Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Hidden Art of Homemaking - Chapter 7

Flower Arranging

zinnias in a tiny pitcher on my windowsill
This week in The Hidden Art of Homemaking Book Study we are looking at the art of flowers, arrangements, centerpieces, creative ways to bring them into your home, your life.

I confess, at first I was a little put off, thinking Mrs. Schaeffer was expecting each of us to take a full-fledged course in the art and science of flower arranging. It wasn't long before I realized I had misjudged her. She actually shared many ideas about displaying and arranging, as well as the impact a bit of beauty might have on your family, your neighbor, yourself.
yellow and purple are lovely together, don't you think?
I adore flowers. (Daisies are my personal favorite) Flowers are a sure-fire way to bring a smile to my face, even tears to my eyes, and win me over for life. As I type up this post, I glance over at two little bouquets presented to me yesterday --  a fist full of golden dandelions surrounded by wild violets, and dainty bluebells and charming dutchman's breeches -- collected by my children while on a nature walk with Grandma. They are happily tucked into small juice glasses I grabbed from the kitchen cupboard.
wildflowers-bluebells and dutchman's breeches
A little sprig from the garden, a single bud from the florist, an inexpensive bouquet from the grocery store, even a greenery from the yard adds a touch of beauty and freshness to your surroundings. Taking just a moment, adding that special touch can transform the space and give it a 'finishing touch'.

I used to be in the habit of picking up a bunch of flowers when I did my grocery shopping. It was a small extravagance, but one I felt was worth it. Trying to stay within my monthly budget, I've let that little luxury go, and now I'm thinking I should pick up that habit once again. It makes me, my table, my home have that extra special feeling. It's time I picked that habit up again!
rose blooming amidst daisies and chrysanthemums
Growing up, I remember stopping on the way to my Grandparents' house to buy a bouquet of flowers - a hostess gift, a sign of appreciation for their hospitality. I remember my Grandmother lovingly take each stem, placing it 'just so' in a crystal vase for the dinner table. There was something very elegant about it.

It's about relationship, about communication. Taking the time and energy, putting thought and care into arranging items for others to enjoy tells them they are important, special. That is really what it's all about. We automatically think of doing this for special occasions, big events. But what about our weeknight family meal? Or snack time with the kids? Our simple meals would so  much more delicious with some special arrangements placed in the midst, just because.
pumpkins for vases, tealights floating in wheatberries, handpainted placecards
We've been talking flowers here, but it doesn't have to be flowers. What about a collection of seashells, or a grouping of candles, or twigs and moss collected from a walk around the yard. A bowl of fresh fruit or a basket of vegetables, maybe. Let the children help by arranging a few special toys, or stacking some blocks to spell out a message. Mrs. Schaeffer gives many ideas to spark your imagination and creativity.

Edith Scaeffer says:
I believe strongly that the suppressing of hidden artistic talents or appreciation has the effect of warping us as personalities. So I feel that this beautifying of meal tables and trays with hidden artistic  and original ideas is a very simple area indeed in which to start fullilling one's own needs, through the freedom of expression, and adding another dimension to the day.
So, let's get started! Take a moment and look around, add a touch of beauty, a little arrangement to make our homes welcoming, alive, special.

a birthday bouquet delivered to me, from my far-away children

 God's timing is always so perfect. A few weeks ago, a friend at church asked me if I'd be interested in a flower arranging class. She works for a florist, and has been asked by some others if she would take time to teach a little about how to make attractive arrangements. She thought maybe I'd be interested. Boy, would I! Now, she had no idea I was reading this book. She's probably never read this book. But here I am, thinking and planning and looking forward to learning. I'll keep you updated.
I'll be linking this post up over at My Homey Haven.
To read my other posts from this book study, you can go here.

1 comment:

  1. I hope you plan to give us some tips from your flower arranging class! How fun that will be for you!

    I can't wait for the flowers in our flower bed to bloom so I can cut some and bring them in the house.

    Have a great week! Thank you for joining me in the book study- I'm afraid I wouldn't stick with it without you gals! :) Tonya @ My Homey Haven


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