Friday, March 29, 2013

It's OK to Go Artificial!


Don't write off artificial flowers

Artificial flowers can have a role in brightening up a dim corner of your house, add a warm greeting to your front door, and add life to a sterile office desk without you having to fuss over them to keep them looking good. 


Silk Orchids

This post was inspired by my encountering three little boys a few weeks ago.

A little boy came bouncing through a set of glass doors.  He wore a double-breasted blue blazer with brass buttons and black trousers.  He caught my attention with his smiley face and his big beautiful bright brown eyes. He was about six years old (I guessed, based on his speech).  If he could stand up straight, he would probably be a good six inches taller than three feet, though difficult to tell for sure.  Francis (I heard his father call him) ably maneuvered his red crutches, which stabilized his wobbly legs, as he thrust his feet forward, heading towards his father.  Francis did not let his disability inhibit his movement and curiosity.  He went up to the cashier counter where his father was paying the bill and asked his father whether the white roses in a white bud vase on the counter were real.  His father rubbed the top of his head and said with a smile, no they were not.  No longer interested in the fake roses, Francis left his father's side and turned towards his oldest brother, who was reading a book at a table nearby.  I could not hear their exchange, but Francis must have said something funny because I heard them laugh.  Next, he shuffled across the room over to his other brother who was on the computer.  His brother scooted over and made room for Francis on his chair.  The two little brown heads met right in front of the computer screen and giggles quickly ensued. 

Children are born pure and happy without any judgment, expectation, predisposition, or prejudice.   Francis did not seem to care that he was different and that he did not have the mobility that everyone around him was blessed with.  His two brothers, who were probably eight and ten, treated him with tenderness without any demonstration of sympathy.  They loved and cared for him without treating him as though he needed special treatment.  Francis' tenacity and his brothers' tenderness (even at such young ages) were beautiful to witness. These three little boys obviously came from a very loving family. 

It warmed my heart to have encountered them that day and I wanted to share this beautiful relationship with you. Let the innocence of these little boys into your hearts and let them remind us to lead our lives free of judgment and expectation. 


Artificial flowers can be beautiful and elegant


Happy Easter,
  Christa 



BTW: I was impressed that a little boy would care whether a flower was real.  I wonder what Francis' next question would have been had the roses been real.  I looked at the roses more closely myself and saw that they were realistic looking.  These days, artificial flowers and leaves can look realistic.  I like to use them sometimes for various reasons.  For example, last February, in the spirit of Valentine's Day, I made a wreath with white and red roses.  It would have been extravagant to use real roses because my wreath would have only looked pretty for a few days. 

I also like to make an artificial arrangement for my living room right before we go on a long trip, so when we got home I would see a beautiful bundle of flowers greeting me.  I also use artificial flowers for a little corner in our house that needs some cheering up, but is not well traveled.  If you have a vacation/second home, an artificial arrangement is a great alternative.  BUT, make sure you buy top quality flowers.  They are a lot more expensive, but you will be pleased with the way your arrangement turns out.  Some of my friends squeeze the petals after learning they are artificial.  To care for these flowers, gently blow cold air from a hair dryer on them periodically to blow off the dust.  (Don't use this technique with dried flowers; you will blow away the petals!)  The only downsides with artificial flowers are that they don't have the fragrance that real flowers have, and that the shapes and colors of your arrangement won't change the way a fresh arrangement does because there, as the buds from various flowers open up, the arrangement takes on a different look.  But again, you don't have to go through the trouble of refreshing them!  I like to use both fresh and artificial arrangements. 

8 comments:

  1. What a lovely story, very heartwarming.
    I have used artificial flowers at various times but admit I much prefer the real thing. I like your tip about the hairdryer. I have one artificial flower in my apartment, a hyacinth in a pot, which I'm sure could do with that treatment x

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    1. You are so lucky to still have the real thing. Here in Virginia, we are still waiting patiently for colors to come out. I am hoping to start a small (very small) cut flower business this spring. I can't wait for the weather to warm up (and dry out) so I can start preparing my flower beds. Wish me luck.

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  2. Christa...I have some lovely stems of silk hydrangea that have been languishing in my closet, hoping you have provided the motivation to do something creative! Don't you just marvel at the life lessons that children can teach? These little guys sound amazing! Thanks for sharing...and inspiring. A very Happy Easter to you and yours!

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    1. Susan,
      Let me know what you do with your silk hydrangea.

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  3. Lovely story about the sweet boys!
    There are fantastic silk and fabric flowers that looks very real + worth keeping in mind.
    Have a lovely weekend!
    Ingrid

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    1. Hi Ingrid, the weather is finally warm here. Spring is here!!! We had a fabulous weekend at our farm. Thank you.

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  4. What a gratifying observation. I hope little Francis holds on to his joy.

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    1. Hi Denise,
      I am glad you visited. I think Francis will be a happy adult. He has a very loving and patient father and two wonderful older brothers (from what I saw).
      Christa

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