The Story of a Cardinal and God Conversations in the Bathroom

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(Photos courtesy of Erin Witkowski)

When I left you last on the story of our journey, I shared our exciting news about starting our own Finding Home maple syrup line.  We are so excited.

And nervous.

And overwhelmed.

But, in all the good ways.

Right now, our biggest challenge is logistics.  Shipping and packaging and all of those things that come with it.  We decided early on not to wait until we had ever detail figured out to launch, so we are moving along figuring out each step as well go.  As far when our online shop will be open, we are hoping for November 1st.   But, hopefully, it will be sooner than that.

When I was young, my grandfather used to ask me all the time what I was going to be when I grew up.  I used to tell him I was going to open a flower shop.  He would scoff at that idea and tell me to become a lawyer, that I would be good in a court room.  I always think about what he would think about what I do now.  Actually, he owned a paint and hardware store.  Somehow, I think he would approved.

When I lost my grandfather at the age of 15, I lost a guider and a cheerleader.  Over the years, though, I have always felt he was watching over me.  Actually, whenever I have faced really hard things, I have seen a cardinal (not very common around here) and I have believed it was him letting me know he was watching over me.  I never told anyone this, because yes, I know it sounds crazy.   A few years ago, I brought this up with my sister and seems she thought the same thing!   Believing that someone is watching over me has helped me through all of the leaps of faith we have been having to make.

 

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I have known all along that even know this was something Dana and I were doing, we were going to need people to help guide us and help us find our way.  When we first made the decision to start our own maple syrup line, the biggest challenge was deciding if it would be branded as “Finding Home” or something else.  The truth is, I really wanted it to be Finding Home because I love our brand so much.  It really is who we are and what we are about.   But, I also knew that I was so close to it that I was having trouble seeing it.  I knew that if were going to be banking our future on this brand, putting it on labels and growing it, it had to make sense.

If you don’t already know it, my background is in marketing.   I love marketing and all things branding.  I love being able to do a lot for myself in that respect.  But I knew in this case, I need professional help.  After a stop and start with another company, Pinterest lead me to Braizen.  I loved their aesthetic, but I really loved their spunk and sass.  They turned out to be the perfect partners for us to re-launch Finding Home as something even more.

I knew we needed more than someone to design a logo for us, we needed someone who could help guide us through a brand.  We knew, actually we learned through each step, we actually had to do a lot of the work ourselves, but Braizen and their amazing team are the ones that got us there.  They helped us find the questions that we needed to answer.   Working with them has seriously been amazing.  From the first conversation, our logo idea was born.  And everything since then has been built around that.

 

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So, how did we get to our logo idea?

When we started with Braizen, we filled out a questionnaire so that they could get a sense of us and what we needed and wanted.  One of the questions asked if we had any mascots or marks we wanted included in our logo.  I mentioned that if it worked, I would love to include a cardinal.  Ashley from Braizen asked me about that and I shared this story with her…

This past February, I went on a blogging trip to Tybee Island, GA.  One of the days we toured Savannah, GA, which really is a lovely city.  We started the morning at an awesome bakery, Back in the Day Bakery.  I will digress slightly and tell you that their coffee and savory baked goods are amazing.  Anyhoo, we had the opportunity to hear Cheryl, one of the owners speak, and share a little bit of her story about starting her bakery and successfully selling her cookbooks.

 

Back-in-the-Day-Bakery

 

At the time I was there, I was very nervous about the prospect of going into the maple business.  I just could not see it.  I couldn’t really wrap my mind around it.  For some reason, after Cheryl spoke, I felted compelled to share our story with her and see how she responded.   Did she think it was stupid to sell maple syrup?  A woman with her background should know.

Well, I shared our story and she was just so gracious and enthusiastic.   And for that I was so thankful.

After our conversation, I excused myself to the ladies room.  As I washed my hands I found myself feeling an overwhelming sense of peace and understanding.  For the first time, I could really “see it”.  I could feel it.   And I felt it was God providing me with the peace and foundation that I still walk on today.

I walked out of the bathroom with a smile on my face.  Just as I walked towards the front, I heard my phone notify me that I had a text message.  As I opened it, there was a message from Peanut.

“Mom, I just saw a cardinal.”

 

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Lets just say that my eyes filled with tears and my day was filled with joy.  And to top if off, I was so blessed to share my day and excitement with some of the dearest blogging friends you can hope for.

And just like the dove carries the olive branch, our cardinal carries a maple leaf on the journey to finding home.

Thank you sweet friends for reading.

