Archives for the month of: August, 2015

I get it, I’m a lucky dog to even be able to complain about how absolutely insanely sore a certain muscle in my inner and upper calves are. I get it. But I put my mind to this. I booked a few flights. Made a few contacts. Established relationships. Relationships with banks, and people. And now I never want to return to America. Just kidding. Or am I?

All this traveling really does make a what used to be 2-3 days a week gym girl, one day a week a 4-5 mile run chick, and one day a week Bikram yogi turn soft and feel fat and gross; mostly because I am on a time table and agenda I most definitely do not attend to on my American schedule. So with my flem-y cough and fatigued body in-tow, I peddled my way from The Amsterdam Artis Zoo (blog post to come) over to The City Street Spa to escape for a two hour session that encompassed a 60 minute body exfoliating scrub and 60 minute facial. Allow me to go into detail….

I pulled up on my super comfy cruiser bike. I called her Daisy Dew. Locked that baby up and walked into this cute little, and fairly randomly located, shop that extended into a glorious and abundantly lit teal day spa…tiffany blue walls and all – complimented by the a rich mahogany stained exterior.

On my right and left immediately were tall product walls. After that the right beheld the white glassy reception desk. On my left were pedicure stations. Ahead was the two manicure stations. Down the hall on the left was firstly the bathroom, then a treatment room, then the changing room, then my treatment room, a relaxation lounge, and beyond that I did not explore but heard what went on and I believe it was another two treatment rooms…for shorter appointments.

I used the restroom first (tip: go beforehand whether you have to go or not for a pleasant experience), went into changing room, got completely naked and into robe and flip flops. Came out and was promptly directed into my treatment room down the hall – the very next door on the left. It was quaint and the perfectly arranged procedural-room for what was about to ensue.

Firstly, I signed up for the “Special Treatment” called The City Street Spa Detox. It was a two hour treatment. The first procedure consisting of a 60 minute Aromatherapy Detox and Revive session which used seaweed and sunflower oil to scrub away all my gross, dead, travelin’ skin. Then another mademoiselle entered the room to carry out my 60 minute facial which consisted of multiple layers of Dermologica products (uhhhh-mazing), and an oatmeal mask (um, yumm! …definitely asked how to make that one at home, holy wow). I was dozy throughout this treatment, but once I smelt that oatmeal mask on my face I was hungry. Like, need it now hungry. I could feel the nutrients in my face. Crazy how our exterior skin, and the face alike, truly absorb nutrients directly from applied foods.

So, between treatments I was asked to step into the shower that was in the same room. Bright idea to have a quaint little shower in there… It doesn’t disrupt this otherworldly water-filled and sensual 2 hours… it adds to it. I was uninterrupted in this almost hospital like room, but knowing you’re only getting healthier from the stay as well as more relaxed. Sign me up! I was given about 5 minutes and a towel to dry off with. It was lovely to smell the aromas of that scrub meet warm water on my body. My whole body felt like butter after I showered. And with what was close to being a deep-tissue massage performed while I was scrubbed, I was feeling damn good. And now a facial? Unreal. Best decision ever.

I zonked out during my facial. She was good. I’m pretty sure she was Irish. It’s hard to talk while you are getting a facial. I talked a lot more to my masseuse who was cool. Born and raised in Amsterdam. Fairly fluent in English. I could tell our cultural backgrounds and outlooks on life might be different. In a great way. We were enlightening for each other. And she was so knowledgeable. I liked that, especially because it makes me feel like she knows what she’s doing. And I get the most out of my experience…a physically pleasing time as well as a mentally stimulating and enlightening conversation.

Anyways. We all wrapped up, I got to wake up slowly in the relaxation room next to my treatment room. They served me Lipton tea and I grabbed a magazine, that I didn’t open. Tried to get on their wifi to post pictures of this place! (@sablethena) I enjoyed a little time in this sunny room with the sheepskin enveloping my little robe-covered tush.

I checked out after about a half hour of chilling out, and getting dressed. Greeted and thanked by the owner, I signed out, hopped on my bike and headed back to our adorable AirBnB flat. Which I also recommend.

I highly recommend a stop in this beautiful little chill-out spot in Amsterdam. You don’t have to go as big as a I did (I needed it) but it’s “the spot” in Amsterdam, I promise 😉

Cheers to you The City Street Spa in Amsterdam!

