Four Southwest Florida Moms Have Very Happy Mother’s Day Thanks to Local Artisans

Gifts from Mark Loren and Norman Love give their special day a “storybook” ending.

Fort Myers, FL, May 13, 2010 --( More than 200 residents of Southwest Florida took the time to nominate the special mothers in their lives to receive exclusive gifts of a limited edition custom-designed necklace and a basket of fine chocolate in Mark Loren Designs’ and Norman Love Confections’ Storybook Mother’s Day Contest, sponsored by WINK News. Entries were posted on Mark Loren Designs’ Facebook page as they rolled in and picking the winners proved tough. In the end, four lucky mothers were chosen and their presents were delivered by Loren and Love in person on May 6.

The four winners of this year’s contest were:

Donna Yzaguirre of Immokalee, nominated by son Trystan Yzaguirre.
Laura Bowling of Naples, nominated by daughter Kelly Rena.
Rosa Tortosa of Cape Coral, nominated by daughter Johanna Tortosa.
Rosie Young of Fort Myers, nominated by granddaughter Morgan Smith.

“We had so many great entries from all over Southwest Florida,” Loren says. “We even had some entries from children living out of state, sharing touching stories about their mothers from across the miles.” In a touching twist, Loren’s own mother agreed to participate in the contest as a judge and helped select the four extremely worthy winners.

All of the entries described mothers doing extraordinary things for their families. Examples of mothers coping with tragedies, overcoming illnesses, serving the community and going to extreme lengths to make ends meet in a tough economy abound. Loren and Love say they were humbled to hear the amazing stories of mothers in our community, and happy they could help brighten some of their days.

“It was so nice to go out and make the deliveries in person,” Love said. “We always hope that what we do makes people happy, but to actually be there to see the joy on the mothers’ faces when we presented them with these special gifts was touching.”

Judge Lindsay Liepman traveled along with Loren and Love to capture the deliveries and interviews with the winning mothers to air Mother’s Day weekend. The nominators and other family members often met the group at the mothers’ homes or workplaces to watch the presentations as well.

“While not every mother was selected as a winner, we hope everyone that entered will share their entry with their mothers,” Loren said. “Simply sharing that acknowledgment and appreciation of how special the nominated mothers are should bring smiles to some faces.”

The Storybook Mother’s Day Contest is not the first time Loren and Love have teamed up with a fun promotion for the community. In December 2009, the duo presented the “12 Gems of Christmas,” during which baubles from Loren’s showroom were hidden in 12 boxes of Love’s signature chocolates for the holidays. Love also created an exclusive Firelight chocolate in February to commemorate and be sold along with Loren’s exclusive Firelight®-cut diamonds. A portion of the profit from Firelight diamond and chocolate sales will benefit The Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida.

About Mark Loren Designs
Mark Loren Designs is a jeweler and has been offering custom designed jewelry, repairs and recreations of sentimental heirlooms for 25 years in Southwest Florida. His efforts have earned high praise by leaders in the jewelry industry. Loren was named one of 39 of the world’s top jewelry artists in the recently published book, Gemstones Masters: Major Works by Leading Artists. The artists in this juried collection were selected by jewelry curator, designer and president of the American Jewelry Design Council, Alan Revere.

His other recognitions include the International Spectrum Design awards, bestowed by the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA), are considered the “Oscars” of the jewelry-design industry—and Loren and his design team have won several over the years for “outstanding jewelry design incorporated colored gemstones.” They’ve earned two AGTA Manufacturing Honors, awarded for combining elegant use of natural colored gemstones with techniques that can be used by mainstream manufacturers. They’ve also taken home two Platinum Honors prizes and won the International Pearl Design contest. Examples of his work can be found online at

About Norman Love Confections
Founded in 2001 by Norman and Mary Love, Norman Love Confections creates and distributes ultra-premium, handcrafted artisanal chocolates. Based in Fort Myers, Fla., the corporate headquarters encompasses both the production and retail operations. The Chocolate Salon is a stylish retail shop with an intimate ambiance in which customers may purchase chocolates or linger over house-made pastries, gourmet coffees, lattes and smoothies. For more information about the Gourmet Chocolate Company, Norman Love Confections, visit the Chocolate Salon located at 11380 Lindbergh Boulevard, off Daniels Parkway, in Fort Myers, call toll free 866-515-2121 or visit

Mark Loren Designs
Erika Houser