Today on ‘Totally Dignified Moments in Floristry’

An open letter to publicly thank Mr. Douglas Wark at the Glen Lawrence Golf Club for being so gracious when a certain florist busted right into his office while he was in the middle of a meeting .

Imagine, if you will, those koolaid commercials from the 1980s. Everyone is having a nice and normal day, until suddenly, a man dressed as a big red jug of koolaid kicks through the wall and yells ‘Oh YEAH!’

Except it’s a frazzled looking short lady who says ‘OH NO!’  … and possibly has some leaves in her hair at this point in proceedings.


Of course on my way OUT of the parking lot, I found the sign with the arrow, clearly pointing to the entrance I was supposed to have used in the first place.

Thanks to Doug, the couple he was meeting with, and the friendly bar and restaurant staff at the Glen Lawrence for being so understanding, getting the  florist to the right door at the right time… and even helping her unload the van!

PS. The bride emailed me on Monday, and she was delighted.


*Screenshot of 1978 ‘Castles and Knights’ kool aid commercial courtesy Wikipedia- under fair use license

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Civic holiday bouquet giveaway draw

blush spray roseWho’s got two thumbs and has to work on the holiday weekend?

This guy!

You too?

Turn that frown upside down- you could win a free bouquet this Sat. July 30th!

How to enter/ rules rules rules:

  1. Leave a comment here on the blog, or post on our facebook wall– ‘I love flowers’ ‘I’m stuck at home all weekend and I wish I had some flowers’ ‘Sage Flowers, I think I love you’ etc. Be as creative or boring as you like. Just keep it clean- my mom is on my facebook!
  2. Entries close at 3pm on Friday July 29th
  3. At 4pm Friday July 29th, I will draw a name from our ‘pool of commenters’ and  announce the winner on the blog and facebook.
  4. Winner (or ‘representative’) must collect their bouquet at the shop (inside Safari Cake Boutique 842 Gardiners Rd.) between 10am and 3pm on Sat July 30th. (we’ve got a wedding underway and won’t be able to deliver)
  5. Bouquet is approx value $40, ‘ as-is’, based on availability, and cannot be converted to cash. No rain checks, this is just a one time thing for pickup on Saturday July 30th. If you aren’t available to collect, you CAN give your bouquet to a friend who is able to pick up during the above times.
  6. We’re running this contest on the blog becasue facebook has strict rules for business page contests- especially when asking for likes or shares.  You didn’t hear it from me, but if we get 5 more page likes and/or 25 shares on the post about this contest… we’ll probably do a draw for a 2nd prize bouquet worth approx $30😉 Not sayin’. Just sayin’.


Whether you spend it under the sun by the lake, or under the flickering glow of fluorescent lights at work… wishing you an awesome Aug 1st long weekend!

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The existential crisis garden tour

My garden is a hot mess.

welcome to the jungle

I apparently  only do adult life in the form of weekly ordeals, so the garden has been on red ordeal alert for approximately 104 weeks.   I busted up my hand in fall 2014 and didn’t get any fall cleanup done.Then I spent the spring and summer venturing onto the deck, looking at the jungle for a couple of seconds, and running back inside.

I didn’t get much gardening done, but I stayed up late and partied a lot  with my old friends shame, guilt, regret, and ‘remember that time when HORTICULTURE SCHOOL? Remember every decision ever? Why the hell do you do any of the things you do?’ Good times.

This year? Honestly, I  don’t want to jinx it by overthinking things… but I am remembering to water things. And add  compost. I put in an appearance at the landscape supplies lot. I am machete-ing weeds,cutting  edges and banging down truckloads of soil. I’m using super lazy cheats, like cardboard garden beds. There are still pockets and corners of burdock and thistle. But it’s fun again.


I found these stawberries’ ancestors growing by our garden gate when we bought the house in the 90s!

I have killed a lot of plants. Legit, spent-money- on -them, adult homeowner career lady plants.  (Beautiful white garden rose bush, I let you down, and I am so so sorry.)

But others? My oddball collection of salvaged, traded, and ‘founds’? The ones who have been in my life through work, projects, a move, all that life stuff? They have been there waiting for me at the end of the sad grey tunnel. (Behind a lot of really tall weeds.)

Want a tour?

mow your driveway

I know, I know, I should mow my damn driveway. You would not believe the temptation to crop the weeds out of these photos. Not today! Meet Hoppy the hops plant. He will try to take over your entire yard. He’s great for gates… and for hops if you’re doing a brewer-couple’s wedding flowers. He is, however, bred for looks, not beer.

porch onion

Porch onion. I love him. I grew allium and garlic chives from seed back in the early 2000s. They are now everywhere. Spencer says I can keep this guy. He reminds me of the radish growing through the concrete in Japan. (the allium. Not Spencer)  Allium come in so many shapes and sizes- plant bulbs in the fall for spring/summer blooms. Those big tall Dr Seuss looking poofballs on a stick? Allium. Also available in tiny and yellow.



