To celebrate Mother’s Day, guest poster Madame Chaos presents the third installment in her series on the art of delightful living. The first two installments are here and here. Fortuitously, this piece also can be cross-linked to Rebel Holiday as the events depicted transpired on a Friday.
I believe it to be no coincidence that Mother’s Day falls in May, when many garden perennials are in their first heady flush and the annuals planted in early Spring have taken root nicely. The beauty of flowers and the beauty of motherhood do indeed complement each other, but the truly thrifty (and unemployable) among us know that nature’s bounty exists primarily for our convenience in creating astonishing and unique gifts in record speed and on a budget.
For this particular project I had to strategize a bit–I lulled Mom into thinking that she could take a few minutes to download and review her Australia pictures while I played with the older kids in the sprinklers. (A tip for my readers: if you can’t distract your mom, try neutralizing her neural pathways with unrelenting whining and pestering until she either retreats, twitching, to her master bedroom closet or enters a catatonic state. But beware, this can backfire if she decides you need a nap. Then you’re hosed.)
To get myself in the floral frame of mind, I sat in the soapwort right by the front door for a little meditation:
In perusing the floral offerings, I had to reject the Jupiter’s Beard because it was merely bending and flopping rather than snapping off. As I withdrew, I noted that Mom’s book club members would be walking directly by these flowers in the evening and would no doubt be impressed, even inspired, with the unusual way that some of the stalks pointed down rather than up. Ironic, yet fitting, that they would be discussing a book titled “Celebration of Discipline:”
Next, I went out to the front flower beds and removed some uninspiring foliage that hadn’t flowered yet. They were disturbing my zen:
Moving on to the real target, I uprooted $30 worth of violas for my project; these particular ones were flung over my shoulder when, snatched out of my reverie, I heard Mom approaching:
At this point, I decided to reveal the surprise early as I displayed the beginnings of the arrangement in a prominent position at the end of the sidewalk:
I noted at this point that Mom was distracted from me once again–absorbed in my brilliant achievement, no doubt–I grabbed my dolly and tiptoed, barefoot, across the way to the neighbors’ to tell my friend about the wonderful idea I had had and to see what possibilities her own garden held:
Happy Mother’s Day!