home about us advertise with us subscribe to Jonesboro Occasions submit an event contact download the 2008 datebook
give a gift subscription

the occasions lady and

A Late-Blooming Bouquet
by Audrey Poff, illustration by Brittney Guest

When I was growing up, young girls didn’t get flowers like they do today.

Your mom might get flowers from your dad or a friend of the family might send flowers to your home for a special occasion or holiday, but kids typically did not get flowers. They were expensive and required a little planning since they had to be ordered from the florist in advance. Big box stores and grocery stores did not carry flowers.

I suppose that’s why I have no trouble remembering my first bouquet of flowers. I was 18 years old and living at home with my parents in Blytheville. I had been asked on a date by a young man in my graduating class. We were both attending a community college in our hometown at the time. The day of our date, the doorbell rang and a local flower shop employee handed me a beautiful vase filled with a dozen red roses. They had been sent by my date before he came to pick me up that evening.

I was never sure exactly how to take it, but I remember my mother asking me who the flowers were from when she got home. Her response in a somewhat jokingly tone: “Poor boy.”

The roses were beautiful and we had fun on our date, but then we both went separate ways. It would be 25 years later before our paths would cross again, but we married two years later on the top of Mt. Magazine with all four kids at our side.

Rodney likes to tell people that it took 25 years for those flowers to work. Maybe it did. We both learned a lot in those 25 years about who we are, what’s important to us and commitment.

He still sends me red roses – sometimes for special occasions and at other times for no occasion, but each time it reminds me of the thoughtful young man who was the first to send me flowers, and how in God’s timing, it all came together better than the storyline in a Nicholas Sparks novel.