Raindrop Inspired Massage, Awaken the Senses

Whether the weather be cold, whether the weather be hot, we'll weather the weather, whatever the weather, whether we like it or not.... I think I'll stick to my day job. 

The changing of seasons can bring spring showers or a winter downpour, but the beauty of either is the sweet and soothing sound of those raindrops. They awaken, inspire, and lull the senses. And, like our beautiful and invigorating friend, the rain, Raindrop Inspired Massage enlivens, invigorates, and soothes the mind and body.

Raindrop Inspired Massage is our own unique and tailored spin on Raindrop Therapy. It's called ''Raindrop" because the therapist drops essential oil directly onto your skin through a delicate and deliciously crafted recipe of specific essential oils. All delivered individually and rhythmically massaged into the body, the oils are coupled with hot towels and hot packs to draw the beneficial properties of the oils into the skin and muscles.

Raindrop Inspired Massage essential oils and their benefits are:

Valor Essential Oil- balances the energies of the mind, body, and spirit. 

Thyme-energizes the mind, and clarity in direction of energy flow, and clarity of the mind.

Basil-soothes tired and overworked muscles.

Oregano- cleansing and soothing

Cypress: beneficial for troubled skin, spiritually grounding, aids in feeling emotionally secure.

Wintergreen- soothes head tension and muscles after exercising. 

Marjoram-relaxes tense and fatigued muscles, nervous system support.

Peppermint- promotes clarity, stimulates the brain, soothes and aids digestion.

Aroma Siez- an essential oil blend, soothes tired muscles, helps reduce stress and discomfort, Especially lovely for head, neck, and tired feet. 

During the treatment, essential oils, hot towels, and hot packs are applied to the feet, back, legs, and neck. Layer upon layer of aromatic oils melt into the skin to relax the mind, release toxins, and reduce inflammation, thus creating a full-bodied bouquet of aromas.

It's said that the anti-inflammatory and healing benefits of the oils can aid in spinal alignment and support physical and emotional balance. Everyone I have given this treatment to has said they feel incredibly relaxed and over the moon with how heavenly they smell. Speaking for myself, the intoxicating and stimulating qualities of the oils leaves me feeling awakened, invigorated, and nurtured through the rest of the day. I often wake the next day with the sweet aromas still greeting me with the sun.

May You Be Well,

Lily

Images compliments of Creative Commons and are licensed for commercial reuse

Strengthen Your Low Back with these 5 Exercises

I have had the pleasure of living with low back pain since the age of 15 years old. You may be asking yourself, "Did she just say had the 'pleasure' of having back pain?! She's crazy!" I truly view my journey as a blessing. I'm 35, a Massage Therapist, and mom of an active toddler. I am passionate about fitness, biking, hiking, and yoga. I am basically moving non-stop all day the moment my feet hit the ground.

This beautiful and busy life depends on me being strong, balanced, and intentional. Part of my self-care regime is exercise, and this exercise is my prescription for life. I'm not being hyperbolic here. I truly see my fitness as a necessary supplement to a magnificent life. 

When I was young I worked for my dad, did farm work, and played hard. At times, I pushed my growing body too hard. Consequently, I began to have a slow onset of, what I now know to be hypertonic (too tight) muscle issues. This led to poor posture, improper technique, and muscle strain in my low back. I then developed Sciatica, which, if you don't know is a pinched sciatic nerve which conveniently affects the legs and can cause severe low back and leg pain. 

Being the problem solver that  I am, I looked into ways to reduce pain, restore strength, restore flexibility, and over all improve my life. It was on this journey that I discovered massage therapy, physical therapy, chiropractic, and the wonderful world of alternative medicine, which, in turn, ultimately taught me that my health was in my hands. I was empowered! I had the ability to do something about my health and wellbeing.  Along my journey, I  found these 5 exercise that support and help the low back, and ultimately, the whole body.

Full disclosure, you may feel these in your booty for a few days...but living pain-free and feeling strong is totally worth it!

