One of my favorite morning activities is walking through the garden discovering what’s bloomed then cutting a basket full of flowers to become a bouquet. Focusing solely on colors, textures and scents quiets my mind while the warming sun and cooling breeze brushing my skin soothes my HSP spirit.
Mother Nature offers this gentle good morning to anyone taking time to appreciate her splendid gifts. Try meditating while creating a morning bouquet and see how you feel. Refreshed? Focused? Rewarded? At peace? Grateful?
A bit overly ambitious this morning, I now have three bouquets to grace my kitchen, bathroom and bedroom. How I love this time of year!
You’ve probably been in a situation where you can’t wait to get away from someone’s toxicity. Maybe it’s a stranger. Maybe it’s family. Maybe it’s your employer who you see day after day after day. You’re not alone. Nature deals with this too.
Daffodils (aka narcissus or jonquils) are often the showy greeters in springtime, yet, like the attractive stranger or successful relative, we often don’t readily see their toxicity. Daffodils contain toxic lycorine and calcium oxalate crystals and when freshly cut, they emit a virtually invisible but poisonous, gooey sap — similar to insidious commentary from passive-aggressives. No wonder they usually appear solo in a vase. But, you can help them get along with others!
To create a diverse but happy springtime bouquet, give daffodils a time out before introducing others to the vase. Cut their stems at an angle and leave them by themselves in a vase of cool water overnight.
The next morning, after most of the sap has seeped out, change the water and safely add other flowers. Then change the water every few days to maintain the harmony of this mixed bouquet.
Are you not feeling well? I’m wondering if you’re going through “the change” offering an unsettling summer and surprising autumn. And how ’bout the Nor’easter that cancelled St. Patty’s Day parades earlier this year?
Was it night sweats or hot flashes that made our summer uncharacteristically rainy and humid? Or when you swooshed 81 degree night air through my moon roof late September, and 70 degree temps on Manhattan’s sidewalks the first week of November that plummeted to 20 degrees only days later?
Generations debated your behavior for over 200 years and I’m just as perplexed. Legions of soft leaves fell to the ground this summer amidst dizzying dog day temps. Itchy allergy season never ceased. Cucumber plants still loaded with blossoms in October bore no fruit, and tomatoes waited til autumn to ripen this year. Harvest was askew. Were you tired and sleeping late?
I understand if anxiety and depression are over-shadowing your concentration. It’s heartbreaking to watch people cast you aside like a battered wife while others honor and try to protect you. Perhaps your irritability is simply fighting back the only way you know how — launching hurricanes, earthquakes, fires and floods, one right after the other.
It may comfort you to know your panic attacks are gaining attention. A recent Washington Post-ABC News poll reported that weather tragedies recruited more believers in climate change.
Contemplating the paradox of pink roses with fallen pine needles and burgundy hardy mums, I wonder if you’ve misplaced your date book…are the changing seasons of my homeland lost with your youth — and mine?
Decades ago, I grew up with four distinctive seasons. Spring was spring; flowers bloomed, birds chirped, lighter coats replaced heavy wool. Summer felt hot; fans whirred and fireflies dotted nighttime skies. Walking on crunchy leaves in crisp autumn mornings transformed to warming hands around glowing bonfires. Winter’s beauty was in its starkness and alluring silence from newly fallen snow. Those were my reliable seasons until your mood swings took control. If you’re going to go through “the change,” do you think you could relax into year-round, sunny blue skies and 70 degree temps?
Are you observing changes in your own environment, like erratic temperatures this year? What do you think is happening with Mother Nature?
Sometimes things don’t work out as we planned. Sometimes, oftentimes, gifts appear in unexpected places or they don’t look like what we envisioned. We think it should be something else and too quickly pass it by.
When I was very young — about five or six, I desperately wanted a kitten. What kid doesn’t at that age? For my seventh birthday my Mom gave me a white fluffy cat with wide-surprise eyes curled up in its three-inch green basket. Yes, I said “three-inch” basket. It was a tiny tchotchke. Feeling terribly disappointed, I didn’t understand my Mom’s cat allergy. Decades later, I still have that tiny memento; its white fur deteriorated with time.
This week I nearly trampled over a viola. How odd, I thought, that it jumped from the flower pot to the other side of the sidewalk. Oftentimes, I’ve planted something in one place only to have it pop up somewhere else like the mound of irises that left the garden plot to live on the pond bank. Who’s to say they were better off in the garden? Who’s to say a gift is not a gift? I don’t dismiss things so easily anymore.
Have you ever had your heart set on something but too quickly passed off what was presented because it did not look the way you thought it should? Please do tell.
In perusing other blogs, it’s refreshing to see so many so deeply moved by nature. Many of us have taken photos hoping to capture the moment or inspiration but the blog with this photo absolutely mesmerizes me with its level of beauty and intrigue. I could not pass up the opportunity to ensure you saw it too.
Driving home this evening with the moon roof open and windows down, I was still savoring a glorious day with an old friend. Kicking off the afternoon in her favorite gardening center and seeing new varieties of trees and plants made my spirits soar.
I learned that the tree I noticed on my walks this week is a Limelight Hydrangea — absolutelybeautiful! In the next row I discovered a Firelight Hydrangea sporting white to pomegranate colored flowers all on the same shrub — delightful! A Dappled Willow caught my eye then the frost white needles on the Korean Fir...and flowing heart-shaped leaves on the Alley Catand Ruby Falls Redbuds — heavenly! Kalmia Latifolia Minuet (Mountain Laurel) surprised me while the Tricolor Beech tree was deceptively interesting. Manhattan Euonymus and Pulminara Moonshine’s brillance drew me in and I’m already envisioning them gracing my entryway.
Thankfully, the humidity that stole Summer thus far was absent today. I drove home in laid back contentment, drinking in the beauty of the mountains and luxuriating in the 72 degree breeze kissing my skin while gently tousling my hair.
But, rounding the corner to a glowing sunset on the lake overwhelmed me with gratitude for the ability to see Nature’s exquisiteness.
When I look, really look at the variety of colors, shades, textures, patterns, sizes, etc., etc., etc., in the garden and mountains beyond, I am stunned. Consider, for just a moment, the endless shades of pink.
The peonies are blooming now. This is how I mark my time. I do not use a “smart” phone but rely on Mother Nature. The late May calendar shows white and lavendar colored phlox, lilies of the valley, and deep purple, almost black columbine. Wild geraniums dot the pachysandra, and grandfather rhododendron (15′ high) arrived for their Memorial Day spectacular.
Foxglove, mugwort, irises, roses, and astilbe will join others to color my pages of June. Sometimes I can hardly wait. But then I catch myself to breathe in the beauty of the moment.