Monday, 1 April 2013

On following your dream...

Once upon a time, when my children were babies, I made wedding flowers from home in whatever space I could find for them.  The kitchen table, a table in the shade opposite the back door, even the garage.  And how I wished, with all my heart, for my very own shop.  For years, I had a picture in my mind, of how I'd turn it into an emporium of seasonal flowers and plants, selling candles, antique containers, how I'd pile it high with apple boxes planted with herbs... and everyone who came in would be transported into the little world we'd created there.

It took a few years like these things do, but the business grew and the dream became reality - amongst stark warnings from those who knew better, that you had to work almost 24/7 to make a shop successful.  But the time was right and with my husband Bob, between us we decided to give it a go.

It was hugely rewarding, hard work and an amazing opportunity.  First I should point out, my husband never has been and never will be a florist - HA!  Just the idea!  However, he amused many of our customers with his unusual range of man-bouquets.  (He's an ex-engineer, ex-pilot and does things like fixing old landrovers - you get the picture).

But we worked like crazy for two years.  Us Mums who work full time... it's sometimes necessary, but believe me, we all know how hard it is. But I get huge satisfaction from saying we did it.  Did it well, too.  For a while - until the recession struck.  Then yet again, it was time to rethink our way forward.

These days, I'm lucky. We live in a beautiful village at the foot of the South Downs.  The babies are teenagers and there are dogs, cats, chickens and the sheep, Dave and Claire in the garden.  My husband teaches teenagers to drive and I make my wedding flowers in a wonderful old farm building a few yards from my back door.  And in between, I write!

Though these days, much as I love flowers, I have a new dream.  Of finding a publisher for my books.  I love to write stories that I hope will touch others in some way.  Stories that just won't go away.  And I'm hoping, that if I'm lucky and persevere and hone my craft and don't give up, like last time, it will eventually come true...

And here's a little picture of Spring, in case you've forgotten what it looks like!  Happy Easter x

Bernard and baby Dave

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