Last spring, not the nearly non-existent one we had this year but the one before, JR and I were on a trip with our Farm Bureau friends and us ladies were talking about fun business ideas while we traversed southeast Texas on a charter bus. My friend AJ mentioned she’d talked to someone about having a girl’s night type event at her place and it struck a chord with me because I’d had a similar idea. If both of us were thinking it, how far off the mark could we be? I mulled it over and toyed with a lot of different ideas, but I suffer from a fatal flaw…I underestimate and discount myself constantly. My mom said when I was a kid I often played alone and when she asked me why I said, because I don’t think they want to play with me. As an adult I’ve heard some say I can be hard to know and, well, cold for a lack of a better word and it makes me seem stuck up. It’s not that I think I’m better than anyone at all. It’s not that I don’t want to make friends. I’m just stuck in that same mindset…why would they want to be friends with me? Why would they want to talk to me? It bleeds into my work whether I want it too or not. Why would someone want to come to my farm? What do we have to offer? Why would someone take a chance and spend money with us versus my competitors? Why would they want to come spend a girl’s night on the farm? I’m working with myself on it, but old habits die hard.
Well, I finally decided to stop second guessing myself and have the event. If I got ten people I’d be happy. My original goal was twenty. I didn’t want to get my hopes up because I didn’t want my feelings hurt. Facebook excitement and interest doesn’t always manifest into sales. I felt like I had a good thing. I like weeknights, because a lot of times in my house the weekends are saved for family times. I thought about hors d'oeuvres and then decided if I was going to go to that trouble a small supper would be just as easy. Slowly the ticket sales started rolling in. Ten turned to twenty. Twenty turned into thirty. Succulents are so on trend right now, I decided instead of doing my original idea of a large planter for a porch we’d plant succulents in tea cups. I saw it on Pinterest and thought it was so adorable. I ordered thirty-five plants and tried to cut it off there. Then I had people message me so excited and I ended up pushing the number to forty, unable to turn them away. Luckily Walmart had some reasonably priced. I looked for paper products that would go with my vision and the mood I wanted to create but found nothing I loved at a reasonable price. Then I decided if I was going to spend the money why not get real plates that I could use for future events (if this one went well). We were using china tea cups, and I needed more, so while I was combing thrift stores for those I picked up plates too. I love the idea of mixing and matching, reusing something old, and china added the elegance I was looking for but the mix-matched gave it shabby chic air that made it fun and not stuffy. For the millionth time I was thanking God for the time I got to spend with my grandmother. While she was making me learn proper manners, flower arranging, and public speaking as a child I thought it was terribly boring and a lot of work for nothing. Now I appreciate it more than I can say. I use those skills so much. Whenever she had an event we always just cut flowers from her yard. I call it the Doris Herring School of Design. My magnolias were blooming so I cut all the blooms I could reach on my tree and poached the rest from my father-in-law’s tree. Finally the evening came and I could see as we were setting up we had it right. Everything looked exactly how it did in my head. I can not thank my team enough for helping me pull it off. JR for being the muscle behind my ideas, Melissa my chief idea bouncer, my step-dad Wayne for cooking, the lovely chicadee Mrs. Pate for taking pictures, and Gracie and Anna for running around that night for me.
Most of all though, I have to thank my customers for being awesome. We had such a fun night. It was relaxed and simple. Everyone was in a fun playful mood and seemed open for anything. I knew it was going to be good when I stood to welcome everyone and people cheered. We had such a wide assortment of ages and types and I loved it. We even had a 92 year old woman come and say she had a wonderful time. It was above and beyond my expectations. I had a really good time and I was hosting. How many events do you host that you get to enjoy too? That night JR said, you need to do more of these, this is where your strength is, and that’s what we’re planning. Hopefully we’ll be planting sunflowers as soon as it rains and when we do we’re planning an event during their bloom. I’d also love to have maybe two in the fall and possibly one in November if the weather holds. So if you missed it and want to join in on the fun or if you came and loved it and want to come back be on the lookout for the invite on Facebook!