Spanista » Self Care Rituals, Reflections & Resources for Joyful Living by Ginny Shiverdecker

  • Spa Style & Self Care Reflections, Rituals and Resources for Joyful Living

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  • About Spanista

    Ginny Shiverdecker, Creator of Spanista is Spa Wellness Enthusiast, Adventurer Seeker and Brand Builder.
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Dear Wellness Seekers,

Spanista Philosophy Belief #4, Synchronicity Through Spa Therapy is really where it all comes together to create the positive results you want. As I shared in my first two posts ‘My Story’, I discovered through much experimentation that we need help to align our mind-body and heart in the moment. Going it alone is futile because it only gets us so far. Why stop there when you can take it to the next level to connect with your true nature – the source of a happier and healthier lifestyle? Lucky for us there is evidence in multiple cultures especially in Asia going back centuries that points to the sources. They are GIFTS of genuine relief  from Natures’ healing ways and Human guidance and healing hands of Spa Therapists. Both are at our disposal but we do not realize the important role they can play in our lives. We need to charge of our human condition and get smart about these solutions.

Addressing this issue is the heart of Spanista Philosophy Belief #4:  The power to feel and live better lies with the ability to sync physical, emotional and mental capacities in the moment and through Reflection and Ritual Practices, both personally and in partnership with professional Spa Therapists.

If you are like me, a busy career and lifestyle comes with loads of outside influences and distractions that keep your head full of Agenda items, leaving no room for exploring Self Care Education. Too bad they do not teach about these tools in school so you have to make time to discover it for yourself. But who has time? So that external Agenda takes over your life so soon you feel that you are living by forces outside your control and unconsciously your body, heart and mind quietly begin to resent it. Other people’s needs take precedence.

Unexpected circumstances can change your life on a daily basis. You feel the pressure of long-standing obligations. In you take a step back to see the big picture, you realize you are living to the expectations of others. Some things on the Agenda maybe appropriate and make you happy while others may have simply gotten out of control and you may not have realized it. Suddenly out of what seems like the blue, you get that uneasy feeling in your body. You feel detached from reality – or what I call ‘My Out Of Body Experience’. It is when I feel like a ‘drone’, run by technology, hovering over my life watching it unfold as if I was viewing myself in a movie.  Within days the resulting effect becomes physical – perhaps you show early signs of a cold, start getting tension headaches or your back starts to spasm or you get up one morning and your neck muscle snaps so you cannot move it. This list of health issues goes on. That is REAL pain. But know it stems from emotion in YOU.

If these kinds of things have a reoccurring pattern in your life-like they did mine, then they are real symptoms of lifestyle issues. For years I ignored them – I was raised in a time when we were taught to push through them. Not to be soft. Especially if you were a working woman. To be respected as one of the guys you could not show any signs weakness – you simply pushed on. Unfortunately, today for men and women we know the effects of pushing through it without relief – it can manifest in serious addictions, in depression and/or transform into disease which can have devastating effects. Does any of this sound familiar to you?

Spanista is about being proactive. Taking charge of your lifestyle to be happy and healthy.  Putting yourself and your Self Care first by regularly planning Reflection and Ritual Practices into your Spanista Lifestyle Agenda will get you in sync physically, emotionally and mentally. This puts you back in touch with your inner truth in the moment. It is with the help of healing hands of Spa Therapists and what we bring to the experience that helps us find a new level of happiness.

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate



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Dear Wellness Seekers,

Summer Gifts of Nature Surprise and Delight Spanista this morning. As thoughtful Thoreau said –

“We need the tonic of Wildness and …Nature.”

On Tuesday of this week I shared my new Reflection Walk in my Kansas City neighborhood of Briar Cliff. In the photos I posted, you may recall the pretty little pond along the path. This morning was so lovely out as it was a bit cooler with an early morning rain providing a fresh blanket of moisture everywhere while creating an unmistakable freshness in the air. The kind that encourages you to breathe deeply.

