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Sand Castle Days-South Padre Island

The Texas valley is starting to feel like my second home; Harlingen mainly. With the bestie & her family living there, their beautiful home 20131005_114209that feels like a bed and breakfast, and the nice down to earth people that reside there, how can it not?  The bestie happens to be the owner of Massage by Roni inside Montage Salon located in Harlingen , so if youre in the area, be sure to schedule a massage for some relaxation or to  get those stress knots  out!  A couple of weekends ago I had the privilege of staying in a very quaint beach house in South Padre Island for a whole weekend with my bestie & my nephews. That weekend we were able to enjoy some local spots, go on an adventure at the end of the island, & enjoy some local cuisine. Our main reason for spending the weekend there was Sand Castle Days. Though the fest was smaller than expected, it not only drew in a big crowd, it was really cool to attend. 20131005_111325

 Sand Castle Days

Held at this really cool restaurant (that carries my favorite beer Landshark, has live music, & fireworks), bar, family20131006_095008 (1) place, beach view all rolled up in one called Clayton’s, Sand Castle Days featured artists 20131005_125318from all over the world and locally. Being an esthetician and working on many beautiful faces let me start off with my favorite sand art piece. This one was called “Bleeding”. Artist Guy-Olivier Deveau is a professional sand and ice sculptor from Quebec, Canada. I was so mesmorized by this piece I could not walk away from it…talk about flawless!

20131006_095034Another favorite titled “Lady in a Dream” was by artist JooHeng Tan all the way from Singapore! It was so amazing to see this piece up close and personal.

I couldn’t help but take a picture of this one; I know how much my nephews love sharks! And being the wife of a Marine & the artist being self taught…yes, this was another favorite! Greg J. Grady is from New Hampshire; he works with sand, now, ice, wood, and pumpkins. Being a huge Halloween junkie, I’d love to pick his brain on pumpkin carving! 20131006_094942

20131006_095056 (2)20131006_100350 (1)Now this local artist was as cool as his sculptor; Amazin’ Walter McDonald is from South Padre Island. He has been a part of Sand Castle Days for all of its 25 years! He’s won several awards for his work. We actually got a chance to meet him and take a few pictures with him as well.

Here are some other awesome sand sculptors that were at the fest.

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 Good Grubbin

20131006_085646If you are ever visiting South Padre Island you need to visit these local restaurants. Talk about great food, good 20131006_084142service, and a really cool atmosphere! For breakfast we went to Grapevine Café Coffeehouse; I love to try new things so I ordered the crab meat omelet stuffed with real Crab Meat and Tomato, then lightly glazed with hollandaise and topped with sliced Avocados, talk about heavenly! As my beverage of choice, I had a café mocha that tasted even better than big coffeehouse chains. Coming from a big coffee drinker…that should tell you something! For dessert we couldn’t pass up having pumpkin pancakes! 20131006_082537

Lunch time rolled in…and how can you NOT eat seafood on an island!? We hit up Dirty Al’s; it was highly recommended by my social media buddies on Google+. We started off with fried calamari and ended it with a fried shrimp basket. “Dirty Al” is owned by Alfonso Salazar, better known as “Dirty Al” who originally started shrimping as a young man with his father and 6 brothers. Being a fisherman’s daughter, I was beyond pleased!

20131007_12504920131007_124234Now for dinner! One of my favorite cuisines is Cajun; having recently returned from New Orleans I was having withdrawals for that Creole spice! So we had dinner at Daddy’s Seafood & Cajun Kitchen. As soon as I walked in I thought of my little brother who happens to love Cajun cuisine as well. They even have their own pet alligator! For my appetizer I had the lobster bisque; it was creamy with big chunks of fresh lobster, the best I have ever had. As my main entrée I had the Fried Crawfish & Crawfish Etoufee…I wish I could have brought a to go plate home; the crawfish were huge!

