Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Christopher and I both enjoy having fresh flowers in the house. We're not worried about expensive flowers or big bouquets, we just like having the flowers around. Roses are lovely, but so are tulips. Irises are nice, too. Daisies and carnations are fine. We just like flowers. 

I'm not sure when that started for Christopher, but for me the desire to have flowers in the house--while instilled by my mom--really kicked in when I spent 9 months living in Paris between college and grad school. I was working as a teaching assistant, so there weren't many luxuries I could afford, but fresh flowers were relatively inexpensive. They were also available on pretty much every corner and outside every market. So they became my every-so-often splurge. 

When I lived in Baltimore, I had the fun of experiencing the Claymore Sieck wholesale florist. They're open to the public, and you go into the cold rooms and choose your own flowers from all of the boxes and bundles. Dozens of dozens of longstem roses in every color are piled next to cartons of multi-colored carnations. Alstroemeria and irises share rooms with lilies and orchids. The first time I tentatively walked into Sieck's was disconcerting--I'd never been somewhere like that where you had to serve yourself from start to finish (except for cashing out, obviously). But I learned to love the act of plunging through the plastic dividers into the cold rooms and finding the treasures on the other side. Eventually I came to consider it one of my favorite places in all of Baltimore. It wasn't the easiest place for me to get to, but for all of the parties I had at my apartment, I always found my way to get fresh flowers. 

In the middle of winter in Minneapolis--even during the weird warm and rainy days we've been having--flowers seem to promise spring. I haven't found a wholesaler to go dig around in, but the grocery stores have bundles of flowers, and we live near a couple of florists, as well. And at the end of last week Christopher brought home a bundle of budding tulips which, over the past few days, have opened to become a richly multi-faceted orange. 

Although, rationally, I know that we're a month or so from tulips poking through the ground outside, having this touch of spring in the house is wonderful. 

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