shop for some truly unique and whimsical gifts for your mom (or yourself). If you have a last minute Mother’s Day gift emergency, swing by the Boston store today.