Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Daffodil Principle

If you haven't heard the story TheDaffodil Principle yet, then you have been missing out. It has such a great message. It quickly became one of my favorite stories the first time I heard it. When Dave found out how much it meant to me he decided to plant some Daffodil bulbs on our hill in our backyard. I was excited because we aren't able to plant a lot of spring flowers due to living so close to the mountain. Why you ask? Well the deer seem to enjoy them in their tummies before we even get to see them blossom! But once we learned the deer won't even taste the daffodils, we were excited to get planting. Dave and my boys painstakingly planted over 750 bulbs one year, ONE bulb at a time! I could NOT believe they would that...for me! It was not an easy thing to do considering the slope of our hill either! Unfortunately, even though the deer don't enjoy eating them, they have no qualms about walking and trampling on them. Still, we get a pretty good burst of bright yellow each spring. We always look for the first glimpse of color up on the hill each March. That means spring is close! This year however, they blossomed about a month late. But blossom they did! I have added some photos of them at the end of this post. I hope you enjoy this story as much as I do!

Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, "Mother, you must come see the daffodils before they are over." I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead. "I will come next Tuesday, "I promised, a little reluctantly, on her third call. Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and so I drove there.When I finally walked into Carolyn's house and hugged and greeted my grandchildren, I said, "Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The road is invisible in the clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and these children that I want to see bad enough to drive another inch!" My daughter smiled, "We drive in this all the time, Mom." "Well, you won't get me back on the road until it clears and then I'm heading straight for home!" I said, rather emphatically. "Gee, Mom, I was hoping you'd take me over to the garage to pick up my car," Carolyn said with a forlorn look in her eyes. "How far will we have to drive?" Smiling she answered, "Just a few blocks, I'll drive ... I'm used to this." After several minutes, I had to ask, "Where are we going? This isn't the way to the garage!" "We're going to my garage the long way," Carolyn smiled, "by way of the daffodils." "Carolyn," I said sternly, "please turn around." "It's all right, Mom, I promise, you will never forgive yourself if you miss this experience." After about twenty minutes we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw a small church. On the far side of the church I saw a hand-lettered sign ... We got out of the car and each took a child's hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path. As we turned a corner of the path, and I looked up and gasped.Before me lay the most glorious sight. It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it down over the mountain peak and slopes. The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns, great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, lemon yellow, salmon pink, saffron, and butter yellow. Each different-colored variety was planted as a group so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. Five acres of the most beautiful flowers I had ever seen!"Who planted all these?" I asked Carolyn."It's just one woman," Carolyn answered. "She lives on the property. That's her home." Carolyn pointed to a well-kept A-frame house that looked small and modest in the midst of all that glory.We walked up to the house we saw a sign...There it was ... "The Daffodil Principle" For me that moment was a life-changing experience. I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty years before, had begun - one bulb at a time - to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure mountain top. Still, this unknown, old woman had forever changed the world in which she lived. She had created something of magnificent beauty, and inspiration.
The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principles of celebration: Learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time, learning to love the doing, learning to use the accumulation of time. When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world. "It makes me sad in a way," I admitted to Carolyn. "What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it 'one bulb at a time' through all those years. Just think what I might have been able to achieve! My daughter summed up the message of the day in her direct way, "Start tomorrow, Mom," she said, "It's so pointless to think of the lost hours of our yesterdays. The way to make learning a lesson a celebration instead of a cause for regret is to only ask... "How can I put this to use today?" ~Written by Jaroldeen Asplund Edwards I did some research on "The Daffodil Principle" written by Jaroldeen Edwards because I wanted to know if this garden existed. This is the real garden by Mrs. Gene Bauer of Running Spring, CA
Anyone can visit during peak bloom time, early March to early April. The garden is located below Running Springs, California, in the San Bernardino Mountains. From the city of Highland (about 60 miles east of downtown Los Angeles), take Highway 330 toward Running Springs. Drive 14 miles into the mountains to the intersection of Live Oak Dr. and Fredalba. Turn right on Fredalba and proceed one mile. Park in the church parking lot. From there, signs will direct you.

She has been through 2 fires in the last 4 years and has lost many of the daffodils. Perhaps, only if you want to, you can send her $5 in the mail so she can buy a few new bulbs.

(Alma) Gene and Dale Bauer
P.O. Box 205,
Running Springs, CA 92382 -0205 Y

Check out this link HERE to see more photos and read the amazing story of how it all started and how she continues to still plant!

You can now buy this great story as a children's book.

These are the shots from my own Daffodil Garden. Can you see the little specks of yellow?

A little closer view... there was a deer right at the top of the hill when I shot this, but I can't find him in the photo!

Closer still..


Daffodils are such happy looking flowers...

These two shots were taken at the top of the hill looking down.
Start today...just one bulb at a time.


Mel said...

I heard that story and long time ago and loved it then and now. Thanks so much for sharing it. So much we can learn from it!

The Hoyt's said...

Love it!!! I read that story not to long ago through email it is a great story.... Your yard is beautiful..

Rhea said...

Beautiful post! Love the flowers.

Jen said...

Love that story! I love all the daffodils! What great boys and a husband you have!

Yvonne said...

I love that story each time I hear it.

How sweet of your husband and boys to do plant all the daffodils for you.

Sheila said...

What a wonderful post! Just loved the Daffodil Principle. I clicked on your blog from Yvonne's Tag... thinking I would see your six words, not yet I guess, but this was delightful. Thank You, toodles, Sheila

Tiffany said...

I love the story. Thank you for sharing. I love the daffodils too. What an inspiration.

Karen said...

I still remember when I first heard that story I was probablly with you!! Give Dave and the boys kudos for that great act!!!. By the way how do you post a go hear to your blog?

sara said...

I have always loved this story as well. Your daffodil garden is amazing. Great post.


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