Garden Farm History

Born and raised on a dairy farm back in the day (mid-50’s) was extremely hard laborious work and each one of my 9 brothers and sisters and I had chores before and after school. There was ALWAYS work to be done! Fortunately Mom had a way of balancing work and play. Locally our farm, known as the G.B.Miller Farm was referred to as the “fun house”.  There was NEVER a dull moment and always room for one or two more at the dinner table. Our home was open for parties and hospitality of visitors, relatives and friends.

Twenty years ago, I returned to the farm from suburbia living and took residency in our 1920’s farmhouse. Mom moved into the “little house” which was more manageable in size as she aged. My Dad had passed in 1986. In the spring of 1998, my husband and I began tilling the yard and transforming the land around the outbuildings into perennial gardens. Beautifying the land with flowers and sharing a vision of starting a Flower Garden Farm. Both of us loved fresh flowers and were experienced retail florists and designers. In 2007, my husband was diagnosed with cancer and passed. Devastated to lose my life partner, I dug into my gardens for emotional healing. “Busy hands, healthy mind” was one of Mom’s sayings.  The flower gardens became my sanctuary and therapy. I dug in the soil and my spiritual journey began.  Over the past 10 years I have planted, weeded, tilled, tended, cultivated and re-purposed our farm into The Friendship Garden of Blooms & Rooms (With the support and manual labor of family and friends).  The upstairs of our Farmhouse are rooms designed for my silk flower design studio, home office and social sitting room. The main level is currently “senior living” space for my Mom to live at home for the remainder of her life. She is now 93. My current purpose and role in life is Full-time Caregiver.

While I serve my life’s purpose my vision and dreams of creating a Flower Garden Farm are still alive!! I am cultivating, planting seeds, weeding, amending, and tending the “Outdoor Rooms” in the gardens with an expanded vision of creating a Gardening Ministry, Gardens of Joy.  A ministry to share the cornerstone of Faith, Hope, and Love and Trust God’s Plan; to teach and educate on truths of God’s Abundant Love and Reveal the mysteries of nature in community.  Sharing of the heart and prosper on a natural garden farm environment that is aligned with my Higher Purpose and Self. As I tend my gardens and enjoy the surroundings of God’s blessings, God is planting seeds upon my heart to BE a Stewardess of the Land and create a family legacy.

My calling is to host:
Seasons of Life workshops, Essential Oil classes, Garden parties and Creative venues at the Gathering Place (a re-purposed outbuilding). I welcome you with an open heart to join me on this sacred journey of a Bloomin’ Essential Lifestyle and share in the bounty through Gardens of Joy Ministry.

Be inspired, empowered & nurtured!

 

Blooms & Rooms’ feature article in MC Magazine

photo collage replacement

 

 

 

 

Holiday Decorations

Holiday decorations can be such a pickle (and not just the one carefully hidden on a Christmas tree)! Some folks bring out bins of the same stuff every year and minimalists do the bare minimum to avoid being a Scrooge.

“[My favorite way to decorate] varies from year to year,” says Joyce Miller-Konstantinow, owner and designer of Blooms & Rooms Design Studio in McHenry. She admits, however, “my favorite is and always has been a whimsical twist to traditional decorations. For example, this year my inspiration is ‘Baby It’s Cold Outside.’ I use red and white plaids and cable knitted pillows accented with snow, red berries, and hot chocolate …”  Click here to go to the full article

“The Underground” – a Sacred Community of Creative Intent

“The Underground” – a Sacred Community of Creative Intent

After spending the past few summer months tending to my personal inner Spiritual Garden I feel compelled to pursue my vision of “The UnderGround”. The space located in the lower level of Blooms & Rooms will, of course, need a few designer tweaks. The space really speaks to the calling of my Soul and Creative Spirit.

In my opinion, so much of today’s world focuses on the outward develop of ourselves, homes, relationships, businesses, etc. I like using the metaphor of a tree or plant; truthfully, it’s outer beauty (above ground level) depends on its depth of root structure and nourishment.

