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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Spa-Therapies-Spansita-Philosophy-Belief-#3.jpegPINIMAGEDear Wellness Seekers,

Spa Therapies Spanista Philosophy Belief #3 focuses on the many physiological benefits of spa practices especially when they become Rituals. It is troubling to realize how divorced from our bodies we let ourselves become, as if we exist from the shoulders up – we recognize this only when a loved one may reach over to rub our shoulders – we let out a moan of pleasure as the tension is released. We push our bodies like machines, ignoring signals of stress which leads to compounding negative effects. The physical body needs nurturing – and the power of therapeutic touch can have vital,restorative impact on our wellbeing. Addressing this issue is the foundation of  the next tenant.  

Spansiata Philosophy  Belief #3: Taking control of our wellbeing through spa therapy practices achieves deeper, more holistic outcomes that are longer lasting.

Today there appear to be almost as many Spas as there are Starbucks. But not all Spas are created equal. Today they generally fall into three types: Wellbeing Services; Medical/Sports Services and Beauty Services and range from local to destination. 

Right now there is little third party advice, other than personal reviews on sites to help pick a Spa that is right for you. There are some common services across Spa types but the one I use as a primary indicator of quality care is Massage Therapy. One of the oldest healing arts, massage is a powerful antidote to stress. While some people still see Spa Therapies like massage as a form of pampering, more and more informed people seeking proactive wellness strategies consider these practices as essential. Why? Because the holistic health benefits have long been realized amongst those who are on the right wavelength. This growing like-minded community sees such therapies as investments in our quality of lifestyle that will pay us back with health and happiness.

I came to this conclusion through a few years of experimentation. So much so, it inspired the birth of Spanista as shared in My Story.  I was introduced to massage therapy by my first boss who believed in my talents so wanted to help me relieve a reoccurring stiff neck. My first massage experience was something I will always remember because my body felt true relief – but as a novice I was in no way properly prepared  to get the most out of the experience nor understand how to integrate it into my schedule. But it did start my exploration into this unique world. My uncle a medical doctor encouraged it saying he saw patients who responded to such practices. Now I love massage therapy and recommend it to everyone I know.

What I do observe in our society is strengthening interest in the Spa Therapies and the Power of Touch to honor our bodies as the temples of life. ‘Studies at the University of Miami School of Medicine’s Touch Research Institute demonstrated that premature infants who were massaged developed more quickly and were less irritable. Touch is equally important to adults as everyone has the needed to be cared for, and nurturing touch fosters a sense of well being. It anchors us and enhances calm thinking and clarity.’ This maybe why as we seek smarter wellness lifestyles, massage has grown in popularity.

Unfortunately we wait too long in life to adopt Massage Therapy as a Ritual. We got into fitness craze, adding yoga, now healthy foods and eating, some have come to the power of touch as a significant healing benefits. Massage is the next big thing. Thank goodness it is more and more accessible to everyone – but it’s time we wake up to embrace it like we do our fitness regimens. The emotional weight we carry around from everyday stress deeply affects our bodies – massage treatments are a healing solution. Just ask anyone who goes regularly.

There are extensive Spa Practices that offer healing – and they too can become part of your Spanista Self Care Values System. It all depends upon your personal desires. In the future I will provide a guide that can act a resource for you to evaluate and select a Spa that is right for you depending upon your needs whether it is a Spa close to home you want to start a relationship with or a Spa while traveling or a destination Spa Experience. Watch for this information in future posts.

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate

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Spanista Happy Friday Wellness Tip, Stressless Self Care Lite features Cucumber Water Luxury Soap by Spring’s Eden from Anthropologie. Chilled Gel Eye Mask from CVS Beauty. Versace Fragrance from Nordstrom for after shower. Gold Bracelet from Landau. Artist print found in Hong Kong Airport.

Dear Wellness Seekers,

Spanista Happy Friday Wellness Tip, Stressless Self Care Lite is an easy way to chill out and allow yourself  to focus on making a healthy transition from a hectic work week with blazing heat in some parts of the America (especially where I am right now – Kansas City!) to calm chic.

