DONNA'S DAY: Tap into the power of fresh flowers

Tap into the power of fresh flowers that are in full bloom right now.

"You can have your cake and blossoms too," was the greeting my friend Janet proclaimed when she arrived for coffee time on my deck.

Carrying a freshly baked blueberry-lime pound cake recipe from Fine Cooking magazine, the allure of her culinary presentation wasn't just about the yummy cake. Ringing the confection were eye-popping clusters of bright orange and yellow organic nasturtiums. The delightful decoration of natural blooms she had just picked from her garden turned a simple get-together into an event.

Tap into the power of fresh flowers that are in full bloom right now.

Let your kids pick their favorites and enjoy flower play as you create something together. It can be as easy as tossing rose petals down the center of your dinner table. There's an idea for everyone.

1. Set a pretty bloom and floating candles in a clear glass bowl or wide-mouthed vase half-filled with water. Set on a patio table and light the candles for an al-fresco family supper.

2. Tuck an aromatic gardenia in your daughter's hair for an eye-catching 'do. No need for perfume with nature's floral scent.

3. Press a flower in a summer journal. It will be a treasured keepsake when you thumb through the pages this winter.

4. Make a basic arrangement in a water-filled vase following the simple principle of using a focal flower, such as a rose, and adding a few smaller flowers, such as daisies, along with a pretty vine or hosta leaves. When kids do the creating, the look will be less contrived and more informal. Name the flowers as you clip and arrange them together.

5. At a family party, top an ice cream cone or cupcakes with edible flowers such as pansies and johnny jump-ups. Or, for a unique presentation, arrange a few nontoxic flowers in a narrow jar or vase, and place it in the center space of an angel food cake.

Donna Erickson's award-winning series "Donna's Day" is airing on public television nationwide. To find more of her creative family recipes and activities, visit www.donnasday.com and link to the NEW Donna's Day Facebook fan page. Her latest book is "Donna Erickson's Fabulous Funstuff for Families."  (c) 2019 Donna Erickson  Distributed by King Features Synd.

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