The only online publication for women in Greater Cincinnati

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    The journey to motherhood is full of twists and turns. Read how one local transformative life coach is helping you stay true to yourself along the way.

    If you’re a mother or have given birth to a child, then you know the transformation you undergo during this journey to motherhood.

    Mindy Schlechter knows this journey, too, and her awareness of the need for integrative services for women during and after childbirth inspired her to launch Effloresce Coaching. 

    “Effloresce Coaching offers heart-led, empowered coaching to women who are learning to hold the same nourishing space for themselves that they provide for others,” she explains. “I understand that pregnancy, birth, and early mothering years are deeply transformative experiences, which often shift a woman’s identity and create a need for self-discovery and soul growth.” 

    That is why she draws on her own experiences and expertise to co-create and collaborate with clients to establish an atmosphere in which they feel “held” while navigating their personal rebirthing within the “Mothering” stage of life. 

    “Women who are drawn to this unique style of coaching are often seeking a deeper relationship to their own intuitive wisdom, increased alignment of their values, and purposeful work, and exploring outdated mindsets and lifestyle choices, which might be holding them back,” says Schlechter. “Effloresce offers women the opportunity to access their own innate wisdom and use it to restore balance, confidence, strength, happiness, and purpose in their lives.” 

    Schlechter has a background in health and wellness, and is a certified Life Coach, Neuro Linguistic programming (NLP) practitioner, and hypnotherapist, and holds a specialized designation for Prenatal Youth within Yoga Alliance’s teaching credentialing program.

    There are a variety of coaching services available from Effloresce Coaching. 

    “Effloresce offers individualized, 1:1 coaching services, both in-person and remotely,” says Schlechter. “Clients are initially offered the space to tell their story and discover what it’s like to expand and take up space for themselves as they discover the changes they want to make (something I describe as a ‘Soul Holding’ session on my list of offerings). They learn to identify areas of their life which are inviting change (i.e., connecting body and mind, lifestyle choices, partnerships, habits, disconnection from intuition, boundaries, cultivating a meditation or mindfulness practice within motherhood, or understanding self-care priorities), and begin to build a toolbox of resources and strategies to grow these areas.” 

    Mindy Schlechter, Founder of Effloresce Coaching

    There’s also the signature Effloresce Journey, as it’s named on my website, which is a collaborative approach that teaches women to break through their limitations to uncover direction and clarity for that “what’s next” question within their feminine journey. 

    “I intuitively draw from my expertise in understanding how women’s minds work and apply techniques such as NLP, hypnosis and mindfulness to help my clients achieve a higher quality of aligned living over several months of working together,” says Schlechter. “Client goals are specific and individualized, but my clients express having an increased experience of confidence, strength, relaxation, balance, happiness, embodiment, and purpose.” 

    Those who are interested in Effloresce Coaching can utilize her complimentary Alignment session, where you can decide whether transformational coaching is right for you. Additionally, Schlechter offers workshops and presentations on mindfulness in mothering and beyond. 

    Schlechter says that what makes Effloresce Coaching unique is its integrated approach with clients, Schlechter’s background in understanding women’s thoughts, emotions, and their lived experiences and challenges, and the way in which she is able to apply her knowledge and techniques.

    “My method is an integrative approach woven from cognitive techniques, hypnosis, mindfulness, somatic movement/yoga, and a holistic focus on empowering women to lead a more intuitive and mindful lifestyle,” she adds.

    Effloresce Coaching will be expanding its horizons in 2021. According to Schlechter, Effloresce Coaching is partnering with local businesses to bring upcoming workshops, speaking engagements, and more. 

    “A group coaching environment is being planned for spring and I am completing my Ayurvedic Health Coach coursework this year with Katie Silcox of Shakti School, a feminine form ayurvedic medicine expert,” she says. 

    Schlechter says she will continue to offer prenatal yoga through Embra and is hoping to roll out a Yoga for Fertility class this year. 

    To learn more, visit You can also follow along on Instagram and Facebook. To contact Schlechter directly, send her an email at  

    Expectant mamas are invited to join her on their yoga mats any given Sunday from 10-11:15 a.m. at Embra Studios. “I thoroughly enjoy introducing women to the powerful effects of yoga through pregnancy and beyond,” she adds.  

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      A small shop in the heart of an antique-loving city is booming. Click here to read more about their unique twist.

      Husband and wife team Jona and Adam Powell are continually evolving. The duo started off watching YouTube videos on how to do graphic design and printing their own shorts. 

      “We tried many different methods before settling on DTG printing,” says Powell. “We sold mostly at festivals and craft shows, before taking the leap to owning our own shop.” 