May You Be Well,

Lily

* Images compliments of Creative Commons and are licensed for commercial reuse

Boost Your Immune System With Wellness Wraps

So, is it just me, or has everyone been perpetually sick lately?! Between working with the public, having a toddler in daycare ( can we say germ-fest?), and journeying to the grocery store and touching those delightfully contaminated carts, I can't seem to avoid the sickening.

If you're anything like me, you're in the same boat. So, when you're on the up and up and starting to feel better but need that little help over the hump, an herbal wrap can be a nourishing, new way to get your immune system back in commission. A step in the right direction toward your self-care journey, an herbal wrap warms you to the core and can boost your energy.

Though new to many people, herbal wraps are quite delightful and healing. At The Pearl, you start with an aromatherapy steam infused with your choice of essential oil  (Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Lavender, Tangerine, Basil, or Lemongrass). Our quaint steam shower increases circulation, letting you flush out toxins and get an all over, head-to-toe warm-up. The steam also warms the body from the outside to the inside, allowing you to continue to stay warm, sometimes for hours after your treatment. Though we don't recommend a steam when you already have a fever, a steam creates an "artificial fever" in the body, which is said to bolster your immune response.

A tailored blend of herbs is steeped in a hot water bath, then cloth sheets are soaked in the warm "tea" in preparation for enveloping your body in a cocoon of herbs. 

We have options, depending on your individual needs, which include the following: 

The Herbal Wrap is relaxing, hydrating, balancing, and re-mineralizing. This treatment is great for boosting the immune system and speeding the metabolism. This wrap is our most detoxifying. 

Breathe Easy Herbal Wrap
A must during the seasonal changes in weather as this will boost your immune system and decongest your respiratory system. 

Mud Wrap
Beneficial for joint pain and inflammation as well as boosting metabolic activity. This wrap uses organic thermal mineral marine mud combined with the essential oils to create an uplifting, oxygenating and healing quality.

Mint Magic Herbal Wrap
This treatment is uplifting and energizing. This is a full body wrap in muslin sheets infused with spearmint, peppermint, savory and lavender.

Tummy Tamer Herbal Wrap
An herbal wrap treatment that is both detoxifying and supportive to the digestive system. All herbs and essential oils in this treatment aid in the digestion process and help to cleanse the digestive tract and tame excited stomachs.

Seaweed Wrap
Total body contour slimming treatment for individuals in need of detoxifying and re-mineralizing. This wrap is slimming, clarifying, and mineralizing.

You then enjoy aromatherapy. Eucalyptus, which can your respiratory system, helps aid in the clearing of nasal passageways. And Rosemary, which can aid in lowering cortisol. Managing our cortisol levels is a helpful tool, because when we are more rested and less stressed, we're more likely to heal faster and avoid illness. You then get a healing and stimulating head, face, shoulder, and décolleté massage. Massage of the face and base of head, especially, support opening and release of sinus discomfort due to their reflexive properties.

To end, you will take a cleansing shower followed by a head-to-toe application of Sacred Earth moisturizing cream, then hopefully retire to the relaxing lounge to enjoy one of our delicious antioxidant teas, which further aid in your relaxation.

When I have the pleasure of giving an Herbal Wrap to a client, it's so delightful and satisfying to see them so deeply relaxed and detoxified. Personally, when I receive an Herbal Wrap I feel the penetrating healing qualities for many days after my treatment. I feel less bloated, my skin is smoother, my energy feels improved, I usually sleep quite well that night, and I just feel very warm and nurtured.

May you be well,

Lily Lunnemann

* Images compliments of Creative Commons

Avoid Sugar & Get Sweet on Healthy Skin

Sugar sugar, da da da da du du, aww honey, honey! Are you a candy girl or boy? I certainly was. From my late teens until about the age of 25, my skin was a mess. Puffy, breakouts, dry & oily splotches. I had no idea it was because I was eating cookies and sweets with reckless abandon. I recently saw an old photo of myself at a party eating a donut and drinking a beer... super fun but not so cute. Luckily, as an esthetician, through trial and error I was able to clear my complexion by replacing the sweets with veggies and whole foods. 

