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Yet again I find myself working at my friend Silence’s mom’s flower shop in Northeastern Illinois. Mother’s Day is fast approaching, and unlike last year, most people are only giving lip service to COVID-19 regulations. It is crazy busy, and I am absolutely tired, so I will not have the full series of narrative posts this year. However, I can give you some pointers on flower ordering.
- Do not use wire services like FTD or 800flowers. They are likely to lose your order, promise something the florist cannot make, or even just take your money. Use DuckDuckGo or your favorite search engine to help find a florist in the area, and call them directly. You have much better accountability, a better idea of what you will actually get, and generally more helpful staff. Besides, these are the small business owners we like to talk about supporting.
- Give the florist the recipient’s phone number. I know you want to surprise Mom or your honeybunny with flowers, but we need a person to contact prior to sending out a delivery vehicle. Someone has to be home to receive the flowers. We can’t just leave flowers on the doorstep – too much risk of damage or theft. We may need to call when we arrive or call to confirm the address. Trust me, I’ve never seen a person bored or uninterested in receiving flowers.
- If you are clueless about flowers, give the florist a few ideas and a price range. Florists deal with this all the time. Mentioning a favorite flower or color will help personalize it, but these ladies are professionals. I once used a florist after I forgot my mom’s birthday. I mentioned she liked the Packers and fall colors, and gave a generous price ceiling. Gorgeous arrangement with Packer balloon delivered, relationship restored, disownment canceled.
- Delivery orders need much more lead time than pick-up. If this is a last-minute order, try for a pickup. Delivery orders need to be planned and generally fill up much faster than pick-up orders, especially on holidays. Most florists will have some items in the case ready to be sold, unless it is already insanely busy. We can help you pack it safely
- Request a full-size card if you have a long message. Flower cards are business card sized. We had some USO cards for mothers of fallen soldiers that required microprinting to fit the message. With a larger card, we can put on as long of a message as you want. Alternatively, brevity is the soul of wit – keep it to the point.