      Today, they are the owners behind Buckeye Charm, a quaint shop in Waynesville that wants to be your favorite “hang out” spot. 

      “We have been to many shops in Nashville, Austin, and Sedona that had really cool, fun vibes, and we thought that we could do our own Ohio version,” she says. “That’s why we bought an old church built in 1877 and have really poured out heart and souls into transforming it into Buckeye Charm.”

      Powell says that although we don’t realize it, as we live our lives we are adding to our stories. 

      “Life is so short, I want to make sure that I add as much to my story as possible,” she says. “But, I have found a way to connect and hopefully be a positive person in our community through our shop, and that has definitely helped fill that void of working in hospice.”

      Jona Powell and her family.

      Buckeye Charm is located in Waynesville, known as the “Antiques Capital of the Midwest.” The location, according to Powell, allows the store to be even more unique in its offerings and incorporate vintage, repurposes, and new trends all in one space. The store also carries more than 20 local and handmade vendors in the shop.

      The upcycled flannels and graphic tees available are some of the most popular items in the shop, as they incorporate the couple’s love for classic country music. In fact, Powell says some customers have traveled from hours away just to purchase the flannels. 

      Overall, though, Powell loves the approach the store takes in being a little bit of everything.

      “We are a little bit country, a little bit boho, and a little bit of vintage soul,” she says. “We have a vintage ‘46 Dode truck as the centerpiece of our shop. We have added to our own shirts that we print and have evolved into a trendy boutique.”

      The growth Buckeye Charm has seen means that they had to close their Etsy shop to build their very own website, which Powell says will be going live soon, to keep up with the love customers have for shopping there.

      You can keep up with Buckeye Charm on social media via Facebook and Instagram. There is a “Coffee with Jona” live video every Wednesday at 10:30am, where Powell has coffee with followers and talks about what is new to the shop and a weekly giveaway. 

      “That’s my little way to feel like I am brightening someone’s day,” she adds. 

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        After beating cancer, this local entrepreneur turned to launching a business that offers safe, toxin-free candles for your home. Click here to read more!

        Cancer is a hard word to hear. A doctor telling you that you have cancer is even harder. 

        Hearing those words, though, was a reality for Elizabeth Howard, the owner and creator of Urban Burn Candle Co.

        “Urban Burn Candle Co. was inspired by my journey with cancer in my teenage years,” she explains. “Although it’s uncertain what caused my cancer, my oncologist believed it was bought out by something in the environment. I’m blessed to have overcome the cancer and vowed to make a promise to myself that I would do my best in the future to rid my body of toxins and try my best to live a healthy lifestyle.” 

        In founding Urban Burn Candle Co. in the spring of 2020, Howarth offers an all-natural candle company focused on using high-quality, natural ingredients that don’t compromise air quality or your health.

        Howarth recalls that even when she was young, she had a love for candles. “Candles, for me, symbolize celebration, signify romance, soothe the senses, define ceremony, and accent the style of home decors,” she says. “They create such a lovely ambiance that simply cannot be replicated and create the perfect atmosphere to induce calm and a sense of well-being.”

        However, while she has a love for candles, Howarth acknowledges that there are many dangerous chemicals that are not only bad for our health but also the world around ust. And with a connection to cancer due to the environment, Howard says that she wanted to create a brand of candles that were ethically made with high-quality ingredients with not only your health in but but also the environment.

        Products from Urban Burn Candle Co. include all natural candles using an all-natural vegan coconut soy wax blend and all-natural soy wax melts. “The candles and wax melts are made with absolutely no artificial additives, dyes – no nonsense,” says Howarth. “We use only the highest quality fragrance oils that are phthalate-free. When you’re burning or candles and wax melts, that peace of mind is yours.”

        At Urban Burn Candle Co. you’ll find that it’s all about offering something that Howarth really believed the city needed. 

        “I experimented with many waxes but settled on a coconut soy wax blend,” she says. “This was unique to me as I never knew or heard much about coconut wax. I’ve learned that it is usually overlooked by the candle industry as it is more expensive than other waxes. The coconut soy wax blend I chose is gluten free, toxin free, paraben free, phthalate free, and comes from renewable sources. Coconut soy wax burns the cleanest and slowest and has an excellent scent throw.”

        Howarth is looking forward to the future of Urban Burn Candle Co. and is always experimenting with new scents. Holiday collections will be released throughout 2021 and a Valentine’s Day collection is launching soon.

        To learn more about Urban Burn Candle Co. visit their Etsy shop. You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram.

