Asbestos Awareness Week April 1-7

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Heather Von St. James- a fellow social media buddy- recently reached out to ask if I could help spread the word about Asbestos Awareness Week (April 1-7).  Little did she know that this is a pretty important topic for me.

While I focus primarily on beauty and mom-com, I care so much about the topic of Asbestos and the consequences of exposure that I am willing to take a pause to focus on the scary real-life dangers of this toxic mineral- specifically Mesothelioma.  Nothing beautiful or family-friendly about asbestos and the serious diseases associated with it!

Did you know that more than 107k people die EACH YEAR of asbestos-related diseases?

My experience with asbestos is a personal one.  As the due date for my youngest son rapidly approached, we were in a frantic search to find a new home in the suburbs- acknowledging that two dogs and two kids in a two bedroom urban condo was not ideal.

We fell in love with a charming 1920s home so with an immediate and above asking offer, we snagged our suburban dream house!

Eager to get in and underway before the baby came, we immediately went ahead and scheduled necessary appointments and inspections.  As with most older homes I expected a few red flags, but I was completely caught off-guard when our thorough inspector, Bret Kaufmann of Kaufmann Consultants, LLC, detected what appeared to be asbestos in a crawl space and around interior piping (Brett was SO thorough and looked through holes in the wall to find this dangerous mineral!).

Imagine the shock when I heard those words!?  "That looks like asbestos."

The realtor, the inspector, and my husband tried to talk me down, but in the height of my maternal nesting stage, I couldn't get out of the basement fast enough!

The truth is, in our area, nearly every home has asbestos located within the walls and around old piping.  Before closing on our home, we requested a few updates- the most important of which was the encapsulation of the asbestos identified areas.  Fortunately the previous owners agreed.  After reassurance from the asbestos remediation team and fellow home owners who have experienced the same challenge, I know our home is safe for our kids.

But this spring my anxiety over possible asbestos exposure is starting to stir.  We are prepping to undergo a minor home renovation.  There are a lot of scenarios that keep me up at night?  What will they find in the walls?  What if construction stirs up the dangerous Asbestos fibers I've finally come to grips with?

The best way to cope with the challenges of living in an old home that has asbestos in it, is to learn more about asbestos exposure and how best to protect my family.  I'm working with a superior team that has been made aware of the areas in our home that may have asbestos and I am reassured by their confidence to identify, remediate, and protect my family from this dangerous mineral.

So as April approaches, please take a moment to read this infographic and learn more about asbestos and Mesothelioma here.
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Summer Beauty Regimen!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

So what's on your summer skincare agenda??  Here's what I'm thinking...

Repair
Starting the day after Mother's Day (which is Sunday, May 10 if you don't already have that noted on the calendar), I am going to start a regular paramedical quality skincare routine.  Ok, so THAT sounds pretty extreme, but really, all I am doing is committing to quarterly med spa facials (skin peels, dermabrasion, etc).  Mother's day is an opportunity to make the commitment to myself and a good time to hit up the family for some medspa gift certificates :)

Nourish & Maintain
I am still obsessed with Obagi's Hydrate and Regenica.  I love the consistency of the creams and I can really see overall skin quality improvement after using this duo regularly since mid-winter.   I want to get better about my twice weekly retinol routine at bedtime, too.  And finally, I REALLY REALLY need an eye cream.  I like my Elastiderm Roller Pen, but I'm struggling with some thin skin crepe issues.  I'm thinking a fraxel treatment might be my best option, but holding out to see if I can find anything topical first!

Prevent & Protect
I scream, YOU scream, we all scream for Sunscreen!  And a hat, too.

Any tips I might have missed?  
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Could Sauna Slathering be the Secret to Great Skin?

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Today is Wednesday- one of my most peaceful days!  I'm not rushing off to drop anyone at pre-k or shuttling to morning activities while trying to stay on schedule.

The best part about Wednesdays is that we can take our time packing up and preparing to head out to the gym- where mom takes advantage of two FULL HOURS of FREE CHILDCARE so that she can work out, balance her brain, sit in a sauna and shower.  I will use this sentence right here to exude my IMMENSE gratitude for having the opportunity to live this life.  Wednesdays really allow me to put my sahm/life challenges into perspective!!

But before I turn this into a "I'm so blessed" post (ok, but really I acknowledge that I am TOTALLY blessed), let me tell you about today's sauna experience.

I am typically the only person in the sauna.  I usually take advantage of the space, lay down on my back, wrapped in a towel, and put my feet up against a wall (I am sure there is a sauna etiquette 101 class I should take, but while in Europe, this is what all of those uninhibited, totally sophisticated women used to do).

Well, today, while I assumed my usual sauna position and settled in, another woman entered the room.  I offered a smile and went back to my high-temperature resting pose.

Seconds later I was distracted by the sound of skin being slathered.  At first it was sort of gross.  Ok, actually, it was just gross.  I didn't want to be rude and to sit up to see what the noise was (the woman was sitting by the wall behind me), but I also was so confused as to why there was rapid rubbing going on in a sweaty sauna.

As the minutes passed and the rubbing continued, I finally sat up, acting as though my time was up.  I was shocked at what I saw- a completely nude woman (fair enough, some people do the nude sauna thing) who had the BEST skin I have ever seen!  This woman was easily in her 60s* and her skin. was. glowing!

So then I was stuck in this awkward situation of staring but not wanting to stare but being totally impressed at her flawless skin but then being totally weirded out by the fact that she was slathering herself in oil.

Always a beauty aficionado, I had to ask.

"Is that lotion?"

That simple question unleashed an entire summary as to why applying lotion while in the sauna is the secret to glowing skin.

Her ritual...  swim, shower, sauna, lotion.  Her theory... the warmth of the sauna opens up the pores allowing the lotion to have a more lasting effect on the skin.

I care NOT as to whether this is backed by science.  Her skin was amazing- I'll stop there before I start to sound creepy.

In an effort to learn more about sauna skincare, I did a quick search and found this article.  Looks like I will be dry brushing and sauna slathering on my next visit!!

Oh, and PS, to my husband- Sweetheart, someplace in our itty bitty house can we please carve out space for a sauna!?


*I didn't ask this woman her age but based on our brief conversation and the details she offered, I imagine that this woman was in her 60s.  Of course now I will make it my sole duty to determine exactly how well this woman has aged by finding out exactly how many revolutions around the sun she has made :)
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Happy Tuesday!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

That right there is a rose...made out of toilet paper...by cleaning Angels sent from the heavens (or, perhaps more seasonally appropriate, cleaning leprechauns sent from the rainbows!).

I love Tuesdays :)
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