There is nothing that will pull me out of the winter blues faster than the bloom of the dogwood trees every spring. When I first see hints of their bloom, I get excited, and often will go out driving daily to watch their progress. I have always loved dogwoods… they seem magical to me, like the unicorn of blossoming trees.

A thousand years ago (okay, it just seems that way) when I was preparing to get married in early April, we had an order in with the florist for the arrangements, and then magically the dogwood bloomed early. My mother called me the week before the wedding and asked me if I’d like to decorate with dogwood instead. She told me that there was a friend in the church that had acres of dogwood trees, and that we were welcome to cut as much as wanted.

We canceled our order of arrangements, and the day before the wedding we drove out to the country to cut our dogwood. We cut a ton, and then followed the instructions we’d found on how to preserve them overnight. They are very fragile blooms, but we added something to their water (was it sugar?), and they were still beautiful the next day. The front of the church was covered in dogwood arrangements, and it was stunning. And magical.

The marriage faded years ago, but my excitement when I see the first blooms start to peek out did not. So here I am in the middle of the woods with my mother during quarantine, and much to my surprise and delight, I found out that their yard is FULL of dogwoods! I counted over a dozen trees, and have LOVED being surrounded by their beauty. I’ve never visited my parents’ home this time of the year… usually we start coming for visits early summer, but never early spring.

You never know where you’ll see #FoundJoy. Sometimes it’s right in your own front yard.

Lee Ann Kendrick

Lee Ann Kendrick


Lee Ann is the owner of Lake Designs Associates of Fayetteville, a design and marketing firm. She is comfortable as both a web communicator, designer, and production specialist. As the head of the creative team, she works hand-in-hand with clients to gather information and direct the team in the process to meet the specific marketing objectives set forth in the initial meetings.

In her spare time Lee Ann likes to write, put on parades, and hang out with her grandkids.