A Champagne toast.

Today is the one-year anniversary of what Peter Pan might have called "an awfully big adventure", had his medical team been any less superlative than mine. It's not an exaggeration to say that last March's ruptured appendix almost spelled 'curtains' for me. It is also not an exaggeration to say that I couldn't have remained in the land of the living without the incredible support and compassion of my friends and loved ones.

My husband Scott and I have discussed how we might mark this significant occasion. Dinner? A night at the movies? An evening of contemplative cocooning, side by side on the sofa? Of course, a lovely bonfire fueled by an entire year's worth of medical bills and insurance EOBs would be très cozy... but I'll settle for ordinary candlelight, and maybe a glass of champagne.

There are many occasions on which our joy is increased by the dramatic POP! of a cork: birthdays, anniversaries, and of course, the New Year. Every Eve, we chill a bottle of our favorite Freixenet Cordon Negro Brut, which is really a Spanish cava, and not a true champagne at all. ("Il n'est champagne que de la Champagne," proclaims the CIVC, which governs and guards that appellation d'origine contrôlée very strictly.) At 11:55 p.m., we pour just enough for a sparkling midnight toast-- but the real fun comes in the morning, when we hang up our brand new calendar and lounge around pajama-clad, sipping mimosas or (even better!) bellinis.

Those divinely refreshing cocktails (made of equal parts sparkling wine and peach nectar) sprang instantly to mind the first time I wore Yves Saint Laurent's Champagne (AKA Yvresse-- renamed thus to hush the loud doléances of that region's confederated winemakers). Long have I criticized Sophia Grojsman for reusing the same roses-and-stone-fruits theme in perfume after perfume-- but oh! that fresh peach note! And oh! that gorgeous rose, which puts the 'pink' in Champagne in exactly the same manner that a touch of strawberry purée brings a blush to a bellini's cheeks. By the time I hit that sumptuous woody-chypre drydown (if there isn't sandalwood in here somewhere, I'll eat my hat!), Ms. Grojsman may rest assured that however I may have bickered before, I take it all back.

Scent Elements:  Aldehydes, nectarine, peach, apricot, lychee, carnation, violet, rose otto, jasmine, lily-of-the-valley, mint, caraway, cumin, anise, cinnamon, oakmoss, vetiver, cedar, patchouli, coconut, amber, benzoin, styrax, musk