Sites

20131007_133116To walk off all of the great food we had we drove to the end of the island…I had never seen sand dunes that big 20131006_120559 (1)and with the rainy windy weather, the seashore was full of thick surf and huge waves, it was beautiful. We walked along the beach and searched for seashells, they were much bigger than the shells in Port Aransas. We had a chance to see locals getting ready to kite surf and take lots of pictures of the beach. We also stopped by the South Padre Island Bird and Nature Center; the views and wildlife we encountered made the visit totally worth it. We visited the beach to 20131006_113149enjoy sunsets and cloudiness on the bay…Texas nature is breathtaking. If you haven’t visited our Texas coast in South Padre Island…I highly recommend it…just don’t come back with a souvenir like I did from climbing the sand dunes! Till next vacation…safe travels everyone!

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October=Pumpkin Everything!

Yay, October is finally here! My favorite month of the year! Halloween is like my Christmas, we celebrate 3 birthdays during the month, lots of family gatherings, and the weather finally gets a bit cooler. With pumpkins being in season this time of year, I take full advantage and offer a facial with autumn ingredients. Be sure if you are in the San Antonio area to book a Pumpkin Cheesecake Facial or one of my other pumpkin spa treatments.
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Pumpkin is full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants! You can tell by its bright color that it’s going to be going to be good for you. Not only is pumpkin loaded with vitamin A and antioxidant carotenoids, particularly alpha and beta-carotenes, it’s a good source of vitamins C, K, and E, and lots of minerals, including magnesium, potassium, & iron. Pumpkin nourishes tired or dry skin instantly, giving you a healthy glow anytime your skin needs a boost! Pumpkin is also anti-aging, can help with breakouts & acne problems, & lighten the skin tone.
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New Month, New Intentions

new month quotesToday is the last day of September. With October starting tomorrow, I always look at the beginning of a new month as a new start. Think of some things you would like to do better, more of, or change this October. Here are a few things I want to try and be better at this month. Happy October to you and yours.

1. Appreciate Life: Be thankful that you woke up alive each morning. Develop a childlike sense of wonder towards life. Focus on the beauty of every living thing. Make the most of each day. Don’t take anything for granted. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

2. Choose Friends: Wisely Surround yourself with happy, positive people who share your values and goals. Friends that have the same ethics as you will encourage you to achieve your dreams. They help you to feel good about yourself. They are there to lend a helping hand when needed.

3. Be Considerate: Accept others for who they are as well as where they are in life. Respect them for who they are. Touch them with a kind and generous spirit. Help when you are able, without trying to change the other person. Try to brighten the day of everyone you come into contact with.

4. Learn Continuously: Keep up to date with the latest news regarding your career and hobbies. Try new and daring things that has sparked your interest – such as dancing, skiing, surfing or even sky-diving.

5. Creative Problem Solving: Don’t wallow in self-pity. As soon as you face a challenge get busy finding a solution. Don’t let the set backs affect your mood, instead see each new obstacle you face as an opportunity to make a positive change. Learn to trust your gut instincts – it’s almost always right.

6. Do What They Love: Some statistics show that 80% of people dislike their jobs! No wonder there’s so many unhappy people running around. We spend a great deal of our life working. Choose a career that you enjoy – the extra money of a job you detest isn’t worth it. Make time to enjoy your hobbies and pursue special interests.

7. Enjoy Life: Take the time to see the beauty around you. There’s more to life than october quoteswork. Take time to smell the roses, watch a sunset or sunrise with a loved one, take a walk along the seashore, hike in the woods etc. Learn to live in the present moment and cherish it. Don’t live in the past or the future.

8. Laugh: Don’t take yourself – or life to seriously. You can find humor in just about any situation. Laugh at yourself – no one’s perfect. When appropriate laugh and make light of the circumstances. (Naturally there are times that you should be serious as it would be improper to laugh.)

9. Forgive: Holding a grudge will hurt no one but you. Forgive others for your own peace of mind. When you make a mistake – own up to it – learn from it – and FORGIVE yourself.

