One of my absolute favorite things that I look forward to when visiting France is to shop the markets! Gosh, there are so many wonderful treasures just waiting to be chosen. From deliciously ripened fruits and vegetables that look picture-perfect, to the “fresh catch of the day” fish and seafood, to the everyday housewares, to beautifully aromatic handmade soaps, to the things you never knew you needed! So many fun things to find.
AND… my favorite of all… les FLEURS! Some of my favorite vendors are those selling their beautiful, fresh cut flowers. Oh, they’re just so gorgeous and I could spend hours just photographing them! All the different colors, types, fragrances… Everything about them!
I always get a fresh bouquet on my first day to have in our room. I like to look for an inexpensive vessel of some sort that I can put those babies into and enjoy for the duration of our stay. Even if I have to use a water bottle for the first day or so, it works!
By the time we head to our next destination, I either take the bouquet with us, or I leave it behind for the next guest if they are still in good shape. Be creative when looking for a vase to hold your beauties. It doesn’t have to be fancy, expensive or even pretty – the flowers will overshadow your vase.
Why do I always get fresh flowers? It’s the joy they bring. I see them as sweet little faces smiling back at me and it makes my heart full. The smallest, most simple bouquet can sure add so much joy to any room.
When we’re in a more rural area of la belle France, I LOVE to stop by the side of the road and pick some wild flowers. Yes, I’ve done it numerous times. I’m not kidding. My husband is very well versed at knowing when to stop when we’re on a country road so I can gather a simple yet elegant bundle of les fleurs. (He’s very much a Francohile as well!)
Why not do the same at home? I try to bring back as many new traditions, tastes, smells, ideas, etc. as I can from our travels. On my first trip to France, although it was a very short few hours (see my About Me post), one memory that really stayed with me is their love of flowers. They don’t have to be big, extravagant, professionally assembled works of art – but just the simplest of a few flowers can change the complete ambience and mood in the area in which they are placed.
I encourage you to pick up a simple bouquet wherever you shop and see what joy they will add to your space. We have a Farmer’s Market in my hometown every Saturday morning and I make a beeline for the flower vendors before they are too picked over.
Or, if you are fortunate enough to grow your own flowers, cut just a few and bring them inside to enjoy. And, forage for your own wild flowers. I love to do this, especially in the spring before many of the flowers start to bloom. A couple of small branches from a tree or bush is a wonderful way to bring the springtime mood indoors. Just look around you – there are beautiful flowers (including wild flowers) smiling at you. Seek their beauty!
A la prochaine…