In a Vase on Monday: kitchen flowers

I bumped into a friend this morning while walking the dog. She has three daughters, all in their 20s at various stages of university and work. She asked me how the exams were going and I remarked that she must be glad it’s all behind her. “Don’t think it’s ever over!” she said, and laughed. There was me, thinking we’re coming to the end of an era (which we sort of are) and feeling a little wistful already, when really we’re just moving towards another phase. I should know this by now, that parenting is a series of phases, but this one seems more dramatic because it’s the one where they start to leave home.

In the meantime, though, I am thankful that I work at home, that I can collect the children from the station and listen to their exam debriefs and soothe their frayed nerves, I can make sure they eat well and get enough sleep, I can bake cakes and I can put flowers on the table. Oh, wait… Those flowers are for me. They’re to brighten the kitchen and put a smile on my face.

This week’s IAVOM is a cop-out – they’re supermarket peonies, popped into the trolley during yet another whizz around the aisles to stock up on gallons of milk, bananas, apples, bread, Cheerios… But, look – aren’t they exquisite? Totally worth the few pounds they cost. And they need no accompaniment in the jug; they’re perfect as they are.

As a bonus, I’ve also refreshed last week’s vase which, apart from most of the roses, is still going strong. It’s good to know what lasts longer than a week in a vase. I’ve been reading up on the best way to get as much vase-life as possible – pick flowers that are mostly in bud, cut stems on a slant, pop a little vinegar or Milton in the water to deter bacteria, etc. Have you any other top tips?

Do visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to see her Monday flowers and find links to many others. Wishing you a thoroughly good week (with flowers and cake, if that’s what takes your fancy).


16 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday: kitchen flowers

  1. I am sure you are worthy of a treat so enjoy those shop-bought peonies! And it’s good to see how well last week’s offering has lasted, and to see how you have refreshed it. Thanks for sharing Sam

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  2. I bought some supermarket peonies myself a couple of weeks ago – they’d have been worth the joy they gave at thrice the price! I haven’t tried adding vinegar to vase water but I use the other steps you mentioned and I sear a lot of my stems in hot water before placing them in the vase, which seems to help.

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  3. Lovely as always hope they are all coping ok, my generous gardener roses are perfect at the moment, hope something waits for Open Gardens! Love to all Joy x

    Sent from my iPad


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  4. Lovely, the littlest boy and I will take a couple of slices of that excellent Victoria sandwich, thank you. I know what you mean about the series of phases. I was thinking this morning that the whole empty nest thing will be hard. But who knows what lies ahead. My grandma used to stick a needle through the stem of a tulip, up near the flower. No idea why. And Sarah Raven does something with boiling water. I bash woody stems a bit, and cut things on a slant, but that’s usually as sophisticated as it gets. The peonies are beautiful. I have some in the garden that we inherited but they’re the most lurid pink imaginable. Hope all is going well with the exams. Hang on in there all! CJ xx

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  5. Gorgeous peonies – I wouldn’t have been able to resist them either! And last week’s vase looks as good as new. A drop of vinegar? I must try that. Thanks Sam!

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  6. Supermarket peonies are definitely all the rage this week! Thanks for reminding me to treasure each stage of children – mine are a stage or two behind yours and I must remember not to wish it away (or think it is magically going to get easier as they get older!)

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  7. Gorgeous flowers Sam! But, you really had me at the cake…I could eat a generous slice right now. Aren’t we lucky to be home based and to be there for our children through the good and the not so good? Jane x

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  8. Peonies I have in abundance in the garden – all done now and not nearly as beautiful as yours from the shop. I admire mine from my desk, which is facing the garden, the variety we have drops petals the moment they are touched. I shall look out for some next time I stock up on teenage supplies. My gran, just like CJ’s used to stick a pin through the tulip stems, right under the head. I don’t know why. I am a bit slapdash with cut flowers, no special treatment other than a trim. I shall try and remember the vinegar next time. Cake sounds good! Have a lovely week. x

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  9. Lovely Peonies, even if they are from the supermarket. And yes, one’s children are never “finished”. Will they get a job? Will they finally get engaged? Once they’re engaged, have they set a date? And what about grandchildren? Our oldest is getting married this coming March (a long engagement, I know).

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  10. Working from home is just the tops when you have children (provided you have space at home and home’s a happy place). Exam times is the pits though. Hope all going well for you and that you’re soon through to the other side (for this year…).
    Love those peonies and the cake.

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