Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Daughters of the American Revolution Speaking Engagement - 12 November 2016

On Wednesday, November 12th, Freedom Petals had the opportunity to speak at the Daughters of the American Revolution luncheon chapter meeting.  It was in conjunction with the chapter’s community service event to provide outreach and support to veterans of the Armed Forces Retirement Home.
The DAR, founded in 1890 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., is a non-profit, non-political volunteer women's service organization dedicated to promoting patriotism. DAR members volunteer millions of service hours annually in their local communities; including supporting active duty military personnel and assisting veteran patients.  We are proud to have been able to work with them to provide wonderful floral arrangements for our veterans.
During the event, Freedom Petals’ Michele Bevington and Marilyn Myers, visited the DAR’s 1776 Chapter to share our experience in flower arranging.  Following the demonstration the twenty DAR volunteers, using FP donated flowers and mugs, made over forty beautiful flower arrangements to be delivered to the Armed Forces Retirement Home here in Washington DC.

It was truly a pleasure to have such a successful speaking engagement to share the mission of Freedom Petals Inc. and support their flower arranging event.   It was so fulfilling because of the exceptional interaction with the DAR members and our ability to support our retired veterans at the same time.

4 November Aleethia Dinner Event

Dear Michele,
Thanks to you and all the wonderful volunteers of Freedom Petals who designed such beautiful floral arrangements for Aleethia’s Friday Night Dinner held on November 4, 2016 at the Washington Golf & Country Club.  It made the dining room more welcoming and created a sharing atmosphere.   It’s been said that the essence of flowers contain magical healing powers and that was quite evident by all the excited smiles.  Besides all the service members and caregivers leaving the dinner with a container of flowers, several bouquets were delivered to families at the Fisher Houses on base.  We learned that one of the Fisher Houses was hosting a “pancake breakfast” for Veterans on Saturday and were thrilled to receive some of the centerpieces.  The “floral ballpoint pens” were delivered to the staff on the oncology wards at WRNMMC.   
Also, we greatly appreciate your generosity in donating the gift cards that will be included in the upcoming holiday gift bags for the wounded/injured/ill service members and caregivers.
Again, thank you for touching everyone in such a joyful and unique way.   We wish you, your volunteers and their families a very Blessed Thanksgiving!
Aleethia Foundation

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Aleethia Dinner - at the Rock Creek Knights of Columbus Hall

The Freedom Petals flower event to support the Friday Night Aleethia Dinner 16 September sponsored by the Ledo Club was a huge success.  

The flower collection during the week was not so successful because fall brings lots of potted plants instead of bouquets.
So as usual when I request our creative volunteers to bring some flowers they always come through.  Also, Barbara Levermann from the Western Fairfax Women's Club and the Chantilly Garden Club brought 4 coolers full of flowers and beautiful greens from their gardens to supplement our event.  I can't thank her enough and her crew for these perfect donations.  My special partner for the last seven years Anne Harvey from the Herndon Florist donated a huge multi-colored box of Alstroemeria.  She is always our angel.

Ten volunteers came to work and create over 40 arrangements for the dinner tables and for everyone to bring back a special flower to Walter Reed.  We had two new Freedom Petal volunteers (Betty and Jane) that helped to make the flags and silk flower pens for the Walter Reed Nurses.

Thanks to all for your time and passion you give each month!

Dear Michele,

What a night!  With 20 "playful" children in attendance, we definitely needed the flowers to make the environment of the room more relaxed and happy while providing increased levels of positive energy!  Everyone left with smiles.   Also, some of the extras bouquets brought smiles to patients staying at the Fisher Houses.  The floral pens headed to Building 10 (WRNMMC) and were given to nurses on several wards.

Again, thanks for all the beautiful floral arrangements ... they certainly generated happiness.   Attached is a collage of some of the arrangements.  We pasted a collage of the Friday Night Dinner on Aleethia's facebook page https://www.facebook.com/AleethiaFoundation/

Looking forward to seeing you in November!



