THE HAPPY FLOWER DAY PROJECT

  • Please read my daily blog on this site. I try to post little anecdotes and pictures. At the end of this post, there is a list of the places where the flowers have been delivered and lots and lots of pictures.. Please scroll to the very end for the hundreds of places that have been surprised by random acts of bouquets!

 

To view the pages of this article, click down at the bottom right hand corner of the picture on the cover and the pages will turn so you can read full four page article with pictures.  AND THEN CLICK ON THE RIGHT CORNER UNTIL YOU GET TO PAGE 8. (Sorry that it is a little tricky.)

 

 

 

http://www.bellesprit.com/wp-content/uploads/swf/2014/september2014.swf

 

 

 

 

Video of the Happy Flower Day Project spreading joy at a senior center.
http://www.timesherald.com/general-news/20131219/the-happy-flower-day-project-spreads-joy-at-montco-saac-in-norristown

Patricia_Giving112Patricia_Giving110Patricia_Giving109Patricia_Giving106

  • 146139140246249245241233genesis 1
  • ladies holding flowers stapeleyWhat is the “Happy Flower Day” Project?

 

Patricia_Gathering002Patricia_Gathering010.JPG

Photos:  Terree Yeagle, The Moment Photography TheMomentPhoto.com

Patricia_Gathering017
I never thought much about flowers and certainly never intended to become The Flower Lady. It all began in May of 2013. My daughter works for a non-profit organization and Trader Joe’s donated flowers for their fundraiser event. A store representative asked her if she knew of any hospitals, support groups or nursing homes that might want their “day-old” flowers.

Patricia_Giving096

Patricia_Giving051

Patricia_Giving103

1383844162742

1383844120932

CAM00067CAM00066CAM00063CAM00060CAM00057CAM00045

The thought of tossing beautiful flowers away at the end of the day got me thinking, “What if I stopped over there every morning and then made the rounds to pass out bouquets of pansies, orchids, roses and sunflowers?”

My mind was racing as I thought of the myriad of places that might need a bouquet of caring. What about local nursing homes, senior living communities, senior centers, hospices, parents with sick children, the elderly and isolated people living in their homes, people down on their luck, foster parents, half-way recovery houses, cancer support groups, Meals on Wheels recipients……there was no end to the list of people who might need a lovely bouquet.

274

1383844075099

I reckoned that the surprise gift of a colorful burst of flowers might be a tonic for someone feeling lonely, restless or worried. Maybe I could re-purpose them and offer them as a “random act of flowery happiness.” I could bring them to folks who needed a tangible sign of caring and appreciation.

Patricia_Giving064

Patricia_Giving066Patricia_Giving049
Bright and early, I arrived at the store and a store employee very kindly gave me 60 bouquets placed in buckets with water to keep them fresh. I went to a nursing home in Germantown. Mission accomplished – given away within an hour.

1383840269984

1383844120932

1383840231021

270

I was so excited that I drove back downtown to retrieve another bunch of bouquets that did not fit into my car for the first delivery. Boy, was my day starting out on a happy note! I was a college student during the late 1960′s “Flower Power” era. I could see that the flowers were bringing sunshine and dispatching lots of smiles and joy wrapped in cellophane and ribbon.

13814299499881381428955755CAM000191381428588434???????????????????????????????

Link to a talk show host audio interview. Scroll down a little bit when you open the link to hear Patricia’s interview.

http://www.audioacrobat.com/sa/WbvbCj6X

Here are some of the comments from the people who received the bouquets:

A lady was lying in her bed. I walked into the room and said, Would you like some flowers? She looked up startled. Her eyes seemed to fly open. I’ve always wanted someone to give me flowers. You are my Sunshine for bringing these to me. Oh, my mouth cannot close. I am so happy. I just keep saying ‘Oh my! Oh my! Because when you get flowers it means that someone cares about you. Did you grow them in your garden?

041

Do men get flowers too? Wow, that is great. My wife is coming to visit in a few minutes. She has a heart of gold. And now I can give her these gold sunflowers! I am going to pretend that I bought them.