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          This year, we’re celebrating all the things and this local and woman-owned business helps us do just that. Read on to learn about this fab collection of stationery, branding, and goods that celebrate your passions with creativity. 

          The new year is something to celebrate and The Marigold Collective wants you to celebrate every little one of life’s precious moments. 

          Taylor Speed, the founder behind The Marigold Collective, launched a collection of stationery, branding, and goods that celebrate your passions with creativity. 

          “In other words, we’re a design studio focused on producing stationery and design, branding design, and fun home goods that are unique for how they tell the story of our clients,” she says.

          Speed says the inspiration behind her business comes from the marigold flower. 

          Taylor Speed, Founder of The Marigold Collective

          “Representing passion and creativity, it speaks so clearly to what we do,” she explains. “All of the people involved in this process are passionate about something – whether it be the client, passionate about their love and wanting to invite people to celebrate it, or our printers, so passionate about producing a beautiful paper product that they’ll text you personally about making it right. Any part of the process you look at, you’ll find someone excited about what they’re doing.” 

          Speed says that at The Marigold Collective, they’re focused on celebrating those passions by using creativity to produce a product that tells that story beautifully.

          When you shop The Marigold Collective, you’ll find stationer and signage design as well as three pre-designed wedding stationery suites that are sorted in tiers with slightly different styles and according to price/how in-depth you’d like your wedding details to be. 

          “We offer two branding packages – again, based on price and how in-depth you need to be with your branding needs,” says Speed. 

          Also offered at The Marigold Collective, is the Goods collection. “At the moment it consists of three goods: a tote, keychain, and print pack,” says Speed. “We’ll be expanding and changing this each season and can’t wait to roll out what we have in store for the spring.” 

          Speed says that what makes The Marigold Collective unique is how they design with the client’s intentions in mind. “Our mission isn’t to mass-produce the trendiest product – it’s to produce something truly unique to each client with the intention to tell their story in style,” she adds. “Clients can expect a high standard of style for every design with a focus on capturing their individual style.”

          Speed says there’s a lot to look forward to in 2021. She says she’s excited to expand business and get The MArigold Collective name out there. “I’m excited for the projects coming and the fun things we’re going to create with 2021 and people’s expanding styles,” she adds.

          To learn more about The Marigold Collective, visit You can also follow on Facebook and Instagram or send an email to 

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            Resolutions to get healthy are going deeper this year. See how a quickly growing mental health focused practice is helping others understand their story, find their purpose, and improve interactions with themselves and others to brighten the future ahead.


            Mental health care is health care. In an often stigmatized field, Rivertown Wellness wants to provide its clients with the highest quality professional counseling and consulting services to individuals, families, and groups so they can achieve enjoyable, productive, and healthy lives.

            “We specialize in counseling and consulting services that are uniquely tailored to fit the needs of each client,” explains Rivertown Wellness Co-Founder Ann Marie Aponte. “With the goal of providing greater access to mental health care throughout the city, we consist of three sites in the Greater Cincinnati area: West Chester, Hyde Park, and College Hill.”

            With a much greater focus on mental health services, the staff at Rivertown Wellness is rapidly expanding and now includes six licensed professional counselors, three licensed professional clinical counselors, one marriage and family therapist in training, and one Ph.D. psychologist. 

            The inspiration for such a clinic in the Queen City is the team’s belief that change is possible and that it happens one life at a time. 

            “When one person engages in the counseling process and begins to understand their story, their purpose, and healthier ways to interact with themself and others, it doesn’t only have a positive impact on them,” says Aponte. “There is a huge ripple effect. So when I sit with someone in my office I truly believe that the work we do has the power to change not only their life but the lives of their children and grandchildren.”

            Rivertown Wellness also believes in emphasizing the idea that counseling is for everyone. “We believe everyone benefits from sharing their stories in a safe place and learning more about how they are wired and how they can be the best version of themselves,” she says. “This inspired us to create a counseling practice that feels welcoming to all and breaks down the stigma around mental health services.”

            Aponte started Rivertown Wellness alongside Cody Hanson in 2016. 

            Hanson says that his love for Cincinnati and a passion to promote wellness here was a big factor in taking a leap with Aponte to start Rivertown Wellness.

            “I want Rivertown Wellness to be a place for people to find approachable counselors that offer quality services,” he says. “Both personally and professionally, I have the desire to discover meaning in suffering in order to make positive change. One of the tools I use to accomplish this is a personality typing system called the Ennegram, which gives powerful insight into why you do the things you do.”

            When we are able to understand why we do the things we do, it’s easier to tear down the barriers that hold us back and heal. 

            For Aponte, she says that a passion for counseling that started in college turned into a first-hand experience of just how counseling can be used to restore brokenness, renew hope, and rejuvenate lives.

