mental health day

Well, I survived Valentine’s Day.  Here I am, a week later, recuperating.  I took a mental health day because, though I thought I would bounce right back, for the rest of last week I had to draaag my little self out of bed.  Bad news.  So I asked for a day to pull myself back together and was graciously granted one.  I’ll be back soon to tell you all about it.

Mini-recap of Love Day: I swear, I’ve never seen the shop as full as it was last Saturday-through-Monday: roses out the wazoo, tulips packed in both the front (display) and back (“extras”) cooler, and other lovely blooming bits of this and that every freaking where you looked.  On the flip side, I’ve never seen the shop as desolately empty as it was when I went home Tuesday evening.  The emptiness is actually the reason we got to go home at our normal time instead of staying til 8 pm as we did Monday night.  The poor drivers were there late on Tuesday, though.  There are no photos, as the aforementioned surviving took all my resources.  (I was on the phone practically all day last Monday, no joke.  When I went back to work at the library I kept awkwardly pausing after answering the phone with “Hello!  This is…”  The name of the flower shop was so burned into my short-term memory that I couldn’t remember, let alone spit out, the name of the library!)

But I think I’m over it.  Things calmed down for the second half of the week; we re-stocked the cooler; and I got to design a few things with more than 45 seconds to think about what I wanted to do.

Customers actually inspired this one.  They were buying iris, birds of paradise, bells of Ireland, and larkspur for a huge party arrangement.  One of them said something about putting rocks in the vase at home, and as soon as I heard that, I thought, “Brilliant!”

We had “blown” (too-open-to-sell) iris that I already wanted to arrange for display.  I could picture how simple and understated it would look to pair smooth river rocks with tissue-thin iris.  A nice yin-and-yang.  A nice departure from the recent spate of red and pink and frilly all over.

The vase opening is elliptical, which helped create the wide arrangement I wanted.  The rocks helped too.  They formed nice crevices where I could tuck stems to hold them in place.

I tucked several of the filler pieces, which are greenery from both waxflower and larkspur, into a hole in the middle of the rock pile.  That helped hold the pieces upright so they didn’t obscure the flowers.

That’s larkspur shimmying up the middle there.  Around the shop we call them “bobblelets,” an affectionate term for the obnoxiously tangle-inducing arms on a stem of larkspur.  If we put stems into buckets with these limbs attached, pulling them out again would be as frustrating as wrangling wire coat hangers.  (Ever done that?  Zero fun.)  So we cut all the bobblelets free first, saving them to add texture to other arrangements.

Here’s another simple arrangement, also deliciously un-Valentiney.

Lovey and I did have a nice holiday–I don’t want to give the impression that stress and chaos totally ruined the day.  The weather was mild so we walked down the street to a little restaurant we’ve planned to try but hadn’t visited yet.  We figured it was offbeat enough that we could still get a table without having made prior plans.  We were wrong, but not for the reason you might expect.  The waiter for that shift failed to show up so the lone employee, who was overseeing the diners from the last shift and, it seemed, running downstairs to do the cooking, told us we’d have to come back another time.  So we trotted our silly selves to a chain restaurant that definitely serves been-frozen chicken strips and, what the hey, had a good time anyway.  So there’s my late update.  I hope you and your love had quality time together, even if it defied the cultural stereotype of a romantic Valentine’s Day date.

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