Small Business Spotlight: Graham mother-daughter duo gives old buses new life

Small Business Spotlight

GRAHAM, N.C. — For Megan Donahue and her mother Lisa, Live Simply is more than a name.

The mother-daughter duo purchase and refurbish old school or church buses, and give them a new life from their Graham driveway.

“Our whole goal was to hit 10, I don’t think we’ll be able to stop. We absolutely love it and we spend so much quality time together,” Megan said.

So far they’ve renovated seven. Megan explained that interest in the buses has increased during the pandemic, with more people shut inside.

“It’s freedom, there’s 20 windows to look out of so it’s not like you’ll get bored. You can work from home just about anywhere so it gives people the ability to travel and work.”

Megan and Lisa gut and clean the buses before giving them a name, and decorating accordingly.

Some are themed, including Buster, a mobile movie theater, complete with a popcorn machine.

The Donahues began their first project in 2017, after Megan lost her brother Micheal two years prior. She was inspired to create something to help people get off the grid.

“His whole life motto was just live the simplest life possible, it doesn’t take much to make people happy, you don’t need materialistic things so to give people the opportunity to live this lifestyle is the biggest legacy we could have ever imagined,” Megan explained. “Any of these buses that they travel, in my eyes it’s giving him the opportunity to travel to those places as well.”

Lisa already has her dream bus planned out, the biggest project yet. She hopes to include a shower and generator, helping people get off the grid during their travels.

“The name is Spartacus, the reason being Spartacus was one of the characters in Michael’s favorite movie,” she said.

Even more important than the finished product is the time mother and daughter spend together cleaning, painting and polishing.

“There are no words, I was really fortunate I had two great children, just the fact that we get this time together really means a lot,” Lisa said.

You can find more information about Live Simply here.

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