It all began on the hot and dusty sidelines of a girl’s soccer match as a conversation between two moms. We were lamenting the never-ending social pull that continually took our daughters out of our lives and the harsh reality that WE were not who they preferred to hang out with anymore. In addition, we were concerned about the constant pressure and stress they felt as teenagers growing up, and we wanted to gift them a small break.
Flowers. I will warn you right now; this is not a story about flowers.
My friend had been to a pick-your-own-bouquet flower farm and had the idea that we could go there with our daughters to reconnect and get away from the daily turmoil of teenage/mom life.
Miraculously, our schedules all aligned one Saturday morning, and we set out for Meadowsong Flower Farm. Carefully cultivated into a rolling meadow with views of the snow-capped mountains in the distance, Holly and her husband Rand own the farm.
Pulling up to the farm, we were all silent as the natural beauty of the setting overwhelmed our senses. Thanks in part to Holly’s BA in Art History and her desire for life design, grounding, and connection, every inch of the farm is a spiritual delight.
Walking in, Holly herself greeted us with a warm smile and genuine appreciation for our mother/daughter group. She took us to a small cart that housed the unique glass jars with her logo, buckets to hold our chosen stems, and clippers we could borrow to snip. After a brief lesson in the best snipping techniques, she turned us loose to begin creating our piece of artwork.
Never-ending rows of flowers burst in front of us! Each section offered various shapes, colors, and sizes to take in with our eyes, noses, and fingers. At first, we were all a bit bewildered by the plethora of choices and wondered how we would even begin to choose which flowers to put into our buckets!
Slowly, we all let go of our need to control, and the flowers began calling to us. As we immersed ourselves in the natural element of the farm, the textures and colors began to open our hearts and awaken our creative souls.
I don’t know how long we snipped because I lost complete track of time. Eventually, our buckets overflowing, we all decided our pieces of art were complete.
Just as I promised, this is not a story about flowers. What happened next brings this point home.
In her book, “Love 2.0 Finding Happiness and Health in Moments of Connection”, Barbara Fredrickson discusses the beauty of creating OTL’s (Opportunities to Love) and how this leads to more health, happiness, and wisdom.
I walked to the cart to return the clippers when I experienced a moment that will forever stay etched on my soul. Holly was heading out into the field, and I felt the need to open up to her.
I will admit, as an introvert, this is not easy for me. But in the classic 5,4,3,2,1 style of Mel Robbins, I looked Holly in the eyes and told her how much JOY I had experienced being on her farm and dancing in the flowers.
OTL. Opportunity to love.
Holly slowly brought one hand to her heart. Her voice was shaking as she said, “Thank you. Thank you for sharing that with me.” Despite the protective cover of her sunglasses, I sensed tears. For just a moment, we shared more. We went beyond the usual niceties of a casual conversation and let our hearts do the talking. We even shared a hug.
I don’t know if my daughter was watching, but as I reflected on this moment later in the day, I realized that these are the lessons we can teach without words.
The flower outing held many moments of connection and opened the door for an OTL. Immersing ourselves in the beauty of nature brought us all a little closer together and a little closer to the wonder of joy, awe, and love.
In the car on the drive home, the air felt a little lighter. I think we were all breathing just a little slower and a little deeper. The aroma of the flowers tickled our noses and reminded us how healing love is.
Holly is an artist, a lover of nature, and an entrepreneur who saw a need to bring JOY into the world. If there is ONE thing that I can take away from this experience, it is this question: how can I bring JOY and LOVE into my entrepreneurial journey?
I hope this is a question you begin to ask yourself daily. And, open your heart and eyes for OTL’s!