I had to cut back some over-enthusiastic geranium from a client’s walkway a couple years ago. I took the cuttings home and planted them beside our steps. The lady who owned these has since passed away- I didn’t know her very well, but I’m friends with her son, and I like thinking that I’m carrying something forward in her memory. I should see if her son would like some…



Another survivor of my ‘let’s grow local wildflowers from seed like a real horticulturist’ days. Columbines. (aquilegia) from one or two plants to whole clumps. Growing perennials from seed is a real exercise in patience. Gardening in general, I guess. “It is only tot he gardener that time is a friend” *


These frigging poppies. I love these. They were in bloom for my birthday this year and it felt like a sign. They spend the whole year as raggedy ass thistle looking leaves… except for one glorious week where they put on a show. Big, silky, the brightest orange red you’ll ever see. These came to me as three strays from my gardening boss’ garden. And now I have billions. They’re my crowning glory.

sage flowers


Also a surprise that felt like a sign as I figure out the next few steps of the rest of my life- my sage plant. It survived the winter. And now it’s growing Sage Flowers.

PS. *That quote back there? Turns out I’d only ever heard half of it.

“It is only to the gardener that time is a friend, giving each year more than he steals. ”

-Beverley Nichols

Well how about that.

Enjoy your weekend, and happy June! I hope it brings you  more friends than thieves, and that you get to play in the dirt🙂


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Monday bleurgs- we want SPRING

*Disclaimer disclaimer, not my garden!* In my wildest dreams!

For anyone else with the Monday blues… a wonderful garden timelapse from You Grow Girl to remind us of that time when the snow went away and the plants grew. Maybe it will happen again.

Garden timelapse video from instant spring therapy

If you are interested in growing anything– whether you have a patch of ground to call your own, or a little plastic bucket on a fire escape, I cannot recommend You Grow Girl (and owner/author Gayla Traill) highly enough. Under the tagline ‘Gardening for the People’, Gayla will show you how to get your own plants going from scratch. She emphasizes affordable, environmentally-friendly techniques for the low budget and/or definitely not Martha Stewart types among us. I loved this site when I was an absolute beginner, and I still love it  now with a few years of horticulture under my belt. Not that you’d guess from looking at my sad, neglected garden. Maybe 2016 is the year I get my act together!

Cover art for You Grow Girl by Gayla Trail.

Cover art for You Grow Girl by Gayla Trail.

PS. Whoever has my beloved , tattered copy of her first book, please give it back. Or I shall haunt you for all time.



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I pity the Fool

Happy April 1st!

Jane (at at Safari Cakes ) and I spent a pleasant last day of March experimenting with some different wedding cake-and-flower techniques. One of my contributions was this composite rose.

Check it out on our wee rustic cake,

cake with composite rose

and side by side with a Monsieur Michel’s faux peony.

composite rose and silk peony

Composites aren’t silk flowers, but they’re definitely not as nature intended: you build these roses by taking apart 4 real roses and reassembling the petals into a monster bloom. Back in the day, this was done by wiring and taping each fragile petal (gives me stress hives just thinking about it) In 2016, it is all about the glue. Or ‘floral adhesive’, as I guess I should say.

Of course I’ve got fakes on my mind as it is April Fool’s Day! Anyone fall for any good ones? I was pretty tickled by the The National Library and Archive Canada’s  release of Wolverine’s WWII journals and photos. You can  check it out here- OUTSTANDING prankstership, ladies and gentlemen!

national post photo

Photo via The National Post

Taking the cake for me this April Fool’s, though, would have to be this new hipster airline connecting Shoreditch in London with al the scenesters worldwide.  They let you into the VIP lounge based on your tats and beard, and bookings are via Instagram. photo

Photo via

Oh and in late breaking news, expedia announces new competing airline Ginge-air, for redheads only, and Queen’s University right here in the Limestone City has successfully launched its first suborbital rocket from the new Belle Island Space Flight Facility. Until next year, jokers!

Serious about sending flowers? Give us a shout at 613-545-9229 or order online at


PS. I’m still a little upset at how many people called/messaged me to ask if I had really opened a yoga studio for cats 2 years ago.


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And Wild Horses

Took a 5 day trip to Chincoteague Island VA with Mr. S.