257

My heart melted as I pictured him surprising her with flowers. He winked with amusement like it was a top secret.

I don’t want any. I don’t have any money to pay you. You mean they are free? Who are you, dear? Why are you bringing me flowers? I didn’t think it was going to be a good day and then this happens. You are giving me these beautiful flowers, really?

She looked surprised. Her eyes crinkled….and I saw tear-filled eyes.

I am feeling desperately homesick. I have been in and out of hospitals and now I am here for rehab. I just want to go home. I would love the white roses. I have company coming.

Miss, what you just did for us, bringing flowers to everyone, means more than if you came in and gave us a hundred dollars. Are you from my church? I go to the one at the bottom of the hill.

He hugged me and I hugged back.

153

Patricia_Gathering036me in front of group with flowerspassing out flowers golden living cass

A frail lady in her 80’s said, Can you help find my father? I want to talk to him. My mother passed away yesterday and I can bring the flowers to her funeral.

Of course, the dementia blurred her reality. I just smiled and told her that someone would help her find her father, long departed.

Time lies heavy on a resident’s mind – lots of time for memories to creep in and fear and worry too. I think the flowers help the spirit. I thought that flowers were just for ladies. But I noticed that the guys liked the flowers as much as the women.

I watched lots of wrinkled hands entwined around the flowers. Smelling them. Touching them. Admiring them. Holding them close against their hearts. One lady wrapped her arms around me and leaned in for a kiss.

Trader Joe’s is so happy that they can be a part of this “recycling of flowers project.” So I am not just going green…..going pink, yellow, white and red….all of the colors of the bouquets that they give to me each morning. All of bouquets that are blooming and helping people in need of a smile!

Since I began the Flower Project in May of 2013 ago, some of the residents of the following places have been surprised by the gorgeous flowers donated by Trader Joe’s. I am so grateful to them for sharing so many beautiful bouquets. It has been so much fun for me!

Here are some of the local senior living communities that have been the recipient of the generosity of Trader Joe’s and other florists. Thousands of bouquets of fresh flowers delivered!

Please read my blog on this site for my daily entries about where the flowers were taken that day.

CAM00072CAM00078

Wesley Enhanced Living, Germantown, eight visits
Fairview Care Center, Paper Mill Road
Ivy Hill Nursing Home
Middletown Senior Center, Levittown
Limelight Restaurant customers, Doylestown
Miraculous Medal Shrine
The Meadows of Shannondell
Towne Manor of Norristown
Chester County Nursing Home
Covenant Church members
People at the corner of Broad and Olney
Golden Living, Stenton Avenue
York House Senior Living, Philadelphia
Chester County Nursing Home and Rehab, Malvern
Chester County Rehab and Nursing, seven times
Clarebridge, Dublin
The Birches, Bucks County
Mother Teresa’s Homeless Shelter, Norristown
To the staff of my mother’s primary care physician’s office, three times
Victory Church, Audubon
Shannondell, Audubon, twice monthly visits
Wesley Enhanced Living, Oxford Avenue – did a special “random act of pies.”
Fox Chase Cancer Center
New Seasons Assisted Living
Cadbury, weekly visits
Left 40 bouquets of flowers for the people attending a 12 step recovery group at a local church
Golden Living, Germantown
To Live Again, monthly grief support meeting
Ivy Hill, two levels of care
Abington Hospital Senior Center Volunteer Luncheon, Lansdale
VFW Senior Dance
The Birches, Newtown, Personal Care
Harlee Manor, Memory Care
The Birches, Memory Care
Chester County Rehab, 3rd floor
Senior Sing-a-Long, Limelight Restaurant Piano Bar
Limelight Restaurant, Senior Sing-a-Long Group, twice
Saint Patrick’s dance for seniors, Moose Lodge
Lady shoveling snow on driveway, gas station attendant, people in life recovery housing
Ten people at a gas station on Bristol Road, Warrington
Caring Hearts, Germantown, four times
Greenbrier, Schwenksville

