Blessings gained by working with Mom

There are two Robertson County mothers and daughters who work together on a daily basis.

All four women said they find the time spent together in business has brought them blessings as they’ve been drawn closer through the years.

Crystalee Hoge and Jenni Dusky are spending time sewing and embroidering in their home-based Creations by Cris business.

Laurie Riley and Olivia Haines spend many hours together each week in their Hey Belle Boutique, located on the Springfield square.

Crystalee Hoge and Jenni Dusky

Hoge and Dusky operate a Springfield home-based apparel decoration company that does embroidery, appliques, digital printing and etching on tumblers and glass. Just about anything can be personalized, according to Hoge.

“We personalize backpacks, shirts and commercial logos,” Hoge said. “Jenni and I spend a lot of time together working on all of our projects.”

Dusky, who is a full-time employee working as a social worker for Robertson County Schools, said she spends time in the evenings and weekends helping her mother.

“We try to get things done in two weeks or less for our customers,” Dusky said. “Since my work time is limited, the nights and weekends are about the only time during the school year I can help her, but we do spend quite a bit of time together.”

Hoge said she and Jenni have an easy time sharing the work.

“We enjoy it for the most part,” Hoge said. “We do have disagreements periodically, but that’s not very often. It’s very easy working with my daughter because she has great ideas. She also helps me with marketing our business.”

Dusky calls the task of working with her mother an easy one, because they have always been close.

“We have become really good friends and have a great relationship,” Dusky said. “We have always had an open line of communication and I can’t imagine not working with her and spending the time together that we spend each week working.”

The pair also travels together, attending barn sales, seasonal events and shows in order to share their products and gain customers.

While they look quite a bit alike, the pair also has their differences, according to Hoge.

“I have brown eyes and brown hair and Jenni is blonde and blue-eyed,” Hoge said. “It always blows my mind when people say we look alike.”

The growth of the personalization business has helped their personal relationship grow as well, according to Hoge.

“We’ve become closer as she’s gotten older,” Hoge said. “I’ve always treated my daughters and now my grandchildren, with respect. Jenni does treat me as her mother, but we are definitely friends, too.”

While the pair leads busy lifestyles, Hoge said it’s nice at the end of the day when they can turn the machines off and be mother and daughter.

“This blessing of working together has helped us to learn more about each other,” Dusky said. “We have a special working relationship, which has proven to be a fun adventure that I’ve had while learning this business with my mom.”

Laurie Riley and Olivia Haines

The mother/daughter duo of Hey Belle Boutique owners Laurie Riley and Olivia Haines began in the lobby of a beauty shop and has blossomed into its current two-story location in the 638 Building on the historic downtown square of Springfield.

“We actually got our big debut at the November, 2014 Christmas Sampler,” Riley said. “The community just supported that effort wonderfully. So then, we just kept going.”

Riley said she and her daughter are able to be creative and enjoy working daily together, having a mutual respect and unconditional love for one another.

Haines said working with mom is a win-win situation and that the pair can read each other pretty well.

“We have the same common goal of successfully operating the boutique,” Haines said. “She’s the enforcer and I’m better behind the scenes. We do have different ideas on how to get there, but she’s always there for me, whether it’s as a mother or a friend.”

Haines said the time spent with her mom is always enjoyable, whether as a vendor at an event, working daily side-by-side in the boutique or out on the road, selecting new fashions for the store.

“We usually travel together twice a year to market,” Haines said. “We generally go to either Dallas or Atlanta when the seasons change.”

Haines said she believes she and Laurie looked alike when they were in their high school years.

Riley describes her own personality as more of an aggressive one than her daughter’s, but with the differences, whether physical ones or personality traits, they are able to work unified together for the success of Hey Belle.

“When we go to market, she chooses more of the styles and fashions that fit her,” Riley said. “I have the twist on that – having the ability to choose styles more for taller women.”

While they carry a great friendship, Riley said she would describe their relationship as being closer to a mother/daughter one, which she enjoys immensely.

“She knows that she’s going to get that advice from me, whether she wants it or not,” Riley laughed. “Since the day she was born, Olivia has just been glued to me.”

Riley said her parents had a difficult time keeping little Olivia for overnight stays when was young.

“She would cry and cry,” Riley said. “Daddy would say, ‘Nancy Jean, just take her home. I don’t want her to be unhappy.’ So, mother has always said, ‘That child will never get too far from you, ever. And she doesn’t.”

When they’re not together, Riley said they still talk three or four times a day.

“We’re still very close,” Riley said.

Mother was right.

Celebrate with these two mother/daughter teams on May 11

Both mother and daughter duos will be sharing some of their beautiful products at the inaugural open house and Tea on the Porch to celebrate Mother’s Day at the Shade Tree Farm & Orchard in Cedar Hill on Saturday, May 11.

Sarah Head, who owns the orchard, said they plan to honor mothers on Saturday.

“We have not promoted weddings a lot at the orchard, but we have had several. It is a beautiful place for a casual wedding or any other special event, especially at sunset,” Head said. “At our Special Events Open House, from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., we want to show what we can do for a special day.”

There will be some mock wedding venues set up as well as a birthday party venue.  There is no admission charge to the open house, however, families can bring Mom out for a special Tea on the Porch, which will include treats from 24 Catering and teas from Blue Rose Tea Company.

The cost is $12 per person and reservations are preferred in order to get a count. Call 615-696-2915 to make reservations for the tea.

There’s more information to all of these businesses on Facebook.

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