Thankful Musings from Tonya on Small Business Saturday…
We have enjoyed seeing so many of you these past few days! We love making beautiful floral arrangements that end up in so many homes in Wheaton, Glen Ellyn, Naperville, Chicago, and far beyond. We pack quite a few for travel! Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. Family & Friends (we like to call them our “chosen family”) at my table, in my home. I love working really hard to prepare a Thanksgiving meal. No shortcuts. Food is love, right? Sharing a Thanksgiving meal with people I love is priceless. Andrew & I love knowing that so many of our flowers and other gifts from Andrew’s Garden are gracing similar celebrations in so many homes. We are very grateful.
This small business, Andrew’s Garden, is our second home. We love it. Andrew & I pour our hearts & minds into Andrew’s Garden. Our employees do too. They are part of our extended family. That is what a Small Business is to us. Our Andrew’s Garden family, our downtown Wheaton business community, our customers from near & far-all of you are very important to us. We love getting to know you and making your experience at Andrew’s Garden something special.
Today, I am exhausted. Andrew & I have been working 12-14 hour days for too many days in November. We work hard to transform Andrew’s Garden into something especially beautiful for Jingle & Mingle every year. When you are packing up your Christmas decorations, we literally start planning & buying holiday inventory in January each year. We couldn’t make the holidays so special each year without other tireless hours & talents from our staff. Thank you to Micheale, Aggie, Patrick, Brenda, & Brendan – and Sophie & Dina who have recently left us. Andrew & I are so lucky to have found a solid group of people who really care about Andrew’s Garden too.
People ask us nearly every day if the construction in downtown Wheaton has affected us. IT HAS!
- Look at those beautiful sidewalks, new planters, benches, bike racks & streetlights! We have some great ideas for next summer to use the new space. If Andrew & I can’t be in Paris as often as we’d like, why not create a little more of it right here to Wheaton, right? If we can bring it to life, it is going to be wonderful.
- Our water pressure is better! You have no idea how old those pipes under the streets were! The benefits of new sewer and water lines are not visible, but they sure make a difference in our shop life. It is so frustrating to fill lots & lots of buckets of water with low water pressure!
- New businesses are arriving! Our new downtown streetscape is more attractive to other retailers, restaurants and service providers! We all benefit from new business neighbors!
- Parking is easier and more plentiful-plus we now have an ADA parking spot right in front of our shop for those of our customers that need easier access! And don’t forget – the Wheaton Place Garage is free and only a block away! Andrew & I park there every day.
We try not to focus on it, but there has been a down-side to the construction too. It is hard for small, independent businesses to absorb your absence. None of us like to be uncomfortable or inconvenienced. Without even thinking too hard about it, we avoid the extra effort it may take to visit businesses in the middle of a construction zone. We need your help so that we are still here to enjoy the benefits of the construction itself! Anyone who has remodeled a kitchen or bathroom knows that you have to endure the inconvenience before you get to enjoy the results! We don’t want to see any more businesses close around us – and we certainly don’t want to be one of them.
Please don’t forget to support the small businesses in your community. Small Business Saturday is a great day to recognize us – but we need you every day of every month in every year.
Thank you to those of you who tell us frequently that we have something special at Andrew’s Garden!
Thank you to those of you who walk in the door and exclaim, “It smells so good in here!”
Thank you to those of you who trusted us with your weddings 10 years ago when we were brand new!
Thank you to those of you who saw something new & creative in our little shop 6 years ago!
Thank you to those of you write reviews and recommend us to your friends!
Thank you to those of you who follow us on social media from all corners of the world!
Thank you to those of you who are inspired by our ideas and keep coming back!
Thank you to those of you who came to see us this summer even if the construction outside wasn’t fun!
Thank you to those of you we haven’t met yet who continue to discover Andrew’s Garden.
Thank you for reading if you got this far. I am an attorney first and florist second – and I tend to be wordy. So sorry. Now, go out and shop today with the local, independent businesses in your neighborhood. We will consider ourselves lucky if it includes Andrew’s Garden!
Happy Thanksgiving from Tonya, Andrew & our Family