The Birches of Newtown, Dementia
Health Clinic for Women and Children, Bensalem
Lady putting baby in her car, ladies and men just walking along the streets of Norristown – random acts of flowers
Saint Patrick’s Church, Norristown
Brighten Place, Chalfont, three visits
Chelsea House, Jenkintown
Genesis, Hillcrest, Wyncote
Veterans’ Ball, Willow Grove
Doo Wop dance party for seniors
Belfry Bargains, volunteers and customers
Ruby Diner, customers and employees
McDonalds’s Restaurant, Main Street, customers and staff
Celebration for Minister Bob, Spiritual Seeds gathering
Cadbury, Cherry Hill, 15 times
Hospice Nurses and Aides, Bucks County
Saint Peter’s, North Wales, volunteers and customers
Lower Bucks Hospital
Golden Living, Germantown
Passed them out around and in the courthouse, Doylestown, PA
Silver Lake Nursing Home
VFW Senior Dance
York House, Philadelphia, four times
Center Square Towers
Turnpike Toll Collectors
Customers at Lukoil
Customers and employees at Sunoco station
Chester County Rehabiltation and Nursing Care, Malvern
Harlee Manor, Memory Care
Perkins Restaurant customers, Doylestown
Drive-Thru, McDonald’s Restaurant, 8 bouquets for employees
Legacy Gardens, three times
Friends at a Super Bowl party
WAWA employees and customers, Horsham Road
Genesis Nursing and Rehab, Paper Mill
Saint Mary’s Hospital, Langhorne
Allentown Seniors Mobile Home Park
Saint Peter’s Thrift Shop customers
WAWA, Cherry Hill customers

Harlee Manor, Senior Suites
McDonald’s Restaurant, Route 309
Shannnondell, Audubon
Valley Forge turnpike attendants
Here and there and all around in Allentown, Walmart Parking Lot, YMCA, etc
Lady with cancer, small church near Doylestown
Belfry Bargains, Gwynedd Valley
Piano Bar Senior Sing-a-Long, monthly
The Solana, Horsham
Ambler Rest and Nursing Home
The Birches of Harleysville
Redeemer Senior Apartments
Saint Mary’s Medical Center

Shannondell, second floor

Ivy Hill, Cheltenham
Harlee Manor, Independent Living
Einstein Hospital, Philadelphia
Cadbury Assisted Living
Lady crossing the street, Philadelphia
Shiloh Baptist Church, Food Pantry, Norristown
Silver Stream, Spring House, two times
Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, three times
Wesley Enhanced Living, Pennypack, Philadelphia, two times
People at a church barbecue
Saint Mary’s Home, Lansdale, three visits
Masonic Village, Lafayette Hill
North Penn Senior Adult Day Care Center
Shannondell, Rehab
Lansdale train station
The Dollar Tree customers and in the shopping center parking lot, Lansdale
Water ice stand/store – 40 bouquets passed out
Lady wanted 40 to take back to her co-workers at a large local corporation
Salem Baptist Church seniors
McDonald’s Restaurant, Willow Grove
McDonald’s Restaurant, Norristown
A lady outside of WAWA, Audubon
Grundy Towers, Quakertown
Center Square Towers
Anne’s Choice, Rose Garden
My mother’s neighbors after her peaceful passing
Pennsburg Manor
Red Hill Senior Apartments
Quakertown Family Restaurant
Twining Manor, Holland, three visits
Home visit to lady with cancer, 40 people at McDonalds, four men at mini-mart, 25 people WAWA, Jenkintown
Visited friend at Horsham Road Assisted Living, 50 bouquets passed out
Chestnut Hill Lodge, Philadelphia, two visits
Hillcrest, Wyncote, three visits
Sunrise, Dresher
People in a Wells Fargo Bank parking lot including 2 ladies at the ATM and a family celebration their little girl’s First Communion
Shannondell, Memory Care
Moose Lodge senior dance
Bustleton and Solly Senior Center dance
Golden Living
Ambler Rest Home
WAWA, North Wales, customers and employees
Sunrise, The Quadrangle
Polish Home Senior Dance
Sunrise, Blue Bell
Cadbury, weekly
Shannondell, The Meadows
Lehigh Valley area, just here there and everywhere
Shannondell, The Meadows
The Solana
Miraculous Medal Shrine staff
Erringer Place apartments, Germantown
Gloucester County, NJ – to a social worker to pass out to seniors
Sunrise, Abington, monthly
Shannondell, Valentine party
People at 7-11, Willow Grove
Action Aids volunteers
Lansdale Senior Center, monthly
Wesley, Oxforc Avenue, Burholme
Macungie dance for seniors
People at CVS, Chalfont
Northeast Philadelphia Senior Center, Bustleton, two times
Sunrise, Lafayette Hill
Suburban Woods, Norristown, two visits
The Oaks, Wyncote, two visits
Eight Japanese tourists sitting in Burger King
Lady filling out a job application at a nursing home
Golden Living, Doylestown
Neshaminy Manor, Doylestown, two visits, about 300 bouquets each time
Grundy Hall, Doylestown, three visits
Artman Lutheran Home. two visits
Ambler Extendicare, Ambler, two visits
Ambler Senior Activity Association
Rotary, Lionville