Sunday, August 14, 2016

Aleethia Dinner - Arlington-Fairfax Elks Lodge August 12th

The Friday, August 12th Flower Event was a huge success, the 10 volunteers from the Friday team worked tirelessly to create beautiful table arrangements for the Warrior Dinner at the Elks Lodge 2188.  The room was immediately transformed with our flowers welcoming over 80 attendees from our warrior families.  The pot luck dinner was delicious with grilled hamburgers, hotdogs and fried chicken.  The Elks members are so organized and so kind to host these dinners.  Freedom petals provided the flowers and also contributed 90 cupcakes (thanks to Mary Beth, Donna, Barbara)  for this event.  We celebrated a wounded warrior member birthday and a 9 year wedding anniversary as well.  And of course we provided special flowers to both.
I have attached a special thank-you note from our Aleethia POC Margaret.  
Thanks so much to the Freedom Petals Family,
God Bless, Michele


Thanks so very much to you and your band of volunteers who designed such beautiful floral arrangements for Aleethia's Friday Night Dinner being held at the Arlington-Fairfax Elks Lodge.  You can't help but feel such positive energy and emotions of happiness as the wounded/injured/ill service members and their families entered the room.  I believe the flowers created a room filled with sharing, laughter and healing.

Again, Freedom Petals outdid themselves.  We are so appreciative of Freedom Petals' partnership with Aleethia's programs.  We look forward to the next time you can fill the dining room with happiness!

Also, thanks for the help with the birthday cake, anniversary flowers and more.  Enjoy the rest of the summer.



Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Boulder Crest Retreat Hoedown - June 4, 2016

Our June flower event was a huge success.  We started at 8:30 am so we would be finished before noon.  This was the first time Freedom Petals supported The Boulder Crest Retreat for wounded warriors in Bluemont,  VA.  Thanks so much to the volunteers who created 20 beautiful table arrangements, 6 extra vases and 3 large baskets. The mason  jar flowers were all donated by Anne Harvey from The Herndon Florist in downtown Herndon.

 The Hoedown was a  fundraising event serving lots of barbecue, hotdogs and a country band.  They had 200 guests.  Keith and I delivered the flowers at 2pm.  
  The flowers were the icing on the cake and everyone was delighted with our special touches for this event. Thanks again for a successful event.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Volunteer Brunch 11 May - Aleethia Dinner Event

     The vounteer brunch was so much fun and we shared a delicious breakfast prepared by 
      Amphora of Chantilly Catering.  We had time to sit and enjoy each other.  After 7 years 
      it was time to say thank you for supporting Freedom Petals initiatives.  I have met so many
      wonderful people through this flower journey and all of you have helped to grow and enable 
      Freedom Petals bouquets to continue to bring joy and healing to our wounded warrior heroes.
Thanks for coming to our events and sharing your talents and the gift of your time.

Cake and flower cookies by Becky

These pictures are a few of the arranagments we made after the brunch!

Monday, May 2, 2016


Hi Everyone,

Just wanted to remind everyone that our first Volunteer Appreciation Brunch will be held at 9am on Friday, 13 May.  We still have room and lots of food if anyone has a change in plans for that morning.  I can't wait to just sit down together to eat and enjoy the morning; reflecting on our successful journey bringing flowers to many wounded warriors over the last seven years.  Please let me know if you want to be added to our list of attendees.  

After the brunch we will be making flowers arrangements for the Aleethia Friday Night Wounded Warrior Dinner.

I'm excited to tell you that Joan H. and I visited The Boulder Crest Retreat for Military and Veteran Wellness in Bluemont, VA last Tuesday.   We received a private tour of the 37 Acre retreat for wounded warriors and their families.  I encourage everyone to please visit this amazing venue started to help our hero's heal and enjoy a family vacation as well.     bouldercrestretreat.org  (check out the website)
As a result of our visit we have signed up to support Boulder Crest's annual fundraising event "A Hoedown" with 20 table arrangements and several flower baskets to raffle.
So our June event will be on Saturday, 4 June at 9am.  We will deliver the flowers that same day to the Retreat.
Please reply if you can support this event.  I will be sending another notice at the end of May and more details about the Hoedown to come.