I took an opportunity to stop at the pond for while to look out over the water and noticed at the edge was this lovely water foliage I had never really noticed before. Maybe it was there before but today it drew me in. The lavender flowers were aglow in the light amidst the bright green waxy leaves – so I went even closer but sadly the camera did not capture the fish swimming close to the surface, but I could see them. I knew I had to get even closer. When I leaned in to get a better photo, a beautiful crystal blue dragonfly with his transparent wings came to visit and sat on a leaf right by me. If you look closely at the very right hand corner of the close up picture of the flowers you will see the lovely creature. He stayed just long enough to allow me to take the shot and in true fashion buzzed away like a miniature helicopter as quickly as he arrived.

Captivated by this little magical experience I came home to Google dragonfly to discover its significant meaning – it is full of delightful surprises I was compelled to share.

The dragonfly, in almost every part of the world symbolizes change and change in the perspective of self-realization; and the kind of change that has its source in mental and emotional maturity and the understanding of the deeper meaning of life. The traditional association of Dragonflies with water also gives rise to this meaning to this amazing insect. The Dragonfly’s scurrying flight across water represents an act of going beyond what’s on the surface and looking into the deeper implications and aspects of life.

The dragonfly normally lives most of its life as a nymph or an immature. It flies only for a fraction of its life and usually not more than a few months. This adult dragonfly does it all in these few months and leaves nothing to be desired. This style of life symbolizes and exemplifies the virtue of living IN the moment and living life to the fullest. By living in the moment you are aware of who you are, where you are, what you are doing, what you want, what you don’t and make informed choices on a moment-to-moment basis. This ability lets you live your life without regrets like the great dragonfly.  WOW…this is creature of nature punches well above its weight. This is just a flavor – there is more fascinating insight at:

The abundance of flowers with such pleasing color and  fragrance allows us to enjoy the sensual pleasure of summer. But if you stay still for a bit to live in the moment, you may see something with deeper meaning like the Dragonfly – there are no coincidences. There was a message in this for me. Who knew I would make such a rich discovery about the Drangonfly when I was really seeking to enjoy the flowers?

The Summer Gifts of Nature Surprise, Delight Spanista –  Yes indeed, nature’s rare little gifts, if you are open to receive them, always appear.

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self care Advocate

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Spanista-In-Touch-Tableau-Home-Spa-Experience-Features-Jasmine.jpegPINIMAGEDear Wellness Seekers,

Spanista In Touch Tableau Home Spa Experience Features Jasmine, a favorite scent of mine especially in late summer when intense warm temperatures linger. The scent sets my mind in the mood for starting to enjoy the weekend ahead. You may have picked up from my first In Touch Tableau post that I have a Spanista Self Care Ritual on Thursday nights where I prioritize ‘me time’ no matter where I am or how busy.  This week has been a transition week as we arrived at our Kansas City home from Tampa Bay. There is always so much to do the first couple of weeks to settle in properly that I try not to become over whelmed by the demands of the outer world. My Ritual of In Touch Tableau Thursday helps me get back in touch with the Devine Me – where I grow in faith, strength, wisdom and love.  I step out of my private ritual experience feeling more centered and happier.

Last night I took a couple of minutes to prepare my In Touch Tableau for tonights Spanista Home Spa Ritual. With no time to shop at my favorite Kansas City spots until this weekend, I pull together some of my favorite things from my current collection. I always have things in an In Touch Treasure Chest at each home so I can easily go to it when life gets a bit hectic.

I found my Jasmine artisan soap I picked up from the Farmers Market in Parkville and took in a stimulating deep breath of the scent and knew this would suit the mood I want to create.

Jasmine is a scent I love this time of year because it exudes exotic, rich,sweet floral notes that act as an aphrodisiac. This will set a blissful mood moving into the weekend.

