Originally published on Lovingly website May 25, 2018
In the hugely successful aftermath of our unconventional Mother’s Day contest, Joe Vega, Lovingly’s co-founder and managing partner, told all the curious people from the press:
“These stories came pouring in and the love came pouring out! We were stunned by the quality and diversity of the entries. Frankly, the sheer power of the feelings involved was overwhelming!”
Truer words were never spoken. We are humbled that so many entrants from across the US and Canada trusted Lovingly with their heartfelt stories of support, inspiration, and unconditional love.
And we’re honored to celebrate the impact our five amazing winners have had on those around them with the gift of a beautiful handcrafted bouquet.
Here, then, are the winners.
A Single Mom’s Success Story
Storyteller: Vince McLaughlin | Winner: Catherine Kearney
Bouquet lovingly handcrafted and hand-delivered by Westdale Florists, Hamilton, Ontario.
From the age of 10 (I’m now 32), my mom did everything she could for us to put food on our table and a roof over our heads, and she made sure we got to school every day with a lunch.
It was never easy and times were tough, but she always made me see that there was a light at the end of the dark tunnel.
Now, over twenty years later, an honors graduate, married, with a fulfilling career and a home, I would like to give her back a small token of my appreciation.
You can never quite tell your mom how much she means to you over a lifetime.
But flowers will certainly help!
We couldn’t agree more! And we bet Catherine loved hearing her son’s heartfelt words of appreciation just as much as she loved her bouquet.
Happy ending extra!
Vince contacted Lovingly to let us know how it went. Here’s a clip of what he told us:
“It went fantastically well and I can’t thank you guys enough for all that you did. She couldn’t read the message at work as she knew she would lose it. All her friends read it for her and they all teared up — so that is a victory!”
Delivering a Gift From Heaven
Storyteller: Brittany Montgomery | Winner: Katherine Harrison
Bouquet lovingly handcrafted and hand-delivered by Flowers Unlimited II, Country Club Hills, Illinois.
My mom, Katherine, deserves to win this bouquet because she is the strongest, kindest, most selfless and loving person I know.
She never left my side after my daughter went into respiratory failure on three separate occasions. She held my hand through three months of not knowing what was wrong with my daughter.
She left her job of 36 years to become her full-time caregiver. She also lost her husband and best friend, my father, last year, after being married 34 years.
My father ALWAYS had flowers delivered to her every Mother’s Day, just to see the reaction on her face. She told me it never got old, and she was always surprised!
This bouquet of flowers would be a special gift from heaven from my dad to my mom.
Any mother, especially one like mine, deserves to have a special reminder that our loved ones are still with us, even though not physically.
She needs this, because it’s the little things that matter most.
We were all so touched by Brittany’s story that we knew Katherine had to win a gorgeous bouquet. And the smile on Katherine’s face when she received it is the biggest gift of all.
The Brand New Mom Who Won
Storyteller: Justine Yingling | Winner: Emily Spiering
Bouquet lovingly handcrafted and hand-delivered by Blooms Floral and Gifts, Ashland, Nebraska.
Emily is my daughter, and she became a mother just 18 hours ago.
She has gone through the entire pregnancy by herself, not ever asking for help, and now she has a beautiful daughter of her own!
I think she needs something that says she is very much loved, and we will support her the best we can!
We can’t think of a better way to celebrate Emily and her sweet new baby girl. We had to pass around the tissues at the Lovingly office when we saw these photos of Emily receiving her gift!
Happy ending extra!
Our Blooms Floral and Gifts partner contacted Lovingly to report: “She was completely shocked!”
An American Mom’s Warm Welcome
Storyteller: Sera Paek | Winner: Kathleen Hatfield
Bouquet lovingly handcrafted and hand-delivered by Sweetgrass Flowers, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.
I am an international student from Korea. When I first came to the United States in 2011, Kathleen became my MOM from Charleston.
Ever since we met, she has been always taking care of me and thinking of me all the time, and that makes me smile and feel loved.
I am graduating from college this May and will probably go back to Korea, and I have been thinking about how to express how thankful I feel and how much I love her.
It’s also her birthday on May 7th, which is perfect timing to express my mind!
We wish we all had a Kathleen in our lives! We loved this story about Kathleen’s thoughtfulness and support, and can only imagine what an amazing difference it must have made for an international student learning to navigate a brand-new country.
It’s Love, So Who’s Counting?
Storyteller: Kristen Mol | Winner: Theresa Jaspers
Bouquet lovingly handcrafted and hand-delivered by From the Heart Florist, Thunder Bay, Ontario.
I have been so blessed with the most amazing and selfless mom!
She is, hands down, the best mom, who will do anything for her five kids, 19 (soon to be 20) grandkids, and husband of almost 40 years!
She’s always looking to help out, which makes life with our little ones that much easier. She takes the laundry off our hands, makes meals, bakes, babysits, and so much more.
She always goes the extra mile to make sure we know how much she cares.
Grandchildren are always welcomed with hugs, snacks of all kinds, and oh so many books.
My mom is a rock in our family and we love her so very, very much!
Twenty grandkids – wow! We think if anyone deserves a beautiful handcrafted bouquet, it’s Theresa!
Happy ending extra!
Kristen contacted Lovingly to let us know how it went. This is an edited clip of what she told us:
“Thank you so much! She loves her flowers! She was very surprised!”
Our From the Heart Florist partner also contacted Lovingly to report: “She was taken completely by surprise! She loved the flowers!”
And one more happy ending extra!
We’d like to thank all our entrants, any one of which could have easily won.
This was really tough!
We asked so many people to get so personal — and as you have seen, they did.
So we thought we’d join in and share our story of how this contest came about.
It breaks down like this.
Lovingly’s story request for its Mother’s Day 2018 contest read:
She may be your mom, your grandma, your caregiver, or a member of your community who has earned the title ‘mom’ in your heart through her unconditional love and devotion.
At this point, our question was: Would anybody respond to such a strange contest?
We decided to send our love call out across North America.
We’d pick out 5 winners, all of whom would receive an original bouquet, handcrafted and hand-delivered by a talented local florist.
Suddenly, the size of the ask for those florists began to dawn on us.
Would Lovingly Partner florists support us?
Would they be willing to handcraft and hand-deliver the winning bouquets if called upon?
How deep do Lovingly relationships with partners really go?
Everything depended on this question. Or rather the answer.
They said YES!
And we shouldn’t have worried. This is what local florists do, after all: celebrate moments, convey sentiments, and make connections between loved ones.
That’s why they’re hometown heroes we’re proud to call partners.
So with that, we were set. And excited to start celebrating the unconditional love of Moms everywhere!
In the end, we were touched, humbled, and so grateful to have a small part in the beautiful relationships and stories that were shared with us.
Thank you, Moms!