So for me, “The Underground”, represents all the “stuff” that is not visible that goes on within. All the “dirt”, trials, tribulations, life storms, grief, inner growth, and nourishment that feeds the “root” development, the strengths and weaknesses of your inner being to live authentically as the person you were meant to be, A Divine Being. The Root System of the Underground is crucial to your fruitfulness of personal beauty, thus being Sacred.

I know this is long, but I wanted all of you to have a better understanding of the depth of what ignites my passion to move forward with this vision. I am an Earthly Being with a Divine Calling, therefore “The Underground” is a Sacred Community of Creative Intent.

My intention is to cultivate a Life Lessons Program and Safe Haven on neutral ground (underground) for Self Enrichment and Empowerment training of a Warrior Goddess. Are you a Warrior Goddess??? I am.

Do you fight to have your voice heard? Do you fight for Peace, Love, Hope? Maybe you fight to be understood, noticed, or respected? To be loved? To heal? or to be forgiven?

Here is a partial list of what my intent for a Sacred Community is:
“Warrior Goddess Training” – Spiritual Growth Book Club
Life Lessons
Alignment with Nature – Seasonal Celebrations
Scripture Inspired Circle
Core Strengthening
Girls Night Out Gatherings – a variety of Fun Creative Expression and Craft Projects.
Natural Wellness
(Being Open to Evolve… Trusting in my Creator & Divine Guidance)

What the Underground is NOT!
A brothel house/space.
A space for wild drunken brawls.
A replacement for Professional Medical Assistance or Counseling.
An Abandonment or Lack of Focus of Blooms & Rooms.

Soooo, there you have it! A declaration of my Spiritual Path.

Does this resonate with you?

During the next few weeks I will be finalizing the programs. How quickly this evolves is up to Divine Timing and You!
If you are interested in participating, forming a circle or group please contact me of your interest.

Fall Blessings Everyone! Joyce

Spring Tea & Fashion Show

Spring Tea & Fashion Show

Join us on Friday, April 17th for our Spring Open House where we’ll be featuring beautiful home accents, gifts and accessories. There is always something new at Blooms & Rooms where local area woman artist display wonderful, unique one of a kind artwork, jewelry, gifts and more. We now carry a new line of coffee and tea. Stop by on Friday and Saturday from 9:30 to 11:00 for a tasting. Plan to attend a tea luncheon and fashion show that starts at 1:00. Please call for reservations.

Spring Tea & Open House

Creativity

Creativity = inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun!

WOW, with that definition how can anyone claim they are not creative. I have been blessed from a very early age to be more of the creative mindset.  My entire life I have enjoyed stretching and developing my creative aspirations.  I realized that our creative minds must be stretched to grow and in many situations reaching a greater potential than we ever imagine.  Some people say; “I don’t have a creative bone in me.”  Well folks, re-read the above statement.  We are all born with (or at least hopefully) two sides of our brains.  Our brains contain one side analytical and one creative. Some are just more naturally prone to one over the other.  Not making either right or wrong, but different.

Sometimes I think we put limits on our creativity. Why?  Is it because we are afraid to be vulnerable? To make mistakes?  Or does being creative relate to having fun and that’s not as acceptable in society?  Truth is . . . . NOTHING exits without creativity.  At some point everything imaginable has been created and designed. It’s just that some express their creativity openly, accepting rejection or acceptance.  Some are paid handsomely for their creativity.

Creativity comes in all shapes, styles, forms, and genders.  Creativity can mean art or design, but does not have to. Creativity is about expressing your unique inner self.  Taking what you have been gifted and then shining that brilliance to its maximum potential.  AND then when you think you’ve achieved it, start again! Stretch again and reach for a new level of creativity, for God has blessed each of us abundantly.

New Year, New Beginnings

New Year, New Beginnings

Last year 2014 was a turbulent year with many changes and moves. Literally, packing & moving. It started with packing my business late in December 2013, then unpacking and temporarily setting up business at my family’s farmhouse.

