Why Flowers

What a flower, beauty and fun filled weekend this little family had in Hillsville, VA!  We  hung by the river... 

I did some fun Mother's Day arrangements using flowers from my mother-in-laws garden and we all got to relax a little!

As the mom of 4 YOUNG kids, I sometimes (read several times a day), feel myself going nuts!!  It is so easy to get bogged down in the tediousness of the  bijillion diaper changes, tons of meals & snacks which turn into tons of food & crumbs everywhere, LAUNDRY, errands, etc. of each day.  Often, when I look up and out of our little bubble, I find hurt and hardship and sadness going on in the world.  Despair and a feeling of being simply overwhelmed can sometimes totally overtake me.

It was in one of these moments of feeling drained of hope, that I stumbled upon a picture (on Pinterest...of all the productive things I could have been doing during nap time!) of the most beautiful bouquet I had ever seen.  It was wild and fresh and lush and made me smile.  I found more and more beautiful flowers and smiled a bit more and more.  By the time the babies woke up, I was magically feeling refreshed.

I don't want to ignore the hard parts of life but I do want to choose to see the beauty of life more.  For me, flowers are a way of helping me see the simple beauty that DOES exist.

As I have started to pay more attention to flowers, I am finding them everywhere!  I find myself smiling when I see them growing wild on the side of the road.  I find myself loading the kids up to go search for them in the woods.  I find myself giddy with excitement as the little seeds that we planted are popping up.  Then, I look up and see my daughter giddy with excitement!  She is outside in her bare feet, the babies are playing in the grass and we are all here, enjoying the beauty of the spring day.  And I, gasp, am truly in the moment, enjoying the sweetness of getting to be the mother of these beautiful babies.

So, I have become flower wild!  I have been reading flower books, taking flower classes, talking to flower farmers and designers.  I have been planting and arranging and selling :) as many flowers as I can.

Yes, there have been late nights arranging, nap times filled with "work" and Saturdays spent begging my tired husband to hang with the kids while I till the beds.  But, there have been many more family tromps through the woods gathering flowers, kids with muddy feet digging in the dirt and cold beers with my husband at the end of a productive day.

In the end, my hope is that this little business of mine will not be something that I do in addition to being a mother.  It is my hope that it will become my style of mothering. I hope that it will help me live in the moment and to appreciate and see the beauty in these fleeting days of being a mom to 4 YOUNG kids.  To focus on the good and to bring as many flowers into the lives of my little family and in turn, into the lives of as many people as possible!!

So, please follow along in our adventure.  I hope this will be a place to find a little piece of beauty in a day that may need it :)

love love

Botanical Journal: Tulip

Botanical Name: Tulipa
Blooms Locally: Mid-Lat April
Flower Meaning: Depends on the color; red symbolizes true love, purple represents loyalty, white tulips say "I'm Sorry"

Last fall, we planted a few rare varieties of tulips with great anticipation for what we would harvest in the spring. With an early warm streak, we began to see green sprouts much earlier than anticipated, and we worried that we wouldn't get to use our precious tulips in our spring bouquets like we had planned. Luckily, Mother Nature found her balance and we harvested breathtaking Salmon Parrot Tulips (pictured below) in time to feature them in a few event arrangements last month. We also grew Professor Rontgen and Charming Beauty Tulips and completely fell in love. We were so impressed with the ease of growing these beauties that we are already stocking up on tulip bulbs for next year!

Have you ever heard of "Tulip Mania"? It was an economic crash that occurred in the 1600s, caused by a sudden surge in demand for...tulip bulbs. In 1593, Turkey introduced the Dutch to tulips. The Dutch went wild for tulips, and the bulbs were widely sought after for a premium price. A viral genetic alteration emerged, causing vibrant streaks of colors on tulip petals, which increased their value tenfold. Gardeners began seeking certain viral strains for their gardens, and the rarity of these strains coupled with bulb buyers scooping up as many bulbs as possible to capitalize on the bubble, initiated a twenty-fold increase in value! People were trading land, even their homes, for tulip bulbs. By 1636, tradesmen, were indulging in frantic trading of the bulbs - think wall street of  tulip bulbs - with some bulbs changing hands up to 10 times during in a single day. Needless to say, this resulted in one of the largest market collapses in modern history. By 1637, speculators could no longer afford to buy the bulbs, demand plummeted along with the price of tulip bulbs, leaving many to suffer from the resulting economic depression upon realizing that they had traded their homes for garden fodder. 

We love using tulips in our arrangements. Their symmetrical petals, bold colors and gorgeous shape uniquely enhance bouquets and arrangements. What are your favorite tulip varieties?

 

Sophie+Co Washington, DC Wedding Flowers
Sophie+Co Washington, DC Wedding Flowers

Photos by Becca Olcott

Sophie+Co Washington, DC Wedding Flowers
Sophie+Co Washington, DC Wedding Flowers

Botanical Journal: Apple Blossom

Botanical Name: Malus pumila
Blooms Locally: Mid-Late April, Early May
Flower Meaning: "Heady Love, Peace, Sensuality, and Fertility"

One of the most cultivated fruit trees in the world, apple trees originated in Central Asia and were brought to America by early European settlers. Apple trees are now a staple of the American landscape and their fruit is a staple of the American diet. These trees thrive here in Maryland, and while the fall harvest is often a ubiquitous time for these trees, we are particularly found of their spring blossoms. They typically bloom in shades of pale pink to white. In order to successfully pollinate apple trees, you must plant at least two trees of different varieties in close proximity that flower at the same time.

Apple blossoms (and trees) were honored by the ancient Celts as a symbol of love, and they would adorn their bedrooms with these blossoms to entice a romantic evening. The apple blossom is also symbolic of long life, and "it stands for the concept of life continuing, even after we endure a 'death' during the winter of our lives.

We love using these blossoms in spring arrangements. Their 5-petal blooms grow in gorgeous clusters on the the large, arching branches and their subtle pink tone is a lovely accent in any setting. Do you have an apple tree in your yard? Have you ever used apple blossom cuttings in an arrangement?

Sophie+Co Washington, DC Wedding Flowers
Sophie+Co.April11,2017byBeccaOlcottPhotography-13.jpg
Sophie+Co Washington, DC Wedding Flowers
Sophie+Co Wedding Flowers Washington DC
Sophie+Co Washington, DC Wedding Flowers

Photos by Becca Olcott