Rosa Reyes opened her shop Rosa’s Boutique in 2007. It was a goal she waited a long time to attain.
“Ever since I was twelve or 13 years old I dreamed of owning my own flower shop,” Reyes said. “I liked helping my mom grow flowers. We sold them alongside the road. I also liked to go to the fields to collect flowers. I would sell them by the cemetery to help my parents.”
Reyes stayed at home for ten years taking care of children at home and eventually she searched for work outside of the home. When Reyes arrived to Mattawa in 1989 she found work pruning in the orchards and eventually worked as a checker.
In the back of her mind, her dream still loomed in the background. She always had a natural talent for arranging flowers. It was her passion, and she wanted to pursue it.
“I thought if you want to do something you can do it,” Reyes said. “It is a sacrifice but you can do it.”
Rosa worked thinning trees in the orchard and also picked asparagus to save up money for a house after she separated from her husband. She didn’t have any help except from her children.
“I always thought my house was the first thing I had to pay for to take care of my kids,” Reyes added. “My children have told me I was a responsible mother.”
Reyes raised three boys and four girls as a single mother for six years without any help. On her own, she saved up enough money to make a down payment on her home.
“I liked it here because there was a lot of work,” Reyes said. “Here there is a way to live well. If you want to you can.”
Reyes opened her shop nearly 11 years ago. She is happiest there working with the flowers. Her flower arrangements just come from ideas she carries around in her head. She even gets ideas in her dreams.
Her children have helped her in the store. Her youngest daughter, Jacky Medina helps her out almost every day. She also helps to make floral arrangements sometimes. Medina’s long term goal is to become a nurse.
“This is a long time to keep a business running,” Medina said. “I am proud of her for keeping her business running. I hope she just keeps doing what she’s doing.”
Reyes likes making people feel special and she has developed special relationships with many in the community, including the children who walk past her store every day. Sometimes she will give them a rose to take to their mother even if they don’t have the money.
Jacky revealed that the child with the most talent for floral arranging is Crystal. Crystal started helping Reyes when she was 13 making arrangements and corsages for the store. Crystal even worked her way up to making 12-rose centerpiece arrangements. Every year she also comes back to help her mother in the store every Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. Son Domingo and his wife, Marisol the day off to come help out as well.
“My children are always here on special days helping me, Reyes added. “I want to say thank you to all of my clients. I hope they feel they have been well cared for. We hope to keep serving the community. Thanks to my partner, Bernabe Medina for being there for me and helping me through hard times and being my support.”