If you’re anything like us, one of your favorite activities this time of year is reflecting on the wonderful things that have happened over the previous year, and making wish lists for the new one. Sometimes, those wishes can be difficult to make happen without the help of friends, family or others. Fresh Produce would like to help you make some of those wishes come true this year in our Wishes Do Come True event. We’ll be selecting three lucky fans to have their wishes granted. Learn more about the event and submit your wish on our Facebook page.
The inspiration for our Wishes Do Come True event came from an amazing long-time customer of Fresh Produce, Jeanette Peterson. Jeanette recently posted a comment on our Facebook page offering to be a model in our next photo shoot. We said, “Why not?!” She’ll be joining us on set, getting her hair and makeup done and modeling some of Fresh Produce’s newest styles for next season.
Jeanette has expressed how thrilled she is to have this opportunity, but as we’ve gotten to know her over the past few weeks, we’ve learned that we’re really the lucky ones. Jeanette is an amazing woman bursting with spirit, enthusiasm and an infectiously positive outlook on life. Her inspiration extends far beyond this event, into her family, her community and anyone that meets her.
Jeanette and her husband of 48 years, Loren, live in upstate New York, surrounded by their two sons and daughters in law, six grandchildren and a community of loving friends. Jeanette is a retired daycare provider, and Loren is a retired elementary school teacher. She and Loren live across the street from the school and Jeanette watched the children of teachers during the day. Jeanette and Loren were high school sweethearts, and recently celebrated the anniversary of their first date, when Jeanette asked Loren to a Sadie Hawkins dance.
Jeanette is very active in her community, acting as surrogate grandmother to kids in the area and volunteering at the local food bank and Hope for the Bereaved, an organization in Syracuse, New York that helps people cope and grow from their losses. After losing their son to an accident in 2001, Jeanette and Loren found solace in Hope for the Bereaved. The organization was there for them when they needed it, and when Jeanette was ready, she was there for the organization.
Jeanette’s love of nature, the outdoors and gardening became her way to give back. Jeanette created a gardening program for Hope for the Bereaved, and works with other members to tend the garden and bring new life to the community and to their lives. Jeanette loves lavender–both the color and the flower. She plants this flower in her gardens and makes sachets out of it to give as gifts for friends and family.
Jeanette’s positive outlook on life comes from never taking anything for granted. “I have my struggles with my outlook on things at times just like everyone else. I just am determined to keep trying to be the best that I can be.”
Jeanette does this in two ways–surrounding herself with positive energy, and by taking stock of the things she’s grateful for every single day. Jeanette follows advice from Sara Ban Breathnach’s book, Simple Abundance, in which the author encourages readers to create a Gratitude Journal–write down five different things you are grateful for each day, and don’t repeat any of those items. Jeanette has made a Gratitude Journal part of her daily routine, and credits it with being one of the most important parts of her life.
Jeanette’s wish for Fresh Produce’s fans and everyone is that they can find peace of mind in their lives. She had learned the hard way that nothing is forever. But rather than let this knowledge frighten or infuriate her, Jeanette uses it to live in the present, “Find a place or a person to have peace with. Take the time to sit back and say “ah.” Nothing is forever. It’s all right now, so make it a good one.”
Fresh Produce would like to help others make it a good one, too. Tell us your wishes on our Facebook page for a chance to have your wish granted! Entries are being accepted November 26 through December 17, and winners will be announced starting December 21, 2014. So, what do you wish for?