​Looking forward to seeing you on 13 May.
​God Bless,​
Michele Bevington

Pam and Barb
Malone House on Walter Reed Army Hospital 
 on Georgia Avenue 2011
Early Delivery of 120 Flower Arrangements
Aleethia Dinner at the Elks Club Arlington
11 March 2016

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

11 March 2016 Aleethia Dinner at the Fairfax Elks Club

Beautiful St. Patrick's Day flowers for the Aleethia Friday Night Warrior Dinner
The Friday Freedom Petals Team Made the Picture

All the flowers were donated from Trader Joes.  Beautiful potted azealias and hyacinths too.  Birthday baskets and cakes for the Birthday Girls.  Everyone enjoyed the Thanksgiving menu in March...Turkey and Dressing.  We have so much to be thankful for.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Post Valentine's Flower Event - 19 February 2016

The Friday, 19 February flower event was a huge success thanks to all the volunteers that came to create beautiful arrangements for the Aleethia Foundation Friday Night dinner at the WGCC in Arlington.  Trader Joe's was so wonderful calling me all week with their extra valentine Roses, forced tulip vases and cut Tulip donations.  We had so many beautiful roses from the Valentine weekend.  Because of all the flowers that were donated by Traders I had a last minute idea...on Thursday, 18 February I called Marcelo at Fisher House on Walter Reed Base to see if I could drop off large vases of roses and buckets of colorful tulips for the Fisher House residents on Friday.  So crazy right!!! On the same day as of the event and the dinner.  I just didn't want to throw so many flowers away.  He said great and was sending in my name for a day pass.  
But when I saw Marilyn (super volunteer) at the door to help that morning...another crazy idea was to have her come with me and use her military ID to get on base.  Yes, she said, "YES"!  She had no plans that day.  So we left at noon for Walter Reed when all the work was done at my house. The Fisher House staff met us at the door and were so excited.

I got home just in time to sit and put my feet up.. Next packing the truck again with the Aleethia Dinner arrangements.  WHEW!  The tables at the club were shining and you could feel the smiles in the room from our beautiful bouquets.

This weekend I received this email and picture collage below from Margaret (The Aleethia Foundation Queen Bee).   You never really know what the impact the Freedom Petals flowers make until you get a note like this below.  
God Bless, Michele
Hi Michele
Spoke with the Elks Lodge organizer and they are delighted Freedom Petals will be provided St. Patrick theme florals! Their tables will have white tablecloths and napkins.

Again, thanks to Freedom Petals for the beautiful "Valentine" flower arrangements.  The tables looked absolutely amazing.   The glass vases with the tulip bulbs were very unique and so many folks told me how excited they are to watch their tulips bloom...All the "birthday boys" enjoyed their special arrangements.  Our sponsor was delighted to see "yellow roses" in her arrangement.  Seems her husband (1950 West Point grad-Korean & Vietnam Veteran) who died ten years ago on this past Thursday, would always give her "yellow roses!"  The wife who got the orchid plant told me that she collects and raises orchids and was so excited to receive the plant.  Her face was beaming!  During the last year, she has been fighting the court system in NC  in dealing with her husband's case.  There were so many stories ... and the flowers brought everyone a moment of joy.

I read this quote the other day - "....flowers are the sunshine, food and medicine for the soul..."  Thanks to all the wonderful Freedom Petal volunteers and donors of the flowers for bringing happiness to the wounded/injured/ill service members, their caregivers and family members who attend Aleethia's "Friday Night Dinners."
Hugs to all!
Aleethia Foundation

Aleethia Dinner WGCC Arrangements

Febaruary 19, 2016

Thursday, January 21, 2016

January 8 2016 Alleethia Dinner Event

      The Freedom Petals volunteers truly out did themselves creating beautiful mugs and flower arrangements for the 8 January Aleethia Dinner.  The holiday and floral mugs were so festive sitting that on the small tables at the Tesoro Restaurant in Washington D.C.  Every family or wounded warrior got to take home an arrangement and the joy filled the room.  This was the first dinner of the new year 2016.  There was a positive energy in the room of families looking forward to healing  and looking forward to going home.  There was a lot of laughter and sharing of stories.  The flowers always bring so many smiles and happiness to the dinners.  Below is an email I received today expressing gratitude for what Freedom Petals brings to our wounded warriors through our beautiful flowers.  This says it all!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the beautiful flowers I got at one of the Friday night dinners.  The cutest part of it is my 21 year old son ( wounded warrior ) handing me these beautiful flowers as he picked them out from a table.  Your designs and thought process behind each and every floral arrangement ( well it is a labor of love and so appreciated ).   Thank you from one appreciative Army Mom.  Love with great gratitude Donna