So daylight’s saving time has ended! I don’t know about all of you, but I’m much more perky in the morning, but by about 6:30pm I feel like calling it a night. It may be because it’s pitch-black dark outside, which doesn’t make me a happy camper in the evening. I’m trying different things to boost my mood as we approach the winter months and the days seem to get shorter and shorter. A friend suggested that I go to the gym more, because as Elle Woods cheerfully exclaimed in Legally Blonde, “Endorphins make you happy!”
Well, I’m not feeling the effects of the endorphins, so on to the next… I then came across this Behavioral Research Study from Harvard about the effects of flowers in the home environment and their impact on our moods and behavior. After reading the study, all I have to say is that I’m glad I work for Blooms By The Box!
Of course everyone is happy when they receive flowers, but what Harvard University researchers didn’t know was that spending a few days with flowers in the home can affect a wide variety of feelings. Here’s what they uncovered…
Flowers feed compassion.
Study participants who lived with fresh cut flowers for less than a week felt an increase in feelings of compassion and kindness for others.
Flowers chase away anxieties, worries, and the blues at home.
Overall, people in the study simply felt less negative after being around flowers at home for just a few days. Participants most frequently placed flowers in their kitchens, dining rooms and living rooms, where they spend a lot of time at home. They reported wanting to see the blooms first thing in the morning
Living with flowers can provide a boost of energy, happiness, and enthusiasm at work.
Having flowers at home can have a positive carry-over impact on our mood at work, too. The study found that people were more likely to feel happier and have more enthusiasm and energy at work when flowers were in their home living environments.
Nancy Etcoff, Ph.D., the brainchild behind the study stated, “As a psychologist, I’m particularly intrigued to find that people who live with flowers report fewer episodes of anxiety and depressed feelings. Our results suggest that flowers have a positive impact on our well being.”
Well there you have it, flowers in the house is the answer! Who would have thought something as simple as this would prove to be such a mood changer? I’m going to try this for myself and see if it rids me of my fall/winter blues.
All right, I am now reverting back to advice for all you brides-to-be out there. As you all know the wedding season is now at a dull roar, but that doesn’t mean that the planning stops. And beyond all the planning, I’m sure all you future brides out there have some questions other than, “What flowers should I use?” or “What should I use for my cake toppers?” This is where our friend Meg comes in. Her blog, A Practical Wedding, has morphed into a phenomenon and safe haven for the newly engaged and newlywed alike. As her bio states, “I started this blog in 2008 to talk about planning our August 2009 wedding. Somewhere along the line, the blog stopped being about me, and started being a lot of grounded smart-alecky women talking intelligently about their weddings and marriages.”
Much like marriage, wedding planning is assumed to be exciting, exhilarating, and every other adjective that starts with an “e” that expresses joy and happiness. For some lucky brides-to-be out there, yes… their wedding planning is a breeze, but for most it feels like a lot of stress and strife. For example: You found the perfect wedding venue… Oh wait, it costs how much? You were planning on using peonies in your bridal bouquet… I guess you should have thought about that before you picked a July wedding date. You have your heart set on this incredible DJ… Well, he’s booked when you need him. Get the picture?
Lucky for you, there’s A Practical Wedding! This is where you can get advice from those who have been where you are, gain some support from some great people, and most importantly, regain some of your sanity! The best part about A Practical Wedding is that it is so much more than a blog about weddings; it’s a blog about weddings, marriage, and EVERYTHING in between; from the hard stuff (i.e. calling off your wedding, when things don’t go as planned, etc…) to how to DJ your wedding with an Ipod. Meg even has an “Ask Team Practical” column every Friday, where you can write a wedding or marriage related question to Alyssa, a member of Team Practical and APW Wedding Graduate, and she’ll give some awesome advice on how to tackle whatever needs tackling.
Meg has also ingeniously created Wedding Undergraduates and Wedding Graduates, which is probably my favorite part APW. Wedding Undergraduates share their story pre-wedding, while Wedding Graduates share what they have learned, from proposal, to planning, to walking down the aisle. It’s great for those of you who are in the early stages of planning because you get the opportunity to be like, “Oh, I feel the same exact way!” or “Maybe I shouldn’t be worried if the icing on my cupcakes match the bridesmaid dresses…”
But what I think I love most about A Practical Wedding is Meg’s honesty, insight, and her ability to make the whole wedding and marriage process seem more authentic. I’m not saying that other blogs out there aren’t genuine, but APW definitely stands out in the sea of wedding blogs. All in all, A Practical Wedding is a smart, wedding community that every bride-to-be should WANT to be a part of. So what are you waiting for, go check it out!
So, I’ve been trying to channel my inner DIY in order to come up with some creative ideas for all of your holiday decorating when I thought, “Why not take an old idea and make it fresh and new!” I then reverted back to this blog post and had an epiphany! One extra step to making underwater arrangements could make them more holiday friendly… Add food coloring to the water!
Like any other holiday themed arrangement you should use seasonal flowers. For example, on Thanksgiving you can use mums and for Christmas you can use winter berry. But to make your arrangements extra special, add some food coloring to the water depending on which holiday you are decorating for. For Thanksgiving use red, orange, and yellow to color the water of the arrangements, while at Christmas use green and red. You could mirrow the picture above and color the water to match the flowers, or you could mix and match! Personally, I think that underwater arrangements are a great way to make your dinner table extra special (and memorable) for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and every gathering with family and friends during the holiday season.
Check out this amazing installation created by event designer Preston Bailey for the celebration of The Knot’s 15th Anniversary and the conclusion of Bridal Fashion Week in New York City. Flower power!
(picture from Christian Oth Studio via The Wall Street Journal)