By Alexa Day
Today’s post is just a little late in getting to you, but I promise I have a good reason. We’re in the best part of the spring right now (although I’m a little tired of having to wear a jacket in the morning), and I needed to recharge with a renewal ritual. People out there are putting up big money for fancy spa renewal rituals, but you don’t need any of that. You can indulge in your very own renewal ritual with very little preparation, just like I do every year.
The most important thing you need is solitude. I mention it first because for some of you, it will be hardest to come by. But the point of the ritual is to recharge your batteries and rebuild your stores of essential energy. You are not going to be able to do that if you’re dealing with other people.
Solitude doesn’t have to be difficult, though. You’ve really got two options. You can make sure no one bothers you by telling them not to bother you – and then backing it up by not rewarding them with your attention when they bother you. Or you can devise some way to remove others from the home by making some other location more attractive. Sending people to the movies is a good idea. Send them to a movie that starts roughly an hour after they leave the house. That should leave lots of time for what we’re doing here.
Once you’re alone, it’s time to run a bath. Even if your weather is actually appropriate for spring, I encourage warm water, since you’re going to be spending a good bit of time in there. While the water is running, hit it with your favorite bath additives. The Internet is rife – rife, I tell you! – with ideas for which fragrances will best suit your needs. I myself am hip deep in bath-related gifts. I will not need to purchase a bath additive for many years.
Make yourself a nice spa beverage. One of my favorites is from the Wynn in Las Vegas. Muddle a bit of cucumber with some lime juice in the bottom of your glass, add just a bit of simple syrup and then fill the glass with ginger ale. Depending on your ginger ale, you may not want the syrup. Alternately, a sliver of ginger muddled before the cucumber works if you substitute syrup and club soda for the ginger ale. The Wynn offers a cocktail version of this beverage, but I like the virgin edition. Brings back nice, hangover-free memories, and the cucumber makes it very refreshing.
Warm bath? Check. Solitude? Got it. Beverage? All ready. Now what?
Maybe nothing. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with just hanging out in your hard-won bath. Enjoy, my friend.
If you don’t get solitude often, though, I suggest putting it to work for you. Meditate. If your mind wanders terribly during traditional meditation, try a working meditation with a beauty treatment. I keep a salt scrub on the edge of the tub for this very purpose. Rubbing a salt scrub into your skin forces you to concentrate on yourself. Focus on how it feels as it scrapes away everything old, leaving behind something fresh and new. Enjoy the scent. My favorite part is watching the salt melt away in the water. Be careful, though. Salt scrubs with oil leave the tub very slick!
Now that all is said and done, slowly rejoin the so-called real world as you towel off. Cap everything off with a nice, soothing lotion and maybe a fresh coat of polish on the old toenails. The nail polish is a sneaky trick, really. While it’s drying, your mobility is limited, so everyone will have to get it themselves for a while. (You’re welcome.)
What are you all doing to renew? Let me know in the comments.
**Alexa Day brings a touch of sexy to your everyday world on the first Wednesday of every month. When she’s not researching her monthly column, she’s working on the follow-up to her first novel, ILLICIT IMPULSE, which is now available wherever e-books are sold. In the meantime, you can catch up to her on Facebook, Twitter, or on her blog, although lately she only seems able to manage one of those three venues.