As Labor Day weekend begins we may not have the opportunity to devote a couple of hours to our Self Care, so here is a Self Care Lite way to get yourself emotionally centered. I find that when I stop long enough to take just 45 minutes of me time on Friday after work – I am in a better state of mind through out the weekend. Everyone around me benefits too because I bring my best self to every shared experience.

After I close my Apple Notebook this afternoon, I plan on taking advantage of a Self Care Lite Ritual. Last night I selected a scented soap for my collection for my shower that is right for transitioning my mood – Cucumber Water Luxury Soap by Spring’s Eden. My 15 minute shower water temperature ranges from hot to cool.

Here is how the Ritual goes. Before getting into the shower I check my mind and mood. I jump into the shower and as I feel and hear the water flow begin to change my mood I take a quick audit to identify three things that are impacting the way I feel emotionally –  I do not want to carry them with me into the weekend – workload, relationships, stress. While showering, I sort through them until they are clearer in my mind. I enjoy the shower with the scented soap taking in the freshness of cucumber as it lifts my spirits.  I then wrap myself in my favorite oversized bath towel and take a moment to write them down in my notebook. Then I say a prayer to let them go and ask the heavens for guidance to help me next week. I let them go. They will be there when I return to the normal work week on Tuesday. I take my chilled eye mask from the frig and head for a short 20 minute nap – with the eye cooler over my closed eyes I inhale and exhale with the intention of further soothing my mind. Upon awakening I feel a new sense of stillness within – an inner clam and peace that will guide my words and actions for the better the rest of the weekend.

Now I get ready for the evening – meeting friends for cocktails and dinner. My summer Versace fragrance has light floral notes and a favorite gold bracelet brings back memories from first trip around the world. As a I am about a well accessorized life, they make the perfect finishing touches.

Spanista Happy Friday Wellness Tip, Stressless Self Care Lite – what would you do to achieve this positive effect?

To You Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate

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New Spanista Self Care Recipe, Rosemary Refresh Cooler. Rosemary Essential Oil from Aveda Salons. Fresh Rosemary sprigs from Whole Foods. Floral Towels by Donna Karan, a personal summer favorite from my seasonal collection. White bowl is a treasure from a Scandanavian Boutique. Fern Print from Crate and Barrel.

Dear Wellness Seekers,

Spanista Rosemary Refresh Cooler, Summer Self Care Recipe maybe a welcome experience especially when the heat index lingers above 100 degrees for a few days. As promised here is the way to bring it to life.

Picking up where we left off in yesterday’s post, I suggest preparing some things a few hours ahead of time, so when the mood strikes you can easily slip into the Self Care Moment.

Staging the Spanista Rosemary Refresh Cooler Facial Experience starts with a few simple steps:

In a medium size bowl that can hold cool water and eventually several layers of ice cubes as a bed, start by  filling it with cool water. Add several sprigs of Rosemary plant from Whole Foods into small pieces along with 3 ample drops of Rosemary from Aveda. Swish and let sit for about 15 minutes. Come back to immerse 3 face cloths in the liquid and wring each slightly so water no longer drips fluidly. Open the wash cloths to lay flat. Add three small sprigs and three drops of oil over the face cloths then roll up rather loosely and evenly. They should hold a tube shape. Put them in a plastic bag and pop them into the frig. Pour out water but keep remaining sprigs to reuse. Take ice and layer in the base of the bowl to the top. Sprinkle in some sprigs but hold some for adding later. Add a few drops of Rosemary over the ice. Put the bowl in the freezer until ready to use.

When you are ready to indulge in Self Care Time, start with getting the foot bath going and prep your small cooler with some ice to set at the spot your will relax. Use the ice as your see fit  in your spa experience. Be creative.

