“Smell the Roses”

We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.” –Abraham Lincoln

Tonight, while eating microwaved Swedish meatballs and instant mashed potatoes, on paper plates with plastic spoons (a delicacy during this new stage of life that I am absolutely crushing) I convinced my three children to “stop and smell the roses.” Literally.

In the center of the dinner table was the most GORGEOUS bouquet of flowers for valentines, and I wanted to show and really experience how amazing fresh flowers could be.

“Aren’t these BEAUTIFUL.” I said in awe. Children (as well as adults) are often times drawn to any sort of enthusiasm if they sense its authenticity. I was authentically admiring, and also purposefully sharing my admiration-to illustrate a moment of beauty for my kids to witness.

Now that I had their attention, I told them first what the flowers were named.

“That is MY name!” said my intelligent, articulate, spirited 6 year old daughter Lily. Amused at the coincidence.

“Yes! And this one is called a Peter” I mused, as I pointed to a brown stem of some leafy filler piece, to tease my ever playful 8 year old son.

The kids and I studied the details of each flower and noticed the soft yellow powder of pollen, collected at different points depending on the flower type. We discussed briefly how pollen plays a big role in a lot of things. Although it is so little, it can affect so much. *a good metaphor I think*

We took turns smelling the “Lillies.” Laughing each time we chose the human one over the flower version.

“Ok guys! I saved the BEST part for last!” I interrupted the happy phrases. And in a whisper I said: “I will now show you the secret of how to PERFECTLY smell a rose!”

These roses were the “good kind.” Especially full, big, multilayered, deep burgundy red ones. Not the fire truck red, small tightly wound kind you’d see at a local grocery store. *no offense* No, these were the kind of roses professional flower shops post front page of their website to initiate higher traffic.

The PERFECT kind of roses for smelling.

I will tell you in adult words what I showed my children (in children terms) on ”how to do it.”

My hope is that one day you will be brave enough, to be present enough, to try it out yourself.

Especially if you are the type (like I used to be) that feels you don’t “get” why roses are romantic. I am no “newly found ecosexual” but I hope after this, you’ll get a glimpse as to a few reasons why roses and romance just belong together.

The process goes like this: *adult version*

1) Gently cup each hand around the outside of the rose. Slowly feel its soft petals with you fingers, and hold it like you would a lovers cheek. It is so odd how similar a rose petal feels to smooth skin. Odd. But accurate.

2) Second, slowly move closer to the rose (as if you are leaning in for a kiss goodnight at the doorstep of a great date) the smell will become stronger the closer you become, (basic science) but notice how the smell is stronger, but never “too strong” no matter how close you get.

3) Once right up to the rose, press your nose, and lips RIGHT in the middle of the rose, and push in a little to feel the petals give. The aroma will envelop you.

4) Close your eyes and take in the smell with a few deep breaths. The complexity is unlike any counterfeit oil, candle, lotion, soap or perfume sold at the highest prices, throughout the world. This is the “real” rose smell. And you can have it.

5) Repeat.

And thats exactly what we did. Only I said it like this: *kid version* (more showing involved, less words)

“ok guys! Get REALLY close… no like put your nose on it! It’s ok if your face touches it a little, it wont break! Isn’t it so soft! Ok DEEP BREATHS! One, two three! *sighs* doesnt it smell AMAZING! Again! *sighs* AHHH!”

Either way you frame it… I loved “smelling the roses” literally tonight, huddled around that ZERO fruit or vegetable type dinner, on this Valentine’s Day, with my 3 little loves.

Love in. Love out. Love you. Love wins. Love love love(ity) love. Today and always sweet thing,


P.s. Don’t try this process on lillies. The amount of pollen on those suckers could cause you to go into anaphylactic shock if your allergies were sensitive enough. I dont want that on my conscious. 😉

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