Chester County Rehab, third floor
New Seasons for the BINGO players
Snow removal crew at an apartment complex
Dollar Tree employees
Subway Sandwich Shop employee and customers in restaurant and in parking lot
Three sick people in their homes – Kathleen, Mary and Hannah
Lady at toll booth
Young man pumping my gas at Liberty gas station
Volunteers and customers at Belfry Bargain thrift shop
Fire Department near Plymouth Meeting
PPH, Lawndale
Broad and Olney Transportation Center
Tornetta Realty Corporation employees
Abramsom Center for Jewish Life and Rehabilitation Center, Horsham, five visits
WAWA – people pumping their gas and walking to cars, multiple times and locations
7-11 employees and customers
Bucks County Health Clinic
Macungie Senior Dance, Lehigh Valley
Ivy Hill, Cheltenham
Country Meadows Senior Living, Allentown
Lady at home with cancer – many visits
Genesis, Wyncote
Pennsburg Manor
Turnpike toll booth attendants, Valley Forge
Shannondell, The Meadows
McDonald’s Restaurant, Route 309
School Bus Drivers at WAWA, Quakertown
Macungie Senior Dance
Church in New Britain
Cadbury, Personal Care Unit staff and residents
People at 7-11 in Ambler
Seniors at Knights of Columbus dance
Wells Fargo Bank patrons and employees
Abington Hospital, Abington
Redeemer Village Senior Apartments, Meadowbrook, two visits
Saint Joseph’s Manor, Huntington Valley
My Church Tuesday Night Prayer Group
Saturday night community supper for the hungry and homeless, Haws Avenue
Friday Night Prayer Group Dinner
Jiffy Lube employees and customers
Shannondell, The Meadows

