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Sunday, May 10, 2009

Home is where the spa is...

All right, enough taking it easy with short blogs...time I posted something of essence (ha, get it? Spa? essence?...thank God it's the weekend!) One of my favorite things to do (when I could afford it) has always been a spa treatment...not a full day - I was never one to sit still that long! But I do enjoy a facial OR a pedicure OR a massage...With the changes in financial situations for so many these days, I'd like to address ways to get these relaxing "fixes" at home but without too much time or money being spent! (It's not relaxing if it breaks the bank or you have to prep for 2 hours to get to the relaxation part!).

A few suggestions first for setting the mood:

*Turn your phone and cell phone off if at all possible for the duration of your spa "treatment."

* Put on some mood music - light and relaxing (i.e. jazz, classical, nature know the drill!)

* Light some candles and/or dim the lights in the room you are using for the treatment (typically this will be your bathroom if room allows.)

* Do some initial breathing exercises to relax and get in the right frame of mind for this - inhale, hold your breath a few seconds and then breathe out...sounds silly but think happy thoughts while you do this.

* Make sure you have several fluffy towels and a few washcloths set out.

* Set out your spa treatments - bath salts, mask, lotions, oils, etc...(if you are making them, do so the day before!)

Which treatments you choose to indulge in and for how long is totally up to you...Even a half hour stolen from the daily craziness will help you feel refreshed.

To save you the searching, I've found what look like easy to concoct homemade spa treatments. I haven't tried them yet, but plan to! Please let me know if you try any that are great (or that aren't)!

Ingredients: 1 Tbsp plain yogurt, 1 Tbsp cucumber, 1 Tbsp parsley
Directions: Puree the cucumber and parsley finely and mix with the yogurt until smooth. Clean your face with a gentle cleanser and cover your face with the mixture. Leave the mask on for approximately 15-20 minutes for best results. Rinse with water.

Ingredients: 1 Cup distilled water, 1/4 Cup vodka, 1/4 tsp Essential Oil of Peppermint, 1/4 tsp Tee Tree Oil (nope - I don't know either!)
Directions: Combine all ingredients and pour into a spray bottle. This tingly spray will revive tired feet!

Ingredients: 2 and 1/2 Cups sugar, 1/2 Cup sweet almond oil, 4 tsps lemon juice, 4 Tblspns honey and 4 drops lemon essential oil.
Directions: Combine the sugar and sweet almond oil in a large bowl and stir well to combine. Add the lemon juice and stire again. Finally add the honey and lemon essential oil and stir again to mix. Use this scrub to gently exfoliate your skin!

Ingredients: 1/2 Cup lemon juice, 1 Cup distilled water and 2/3 Cup witch hazel
Directions: Combine all ingredients in glass measuring cup and mix well. Pour into a clean bottle and shake well before each use. Apply with a cotton ball or soft cloth.

Ingredients: 1 ripe peach (peeled and pitted), 1 egg white.
Directions: Whip peach and egg white together in a blender until smooth. Gently pat mixture over face. Leave on for 30 minutes. Rinse off with cool water.

Ingredients: 1 Cup baking soda, 1/2 Cup citric acid, 1/2 Cup cornstarch, 2 tsp. fragrance or essential oil, 3-4 drops food coloring (optional)
Directions: Mix all ingredients well in a large bowl. Store in an air tight canister. To use, sprinkle 2 Tblspns into warm bath water to dissolve and active the "fizzy" aromatherapy.

If you really don't have the patience (believe me, I understand!) to make all of these yourself, tomorrow I will be addressing where to (a) buy inexpensive versions of pre-made spa treatment goodies and (b) where to go to have someone give you that treatment or massage but at a fraction of the usual cost. So...take a deep exhale...more tomorrow!

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