Take time to stop and smell the roses.
You know what that means. Slow down. Take time to appreciate the sights and sounds (and smells) around you. Stop rushing around and go with the flow. Stop, bend over and smell a flower for goodness sake!
We all rush around so much trying to DO that we forget, no, we won't ALLOW ourselves to stop for anything. Not our food, not our sleep, not our health, not our kids, and certainly not for a flower. Have you ever not taken a break just to go use the bathroom because you were urgently trying to finish something? How bad is it when we can't even stop to use the toilet??
Maybe you do take care of yourself. Maybe you do use the restroom, eat good food, play with your kids and smell the roses.
Do you stop to smell the Milkweed??
As hard as it may seem sometimes to stop for the things we know are really great (the smell of roses), it may seem crazy to think we should stop to check out things that at first glance don't look so hot (a milkweed).
For those of you who don't know, a milkweed is, well, a weed. It's a wild plant that in it's common form is found in the northeastern and north central areas of the U.S. and adjacent areas of Canada. It's called the milkweed because if broken it leaks a sap that looks like milk.
It can grow to between 4 to 6 feet tall. It is poisonous.
At first glance (and with no help from it's name) the milkweed is nothing special. If you found it in your yard or garden you would probably pluck it out. But if you looked closer you'd find an extraordinary plant. It may not have the conventional beauty of a rose, but it has it's own beauty and a whole host of surprises awaiting anyone willing to stop and smell the milkweed.
- The milkweed has over 140 known species and it's flowers range from white to orange and a wide spectrum of pinks.
- It's filaments (that carry the seeds once the milkweed pods open) have been used as insulation and some say are better than down feathers.
- The milkweed sap is a natural remedy for warts and poison ivy.
- Milkweed nectar was used as a natural sweetener by Native Americans and Voyageurs
- The Genus for milkweed, Asclepius, is named after the Greek god of healing, because of the many folk-medicinal uses for the milkweed plants.
- Milkweed plants and nectar are beneficial for many insects, including bees and the most well known milkweed feeding insect - the Monarch Butterfly.
...the flowers smell better than roses!