Wild ponies. The Lighthouse. The forest. The Atlantic.

chincoteague poniesAtlantic

We arrived waaay later than expected on Friday night, but this meant we got to discover where we’d ended up as the sun rose on Saturday morning. Magic.

We had  the whole place virtually to ourselves since Chincoteague doesn’t open for the season until US Spring break. Many shops and restaurants are still closed, or only open Thurs-Sun, and you can’t book tours. Honestly? We LOVED it.

lighthouseheronAssateague island forest

Things to do on Chincoteague in March:

Proceed directly to Assateague Island and look for wild ponies, obviously.

ponies 2

You may also enjoy the Island Museum if it’s open for ‘history weekend’

Famous Pizza and Subs- PICKLE FRIES.

Ray’s Shanty for seafood about 20 min off the island (weekends only in early spring- closed for the winter)

The Village restaurant on the island for seafood closer to home. If you are so inclined, eat the scallops.

The NASA visitor centre for Wallops Flight Facility on nearby Wallops Island, (we missed a rocket launch by a WEEK. Booooo)


A one hour road trip to the Evolution craft brewery in Salisbury. We missed the tours, but consoled ourselves with amazing local food, a flight and a pint. It was Spence’s birthday, and the birthday kid may or may not have left the premises with a couple growlers of his favourite. He was chauffeured by station wagon for a nap on the beach, haha.

Island Creamery for ice cream. SEA SALT CARAMEL I WANT TO LIVE IN YOU.

If you can’t find wild ponies, don’t be sad – there are tame ponies at the McDonald’sparking lot near the bridge to the wildlife refuge, and they will be your friends if you buy them 50 cents worth of corn feed.

Things we did not do, but looked or sounded rad:

Bring binoculars. Bring a proper beach blanket for picnics and or naps.

Rent a bike.

Go check out Crisfield on the Chesapeake side, take a ferry to Smith Island, and eat an entire Smith Island cake.

Saigon Village restaurant, apparently the place to eat on Chincoteague if you have overdone it on the seafood. Or the pickle fries.

Random things to know as you head south: the Penn Turnpike is the worst and it costs $15. Ordering tea is weird. Tea is “hot tea” and iced tea is “sweet tea” or “unsweetened” tea. Anything sweet is super sweet. People will call you honey and baby but it’s not creepy at all and is genuinely friendly. Ordering food will always result in too much food. But sometimes you’re your own worst influence.  Like if you go for ice cream twice in one day.

And Misty of Chincoteague was not wild, but she was real.

ponies 3ponies 4duck life

Happy weekend, friends!





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Cannibals and bridesmaid’s bouquets

I have been a very naughty florist and biz-lady and have not kept the old blog up to date AT ALL. 

It’s one of the hazards of being married to a teacher: when no one else in your house has to wear pants or go to work for two months, it’s difficult to stay in worker bee mode!

In my defense, a lot of our spare time has been spent on Mr. Spencer’s summer project. He is writing and co-directing an indie horror film called the Stronghold. (There is an awesome Station 14 clip about the film here, and the creative team has a facebook page here.)

I volunteered as boom-mic holder to spend some time with the husband. HAAA. Do I get an ‘A’ for effort? 

When I’m not rocking it out in a suburban cannibal dystopia, I like to make beautiful bridal bouquets for Kingston area weddings! We are long overdue for some more photos of wedding season 2014. 

Kate and Alexander tied the knot on May 31. They are from Ottawa, but they love Kingston so much, they decided to have a destination wedding here. Their reception? A rainbow-themed karaoke party on board the Island Star. GET. OUT. ( I actually thought Kate was a friend pranking me when she first emailed me about her unique rainbow, fruit-and-veggie infused designs, her preferences were so similar to mine and she was so easy going about everything. I’m so glad this was real!)

Here’s Kate’s bouquet

kate rainbow bouquet 700px     

Some of the guys’ billy-ball and eryngium boutonnieres 

eryngium boutonnieres 700px

And a few of their rainbow centrepieces all packed up and ready to go

rainbow delivery copy700px

and a few shots from the Island Star. 

martello 700px

purple table 700px

Shot of boat 700px

Events Coordinator Heather and her team at Kingston 1000 Island Cruises were great to work with. If you’re considering a wedding reception on lovely Lake Ontario, I’d highly recommend getting in touch. You can reach her at

Kingston 1000 Islands Cruises & Trolleys


the Kingston 1000 Island Cruises website

tel 613-549-5544 ext.201 or 1-800-848-0108

If you follow us on facebook or twitter , you may have seen some of these images before- please click, follow or like for more regular floral show and tell.😉

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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