Friday, June 8, 2012

It's not just about the flowers...

Farmers' Market June 2, 2012

Saturday mornings in Petersburg are special. It's a time for us to connect with people whether or not they are our customers.

Farmers' Market June 2, 2012 (1)

People stop to look and ask to take pictures of the flowers. They stop to tell us how their week was (good or bad). They look to the time at the market as a time to make friends, share, and oftentimes find comfort in a world where the human connection has been replaced by email, facebook, twitter, and texting.

Farmers' Market June 2, 2012 (2)

To us, being at the market is more than just selling flowers and soap. It's about building relationships. Making friends! Connecting with people.

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We go back year after year looking forward to seeing the children grow, dogs age, new additions to families, new excitement, new adventures for people, retirements, and even sadness. Life is about learning and growing. Being at the market has allowed us to make so many personal connections.

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Connections with our customers as well as other vendors. It's a joy to see people year after year and to grow with them and they grow with us. They support us and we support them. It's about building a community.

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Today, many people don't know the farmers that grow their food. What a shame. I challenge you to know your farmer. Go to the Market and talk to the vendors. Ask them questions. Build those relationships. Ask how they grow the veggies. Ask about their husbands and wives. Ask about their kids. Get to know them and care about their success. Invest in your communities' future by shopping local. Support the farmers. Support the small businesses.

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Grow your community! Share in the success when a farmer or vendor at the market can grow their business into a storefront or a restaurant or whatever. You helped to make them a success.

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I don't mean to preach to you, but I want you to know that it means so much to us to have our customers come back year after year. To love us and support us.

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I had a gentleman to come to the table last week, smell my soaps, and look at me and ask "Are you an angel or something?" I looked at him stunned, not knowing where that came from. We began to talk about the soaps and then about our love of dogs and how he felt when he lost his and how much it had made him ache. We teared up together! We connected! It was God's plan for us to meet. He and his wife left our table comforted. He left me comforted too!

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Another customer came asking for my mom. She wanted to visit. She always visits. She brings her dog, Taco. Taco is not always friendly might I add. But, she stops by every week looking to hug my mom and talk. And, Taco rides in the convertible...

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People stop to visit Charlie now! Other vendors like Alan, give him love!

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So, my point is that we are selling more than just flowers. We are getting more than just money every week. We make new friends. We make new connections. We learn. We grow.

This week, take some time to invest in your community. Go meet a farmer or a soap lady or a baker. When someone at work is making a craft, support them. When someone is selling something for their kids' school, support them. Give it away. It comes back around very quickly.

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