whole shopping cart of my flowers

Bright View, Norristown, four visits
Salem Baptist Church Senior center, Jenkintown, two times
Loaves and Fishes Food Pantry, Jenkintown, two times
Bellingham, West Chester
Gwynedd Square Nursing Home, Lansdale
Saint Mary’s Manor, Lansdale, three visits
Frederick Mennonite Community
The Women’s Recovery Center, New Britain, two visits
West Philadelphia Senior Center
Penn Nursing Home, Philadelphia
Sunrise, Abington
Golden Living, Stenton Avenue
Philadelphia Housing Authority
Lukoil gas station customers, Montgomery County
Saint Peter’s Thrift Shop and Volunteer Luncheon
Saint Joseph’s Villa, Flourtown
Some employees of the Times Herald and The Reporter of Lansdale newspapers
Lots of employees of the fast-food restaurants that I pass on my route
Toll collectors on the turnpike, multiple times
People walking down the street, people waiting for buses, people sitting in cars
Panhandler asking for money in Philadelphia
Circle of Miracles, New Britain, weekly visits
Harvest House, New Jersey
Ivy Hill, Cheltenham
Valet parking attendants at a hospital
York House Senior Living, Philadelphia, three visits
Fairview, Paper Mill Road, four times
WAWA parking lot, Warminster
Abington Senior Day Care Center
Fairview, Bethlehem Pike
Otto’s Restaurant
Gloria Dei Towers, Huntington Valley
Passing out flowers to people on the streets of Doylestown on a sunny Sunday afternoon
WAWA, Bethlehem Pike
Volunteers at the Belfry Bargain
Brightview, Norristown
Duck Deli Restaurant, customers and waitresses
Silver Lake, Bristol
The Solana
Greenleaf Senior Center
Legacy Gardens, Bristol, two visits
Statesman Woods, Levittown
Wesley Enhanced Living, Lawndale, three visits
Pennswood Manor, Newtown
Dock Manor
Deer Meadows, Philadelphia
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Philadelphia
Greenleaf, Doylestown, two times
Buckingham Woods, Buckingham, two times
Paradise Manor, Hatfield
Regina Nursing Home, Norristown. two times
Vika Home, Ambler
Warminster Senior Dance
Schnecksville Senior Dance
The Solana, Horsham, five visits
Greenbrier Senior Living, Schwenksville, three times
Manor Care, Montgomeryville, four times
Harlee Manor, Memory Care
Brandywine Senior Living, Norristown, three times
Wesley Enhanced Living, Hatboro, two times
Car Wash on Route 611, Abington, employees and customers
Brookdale Senior Living, Clare Bridge, North Wales, four visits
Harlee Manor, Springfield, seven visits
Sunrise, Abington,  six visits
Center Square Towers, Doylestown, five times
Pine Run Community, Doylestown, five times
Wesley Enhanced Living, Doylestown, six visits
The Birches, Harleysville
York House Senior Dance, Philadelphia
Vo-tech School Students, Lansdale (For 36 kids to take home to surprise 36 mothers!)
Elm Terrace, Lansdale, three visits
Watermark, Blue Bell, three times
Golden Living, Doylestown, four visits
Golden Living, Lansdale, two times
Philadelphia Protestant Home, two visits
Abington/North Penn Senior Center, Lansdale, six visits
New Seasons, New Britain, three visits
Brookside, Roslyn, four visits
Senior Center, Lansdale
Towne Manor, Johnson Highway, Norristown, six visits
Towne Manor, Arch Road, Norristown
Pickering Run, Newtown
Brookside Staff Appreciation
WAWA, Jenkintown
Shannondell, Assisted Living
Chalfont Fire Department – we called 911 for a fire in kitchen
Chester County Rehab and Nursing
Easter celebrations with lots of family and friends
Doylestown Hospice Home Health Aides
Lots of people that I met along my way in Allentown area
Salem Baptist Church, 88th birthday celebration
Memorial Service for Tom’s friends – for his friends in their 70’sand 80’s
WEL, Rising Sun Avenue, Independent Senior Living
Senior Apartments on Route 611, Warrington
Senior Center, Summit Avenue, Jenkintown
Andorra Woods
McDonald’s Restaurant. Route 611
McDonald’s Restaurant, Chalfont
McDonald’s Restaurant, Ogontz Avenue
The Birches, Memory Care Unit
Springfield Senior Commons, Harlee Manor
Rydal Park, Jenkintown
Shannondell, The Meadows
Bowling Alley, Allentown
Gilbertsville Dance
School Crossing guard and people in oral surgeon’s waiting room, NE Phila
Food Pantry
Thirty people sitting in a Starbucks restaurant, on a rainy dreary Thursday afternoon, Warrington
People waiting for their cars to be repaired at dealership in Lansdale
40 bouquets to people at WAWA in North Wales, Horsham Road -20 people each got two bouquets
Lady coming out of hairdresser

Action AIDS Walk, Philadelphia
Doylestown Hospital, Doylestown, two times
Rittenhouse Pine
Abington Hospital, Lansdale Division
Adult Day Care Center, Lansdale
Cadbury, Cherry Hill, seven times

man holding flowers stapeleyBob G and me with flowersresidents holding flowers stapeleyangela holding 2 bouquets