That led me to select a fragrance of JasminNoir by Bulgari I love to use during bath and after to extend the experience into the evening. And into the weekend. With my creative juices flowing I went to a healthy pomegranate tea I picked up at Starbucks. I brew some early and seep it. It is very refreshing when slightly chilled. The two make a complimentary pair after a very warm, busy week here in Kansas City. This Spansita Home Spa Ritual will really help me feel back at home again.  I select a lovely tray, tea-pot and cup to round out the presentation. Pink peonies I picked up at the local market add the right splash of color. I always like to include an interesting visual so the Queen Bee original ink drawing created by a Park University art student, I also found at a Parkville Art Gallery celebrates the natural world of the season. Lastly part of the Ritual is including a piece of jewelry that holds a personal story. The green flower styled broach is a gift from a friend. She gave it to me when we were on a long spa weekend together. A treasure that brings back positive memories and reminds me of the importance of loving relationships in bringing us true happiness.

Do you have a fragrance that stimulates your mood in a positive way?

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate



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      Wellness Seekers,

Spanista Reflection Walk Kansas City Style is an experience I look forward to sharing with you as another dimension of my Spanista Wellness Lifestyle. Coming back to Kansas City is always cathartic. Even though I have to break into a new routine, it is the place that grounds me because it is where love blossomed into a devoted commitment for life. So my Reflection Walk takes me down memory lane with the Intention of Gratitude for the many blessings that unfolded since coming here years ago.

A few months after we were first married we moved to Minneapolis (while keeping our home in Tampa) for my career while my husband commuted to engage in the crazy tech world of San Francisco. At the 5 year point, we determined we would move to Kansas City, where we set down roots as a family after our first years of demanding work and extensive travel always moving us in different directions. Back when I knew I was moving into a serious relationship with Bob he wanted me to take a trip with him to Kansas City to see where he grew up, went to university, started his career and became a Father to his beautiful daughter. I remember him saying, “You are going to be surprised.” And indeed I was.

There is a delightful creative, cosmopolitan and independent lifestyle here. Yes, right in the middle of the country is this gem of a city and for someone who lived in Manhattan and traveled to far off lands eventually establishing a home here, I am excited to share its virtues. The city has a rich wild west history that dates back to native Indian settlements and was noteworthy on The Lewis and Clark Expedition stopping a Parkville, a small village near home as they journeyed along the mighty Missouri River. Wherever I have lived, I am drawn to be near water so we live high on a bluff that overlooks the river and cityscape. When the atmosphere is right the cityscape takes on an aura of the Emerald City in the Wizard of Oz. The surrounding hillsides are lushly green and some how Mother Nature’s watercolor brush washes a beautiful green cast over it all.

I find on my early morning Spanista Reflection Walks, I am memorized by the amazing number of shades of green nature offers along my path. No wonder it is the color of healing. You can almost taste the oxygen the trees emit. Soon they will begin to change color so the trail will become a blaze in the colors of fire. The rolling hills in our small neighborhood are killer to climb – so much so I find a need to focus on each step in a medative fashion to push through to the top. It calls for me to breathe deeply so any tension I feel emits from my body with every step upward. When the trail plateaus to offer relief, I observe more of natures gifts. If you are open to receive they always appear. My trail starts outside my front door, then up my first long hill taking me past rows of cozy homes with pets in the windows and glorious trees. The first view over the hill top is of the lovely pond – absent of geese who will return when the weather changes.

Then I come to Briar Cliff Village where a well designed lifestyle center features all locally owned shops and eateries. The Village is designed after the first outdoor shopping center in America, Country Club Plaza in the heart of Kansas City which was inspired by Seville Spain’s architecture – rich terra-cotta colored masonry and lovely waters fountains everywhere. Kansas City boasts more fountains than any city in the America. (More on this in future posts.) Of course I welcome the site of Spa at Briar Cliff Village as it is one of my favorites and make a mental note to schedule a massage for when I return from San Francisco.

