Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Feeling the Call of Spring and Summer

If half the pleasure of an event is the anticipation, I've got to say Spring can't come soon enough!

I don't know why, but I never really feel like making a resolution for the New Year.  Rather I feel it in the Spring, and am often motivated by an image, or a song.

Normally in this blog, I try to share something about Gilden Tree that I think you might find interesting or inspiring. But recently, I came across an old family photograph of a picnic at a park or someone's farm that made me catch my breath and I decided to share it with you.

I believe that's my grandmother Clara on the far left and my great aunt Evelyn right beside her looking at the camera, when all of them were impossibly young.

I love all the women in their print dresses, and the man in his white shirt and hat, no doubt at the men's end of the table.

The lunch was all home-cooked and probably delicious, since they were all wonderful cooks.

The silverware and dishes - all real -  would be gathered up in a wooden picnic basket, taken home and washed. The tablecloths would be washed, ironed and kept away for next time.  (I even see a little mason jar of something on the table there, too.)

There is something permanent and real in this photo that calls to me, and I have a sense that it's all coming back again.  We've gone from using real to relying on disposable. Could we finally be coming back round to real again?

Let us strive to savor the simple pleasures of a picnic with real food, and people we love. I am going to air out the old picnic baskets from my grandmother and my mother, and fill them again.

Whatever it is that signifies Spring and happiness for you - I hope you find it and follow it. Let's celebrate the real and create these amazing moments together.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Arnie Sanders Uses Home-made Spa Soaks for Professional Athletes!

Just finished reading a great article by Jen Murphy in the Health & Wellness section of the Wall Street Journal.  Click Here to read the original article.

Arnie Sanders, VP of Sports Performance for the Minnesota Timberwolves, has taken a remarkably holistic approach to helping his athletes treat tired, sore muscles, using customized home-made soaks, and creating a relaxing environment for using them.

Basically, Arnie suggests creating your own customized soaks at home, using high-quality, organic, pure ingredients.  He focuses on tried and true ingredients like epsom salt, sea salt, baking soda and essential oils.  He recommends soaking in them for 20 minutes.

But he takes it a step further and says that to reap the maximum benefit, you need to do so in a quiet, relaxing environment, perhaps lighting a candle, letting your heart rate slow down and just listening to your own breathing.

He creates a base mix of:

1 cup epsom salt
1 cup sea salt
2 cups baking soda

He mixes and stores his base mix in an airtight plastic container.  You could probably put them in a pretty glass jar by your bath, too if it has a good seal.

Then he customizes the soak, depending on how it is going to be used.

For a Rejuvenating foot soak, he uses:

1 cup base mix
1 drop of peppermint oil
1 drop frankincense
1 drop ylang-ylang oil

For a Relaxing foot soak, he uses:

1 cup base mix
1 drop sandalwood
2 drops of myrrh
2 chamomile tea bags
(You can also steep the tea bags in a cup of boiling water for 4-5 minutes and add the very strong chamomile tea to the foot bath.)

For a Recovery Bath Soak, to help reduce inflammation and calm muscle tissues, he uses:

2 cups base mix
4-5 drops liquid arnica
8-10 crushed aspirins

He also suggests 5 minutes of gentle stretching afterwards.

To create a Rejuvenating or Relaxing Bath, you can just double the the Foot Soak recipes.

It's so delightful to see someone using simple, DIY home spa recipes to help serious athletes.

We've been creating fresh, home spa recipes for years - and would love to share them with you.

Check out our fresh Home Spa Recipes.    And send a little mental thank you to Arnie for sharing his wonderful recipes!