Community Meeting, Reverand Edie Weinstein

Willow Lake, Willow Grove, three times
Exton Senior Living, Exton

Arbor Square, Philadelphia

Shannondell, Avondale
60 passed out on the streets of Norristown, PA
Ben Wilson Senior Center, Warminster
Anne’s Choice, Warminster, two times
Harlee Manor
The Solana
Toll Collectors at Plymouth Meeting and Lehigh Valley
Sunrise, Abington
Ivy Hill, Cheltenham, seven visits
Genesis, Powerback, Norristown, two times
SAAC, Senior Center, Norristown

pictures of bags of flowersladies holding flowers stapeley

Wynwood of Montgomery, North Wales
Spring Mill, Presby Inspired Life, Lafayette Hill, two times
Bellingham, West Chester
Genesis, Garden Springs, Willow Grove
Manor Glen, Philadelphia
Northampton/Richboro Library
The Birches, Dementia, Newtown
To my friend Carol (10 bouquets) who does so much to help people.
Shannondell, eight times
Action AIDS Walk, Philadelphia
Ivy Hill, eight visits
Chester County Rehab and Nursing Care, Malvern, seven visits
Silver Stream, Ambler
Sunrise, Paoli
Shut-in with stage 4 cancer
Senior Day Care Center for Staff Appreciation, Lansdale
Brookdale Assisted Living, Horsham Road
Sunrise, Lafayette Hill
Hopkins House, Wyncote
Calcutta House, Philadelphia
Divine Providence Nursing Home, Broomall
Richboro Care Center, Richboro
Arden Court, Warminster, two times
Gwynedd Square, Gwynedd Valley, three times

Patricia_Gathering008

(Other flower recipients: Many individuals along the street sitting in wheelchairs, a homeless man in Germantown pushing a cart filled with soda cans and cardboard to sell for money, a man who pumped my gas in New Jersey, customers at Saint Peter’s thrift shop, people walking out of a Philadelphia court, a lady in a mini-mart who looked sad, a group of missionaries walking along a Philadelphia street that said they could use flowers for their visits to invalids, a lady at home recovering from a breast cancer operation, a woman sitting on a corner waiting for a bus, a 92-year-old lady living alone in North Wales, a bank teller who was kind to me, two men in McDonalds to surprise their wives, for a lady celebrating her 100th birthday,  people at bus stops, waiting in lobbies, for a lady at a turnpike tollbooth, to an elderly man sitting in a car outside of a nursing home, two volunteers at a hospital information desk, two young mothers down on their financial luck, a lady that looked sad in a parking lot, 10 people at our local newspaper office, a a man who gave me direction to the main entrance of a hospital, lots of people walking into a hospital or nursing home to visit someone -“Would you like to take some flowers in to the person that you are visiting, and one for their room-mate too?” And hundreds of other impromptu encounters  that make life “rosy-er.”

Moral of the story: Never underestimate the power of a surprise bouquet of flowers that can sprout a smile for someone in a nursing home or even on the street!

CAM00262

CAM00265

411

CAM00266

417

residents holding flowers stapeley

421

245

???????????????????????????????

Article in Intelligencer about Flower Project

1383845422857

13838469368281383846185201

Patricia_Giving067

Patricia_Giving070

Patricia_Giving077

2 Comments

2 thoughts on “THE HAPPY FLOWER DAY PROJECT

  1. Dear Trisha: What a great idea! I’m an American married to a Brit and living in the UK. I write for Woman Alive, a Christian woman’s magazine here. We would love to include a brief article about your Happy Flower Day project in an upcoming issue. Would you be happy for me to ask you some questions, so that I could write this? We would also need a good high resolution photo of you with one or two recipients, including some colourful flowers of course! 🙂 Please could you let me know asap. Many thanks, Suzanne Green

  2. Pingback: Happy Flower Day - Patricia Gallagher

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s