Since we got home from the hospital six weeks ago, friends have come by with flowers on just about a weekly basis. They have made such a difference - they look beautiful and they lift my spirits - any living thing does. Alexandra Stoddard, author and interior designer, encourages readers to keep fresh flowers around the home all year. When she was a starving student, she skipped lunch so she could buy a purple hyacinth for her apartment. I love that story and although her ideas are sometimes old fashioned, Stoddard's book Living a Beautiful Life is very comforting to me and I reach for it when I need ideas to beautify my home and when I need little miracles to lift my soul.