            “Now, I consider it a great privilege to join my clients on their transformational journeys,” she says. “My integrative approach is built on a trusting relationship formed between me and my client. This positive therapeutic relationship provides a safe place for clients to explore thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. In this environment, I partner with my clients to help them develop the insights and skills necessary to make positive changes in their lives.”

            At Rivertown Wellness, Aponte says they do their best to provide quality mental health care for a wide spectrum of demographics and situations. There is individual, couples, and family counseling available for adults, adolescents, and children.

            “Specifically, we have licensed professionals counselors and licensed professional clinical counselors that specialize in a variety of areas such as anxiety, depression, grief, premarital, OCD, trauma, and more,” says Aponte. “Some of our counselors hold special certifications in Gottman marriage counseling, EMDR therapy, and child play therapy as well. We also have a trained psychologist on staff who offers clinical interviews, testing, and diagnosis for clients. Lasty, due to higher-than-ever demand for mental health services during the COVID-19 pandemic, we offer video counseling through our secure online portal, Telehealth.”

            Aponte says that what makes Rivertown Wellness unique is that their team of clinicians are people who understand what going to counseling themselves is like.

            “I learned from my professional counselor parents that the best professional counselors are those who are willing to do their own counseling work,” she explains. “This allows them to know what it feels like to make that first call, to unpack their own story, to be vulnerable, to accept feedback, and to pursue healthy change. They taught me that to be able to truly enter into another person’s pain and suffering, you had to get in touch with your own.”

            The team at Rivertown Wellness says they are looking forward to 2021. While much of the year was full of obstacles and other challenges, they are pleased with how the use of telehealth counseling increased last year and hope to continue to use and improve the platform in 2021 to make mental health services more accessible. 

            Three new team members will also be joining in January with each one offering unique skill sets to help the group better serve their clients.

            Aponte says that the new Rivertown Wellness office will open at the Hyde Park location this month. Additionally, they are introducing a blog where the team of clinicians will contribute educational and encouraging posts to equip readers with mental health tips. 

            To learn more about Rivertown Wellness or for mental health tips, helpful articles and resources, and the latest practice updates, follow along on Instagram. You can also stay in touch on Facebook and LinkedIn.

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              Have some high hopes for 2021? See how this professional development powerhouse started a movement to help women across the state expand their potential, make big connections and reach lofty goals.

              Behind every successful woman is a group of women who are cheering her on. In an effort to provide women with a supportive and inspiring community of fellow leaders and entrepreneurs, The Diva Movement was created.

              “The Diva Movement is a community of women leaders and entrepreneurs where we provide support, tools, and resources to help women grow as they are growing their business,” explains CEO and Founder Noni Banks. “We offer online personal and business development resources, networking, events, entrepreneur workshops, and opportunities for women to connect in our private Facebook group.”

              Banks says that she was inspired to launch The Diva Movement off a quote by W.E.B. Dubois: “There is no force more powerful than a woman determined to rise.”

              “I was at a place in my life where I was tired of waking up every day and not being fulfilled,” explains Banks. “I was going through a divorce and I realized that I consistently placed my hopes and dreams on the back burner, while I pushed and [helped] build someone else’s dream.”

              In an effort to help build the dreams of the women around her, Banks launched The Diva Movement, which serves hundreds of womens, entrepreneurs, and followers.

              “What started as a book club with 15 people has now grown into an organization with hundreds of members,” adds Banks.

              While 2020 has been a challenging year for everyone, Banks says that she finds motivation and inspiration in her day-to-day life by focusing on her goals. 

              “My purpose fuels my passion and keeps me motivated,” she says. “In order to have a clear vision for your life, you have to know your purpose. The two greatest days of your life is the day you were born and the day you find out why.”

              Banks says that her “why” is directly tied to her purpose.  “When you tap into your why and your purpose, you become an unstoppable, purpose-driven force of positivity,” she adds.

              Banks’ company and the events it hosts in addition to the products it creates and the services it provinces, are bigger than her, her dreams, and her goals.

              “I get up everyday knowing that there are women out here that are struggling to grow their companies,” she says. “Having the ability to sow seeds into the lives of these women and into their businesses is what really keeps me going everyday.”

              With a tumultuous year behind her, Banks is looking forward to her continued offerings in providing tools, support, products and services that women grow as they are growing their business.

              “We are on a mission to help women grow and market their business with confidence,” she adds.

              In the midst of the pandemic, Banks has changed some of her offerings so that she can continue to provide her services in a virtual manner. 