10. Gratitude: Develop an attitude of gratitude. Count your blessings; All of them – even the things that seem trivial. Be grateful for your home, your work and most importantly your family and friends. Take the time to tell them that you are happy they are in your life.

11. Invest in Relationships: Always make sure your loved ones know you love them even in times of conflict. Nurture and grow your relationships with your family and friends by making the time to spend with them. Don’t break your promises to them. Be supportive.

12. Keep Their Word: Honesty is the best policy. Every action and decision you make should be based on honesty. Be honest with yourself and with your loved ones.

13. Meditate: Meditation gives your very active brain a rest. When it’s rested you will have more energy and function at a higher level. Types of meditation include yoga, hypnosis, relaxation tapes, affirmations, visualization or just sitting in complete silence. Find something you enjoy and make the time to practice daily.

14. Mind Their Own Business: Concentrate on creating your life the way you want it. Take care of you and your family. Don’t get overly concerned with what other people are doing or saying. Don’t get caught up with gossip or name calling. Don’t judge. Everyone has a right to live their own life the way they want to – including you.

hello october15. Optimism: See the glass as half full. Find the positive side of any given situation. It’s there – even though it may be hard to find. Know that everything happens for a reason, even though you may never know what the reason is. Steer clear of negative thoughts. If a negative thought creeps in – replace it with a positive thought.

16. Love Unconditionally: Accept others for who they are. You don’t put limitations on your love. Even though you may not always like the actions of your loved ones – you continue to love them.

17. Persistence: Never give up. Face each new challenge with the attitude that it will bring you one step closer to your goal. You will never fail, as long as you never give up. Focus on what you want, learn the required skills, make a plan to succeed and take action. We are always happiest while pursuing something of value to us.

18. Be Proactive: Accept what can not be changed. Happy people don’t waste energy on circumstances beyond their control. Accept your limitations as a human being. Determine how you can take control by creating the outcome you desire – rather than waiting to respond.

19. Self Care: Take care of your mind, body and health. Get regular medical check ups. Eat healthy and work out. Get plenty of rest. Drink lots of water. Exercise your mind by continually energizing it with interesting and exciting challenges.

20. Self Confidence: Don’t try to be someone that you’re not. After all no one likes a phony. Determine who you are in the inside – your own personal likes and dislikes. Be confident in who you are. Do the best you can and don’t second guess yourself.

21. Take Responsibility: Happy people know and understand that they are 100% responsible for their life. They take responsibility for their moods, attitude, thoughts, feelings, actions and words. They are the first to admit when they’ve made a mistake. Begin today by taking responsibility for your happiness. Work on developing these habits as you own. The more you incorporate the above habits into your daily lifestyle – the happier you will be.

Most of all: BE TRUE TO YOURSELF.

be true to yourself

Mud Masks & Spiced Cider

Happy National Mud Pack Day Beauties! I kinda feel like I have my own special holiday! A day I can wear my mud facial mask proudly and actually be celebrating something. How cool is that?  I’m ready to pack on a nutrient enriched mud mask and slap one on my husband’s face as well. Ladies, don’t think this is just a day for you, guys can get a facial mud pack mask too! Mud masks used in facials is still very popular.

National Mud Pack Day is a day to get a mud pack facial. Actually, you can put mud anywhere on your body but the face is the most common. Mud is full of nutrients and minerals which your body quickly absorbs and are said to reduce facial oil and acne as well as reduce facial lines and wrinkles. Mud also helps trap bacteria and acts as a mild exfoliant, getting rid of dead skin cells leaving your face smooth with a glow.

FYI: A mud pack is a quick treatment for bee stings. Use, if necessary, when you’re hiking or until you can get a place to be treated for stings of bees and wasps.

