Monday, July 11, 2011

4th of July

Today is the first real Monday after a relaxing couples of weeks.... Relaxation, actually, occurred only on the weekend of 4th of July, other 12 days we were fighting all kinds of summer bugs like herpangina - in my 2.5 year old, and tonsillitis - in my 7 year old. Phewwww, I’m glad it is finally over... I hope. I am way behind on my schedule and will need to step up our Holiday production. Such is life, no complains here.
Anyways, back to the post... I just wanted to share with you some of the beautiful pictures we took during our trip to Michigan’s west coast. We started going to the Grand Haven area a few years ago: conveniently located on beautiful, sandy beaches of Lake Michigan, this gem is only 3 hours away, which is a BIG plus when you travel with small children. We fell in love with it the minute we stepped on the beach. I never knew that lakes could have white sandy beaches! Lake Michigan has many beaches. The region is often referred to as the "Third Coast" of the United States, after those of the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. The sand is soft and off-white due to its high quartz content.
We have spent most of our time on the beach and browsing downtown Grand Haven. At night we set in our beach chairs and watched musical fountain and fireworks. Kids were ecstatic! As always, we had an amazing time as a family, surrounded by beautiful nature.

Hope your 4th of July break was great. Till next time,

Recent update: little did I know, three days after our short vacation was over, my little guys picked up tonsillitis from his older sister. He was miserable for another 5 days. Crazy times!

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Skin Care Essentials - Exfoliate

As part of our “essential skin care steps” blog series here comes today’s post about second important step on your way to a beautiful and healthy complexion. You can read about first step here.
Exfoliation - a simple and effective beauty treatment which artificially encourages the gentle removal of surface skin cells. Our body sloughs off up to 500,000,000 dead skin cells every day - by actively assisting this process we help cell renewal and regeneration. Exfoliation actually lifts of the top layer of dead skin cells, dirt and sebum, revealing new layer of young looking skin beneath. This stimulates the blood circulation in the dermis, which in turn feeds the newborn skin cells more efficiently and rids the area of waste products. As the skin ages, the production of of new cells slows down, often leading to dull skin tone and uneven texture.
Exfoliation can also assist with some other common problems like flaky or ashy skin or enlarged facial pores. Dermatologist Susan Evans, MD, recommends exfoliation to help fight enlarged facial pores. “Pores appear enlarged when they are clogged, dilated, or infected, and that's why the best way to keep your pores small and less visible is to keep your skin clean all the time. Often the pores get clogged with dead skin cells, dirt, and oil, which makes them appear more prominent. That’s why regular skin exfoliation is essential, in order to remove the dead skin cells and to allow your skin to produce newer, healthier cells”. (WebMD article)
There are many great natural exfoliants that can be found on the natural market today. Most popular of them are sugar and salt. We create our emulsifying body polishes with pure cane sugar and Dead Sea and Epsom salts, with addition of extra conditioning butters and oils. Our double whipped body polishes/scrubs are not messy and not runny - they are always ready whenever you are.
It is recommended to exfoliate at least once a week and even more frequently during summer, to shed off extra dirt that we accumulate from spending more time outside, and to rid of sun-damaged cells. Quick tip: depending on the personal preferences body polishes can be applied on dry skin to achieve more friction and exfoliation, or lightly damp skin, to insure easy glide for sensitive skin.
Note: salt body polishes may sting sensitive skin as well as cuts and bruises.

For facial exfoliation, we recommend using Marmalade Hills clay masques, as clays provide gentle exfoliation and deep cleansing without applying any pressure.

Hope you find this post useful. Take care of your skin and it will thank you!

Till next time,

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