by Beverly Church
What started out as a way for a few friends to boost one another’s spirits during the COVID-19 pandemic has grown into a 650-member group that is spreading cheer – along with wine, chocolate, flowers and other goodies – throughout the community.
Farmington resident Sarah Davies launched The Sisterhood of the Traveling Wine/Spirits, named for “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants”, a series of stories about friends who stay connected through a pair of shared jeans. She got the idea after seeing a news story about a similar group in another community.
“I had no idea how quickly it was going to grow or how big it was going to become,” said Davies. “It’s incredible. People are gifting each other all the time. It’s such a sweet thing.”
To date, members have distributed more than 1,000 gifts.
Residents of Farmington and Farmington Hills can sign up on the group’s Facebook page. Once you’ve joined the group, you can choose someone to deliver a gift to. If you provide your address (it’s optional), someone else can gift you. There is no limit to how many times you can give or receive. Recipients are asked to observe social distancing guidelines when delivering a gift and post a photo when they receive one.
Taking care of one another
In addition to sharing wine and other goodies, Davies said the group has become a way to help take care of one another. When she learned that one woman was experiencing a family health crisis, she posted a message asking members to help with a “special project.”
“We rallied together and started a Go Fund Me page for her and we ‘wined’ her a whole bunch,” she said. “(We delivered gifts) every day for two weeks in a row so she could feel the love from the community.”
Of the 650 members, Davies said about 480 have included their addresses.
“Some…don’t want to be gifted but want to be secret fairies,” she said. “They just go and wine other people and want nothing in return. One of those women had done a lot, and she had a big retirement coming up, so I sent people to wine her on her last day of work. So we’re trying to keep it really fun.”
Local business help out
Local businesses have also gotten involved to help members shop for gifts safely and inexpensively. Meadows Fine Wine & Liquor on Farmington Road will help members select wines over the phone to fit the sender’s budget and will bring them out to the car. The Vines Flower & Garden Shop offers “wine bouquets” ($4 and $5 arrangements) and will also bring them out to the car.
Brightening someone’s day
Davies said one of the most rewarding parts of being in the group is knowing that you’re making someone else’s day.
“We’ve all been on an emotional roller coaster these past four months,” she said. “I love seeing people post, ‘I was having the worst day today’ or ‘I was feeling so down.’ It’s so nice to see, when people are having a lousy day, and this gift just brightens their whole world.”