Enjoy a spa day in the comfort of your own home by applying a mud mask and sipping on a warm mug or glass of mulled cider (today is also National Mulled Cider Day), and play some soothing new age tunes to get you in a perfect relaxation mode. Talk about an easy stress reliever.

spiced ciderSpiced Cider Recipe
2 quarts cider
1 cup brown sugar
2 sticks cinnamon
6 cloves
1 teaspoon allspice
Nutmeg

Directions: Add sugar & spices to the cider in a large saucepan. Simmer (not boil) for 15 minutes, strain & serve hot in small glasses/mugs. Sprinkled a little nutmeg on each glass before serving.

Another great way to take advantage of Mulled Cider Day is to schedule a Spiced SpicedCiderFacial san antonioCider Facial! This Autumn scented anti-aging treatment has been a hit so far! If you are in the San Antonio area, treat yourself to one!

My favorite Mud Mask is the Epoch® Glacial Marine Mud. It’s a skin-purifying estuary treasure! Draw out impurities, remove dead skin cells, and nurture skin with more than 50 skin beneficial minerals, including zinc and sea botanicals. Legend has it that indigenous peoples may have tried to use this special mud to make pottery. They were unsuccessful because of its fine particle size, but noticed their hands were softer and smoother. Today, Glacial Marine Mud is homogenized to produce a highly absorbent mud with impeccable consistency. Experience the renewing benefits of this mud mask by pampering your face! It’s easy to use and inexpensive. Contact me to purchase.

epoch glacial marine maskEasy to use: Apply a generous layer of mud to skin, avoiding mouth and eye areas. Let mud dry 15 to 20 minutes or until it turns a light aquamarine color. Rinse thoroughly with warm water. Use two to three times a week for best results!

About the mask:Effectively removes impurities and dead skin cells without affecting normal cells.
Less flaking when dried due to presence of sea botanicals.
Minimal water separation.
Rich in minerals.
Great for all-over body use.
Low-density, flexible tube lets you get all the product out so none goes to waste.
Make this a special day by buying a gift certificate or scheduling a facial for your loved one. Make sure to tell them its not that they need it. Rather, its because it is comforting, and will make them feel good and their skin beautiful!

National Mud Pack Day

Coffee Body Scrub

What’s a better way to celebrate National Coffee Day than drinking a hot cup of coffee? Giving yourself a spa quality coffee scrub!Coffee grounds are a natural exfoliator. Exfoliation is the removal of dead, dry skin cells that collect on the outer surface of the skin. The coffee exfoliates these unwanted cells off and speeds up our own skins natural renewal process, producing healthy glowing skin. Also, coffee’s natural caffeine content is used as a topical treatment for cellulite, as it dilates blood vessels which increases speed and volume of blood flow.

Easy Coffee Scrub Recipe:
3 tbl coffee grounds (use fresh coffee)
1 tbl of brown sugar
1 tbl olive oilve (unscented & great for sensitive skin), melted coconut (fruity), or almond (sweet).
Mix all dry ingredients, then add oil.

*Olive is a richer oil, naturally hypoallergenic and contains vitamin A and E, which helps strengthen & repair skin. It’s also the easiest to find.

*This scrub is for the body, not a facial scrub. Use on the neck down to your feet.

Directions: Use the coffee scrub in the shower. Take a hand full of scrub mixture and use circular motions during applications. Remember to focus on knees, elbows, cellulite areas, and any dry skin patches.

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Hair Care Tips for Fall

I am officially a brunette (a little on the Auburn side to be exact) without split ends. Yes, summer is now over, so it was time to cover up the chunky, thick blonde highlights and cut off all those dead, dry ends that comes with swimming, sunning, & the hot summer weather. With the Fall season here, its time to change our hair care routine a bit. Here are some tips.

1. Wash your hair every other day. To absorb excess oil between washes, apply a dime-size amount of baby powder to your roots at the crown and massage it into your scalp.