Rosemary Refresh Foot Bath Cooler: Fill your wash basin with cool water. Add Rosemary leaves and 6 large drops of Rosemary Essential Oil. Swish the water to disperse the oil. While the Rosemary is penetrating the foot bath water head to the frig to take out your face cloths and add them to your small bowl full of ice. Add some cubes and fresh sprigs and bring it to your special spot. Also bring the essential oil bottle along. Take to your spot. Add some ice cubes to the foot bath and swish. Then set the bowl of wash clothes in the cooler.

Ready To Indulge Yourself?  Put one foot in and swish three times in one direction and then put in the other foot and do the same. Create a ritual of your own here – focus on the feeling. You can take your feet in and out and repeat then bring them to rest in the bath when you get comfortable with the temperature. Breath deeply 3 times to take in the healing power of the Rosemary with the essential oil bottle open and to your nose. Also I like to put some on my wrist for a quick hit and breath in three times with my eyes closed.

Now take out the first face cloth and partially unfold.  Lean back with the cool clothe over your eyes. Inhale with 3 deep breaths. Relax your body. Breath. Allow your feet to swirl in the water and then rest. Replace the face cloth with a fresh one when ever you want to cool the eyes and face. Enjoy the feeling. The peacefulness comes – let go and allow it to come to you. When ready wrap your feet in the towel and stay restful – then enjoy the last Rosemary face cloth by laying it over your eyes.

A Spanista Stat: Did you know that Scientists find that sniffing Rosemary can increase memory by 75%?  Allow yourself time for an immediate nap if you are so inclined – you will feel relaxed, focused but clear-headed so pick a theme you wish to dream about and set yourself off for a short sleep. You may wake up in a new state of mind feeling a sweet contentment because you took the time to enjoy summers glory – a special time just for you. Now you are in a frame of mind to enjoy a lovely evening.

If you were inspired to try this Spanista Self Care Recipe. Do find time for you to enjoy the last days of summer.

Do you have a favorite last days of summer ritual?

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate

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New Spanista Self Care Recipe, Rosemary Refresh Cooler. Rosemary Essential Oil from Aveda Salons. Fresh Rosemary sprigs from Whole Foods. Floral Towels by Donna Karan, a personal summer favorite from my seasonal collection. White bowl is a treasure from a Scandanavian Boutique. Fern Print from Crate and Barrel.

Dear Wellness Seekers,

New Spanista Self Care Recipe, Rosemary Refresh Cooler is created with one of natures gifts of the season – Rosemary, the superb rejuvenation herb. As the remaining days of summer draw near, it maybe time to enjoy a Spanista Self Care Recipe before it slips away. 

No matter where you plan to be for our last long weekend of summer perhaps you might enjoy partaking in one of my simple summer rituals to savor the moment by using the lush resources nature provides us – the natural fragrance of Rosemary. Certified Aromatherapist say it acts as a stimulant and has a unique tonifying effect.

It is designed for a late afternoon fancy and can be enjoyed anywhere really, but if you have a back porch with a favorite chair and pillows – all the better. But this can be done in an urban setting as well in the countryside. Suggestion – You may wish to get things organized in the morning to enjoy later in the day. Here is what you will need – most are things you have around you home. You will however need Rosemary in two forms as suggested in my menu plan below:

New Spanista Self Care Recipe, Rosemary Refresh Cooler

Easy Menu Preparation:

~ Fresh Rosemary sprigs broken into pieces (Found at farmers market or Whole Foods.)

~ Bottle of Rosemary pure essential oil (Found at Aveda Salons & Online or Whole Foods.)

~ A pretty medium size bowl

~ A big basen or bucket that you can fit two feet into comfortably

~ Three plush face cloths

~ A large fluffy towel or two

~ Large plastic ziplock bag

~ Small cooler of ice cubes

~ Very comfortable, peaceful place with chair to lay back yet be able to reach your feet and small table for your bowl, a drink, and perhaps an ipod/phone/earbuds for mood music.