In July I was contracted by a client to assist in downsizing them from a 6000 sq ft. home to an 1800 sq. ft. condo. As a designer I am frequently assisting clients in De-cluttering and redefining spaces, so I was up for the challenge. The project took almost 12 weeks of objective decision making; keep and pack, sell, or pack and give-away for donation. The emotional aspect was a daunting task for the aging clients and for me. This elderly couple, in their mid 80’s, had years of collected treasures, some Ir-replaceable. There were pieces and collection sets of china, Pre-War from Switzerland and Austria, brought over to the states by the gentleman’s mother, breathtaking Persian Rugs, and approximately 200 pieces of quality furnishings, besides tons of trinkets that would no longer fit in their new condo. Sadly their children were not interested in adding many of these valuables to their possessions and time did not allow to search for a suitable buyer. Heartbreak and tears for this kind, compassionate senior man and wife.

Moving & downsizing can be an extremely overwhelming task and a huge awakening of grief. It is difficult to “let go” of 90% of your earthly possessions. For me as a consultant, my own previous move prepared me with blessings of compassion and healing. I was able to share & consult on the understanding of emotional attachment, loss, and accepting change as a process of life. Many, many hours were spent in listening to this gentleman’s stories regarding each treasured item from “back when”. I understood how valuable it was for him to share his stories. Sometimes it took days for him to process the final decision. While he processed and listened I stayed focus on moving forward for the house was sold and closing date was 6 weeks away.

When you are young and move, its exciting and adventurous, but as you age and especially at 85 with declining health, its a whole different ball game. Surrendering your life to the inevitable phase of aging. So, after almost 3 months of moving and relocating my clients I personally was faced with yet another move, once again! For 8 months internally I had been processing, searching and planning on relocating to a vacant storefront/warehouse. Movement was still stirring in my soul. At the end of August 2014, “a door” slammed shut and I was faced with making a quick business decision. Do I close my business or take a Leap of Faith and move my business? Well folks, I took “The Leap of Faith”! With the assistance of one of my staff, we packed up all inventory and physically moved daily for a week to a 2000 sq. ft retail showroom on Green St. in downtown McHenry, IL.

Again, Blessed from Above a window of opportunities for growth & development appeared! Praise God! In just 3 weeks the space was painted, showroom displayed, and set to open the doors of Blooms & Rooms Design Studio. Pre-Launch Opening was Sept. 28th, 2014. Just in time for the busiest season of the year, Fall & Christmas. Leaps of Faith can be scary or you can choose to look at them as opportunities with excitement. The choice is all yours.

Now onto New Year, New Beginnings! Follow me as I “Fly Solo” in this new venture. It’s all me & God as my partner, soaring like an Eagle. Yes, I do have a crew and many friends that are on this journey with me, but no partner in life as a husband, significant other, or business partner as I did in the past. Up until now, I resisted “Flying Solo”. I am ready to accept and pursue my own Creative Expressions through teaching, workshops, public speaking, writing, and mentoring. Utilizing my life experiences & talents to form and cultivate my next phase and chapter in life (60 is just around the corner). My plan is to start to write a new story for the life of Joyce Miller-Konstantinow as a visionary and creative woman. 29 years of being an entrepreneur has taught me invaluable life lessons and shaped me into the woman and designer I am today. My vision for Blooms & Rooms Design Studio’s new business location is to blossom into a supportive community of Creatives. Empower women to Nurture the Creative Spirit that lies within each of us and cultivate “The Underground” of our Souls. Bloom from the inside out, the internal rooms of our hearts and answer our calling of being creative. I am energized and excited for these new beginnings!

Blessings Everyone, Blessings

Times of Transition

Times of Transition

Times of Transition for me requires a great deal of patience and faith.  I find myself shifting between emotions of enthusiasm for the new beginning and impatience with the lapse of time it takes for change to take effect.  With the recent move of locations and time of transition for Blooms & Rooms Design Studio it has been a time of healing, soul searching, planning, and exploration of purpose.  What surprised me was the grief process in letting go of dreams and aspirations that the investment was time, heart & soul.  Letting go of a relationship that no longer served my greater good.  I listened to the calling of my soul that it was time to transition without a plan, but I knew deep within my heart it was the proper time and took a Leap of Faith.  Knowing that when one door closes another will open, generally bigger and better.  I just needed to be open and receptive with faith in the unknown.

Time of Transition has allowed me to rest, rejuvenate, revive my creative spirit & rekindle friendships.  Time sometimes is the greatest and most precious gift, we can give ourselves if we are just willing to take that Leap of Faith.