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P.S. My lovely friends at Joss & Main have partnered with a group of amazing bloggers to share their Holiday Hostess series and it just launched with the ever talented Marian from Miss Mustard Seed – stop by to see her beautiful collection.  Thanks!

 

 

 

 

About Finding Home

Welcome to Finding Home Farms where we share our favorite DIY and decorating ideas and inspiration. We believe your home should be a reflection of you and your family. Our blog is the story of our journey - and what we find along the way. Thanks for joining us!

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27 thoughts on “The Story of a Cardinal and God Conversations in the Bathroom”

Comments

  1. I read every word and I simply loved the story. I do believe it was your grandfather giving his seal of approval. If there are typos it’s because i have tears in my eyes. I was really moved by the story. We are your cheerleaders and I am so happy that you consider us your friends. Wishing you all the very best. Big hugs!!

  2. Tears. I KNOW you will be successful! This Pike Road lady believes in you and is cheering on the sidelines! Can’t wait to see you next week!!

  3. A wonderful story. No cardinals here, but I do have feathers. Just a small reminder from my Mum who is always watching over and guiding me. The branding looks fantastic and I wish you all the very best with the business! Sx

  4. You brought tears to my eyes! It’s funny, I have never thought of the cardinal representing anything specific but I have developed what I have thought of as a strange fascination for them. I started putting up feeders in hopes they would show up more often. We often see a male & female in the yard. I will certainly look at them differently now.

  5. What a special story this is. I, too, believe that we have angels among us. I love that you and your family are following your dream and doing so with an open heart. You are a true inspiration for living your best life, and I take a lot away from your posts. Wishing you all the best in your new venture!

  6. Looking forward to ordering your maple syrup.
    My daughter and I see cardinals as a sign of her friend who passed 10 years ago. Sometimes the cardinals are noisy so that we are paying attention.
    All the best!

  7. I loved your post and you are not crazy. Every time I cook something in my kitchen, I feel my Mom is guiding me because she was a spectacular cook. Congratulations on your new endeavor.

  8. I love the fact that you are using a cardinal in your trademark. Tears came to my eyes when Peanut saw one and thought to call you. I am anxiously awaiting your website.

  9. What a great story ! I don’t think that’s crazy at all. After my brother passed away prematurely, we had a white squirrel in our yard and I was certain it was a sign from him. Gave me comfort. Shortly after that my husband brother passed and we had a white duck under our feeders in our yard. We both thought it was my brother in law passing through giving us a sign he was ok. Thanks for sharing your story. Very heartwarming.
    Marijean

  10. Thank you for sharing this beautiful story with us. Wishing you and Dana and your lovely family all success with your new business…

  11. C
    Cried reading this. My best friend passed away in august and ever since a dragonfly seems to find me. Every time I feel its her. I think God sends them to us when we need to see them. Many blessings on your new adventure.

  12. God speaks to us in very unique and personal ways. Your story is beautiful. I love cardinals! We have them pretty much year round and they are almost always in pairs of male and female. Every spring they give their little offspring flying lessons outside of my kitchen window. And the little guys frequently fly into the window all dazed and unsettled. It’s a hoot. Well, Laura, it’s official…you’re the maple syrup lady 😉

  13. What a beautiful story and like many of your readers, it brought tears. I wish you the best possible in this journey and I think Grandpa is all smiles (and perhaps rethinking about you becoming a lawyer!).

  14. Your story touched me. A beautiful post. Congratulations on growing your business in this new direction. Your Grandfather would be very proud. I do believe he sends a cardinal to let you know he is watching over you. Isn’t it amazing when you are where you are suppose to be fulfilling your purpose, everything seems to just fit in place?

  15. Congratulations on your business!! I am so excited for you and your family. I know your Grandfather is watching over you and your family each and every day cheerleading you on your way to success. Your story brought tears to my eyes.
    I had to comment on your story because of what I am about to share…my father passed away 12 years ago this month, he taught me so much about wood working, painting and creating things with my hands … I will always be grateful for this. My father too, loved the cardinals. He would walk out the back door of our family home and whistle and I swear they would whistle back at him. They were always hanging around my parents yard and dad didn’t even feed them! Upon dads passing, my sister noticed more cardinals (she is not a nature person) in her back yard and when I am at her home she will say, “Look, there is dad”. I would roll my eyes and say, “yeah, okay”. After reading your story, I sent her a message with your site and the title of my post was, “Dad has a new friend”.
    You have a new subscriber in this girl-thanks for sharing your story.
    Beth

  16. Such a sweet story! My mom and I love ” The Red Birds!” It is our reminder that God is looking over us and that whatever we are going through that He is there with us guiding our steps! Have a blessed day!