Channeling the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival at Home

The weekend before self-isolation began, I had getting to the plant nursery on my to-do list. Push came to shove, and getting across town to buy a few plants gave way to bigger and more pressing things. At the end of the weekend, the night that Walt Disney World began its temporary closure, I got online and ordered four small lavender plants.

During college, I worked at two plant nurseries. I enjoyed the early mornings of getting things ready for the customers, watering the plants, sweeping the walkways, and starting the new day. Getting to help recommend the right plants and soil amendments for people based on the available sun or shade or preference was so much fun.

Lavender plants have been a favorite of mine for years. As someone who has bucket list dreams of visiting France, it’s something that brings just a touch of France to my neck of the woods. When we lived in Maryland, I had a bed of lavender plants of different sorts and varieties that I had added to over the years right by our front door.

I was so excited when the plants arrived, and I unboxed them and took care of them until the time came to plant them. I cleaned up my flower pots, and grabbed a bag of potting soil from my garage.

Lavender plants are tough little things. They’re drought tolerant, meaning that if I don’t water them one day, they won’t croak by morning. I love that about them. They’re just a little bit forgiving. And their scent is like none other; I’m immediately put at ease when I run my hand over them.

I mentioned briefly at the end of Friday’s column that I would be planting my four tiny lavender plants in order bring a little beauty into the everyday. Perhaps it could also be a way to channel a little bit of the Flower and Garden Festival here at home. It’s a little sad to me that all of those lovely flowers are blooming at Epcot without guests there to enjoy them.

You know what? Getting my hands in the dirt helped to lift my spirits. The scent of the lavender soothed the rough edges. Just the intentional effort to invite something beautiful into this funky-normal-for-now made things better. I still miss Epcot, but it feels like just a tiny bit of it has come to live at my house. And I’ll get to enjoy it every day.

What are you doing to help lift your spirits during this time? What at-home Disney festival-inspired activities have you done? Please share in the comments section below.

Deni loves all things Disney, and, in 2013, moved to the Magic from Maryland. Walt Disney World is her happy place, and she loves getting to share it with others. Deni and her husband of almost 26 years have 2 grown children. Her favorite WDW snack? A Mickey Bar, of course. Is there any other?!


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