              “We moved our Conversations and Connections to a virtual platform this year and we will continue to host livestream conversations with women entrepreneurs, influencers, and industry leaders from around the world,” she says.

              One of those offerings is a Hustle & Grow Content Club. “The Hustle & Grow Content Club is a 12-week series for female entrepreneurs who want to improve your content, cashflow, and conversions,” says Banks. “This is a membership for entrepreneurs who want to build high-quality content and market your business with confidence.”

              The membership for this club includes: weekly content strategy sessions, private Facebook group, exclusive digital products and content, monthly training and demos.  

              Banks says that she and her business are looking forward to 2021, when they’ll be offering several new options for members.

              These new offerings include a new website with updated product pages and easy, one-click shopping for the new digital products and services. The Hustle & Grow Digital Boutique is a new store that offers business and marketing solutions for entrepreneurs.

              Also new are a variety of memberships that will help you increase your income, impact, and influence, according to Banks.

              Other new offerings include easy-to-use graphics that are simple to customize templates that will help you create eye-catching social media posts to increase engagement, sales, and business growth. “Each month new products are added to the shop,” says Banks.

              Business and marketing templates are available to help you take the guesswork out of creating a business and marketing plan by providing templates that will help you reach your social media and marketing goals.

              Banks is planning on offering marketing and social media coaching to help entrepreneurs market their business with confidence. She says she plans to also offer one-time strategy sessions as well.

              Additionally, be on the lookout for The Diva Movement to offer social media management services. “We help entrepreneurs manage their social media presence to effectively engage with the audience and get the maximum value from social media,” she says.

              To learn more about The Diva Movement, visit You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram. To contact Banks and The Diva Movement, call 614-259-7526 or email

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                This local news broadcaster’s story is nothing short of astounding. See how she’s pushing forward and encouraging others with the inspiration that can only be found in a second chance at life.

                Alanna Martella was given a new lease on life and is now inspiring others with it.

                Alanna Martella’s journey in this life is nothing short of a miracle, and adventurous. 

                As a little girl, she remembers just how much she loved watching the news, a love she inherited from her mother, who, she recalls, always had the news on the television.

                “She was so interested in knowing what was going on in the community,” says Martella. “Through that, I grew to love the news, too. I loved watching the anchors at the desk and how they developed a rapport with viewers they didn’t know – and how they can seem like your friend without ever being introduced in-person.”

                As a person who also found interest in curiosity, Martella says that her love for the news and for being a “Curious George” meant that it only made sense for her to become a broadcaster. 

                The journey from being a little girl with dreams of becoming a broadcaster to actually becoming a broadcaster had some bumps along the way.

                According to Martella, her health story began her senior year of high school.

                “I was visiting my grandma at her nursing home and felt this extreme pain in my abdomen,” she explains. “It felt as if my insides were on fire. I have never felt anything like this pain and hope to God I never will again.”

                She says the pain continued for hours and she recalls laying in bed that night in the fetal position, in a pool of sweat, and looking out at the moon almost wishing for death. “I felt that would be the only way to relieve myself of the utter anguish that I was experiencing,” she adds. 

                She eventually made it to the bathroom,where she then passed out. Martella hit the ground hard enough that her dad heard and found her on the bathroom floor. With a pulse of 167 beats per minute, 911 was called and she was rushed to the hospital. 

                “Upon arrival at the Emergency Room, I had to go to the bathroom,” she says. “I asked my mom, who had driven to meet me there (since nobody could join me in the ambulance), to help me because I was in so much pain and was so lethargic that I couldn’t walk or hold myself up. So, with my mom’s help, I went into the bathroom. And this is when it happened – I thrashed about a couple of times and then just went limp.”

                Then, it happened. Martella died. 

                A nurse who rushed to the room to provide assistance called a double code and Martella was rushed to the operating room. 

                While her death experience is another tale in itself, she made it back to this side of consciousness and remembers the following events rather vividly. 

                “The doctors were in the zone and rattling off medical terms that didn’t make any sense,” she says. “I remember looking at the back of the room and seeing my mom, dad, and stepdad bawling their eyes out, and I was so confused as to what was happening! I looked to the doctor to my right and asked if I was going to be okay — in which he responded, ‘We’re going to do the best we can.’”

                Even while laying on a gurney, Martella understood the impact of those words, and didn’t see such a bright future for herself. But, she made it through with a newfound love of life and passion for ensuring her own health.

                It turns out that Martella’s small intestines had been twisting around each other. “They had twisted for so long, circulation was cut off and created sepsis, which is how I died,” she says. “The intestines were so dead and necrotic that when the doctors went in to see what was wrong, they actually crumbled in their hands.” 

