Thursday, November 18, 2010

Voilà! It's Nouveau Beaujolais Day! Sarmentelles and Thanksgiving


During Thanksgiving time, I appreciate the shapes and textures of the gourds that enhance my urban garden's environment during this time of year, as seen in this photograph posted above of an assortment of gourds (from the greenmarket), which have been placed in an old wire "shopping basket" propped up against a planter and alongside my Juncus effusus (Juncaceae or Unicorn Soft Rush). The Juncus' playful spirally foliage is always a welcome texture in my garden (as seen below),



and texture is something I discussed in a previous post, Celebrating Texture . Meanwhile, as if giving a standing ovation to the beauty of November,  . . . my 'Tamuekyam's' leaves (seen below)


seem to know their textures and colors are much appreciated — especially at Thanksgiving. I referred to my Acer palmatum var. dissectum 'Tamukeyam' in  a previous post back in August when its leaves were burgundy, which was lovely too.
However, I often honor and preserve these November moments in nature, by rendering images I take of them into unique invitations (that are suitable to invite dear ones for any gathering to celebrate Thanksgiving), as well as  a selection of greeting cards that are perfect for sending to friends or family, to show your appreciation for the meaning they bring to your life. My client, Donna Wandrey (mentioned in a previous post), did this when she purchased some of  my large wrap-around card selections to honor her friends at Thanksgiving. Her selections included Late Autumn and Hiker's Paradise, pictured below:


My cards are blank inside, leaving you the freedom to write your own message, but in case you are feeling a bit dry in inspiration, here are a  couple of quotes you could write inside one of my cards, such as Ralph Waldo Emerson's:


"For flowers that bloom about our feet;
 For tender grass, so fresh, so sweet:
 For song of bird, and hum of bee;
 For all things fair we hear or see;
 Father in heaven, we thank thee!"

Or Irving Berlin's, "Got no check books, got no banks. Still I'd like to express my thanks - I got the sun in the morning and the moon at night."

Then again, my selections of  invitations and cards are not limited to Thanksgiving. They are special enough to use for a number of late autumn occasions. For example, today is Beaujolais Nouveau Day. All over France, grand traditions have been developed in honor of the release of the much anticipated Nouveau Beaujolais wine — which occurs every year on the third Thursday of November at 12:01 AM.  When the strike of midnight occurs, France explodes with celebrations, with the biggest one taking place in Beaujeu, the capital of the Beaujolais region, with a spectacular soiree called Sarmentelles. Beaujolais should be consumed by Christmas time. Celebrating its arrival with friends is a great way to bid adieu to the last of the last Fall temperatures.


If you didn't make it to France during this time to attend the Sarmentelles, and won't be there in the coming days to catch other Beaujolais celebrations, and you are a gardener, or someone who appreciates the outdoors, why not invite friends (using my invitations) and host your soirée own Samentelles to honor the wine, and to enjoy the remaining traces of Autumn's  colors and textures?

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