I walk past the pond on to the a main road that comes to a round about and onto another path of gentle hills until I come to my turn around spot – the waterfall. Here I linger a bit on the bridge to ponder today’s Spanista Reflection Walk Intention – Gratitude. Gratitude for being lucky enough to meet my husband on an airplane and enjoy living together in another great place like Kansas City. There is loads to share about life here so will write highlights through the eyes of Spanista in weeks to come.

What do you love about where you live?

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate

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Spanista-Suggests-Facial-Therapy-Put-Your-Best-Face-Forward.jpegPINIMAGEDear Wellness Seekers,

Spanista Suggests Facial Therapy, Put Your Best Face Forward as a happy Self Care truism I want to share. It also plays a role in Spanista Philosophy Belief #3 I explored in yesterdays post. Facial Therapy is a specific skin treatment including expert massage of the gentlest kind that is customized for both men and women. I was deep into my career before I tried my first professional facial. It was part of a Spa Gift Package from my sweet husband. Much to my delight as a result of the experience I realized what I had been missing. It was a healthful surprise because I loved the way it made me feel.

When it comes to caring for my skin, especially my face, which is so important to self esteem, I believe that a simple ritual executed with consistency has a powerful effect. Since the first facial experience I adopted Facial Therapy as part of my Spanista Self Care Rituals. Today our face is always exposed to changing elements and is a primary vehicle for expressing our feelings. So it easily takes on the signs of stressful living affected by our diet, lack of moisture, weather and working indoors at a computer screen for long hours. With this type of lifestyle our skin becomes zapped of vital nutrients. An expert Spa Facial Massage with quality products allows your skin to be replenished properly.

Here are 5 great reasons Spanista suggests Facial Therapy Ritual:

1. It results in cleaner and softer skin as exfoliation removes the dead cells and applied hydration quenches parched skin especially intense in the summer.

2. It restores natural radiance helping you feel more at ease and confident to put your best face forward.

3. The right products, applied properly can help to brighten and soften your skin to retain a youthful look.

4. The effects can lessen the natural affects of aging as skilled treatment helps your skin feel taut and firmer.

5. Nurturing your skin now is an investment – it is paying it forward for a better looking tomorrow.

As summer winds down we realize how much we enjoyed our skins healthy glow from days in the sun, as we can feel our skin has experienced the impact. What will we do to deal with the residual effects of tanned skin, sea salt and heavy humidity? With Autumn approaching our skin needs attention to transition healthily into the changing climate of Autumn.

Everyone has to experiment with the right schedule, spa, esthetician and quality products that works best. Personally, I make it a Self Care priority to start each new season with a Professional Facial at quality Spa with a well regarded licensed esthetician who is recommended by others. If I can fit one or two in during the season even better. But I am dedicated to in home Self Care Facial Therapy in between Spa visits. There is a wide range of products to consider so do ask your Licensed Esthetician for a review of the options available at your Spa to determine what is right for you.

Now I am captivated with a skin care collection that is the best I have experienced. Spanistasuggests Facial Therapy with Luxury Caudalie Skin Care Collection Paris. Visit to explore this special world of  inspiration and shop. It is very exclusive as my first experience with it was at the Plaza Hotel, New York City and recently discovered the only other offering is at Spa Evangeline, Tampa.  

It is naturally derived  from the essence of grapes. Mathilde Thomas, Claualie’s founder discovered the vine and grape possess exceptional powers for the skin – power which were simply waiting to be developed. They extract beneficial effects from the vine as grape seed Polyphenois with a patented process. This knowledge has been transformed into a fabulous skin care collection. They also have a fabulous spa that applies the products in such a romantic vineyard setting at Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte. 


While I would love to visit it one day, for now I am excited to have scheduled my facial during my trip to San Francisco in a couple of weeks. When will you schedule your next professional facial my friend?

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate

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