                The surgeons removed 15 feet of her small intestines, and the remaining intestine were still rather dead, so she was given an ostomy bag. “Let me tell you what, it is not pretty,” she says. “That thing would break open and spill its contents all over my body at any given time. But it did make for a nice conversation piece.” 

                Fast forward through months of IVs full of TPN and lipids, some jaundice, and a chest port, Martella received her high school diploma and her parents were leaving her behind at Ohio University where she was enrolled as a journalism major at E.W. Scripps School of Journalism to pursue her dream of being a broadcast journalist.

                A few more bumps on the long road to a healthy life and Martella found herself on the other side, promising herself to truly, fully live her life.

                “I vowed to myself that I would go skydiving, that I would make every life dream I’ve ever imagined become a reality, that I would tell the ones I love that I love them and nothing would ever go unsaid, that I would go on vacations and not get so caught up with running or exercise,”she says. “I vowed that I would open my heart to find love and eventually get married. But most of all, I vowed to live. To enjoy life and to experience it moment by moment and not get so caught up in the logistics.”

                And since Martell made that vow to herself, she hasn’t looked back. 

                “September 8th, 2008 could have been my last day here on this Earth, but I was blessed enough to get the opportunity of a second chance,” she says. “And you can bet I won’t let any of my life goals, dreams or wishes go unrealized. But more importantly, you can bet I will live and love and enjoy this beautiful gift of life we’ve all been blessed with, because trust me, I know all too well that it can be taken away from us in an instant.”

                Along with the promises Martella made to herself, she also finds plenty of inspiration in the world around her as she navigates her day-to-day life.

                She says that seeing people put themselves aside and go out of their way to make life easier for others is something that encourages and inspires her.

                She’s also inspired by the freedom to do anything and everything we want to do or accomplish in life. “We are so blessed to be presented with endless opportunities, we might as well take advantage of that,” she adds.

                Martella, like most people, says she also finds inspiration in her mom.

                “This woman is the greatest human on Earth,” says Martella. “She truly is sunshine in human form. She’s always in a jolly mood and she always has a smile on her face. If you know Linda Lohrer, I can guarantee you agree with what I’m saying right now. She will drop what she’s doing at any given moment to be with anyone and everyone who needs help or guidance. She donates to countless numbers of causes because she has such a beautiful heart. She is just so selfless and so giving. I can only pray to be one-quarter of the woman she is some day. She is truly my best friend in the whole world and I am so proud to be her daughter.”

                In addition to her work she does at WLWT, Martella does speaking engagements and outreach efforts, although COVID has put a damper on the in-person speaking world. 

                One of those outreach efforts is a 5-step model called the “Rise Up” model. “It’s proven to help people overcome extreme obstacles and seize opportunities,” she says. “I like to share this model with others, in hopes that it can help them as well.”

                While COVID has halted in-person events, Martella says that she’s been able to utilize technology to do virtual speaking events and continue to share her story with others.

                Additionally, Martella is on the Board of Directors for Make-A-Wish Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana’s southern Ohio Region and, as a Wish Kid, she enjoys being able to sit on the board for an organization that also helped her. 

                To continue her outreach, Martella is launching a podcast with her friend Nicole Dambro. The podcast, she says, is geared toward breaking down any information barriers that people with chronic illness might experience and to help people know they are not alone.

                “Ironically, Nicole has the same type of illness I have,” says Martella. “How we met was fate: She lives in LA, I live here in Cincinnati, and we were seated at the same table for a mutual friend of ours’ wedding a year and a half ago. We got to talking, and realized we deal with the same situation. We stayed in touch and through the last year and a half, we have both undergone emergency surgeries related to our illness.”

                Martella credits Nicole with making it through some of her health obstacles this past spring, and appreciates the support system she has found in her friend. Those shared experiences inspired them to create the podcast “Girls With Guts Podcast.” 

                Martella says the podcast will be launching in the New Year and their Instagram page is currently available for you to stay tuned to for announcements.

                You can find Martella on WLWT Channel 5 Monday through Friday from 4:30-7am. 

                “I work with some of the most talented and incredible people and journalists in the entire world,” says Martella. “They are such hard-working individuals. Though they are co-workers, they are also friends and family. I love the WLWT team so much and am so proud to be a part of it.”

                To learn more about Martella, you can keep up with her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

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                  Staying in is the new going out - especially in a COVID world. Click here to read more about a husband and wife team aiming to make stay-at-home orders more enjoyable and a lot more memorable.

                  This year has been rough. We’ve been separated from extended family for months, unable to enjoy the things we usually do – including sleepovers and family vacations. 

