Flowers: Bouquets of Joy

First farmers market of the season this year for us was the Downtown Peoria, IL Riverfront Farmers Market. I think we stopped by the second week when flooding was still an issue pushing it over a few blocks to higher ground. It’s one of my favorites for a few years and I’ve been to more than 50 in that time.

I simply love farmers markets. One day I’ll write an entry with my top 10 favorite reasons to love farmers markets. This one has a great variety which are my favorite.

I’m not a produce purist – only wanting produce at my farmers markets – as many people prefer. I love it all. I love the sense of community, creativity everywhere from outright plants to jewelry, and different cultural influences that equal new foods to try.

Here’s a brand new reason to love this Peoria Riverfront Farmers Market. It is captured in this image of my 10-year-old son, Liam, holding a special bouquet for his grandma we purchased on the way to see his grandma at the hospital. She’s better now and back home, but we missed her that day as she was with a doctor, so this is Liam holding them ready to give them to her on a sunny Saturday morning.

We left her this beautiful bouquet of flowers reminiscent of flowers she has in her own yard where I grew up back home. It seemed like it’d be a welcome reminder since she wasn’t home for some of this spring bloom.

Who can’t appreciate the scent of a lilac or three wafting through the air for that precious couple weeks in May?

Here’s what makes this a particularly special bouquet. I saw people walking around the market with these eye-popping bouquets and when I spotted them at a booth, I was thrilled. One of the only ones left, though, had only greens. I was ready to pay my $5 (so low a price as you can see!) and asked if I could pay more to have her add a sprig or two of lilac since these were going to my mom who loves lilacs…explaining why that meant something on this day.

Without expecting anything special, this amazing woman refused to let me take this handful of greens until she added all you see here. I gave them more money doubling the price knowing what she did deserved more than that and they didn’t want it! I left extra cash anyway…$10 and it could have been much more than that.

In fact, once she was done – she came out from behind the table, gave me a hug, looked in my eyes and said she hoped my mom got better. Precious people. They add beauty to this planet that virtually all of us yearn for and I won’t soon forget it. In fact, I’ll never forget it. ❤️