Wednesday, March 10, 2010


I thought I'd take the opportunity to celebrate spring (in my hemisphere, anyway) with a plug for one of life's little treasures. It's amazing how something so small and basic as a flower bouquet can dress up a room, a meal, a life.

Take the above pic. That's a quick breakfast I threw together the other day, just scrambled eggs and apple slices with cheddar-garlic drop biscuits. And it was so lovely there on my table by the window, with the newspaper and some delicious coffee, nibbling with my husband across the table, and a big bouquet of spring daffodils to bring the spring inside.

I feel happy when I have flowers on the table, and they elevate any meal into a dining experience, which is not only pleasurable but crucial for health. When we mindfully dine, rather than feed, we savor our food more, we chew it more thoroughly, and we eat less of it. Eating becomes an act of nourishment rather than stuffing. (For more on this subject, I recommend the excellent book French Women Don't Get Fat by Mireille Guiliano.) And when you're not eating, it's a great mood boost to have flowers around; I know I get a lift when I come home from a hard day at work and those bright sunny daffodils are beaming at me!

Besides, flowers don't have to be expensive, though they certainly can be. I picked up the daffodil bouquet above for $1.29 at Trader Joe's, but in the summer I typically have marigolds or roses from my yard in a small juice glass on the table. You don't need a fancy vase or a professional arrangement. Just cut some pretty flowers from wherever you find them (oh yes, I've pulled over for a wildflower before!) and stick them in water. Cut them at an angle so they take up more water and last longer, and for an even longer lifespan, drop a penny into the water too.

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