                  Megan Redmond is no exception to the sadness the year has caused when it comes to travel.

                  “We had a family vacation planned this past summer that ended up being cancelled due to COVID,” she says. “As Option B, we decided to do a family staycation at our parents’ house with our kids and their three cousins. We were all so disappointed that we couldn’t get out of town, so we set out on a journey to make the staycation as fun as it could be.”

                  The family reserved a Kona Ice truck, blew up a bounce house in the backyard, got a pinata, and had a fun family meal catered. 

                  The fun they were able to create in the backyard with their children’s first sleepover inspired them to do something more – launch their own business.

                  The Redmonds are the founders behind Cincy Sleepovers, a luxury sleepover rental company.

                  “We provide all the supplies and decor you need to throw an epic sleepover for your kids or family in the comfort of your own home,” explains Redmond. “We offer various themes and each theme comes with all sorts of supplies and decor items like large canvas tents, inflatable air mattresses, themed throw pillows, tray tables, lanterns, strand globe lights, banners, garland, and other fun accessories.”

                  The husband and wife team behind Cincy Sleepovers additionally work full-time jobs, but enjoy the fun they’re able to create for others, especially during these trying times. 

                  Cincy Sleepovers just recently went live and are touched by the response they’ve seen thus far. “We thought maybe we would get one or two reservations a month,” says Redmond. “Ha! We sold out the entire month of December in our first 48 hours!”

                  When booking a sleepover with Cincy Sleepovers, the first step is to decide how many kits you need. A kit is a tent/mattress/decor combo as well as your theme. 

                  Then, you can reach out to the team at Cincy Sleepovers and choose a date to get a quote. Once your date is set and your deposit is receive, you can pick up your supplies the day before the event and bring them back the day after your event. 

                  “We provide setup resources like photos and checklists so that you know exactly how to style everything,” says Redmond. “Setup is super simple and can usually be done in less than an hour.” 

                  Currently there are seven themes to choose from with Cincy Sleepovers. These are: ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, Pretty in Pink & Gold, Rainbows & Unicorns, America’s Past (Bed) Time (Cincinnati Reds), Who Day Huggle (Cincinnati Bengals), Harry Potter, and Fortnite. 

                  “We also offer clients the ability to create a custom theme,” she explains. “So if parents don’t have a specific theme or color combo in mind that we don’t currently offer, we can curate the accessories specifically for them!”

                  Because Cincy Sleepovers was born out of COVID caution, and because the Redmonds have a high-risk child, they understand and take this pandemic seriously.

                  “Cincy Sleepovers is a way to celebrate safely in the comfort of your own home,” she says. “We have very specific processes in place to ensure all of our materials are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before and after each rental. This is important all the time, but especially important right now.”

                  The disinfection process with Cincy Sleepovers includes: laundering in hot water all sheets, removable pillow covers, and blankets; steamign with a commercial steamer all pillows, plush items, tens, fabric garland, and rugs; disinfecting all hard surfaces like wood, trays, signs, and lanterns with products listed on the EPA’s list of approved SARS-CoV-2 disinfectants; temporarily suspending all in-person services such as kit delivery and pickup and operating under a contactless model until COVID is better controlled; and temporarily limited packages to five tents maximum to encourage gatherings remain small and safe, except for family-only gatherings. 

                  Cincy Sleepovers is a first of its kind in the Queen City. “We are the only company that helps make staying home and partying in your living room better than going out,” says Redmond. 

                  And the couple is only looking up as we head into 2021. Redmond says they’ll be adding new themes like Slumber Spa, Jungle, and Outer Space. They’ll also be offering “add-on” products soon. 

                  “While all of our standard kits come with everything you need, add-ons are extra special items that can really take the party over the top,” she adds. “Think of a projector for watching a movie on the big screen, craft kits, and themed games.” 

                  To learn more about Cincy Sleepovers, visit You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram to see photos of new themes, updates on last-minute reservation openings, and host giveaways. 

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                    The holidays are here and we’re sharing some of the must-haves from a locally-based online boutique. Click here to see more!

                    Allie Meyer’s experiences as an entrepreneur have only further ignited her passion for empowering women of all ages through her fashionable boutique.

                    As the owner of Two Twenty Two Market, Meyer has always had a love for shopping and styling. 

                    “I started in the blogging world about 12 years ago, sharing outfits I would create and my favorite shops. Once I became a new mom, I quickly realized how much I missed the connection with other women who shared my same love of fashion. TwoTwentyTwo Market was born.”