2. Get a trim every six to eight weeks to rid hair of dry, split ends.

3. Moisture loss causes split ends, so keep hair hydrated with leave in conditioner.

4. Deep-condition hair twice a month to restore health and boost radiance.

5. Be honest! Tell your stylist about any previous chemical treatments. This will ensure nothing is used on your hair that will cause a bad reaction—like hair loss.

6. Avoid pulling or tugging at tangled wet hair. Hair is like an elastic band—it can snap off and break if stretched too far. Instead, use your fingers or a wide tooth comb to separate wet strands.

7. Hot water is the enemy! High temperatures can damage your hair and will promote frizz.

8. Use a clarifying shampoo once a month to remove protein buildup along the scalp caused by oral medications, fatty acids and product use.

9. Create your own clarifying rinse: Mix 1 oz apple cider vinegar with 8 oz water and apply to wet hair. Let sit for 5 minutes, then rinse clear.

10. Buffing your hair with a towel when wet causes it to tangle. To absorb water, gently blot with a towel.

11. Want a quick hydration boost for hair? Apply olive oil to ends.

12. Always rinse out conditioner with cold water to seal the cuticle, which promotes shine.

13. Comb your hair from root to tip each night to increase blood circulation, loosen up dry skin on your scalp and distribute your hair’s natural oils, which will moisturize the hair shaft.
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Love is in the Air: Love Note Day Ideas

September 26, 2014 is Love Note Day! The practice of writing and sending love letters has a long and illustrious history. Famous romantics like Lord Byron and William Shakespeare penned sonnets and odes, and inspired generations of young lovers to do the same. A love note is any written expression of emotion addressed to a loved one. It can be short or long, formal or casual, poetry or prose. In Germany, love notes are delicately painted by hand on high quality paper and are considered folk art. Love Note Day is the perfect time to recognize the people that you love. Here are some ideas to let your loved ones know just how much they mean to you!
Love Notes

love stampLove Note Ideas:

Send a sweet e-mail, poem, or let your loved one know why you love them.

Mail them a letter today, let them know it’s Love Note Day & you thought about them.

Add your own personal touch to your letters; spritz them with your cologne/perfume, seal it with a kiss (wear red lipstick), or add little hearts all over the envelope.

Surprise them! Slip the note under the bathroom door while they’re in the shower, write on the mirror of your bedroom, and slip it in their work bag, briefcase, lunch bag, or car. Who doesn’t like surprises?

Hide the love letter under their pillow, they’re favorite blanket, or place where they set their keys down when they get home from work.

Write down the letters of their name and with each letter use a sweet word to describe them.

Leave a trail of post it’s from the door to the bedroom with silly romantic sayings.

Hide a love note in the book or magazine they are currently reading.

If your loved one makes their way to the fridge as soon as they get home from work, stick a note on their beverage of choice.

Spice up your love note day by being creative and adding your own flare to these ideas, you’ll be sure to make your loved one’s day. Cheers to love in the air today.
Love Note Day

Why I Love Fall!

Fall Autumn Quotes Fall has arrived! For those of you rolling your eyes at our 85 degree “autumn” weather here in San Antonio, Texas, it’s a heck of a lot better than being in the 100+ degree heat! When you think of fall, you think about cooler mornings, windier evenings, and summer officially ending. Fall is my favorite time of year; now being officially self employed and having more freedom to enjoy life, these are some of the things that I plan on enjoying to celebrate the season.

The Pumpkin craze: Pumpkin pie, pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin oreos, pumpkin pumpkin the lil spa roombeer, pumpkin facials, pumpkin massages, pumpkin manicures & pedicures, pumpkin candles, roasted pumpkin seeds, pumpkin bread, pumpkin cupcakes, pumpkin ice cream, and last but not least…The pumpkin spiced latte…YUM! (Starbucks shout-out!) I probably gained about 20 lbs just typing up this list, haha, but, you gotta admit, all of the listed is pretty enjoyable.

fall quotesNot a “Fashionista”: So for those that personally know me, I am a very plain Jane when it comes to the fashion world. Jeans, boots, sweaters, jackets, thick socks, and hats are my thing and are in “style” during the fall season. Nothing cozy like a warm pair of yoga pants to bum around in! My favorite colors are fall faves too, black, browns, taupes, dark greens, plums, and coppers! No more summer pink everywhere you turn!

