The first time I saw a bluebird was on one of the saddest days of my life.

I was returning home with my children in the family car after burying my husband, and a pair of bluebirds were perched on the fence of my driveway as if waiting on me.

That moment and those two little bluebirds brought joy in the midst of our sea of sadness.

Bluebirds have always been mythical creatures to me. I discovered their existence as a child watching 'The Wizard of Oz" on a television we used needle nose pliers to change channels. A young Judy Garland, Dorothy, sang:

"Somewhere over the rainbow
Bluebirds fly
Birds fly over the rainbow
Why then, oh, why can't I?
If happy little bluebirds fly
Beyond the rainbow
Why, oh why can't I?"

Birds, books, and butterflies have always felt like messengers to lift my spirits during challenging moments in my life.

A scissortail was my constant companion on daily sunset trips to my husband's grave while I consumed book upon book in an attempt to find a measure of respite from my oppressive grief.

And despite not having seen a bluebird in my life or at my home during the previous three years we lived there – after the two appeared on my fence that sad day in June, it was if a family of bluebirds took up residence in my backyard, flying and landing nearby when I least expected it.

Native Americans believe the bluebird to be symbolic of growth, transformation, transition, and the harbinger of spring – the season of renewal. In Christianity, bluebirds are considered angels in disguise. Others say bluebirds are deeply spiritual creatures that can be seen when your life has hit a low point.

It was such a joy meeting Robert Black – a widower with children suffering the sudden loss of their mother. After months of friendship and providing a level of support to each other, we fell in love, blended our family, our multitude of pets, and our homes to affectionately and gratefully title this time in our lives, "Our Second Chapter."

In 2019, bluebirds once again ushered in a pivotal moment when we left secure jobs and made the jump to become business owners in historic Downtown Edmond, Okla.

While I regularly saw bluebirds in the backyard, I could never find where they nested. Again, mythical creatures. Then,   during a thoroughly exhausting day of gardening I took a break under a large oak to look up at the canopy to garner just enough strength to finish the job. And in that moment, I saw a bluebird fly into a hole in the tree! Their home! My next view was Robert leaning over checking on me… then, proceeding to ask, “How do you feel about buying Evoke?”

We have been a part of the Downtown Edmond community and in love with our hometown ever since. Purchasing Evoke six months before a global pandemic was an unexpected setback. But the love of so many people, customers, we didn’t know lifted us up like little bluebirds through the hardest of those days when we thought we might lose not just Evoke, but everything we had with it. Now, our sweet coffee eatery is bustling from the moment we open our doors for the day until we close.

We added to our business presence in Edmond when we opened Twisted Tree Baking Company and The Lofts at Evoke in 2022. There is such excitement and growth in our community we just have to pinch ourselves some days that we get to be a part of it.

Upon hearing the downtown bookstore would be closing, we knew in an instant how important an independent bookstore is to a community and especially a historic district like Downtown Edmond. And I knew immediately what the name would be and began sketching it out in the form of a bookplate that now serves as our brand … Bluebird Books.  

Bluebird is a women-owned business filled with books for all genre lovers, comfortable seating, family story time, book club opportunities, art, gifts, and a place where we can put down our phones and the oft heavy load of life and escape into the wonder and magic of books.

And what I wouldn’t give to tell the child version of me beginning her hunt for the mythical bluebird so many years ago … “You can fly somewhere over the rainbow with a bluebird and a book.”

- Lori Dickinson Black