After being on a month long adventure where I went in knowing I was going to be able to be myself entirely, and then being accepted for that, I couldn’t agree with this article more. Because well, sometimes we wind up in situations where we have to tiptoe around people and, ew. That was and is the great thing about planning out your life, you can choose the situations you put yourself into, or take yourself out of. However, sometimes sacrifices have to be…that I understand. Any who, I put myself into homes and situations I knew I was going to be comfortable with – the comfort level I know and prefer.

Given, I chose not to backpack across the world without showers or a close-by laundry machine or a with a 50 pound bag on my back..I continued to live the way I do at home. Leisurely. I stayed with friends/family in Miami, New York and Cascais, Portugal, and then we shared our own apartment in Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona and Lisbon. The person I met up with to travel a few of those places with (Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona), fully understood how I like to live. As he says, he knew what he was getting himself into. Lucky for me, he’s great at reading people. He majored in journalism with a focus in digital media so understanding people is key to what he does for a living. We’ve known of each other through mutual friends for probably 6+ years now? So he’s been able to watch (social media), chat with me about, and comprehend how I carry myself. What I didn’t realize was how special and understood it made me feel to be with someone who let me take care of myself (and be taken care of) how I like to. I think I’ve always tried to come across as low-maintenance. The guys-girl. No more.

Let me just share a bit of my routines….

It’s true I don’t contour my face with makeup, just the tinted sunscreen moisturizer (no wrinkles or sun damage please!) on the face, with accentuated eyes (eyeshadow and mascara), a little blush for rosey high-lighted cheekbones, and maybe some lipstick and liner, or just chapstick. So I may come across as the girl who doesn’t look like I am wearing much makeup but trust that it is there and it takes time. You can also guarantee I am the girl who religiously washes my face, am picky about my products, and brush/flosses day and night, and maybe in between. (I’ve heard successful people floss their teeth. Sticking to it.)

But I also take long showers….so I spend quite a bit of time hanging out in the bathroom. It’s like my own daily spa experience, something I have been exposing myself to more and more lately. I have long hair that needs to be washed appropriately (cool water). I have legs, arms, armpits and a bikini line I have to shave sometimes. I moisturize every part of my body. I tweeze. I usually paint my own nails and toes. I like to give myself a blowout when I dry my hair; it’s so straight it needs that luscious and voluminous volumne you can’t get from air-drying. And hey, sometimes I like to feel girly and curl it. Then there are the days where I don’t wash my hair but I have to use that golden product, dry shampoo, to take away the days buildup of oil. And then comes the styling of that day (or two) old hair. Time.

I could easily (or maybe more like painfully, for me) run out of the house with just brushing my teeth and throwing my hair up, but that is not the essence of my soul or how I prefer to treat the one vessel I have been given. I am an artist by nature in the way I live and I choose to express that in how I look, dress and experience life.

I have adamantly worked out since I graduated high school. Another thing that takes time, and is damn worth it. Now at 28 I couldn’t be more comfortable in my sexuality and skin because I’ve worked hard to be where I am at physically, and nutritionally. If I don’t take care of my body, who will? Like this article says, you are treated how you treat yourself. And I refuse to subdue my maintenance levels any longer. I now know what it is like to be with someone who fully accepts and works around/into how I care for myself. And you know what? The level of how much he showed me he cared, was almost unbelievable. If like this article says, those two things correlate, well then I’m joining this #HighMaintenanceMovement.

Booking my next spa appointment very soon. Something this true gentleman I speak of also graciously accompanied me to in Barcelona…at the phenomenal, and surreal, Aire Ancient Baths. And what’s funny, he also just told me that because of our time spent together, he realized the “Princess type”, that he’s dated before, is what he prefers too. It just took him time to figure out and accept. It works for him. And it definitely worked for me. He likes a woman who is assertive, confident and knows how she likes to be treated and who wouldn’t put up with anything less. And she’s also fairly dolled up on the regular? What guy doesn’t like a pretty girl on his arm? None. Or he’s lying.

Click the article link below to hear where I found my inspiration and soundboard for this article.

Why Women Shouldn’t Feel Ashamed To Call Themselves High Maintenance.