The results blend into a rejuvenating experience  in two ways:

1. Rosemary Refresh Facial Cooler

2. Rosemary Refresh Foot Bath Cooler

Both offer a simple, relaxing and refreshing late summer indulgence you will remember fondly when winter sets in. Tomorrow I will share the fun and easy recipes for both Cooler Experiences. You can enjoy either of them alone, but combined they are a real chill-out in the days of intense summer heat some parts of the America are enduring.

Look forward to seeing your tomorrow for the Spanista Self Care Recipe, Rosemary Refresh Cooler. This introduction will give you an idea of what it will take to prepare – the rest is fun and easy especially if you make it attractive to the eye as well as the nose. When will you plan your Self Care Time this last weekend of Summer?

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate







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Seeking Happiness Within Framed Quote, Gift From a Friend in Spanista Inspiration Salon

Dear Wellness Seekers,

Welcome back for Seeking Happiness Within? Spanista Philosophy Belief #2 Continued.

Yesterday, I shared the basis for Spanista Belief #2: To achieve lasting happiness is ‘to be in touch with ones true nature’ by making a commitment to proactive Self Care.

At the heart of this wellness Belief is seeking happiness within by exploring your ‘Happy and Whole Zones’. This focuses on your Self Awareness so it will help you create an enlightening visual roadmap in a safe personal environment. Now lets put on those Spanista sunglasses I mentioned yesterday with the special lenses. seeking happiness within.

When seeking happiness within, look into your inner world. What do you see?

Exploring two key questions in-depth will call for having an attractive notebook and pen close at hand to jot down the thoughts that surface. This is a stimulant as writing these thoughts by hand releases them and allows new ones to surface. Thereby allowing your body an emotional outlet not unlike an artist working a paint brush – it is a creative expression of energy that cannot be denied. You want to let your mind flow – no editing, just jot down what comes to mind. For each new thought draw a circle and put the key theme in it. As you go, if you find some ideas relate to a theme you have already noted in a circle, then put them next to it. I call this ‘clustering zones’. It will reveal valuable patterns in your feelings. This exercise is about brainstorming a lot of themes in a 20 minute window for each – question #1 and #2.  You can do this when have some time later this week. To get prepared for your brainstorm session, ask yourself the questions below. When is best? The early morning is good, when you have breaks during the day or late evening – whenever you find private time.

Here are the two proactive Self Care questions to reflect upon that will inspire your themes. Remember to look inside yourself with your ‘special sunglasses’. This is only about YOU:

1. What makes you feel really happy?

What little things do you do, when you do them make you feel happy? What helps you feel free – light of heart? Can you hear your inner voice? What is it saying? Can your recognize and work through your feelings? Does a spa facial make you happy? Fresh flowers? What are the Happy Zones that are yours and yours alone? What relieves your stress in a beneficial manner?

2. What makes you feel really whole?

What defines your inner beauty? Is it about getting time to stop the madness and relax for a short while? Is nurturing your soul with inspiring reading or escaping in a period novel? Is it luxuriating in a quiet bath? Is it enjoying an adult refreshment that satisfies your taste buds? Does a spa massage or a facial transform you? What are your Wholeness Zones that are your and yours alone?

Now look at the page of circles – your ‘Happy and Whole Zones Roadmap’. After a few days of reflection and sleeping on the themes your body will allow your deep seeded desires to evaluate the themes. Resist trying to prioritize them now…just go back to the ‘Happy and Whole Zones Roadmap’ now and then over the long Labor Day weekend and reflect on what it inspires. Listen to you body here – get out of your head and into your body. Begin to feel where happy surfaces. So what are the simple things in your daily, weekly and monthly routine that can be shaped into enhanced proactive Self Care?

Come Saturday and Sunday jot down anything your body tells you about your themes. Avoid judging, just write. We will come back to your zones – just let them grow in your heart.

You are worth this Self Care effort. Designing your own style of Self Care is happiness personified as it is your divine and true nature to enjoy life just the way you are.  The best part is this does not require you to change who you are, it is about getting to know who you really are and celebrating it.

Would love to know how you how you feel after the Belief #2 exercise?

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


Spanista Founder & Self Care Advocate

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