Shut up and Drive: Fall is the best time to open up your windows, sunroof, and turn up the jams and just drive through scenic country roads. Try it on a day off and appreciate the beauty!

Places all to yourself: Its school time, so that means, movie theatres, malls, restaurants, and pretty much anywhere you go during the week is not crowed with screaming summer kids. I’m sure stay at home moms love the peace and quiet with their children being in school.

BOO! Halloween: Nothing more fun than decorating the house, carving pumpkins with the family, passing out candies to the trick or treaters, and seeing all the cool costumes. Halloween is MY Christmas. The main perk of being an adult on Halloween: NO candy limit…all you can eat! fall pictures

More sleep: Whether you’re a morning person or not, it’s nice to know you have an extra hour to sleep in if you want to, thanks to daylight savings. I know many friends and family members totally appreciate that hour of sleeping in.

Thanksgiving: All the food! Turkey, mashers, stuffing, pies…that’s what it’s all about! Ok, totally kidding! Thanksgiving is the one day (or night) you get to sit down, feast, and hang out with your family and full bellies. How can you not be thankful on such a day?pumpkin spiced latte starbucks

In celebration of my favorite season, I have some festive autumn themed spa treatments at my spa studio. If you’re in the San Antonio area, be sure to schedule one!

Seasonal Specials (Till December 1st)

Foot facial-the lil spa roomPumpkin Spice Foot Facial $50-A foot facial is the perfect antidote for stress, tired feet & general fatigue. Your feet work hard; let’s give them a long overdue rest along with softening your skin. Warm up this fall with a delicious scented pumpkin spice foot facial. This Fall foot treatment includes a cleanse, exfoliating scrub, warm hydrating mask, hot towel wrap, foot & calf massage & warm booties all while relaxing on a cozy, heated table. This treatment is sure to melt the stress away!! 45 minutes

Pumpkin Back Treatment $70-This “back facial” consists of a deep cleansing, pumpkin back facial san antonioexfoliation with a pumpkin scrub, & massage using a special nutrient enriched and deliciously scented pumpkin oil. The pumpkin enzyme mask will then nourish your skin before being enriched with a moisturizing pumpkin butter lotion. The benefits of pumpkin include natural exfoliation, increased hydration, skin healing, restoration of elasticity, inhibition of breakouts, & aging reversal through increased cell turnover! 50 minutes

Pumpkin Cheesecake Facial (All Skin Types) $60-Pumpkin “nature’s natural collagen” is the perfect way to celebrate fall and replenish dry, summer skin. The Pumpkin Facial exfoliates surface skin cells (Anti aging results can be seen by the reduction of lines and wrinkles in addition to an improvement in the skin’s elasticity.), provides antioxidant support, stimulates collagen activity, uses a warming pumpkin mask and leaves skin feeling smooth and perfectly polished! This festive facial is a seasonal favorite, and I am sure it will be one of yours too! 50 minutes

Spiced Cider Facial (All Skin Types) $70-A beautiful medley of fall scents such as fresh apples, nutmeg and cinnamon. This facial delivers a comforting, warming effect on the skin perfect for the autumn months.  Packed with malic acid from apples to exfoliate your skin and filled with rich antioxidants, vitamin C, and enzymes to help hydrate, firm and improve skin tone.  The mask contains nutmeg to soothe inflammation.  Cinnamon creates a warming sensation in the skin while honeysuckle and passionflower provide anti-aging benefits for healthy nourished skin. 50 minutes

**Facials include extractions, arm & hand, décolleté, neck, shoulder, & scalp massage. **Add an eyebrow or lip wax to your seasonal facial & receive it at half off.

pumpkin facial san antonio