Our journey to becoming a wedding venue was challenging, but we were excited to finally get our first wedding under our belt. Janelle and Brian were the perfect couple to jump start our new venture; they had low expectations, but then they were tickled pink at all of the changes that we had made. We still had much learning to go and we were optimistic for what was coming ahead.
As you read in Part I, we had simple beginnings and a simple plan on our wedding business approach. Remember, initially, we were hoping that we could find "several" brides to book weddings here but never imagined that it would turn into a full time business. In early 2011, we had four generations living here on the farm. My mother, Willene Reynolds (everyone called her Mimi) lived in her brick house still enjoying a busy retirement with lots of involvement in her church and with a local widow's ministry plus weekly meetings with her china painting friends, and she was also very involved with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She was aged, somewhat decrepit but still managed to be active, work in her flower beds, and be the hospitality queen of the farm. Her love of flowers has influenced both me and Jill. Her love of life, God, and relationships have influenced all who knew her.
It was during the Christmas Holidays of the winter of 2010-2011 that we decided to start a part-time business of hosting weddings here at the farm. This now means that we have begun our tenth year. We have come a long way, baby, and I thought that reflecting back on some of our story would be of interest to you.