So why is eating pie making your face look older and broken out?  It's all about the process of glycation happening in your body and skin.  The legendary Dr. Frederic Brandt used to say that giving up sugar could make you look younger by ten years.

"It is already known that excess sugar can lead to a variety of health concerns, but what most forget is that too much sugar can also affect the skin. Sugar can be digested in many forms, including the consumption of carbohydrates and can even be formed via meal preparation. If there is too much sugar in the body, protein molecules can cross-link with sugar molecules. Once this cross-linking process has occurred, the new sugar proteins are called advanced glycation end products (AGEs). The human body does not recognize AGEs as normal, and will produce antibodies that cause inflammation in the skin. Once formed, AGEs tend to gravitate toward dermal collagen and elastin.

A little self-love can go a long way when it comes to not just our skin but our overall well-being. 

A little self-love can go a long way when it comes to not just our skin but our overall well-being. 

As people age, proteins in the body can become damaged through the introduction of AGEs—one of the key factors in aging of the skin. The more sugar you eat, whether processed or natural, the more AGEs are produced. When the body is overwhelmed with AGEs, collagen becomes compromised. Effects of the glycation process at the cellular level of the skin’s structure may result in wrinkling, loss of elasticity, stiffness, accelerated aging and compromised barrier function."

Is it realistic to cut sugar to keep your skin looking healthy? Keep in mind that sugar is highly addictive, it stimulates the brain in a similar way as cocaine & heroin! If you can keep cookie monster from making too many food choices, you are likely to notice a difference. Try to choose whole foods on the low end of the glycemic index.

How soon post-sugar will my skin improve?  Skin professionals say people see changes within 72 to 96 hours. “They’ll feel better, their color will look better, their skin won’t be so oily and they won’t be so dry. Their circles will be reduced, perkier.”

How far you want to go with it is up to you! I was really serious about a no sugar diet for a few solid years and noticed a huge difference in the health of my skin...now as a Mom I like being able to enjoy a sweet treat with my wee one on occasion, so I have more of a 90/10 rule. 90 percent wholesome, 10 percent fluff.  

- See more at: http://www.skininc.com/skinscience/physiology/Glycation-and-the-Skin-230102271.html#sthash.AA7PvXl7.dpu

Images courtesy of stocksnap and pixabay and are licensed for commercial reuse 

Immune Boosting, Anti-Inflammatory Drink

On its own or as a base for recipes such as this, bone broth has many health benefits

On its own or as a base for recipes such as this, bone broth has many health benefits

The season of nasty colds, sore throats, and earaches is almost over-- but not quite. If you haven’t gotten sick yet, congratulations, keep it up! if you have, this too shall pass. No matter which camp you are in, prevention or treatment, boosting the immune system is vital. A wholesome, nutrient dense beverage  you can take on the go is this anti-inflammatory, immune boosting drink. It can serve as your breakfast, snack, or part of your lunch.

The key player is chicken broth. Now before you run away screaming, allow me to provide you with a few facts that may change your mind. Studies have shown that chicken broth reduces the number of white blood cells during respiratory infections. This magical drink contains amino acids, calcium , phosphorus,  glycosaminoglycans, and gelatin. These nutrients will not only boost your immune system but they will also support your joints, soothe your intestinal walls and help you achieve hormonal balance. The secondary players are ginger and tumeric. Both enhance the inflammatory effect the chicken broth and turn this beverage into a superfood. 

Recipe:

  • One cup of chicken broth (make your own, recipe here, or purchase a reliable brand such as Pacifico)
  • ½ tsp Grated Ginger
  • ½ tsp Grated Tumeric

One dash of sea salt
Heat the broth mix in the ginger, tumeric and salt. Can’t handle the taste? Add a ¼ cup of coconut milk for a creamier texture. The coconut milk is chalk full of medium chain fatty acids that will feed your brain and give you instant energy. Now throw it in a to go cup or a enjoy its warming effects while you read a book on your couch. Allow this traditional drink to fully nourish and repair your body.

Photo is licensed for commercial reuse and is a courtesy of Creative Commons & All Astir