Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Texas Wildflowers in Spring

One wonderful thing about living in Texas is the wildflowers that grace every roadside in the spring. Last spring, due to the constant rains we had, the wildflowers were beautiful. This year, the show may be a little less spectacular, but beautiful just the same.

This past weekend we were Huntsville for our daughter's college softball games and the wildflowers are making their appearance in that area.

One terrific place to see wildflower displays is the drive from Southeast Louisiana to North Texas up 287. This highway wanders through rural Texas where picturesque small towns, farms and farmland greet the traveler. This is a great place to find famed Texas wildflowers growing in fields and along the roadway.

All along the roadsides you see people stopped to photograph the flowers. Many dress up their babies and small children and set them a pile of bluebonnets for a great photo op. Since our kids are grown, we decided to photograph our "baby," Molly, in the bluebonnets too.

What, you may ask, do wildflowers have to do with health? Unfortunately, many of us don't take the time to relax, to "stop and smell the roses." When you're driving past a field covered in waves of brilliant blues, yellows or reds, you can't help but marvel at the beauty and ponder things bigger than yourself. It reminds us to live in and enjoy the moment, to take a deep breath and relax, to be grateful just to be in the world.

Health problems and age-related diseases are rampant in our society, in very large part due to poor lifestyle choices, which includes not taking enough time to relax. Stress keeps our bodies from functioning in their best possible way and relaxation is the key to combating this stress. You owe it to yourself and those around you to take a deep breath and find the beauty in life.

The real wonders in life are made up of these small, unforgettable moments.

Bluebonnets are the state flower of Texas but over 5,000 species of wildflowers also bloom in Texas during March, April and May. Other splashes of color come from yellow Black-eyed Susans, poppies and more. For more information about wildflowers in Texas and where to find them, visit the Texas Department of Transportation website at http://www.dot.state.tx.us/travel/flora_conditions.htm

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