                    TwoTwentyTwo Market is an online boutique bringing stylish clothes for women of all shapes, sizes and walks of life. Their main mission is to inspire confidence and provide empowerment. The trendy boutique offers unique clothing, jewelry and small ticket items such as coffee cups, koozies, wristlets and candles. 

                    The boutique’s unique name derived from Meyer’s desire to include her two kids. “It just so happened that my kids both have birthdays on the twenty-second and the name was born,” says Meyer. “They are the reason I strive to become the best.”

                    When it comes to the holiday season, Meyer wants to help you check off as many of those names on your list that you can. 

                    “While we are mostly a women’s clothing boutique, we like to offer fun accessories and giftables, too,” she says. “Our 12oz tumblers make for a great gift for that coffee or wine lover in your life. These insulated cups keep your drink hot or cold and fit perfectly into a cup holder.” 

                    You can find a variety of colors and prints to choose from in the tumblers. Matching slim can koozies are available for beer or spiked seltzer lovers. 

                    If your gift list includes those who aren’t quite into fashion but still appreciate a good accessory, Two Twenty Two Market also carries a variety of jewelry and winter accessories.

                    Currently, some of the top selling products at Two Twenty Two Market include the Here For Your Jogger Pants and Merry Holiday Sweatshirt. “People are staying in this holiday season, so we want to make sure you look great while being cozy,” she adds. 

                    Other must-haves from Two Twenty Two Market include the winter beanies. “These are a must for the cold winter days ahead,” says Meyer. “These are fleece lined, with a fun pompom on top, and come in a variety of popular prints, like animal print, buffalo plaid, and tie dye.”

                    First-time shoppers with Two Twenty Two Market can save 10% off their purchase with code CHIC. You can also join the email list to get a first look at the new arrivals and exclusive deals. 

                    While Two Twenty Two Market doesn’t have a physical store, you can shop online at and save on shipping by choosing contactless pickup in Deer Park, Ohio.

                    To follow along with Two Twenty Two Market, find them on Facebook<> and Instagram<>.

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                      In a world where there's an increasing demand on moms to be parent, teacher, coach and all the other things, one Ohio-based business is here to help.

                      Juggle LLC was founded by two sets of sisters, from left: CEO Annie Kentris Arthur; Amber Lear Nolan, chief recruiting officer; COO Ashlee Lear Giannetti; and Emily Kentris Music, chief communications officer

                      In a COVID-19 world, moms throughout the country have been tasked with working from home, teaching from home, cleaning (even more than usual), and a plethora of other duties that have only been heightened as stay-at-home orders and quarantines seem never-ending. 

                      To help alleviate the struggle many moms are facing, pre- and post-COVID, there’s one mobile childcare app that’s here to help: Juggle. 

                      “We offer childcare, pet care, and homeschool help,” explains Juggle Co-Founder Amber Nolan. “Juggle connects local families to college students, recent grads, and young professionals who have been recruited, vetted, and interviewed by a mom.”

                      The Juggle app and website allows you to see who their friends have used and reviewed, acting as an instant friend referral. Juggle allows families to look, book, and pay through the app.

                      “We strive to make finding reliable and trusted childcare easy for families,” she adds.

                      The inspiration for Juggle came from four Ohio moms: Amber Nolan, Ashlee Giannetti, Annie Arthur, and Emily Music. They are two sets of sisters and best friends who all ran into the same childcare problem and decided to find a solution together.

                      The four founders behind Juggle all grew up in a small town in Northwest Ohio. 

                      “Raised by four hard working parents and entrepreneurs themselves, they taught us that we could do anything if we put our minds to it,” says Nolan. “That is exactly what we did!”

                      The four of them say that without the support of their parents and the rest of their family and friends, they wouldn’t have been able to launch Juggle and make it what it is today. 

                      While Juggle prides itself on helping to alleviate the childcare problems encountered by many moms, the organization also offers support to the communities it’s a part of.

                      “We love to be a part of school, church, and community philanthropies and events,” says Nolan. “We are a female-founded company and love to partner with other female founded companies to share our passions.” 

                      To help with the increased demand on parents this year, Juggle has adapted its services to accommodate those needs.

                      “When the pandemic hit in early March, Juggle had to pivot,” explains Nolan. “We considered ourselves a date night app but quickly adapted and evolved into a service to essential workers for childcare and homeschool help. We formed corporate partnerships with hospital systems to help their families during this time. The need and demand for consistent care increased as well as the demand for homeschool help with so many schools shifting to hybrid and virtual.”

                      As the New Year approaches, the team at Juggle says they’re looking forward to a healthier 2021 for all Juggle users and expanding to more markets to help even more busy families.

                      To learn more about Juggle, visit You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram.