As you no doubt have guessed by now, I’m a fool for springtime. (Can you believe this Dahlia is bigger than my face?) I blame it on where I live, here gray skies often stay longer than a body can stand. I never dreamed when we settled in the Pacific NW, that “Weather” could possibly be the dominant subject of conversation. When the sun stays out longer than 10 minutes, people burst outside as if the prison gates were just unlatched. Smiles are everywhere, and the under 30-year-olds scramble for their shorts — never mind that it’s still 55°. We get excited. We learn to appreciate. We get irrational.
The sun is a powerful mood lifter, and the flowers it produces nurtures and helps us better manage a complicated life. I’m lucky, the painting below is what I get to look at every day. It’s hanging on the wall in front of me as I head for my morning jo. My dad was a artist and captured this Amaryllis at its peak back in 1986. No matter what’s going on in my life, this greeting in the morning makes everything just a little bet better. Sometimes, two seconds is all the time it takes to reset the stress-o-meter.
It’s easy to underestimate the effect that flowers can have. They’re so common that you take them for granted most of the time. In fact, you probably don’t even think about them unless they’re already right in front of you. It’s why grocery stores display them right as you walk in the door. But remembering to get them before checkout is the hard part. If you put them in the cart BEFORE you shop, they’ll get schmushed unless you stand them upright. But that’s hard to do unless there’s enough stuff already in there to wedge them into the corner. Believe me, I know. Adding flowers to your shopping cart is money well spent because reducing your stress is far more important than the cookies, coke and chips on your list. Of course, those who have money to burn don’t have to worry about all this finagling, they can just call the florist. Oddly enough, that’s the second thing on my when-I-win-the-lottery list. #1. Hire a cook and never never never enter the kitchen again. #2. Have a florist deliver weekly, glorious, bouquets for my table. Oh yes, I could go on……
Growing your own is the ultimate and not possible for everyone, but there are other ways to keep flowers in your life. Art on the wall or silk stems in a vase substitute because there’s comfort in just looking at their image. Aroma is a subject for another time.
A bouquet on the table is like gold and real estate agents know this. There’s good reason they suggest you have flowers on the table; it helps your lookers become your buyers. Flowers are what we send our loved ones to say “I love you”, “Congratulations“, “I’m sorry for your loss”, or simply that “you matter”. Developing the flower habit is a tiny bit of therapy that will help you cope better with whatever’s going on in your life. Lifting spirits is what it’s all about.