Monday, January 20, 2020

A Dose of Real Life: An Open Letter to My Daughter

I'm not a size 0 and that's OK.  Truth is, the only time I was ever a size 0 was in High school and I was doing extreme dieting to the point where my mom made me watch a Lifetime movie about a girl who dies from Anorexia.  It worked.

Now that I have a daughter, I want to pass on the unconditional love that my mom always reinforced in me.  My mom taught me healthy eating habits at a young age so that it wasn't about being skinny, but about being healthy.

A simple yet powerful message for my daughter:

Dear Savannah,

Whether you are a size zero and naturally skinny (like Daddy) or have always been a little curvy (like Mommy), I want you to know that God made you just the way you are in his image. (Genesis 1:27)  Your innate body type was designed for you and all you have to do is nourish your body with amazing food and exercise to be the best version of you.  My hope for you is that you don't start dieting at 12 because you have natural hips forming or you don't feel inadequate because your body isn't developing yet.  My hope is that you look at food as fuel and medicine rather than obsess over diets and calorie-counting.  I hope you never spend a dime on plastic surgery or on diet pills (Do you know how many pairs of shoes you can do with that money?!)  I hope you look in the mirror and always see yourself the way I see you.

I hope you never find your worth in the size of your jeans, the size of your bra, or the size of your waist- but only the size of you heart. 

You do not need bigger boobs.

You do not need to starve yourself.

You do not need to waist train to look like a Kardashian.

You do not need to gain weight to look more "feminine."

 I hope you use your beauty for good and and radiate your light to others with confidence.  You will always be beautiful and you will always be "you" and there is never a competition with others.  How amazing it will be if you and your friends lift each other up and support one another while strengthening each other's self-worth.  

After you have a baby, I hope you smile at your stretch marks and go easy on yourself.  Your body is a beautiful, miracle-maker and how blessed you are to have experienced the most amazing gift a mother could ever ask for.  I hope you look at your body as a strong, beautiful miracle that not only carried around children but continues to carry on the strength to rock your babies to sleep, give them horsey-back rides, and push them high on a swing-set.

I hope you don't loathe the changes of your body after breastfeeding.  Know that your body has nourished your babies with the most amazing gift you can ever give them.  Isn't your body simply amazing that it can create and sustain life on it's own?!  

I hope you spend way more time laughing, hugging, and traveling than you do looking in the mirror.  I hope you always know you are beautiful, you are strong and most of all, you are so LOVED. 


Ever After,

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Grandparents Gift Guide

If you're like me, you enjoy GIVING gifts much more than getting gifts.  I love trying to find something special for everyone in my life and grandparents play such an important role in our lives.
I often find it hard to come up with things that grandparents actually need besides playing with their grand kids or lots of love.

 I've put together a gift guide that has it all.. from the trendy wine-drinking Glam-ma to the incredibly crafty and loves-to-cook Nana.

All are very fair price-points (BONUS) and have really good reviews on Amazon and it doesn't hurt that 2-day shipping is free as well as returns to make it easy for you and your gift recipient.

1.  For the BASEBALL-going Grandma- the ultimate Fan needs this: BASEBALL PURSE

2.  For the traveling Grandparents.. Luggage for Under $25?!:  HIS + HERS Carry On

3.  Ever since I got a lightweight vacuum, I realized definitely was missing out before.. A lightweight vacuum is an absolute necessity for the household (and only $30!).

4.  For the Grandpa that loves to fish and loves backyard games, definitely invest in this fishing accessory as well as an awesome corn-hole set.

5.  Does Grandma like to visit vineyards?  This portable picnic table is a must-have for picnics and day-tripping to vineyards as well as an adorable wine tumbler to bring along.

6.  For the corporate man, this executive organizer for cell phone, watch, etc is super convenient and who doesn't love new dress socks?

For the entire gift guide + more ideas for holiday gift-giving, visit here.

Ever After,

Friday, June 21, 2019

Everything You Need to Know About the Vampire Facial

I've always had a fascination with skincare procedures because I love taking care of my skin.  I wear SPF anytime I am in the sun on my face, I wash my makeup off every single night, and I am constantly trying out the newest products if I can. I heard great things about Liquid Aesthetics right in Glastonbury and they were amazing!  You can see some of their before and afters as well on their Facebook page.  

I really wanted to try the Vampire facial because to me, it's the most "Natural procedure" since it's your own blood and not foreign fillers that are entering your body.  I heard great things and I wanted to even out my skin tone so I was very excited to try this out and was very happy with my results.  The more consistent you do them also produces greater results because it is helping stimulate and and encouraging collagen production!

The "Vampire" facial, which is actually micro-needling with PRP is perfect for those that want to tighten skin and allow for better absorption of skincare products.  I had a ton of blackheads and uneven skin tone in my "before" pictures and I noticed that my skin in general was more smooth and I had way less blackheads after my procedure.  I made sure to moisturize HEAVILY after though because it truly tightens your skin to the point where it feeld dehydrated so I wanted to SOAK up as much moisture into my skin as possible!

Who are ideal candidates for Vampire Facials?

Vampire facials/microneedling with PRP are ideal for adults of all ages (18+) male or female who are looking to achieve smoother, younger looking skin.

The procedure is effective at lifting and tightening the skin, improving uneven skin texture and tone, acne scarring, diminishing pore size, decreasing fine lines and it allows for significantly increased absorption of skincare products. 

Who should NOT get a vampire facial?

A vampire facial is not recommended for pregnant women because of the potential risk for infection that can occur with any cosmetic procedure. Additionally, a topical anesthetic agent is used to numb the skin pre-procedure and the components range from pregnancy category B to C. As always, any pregnant woman interested in undergoing a cosmetic procedure should weigh the potential benefits versus the potential risks and discuss with their obstetrician. 

What is the standard downtime?

The standard downtime is 24 to 48 hours of some slight swelling along with redness/pinkness of the skin consistent with a mild to moderate sunburn.  My skin was pretty red the first day but second and third day, I was able to put tinted moisturizer on and be fine with covering up the redness.

What are the major benefits of this procedure?

The major benefits of PRP (platelet rich plasma) as an adjunct to the Microneedling procedure is that PRP contains growth factors that speed up wound healing and improves the regenerative effects of the treatment. 
For those who don’t know, PRP is obtained by drawing the patients own blood in the office and spinning it in a machine called a centrifuge to separate the platelet rich plasma from the other blood components. 

Does it HURT?!

No! They use a numbing cream so you do not feel anything but pressure.  When the procedure is done, your skin feels very tight and may be red/sensitive but I personally did not feel any pain during or after.

What are some other new procedures you would recommend?

One of the latest procedures Liquid Aesthetics are offering is called dermaplaning. This is a mechanical skin peel with no downtime that leaves the clients skin soft and glowing. This procedure used a sterile instrument to remove dead skin and fine facial hair. 

Also, do not forget, this is a MEDICAL procedure so make sure you go to someone who is reputable like Liquid Aesthetics.  An APRN did my procedure and it's like any medical procedure... you need the right person to do it.  Wojtek was super professional and opened the brand new needle right in front of me so I knew I was in good hands.

The best thing you can do for your own skin is to schedule a FREE consultation and someone from Liquid Aesthetics will take a look at your skin and recommend what they think is best for you.  They are awesome and not pushy and really know their skin!! 

First time patients in our office can receive 15% off their first vampire facial or dermaplaning treatment.

Ever After,