we all know that birth plans are for the birds. we have such little control over what our body is going to do and how the baby is going to enter the world. we might have an idea of what we’d like to have happen, but a myriad of factors can change that in a heart beat. if there’s one thing i learned from giving birth to ramona it’s that you just must embrace –as much as possible– the path your little one chooses to enter the world and accept things as they happen.
this is not to say that we can not prepare and plan and set intentions for bringing our children into the world. i’ve done this through selective reading (ina may gaskin and bountiful, beautiful, blissful), nourishing foods and vitamins, nesting, acupuncture, pre-natal massage, and putting together my birth team of the only people i want around when little bug arrives (jp, my two midwives, and my doula). last week we had the home visit (!), which runs through all the supplies we need to have on hand, emergency contacts, plan Bs, who ramona and otto are going with, and what things i’d like to have accessible. that last part got me thinking. what would help me settle into this home birth? make me feel even more at home? make me feel as calm as can be as i work to bring little bug into her fourth trimester?
in addition to my sandalwood room spray and linden’s thousand petal beautifying mist, these are the items i will be sure to have on hand for me or my birth team to use to calm, affirm, encourage, relax me. of course, i have no idea if they’ll all be used or if they’ll even end up being helpful. but the act of putting these items together has been both soothing and exciting. i cannot wait to welcome this little girl into the world!
clockwise from top left:|| portishead : the same album we had playing when ramona entered the world. it’s creepy and moody and always puts me in this head space for concentration || jp got me a beautiful mala from standing laurel with gemstones conducive to labor support: jade [brings harmony and protects from harm], moss agate [a stone of new beginnings it helps to release one from deep-seated fears and blockages that may be holding her back], crystal quartz [the “master healer” stone] || my kimono robe from the hotel san jose, a souvenir i brought back from our babymoon || cosabella bralette, bc i don’t want to be walking around naked and this thing is incredibly comfortable and sexy || beeswax candles for purifying the air || neroli : helps to sooth fears and anxieties and improve post-partum mental state [as well as lessen stretch marks!] || jasmine : encouraging labor || frankincense : helps to calm emotions and can aid in repair of tears || clary sage : promotes pain relief and relaxation during labor ||
what did you need and/or want with you during your labors? home or otherwise? a special blanket? mantras? literature? i’d love to hear what helped you bring your little one into this world.
my toiletry tuesday base layer post is in need of an update! here’s what i’ve been using recently. maybe it’s the pregnancy. maybe it’s the nightly clarisonic deep clean. but either way, i am loving what is happening with my skin lately and i’m certain the above products contribute to it.
- r.l. linden & co. thousand petal beautifying mist || i spray this all over my face first thing when i get out of the shower (i also use this if i need a refresher during the day).
- arcona eye dew || gives a nice dewy look to the eyes but also, after consistent use, works to brighten and plump skin. i don’t know if it’s actually plumping my skin but my eyes, which are naturally dark and a bit sunken, have never looked more awake.
- r.l. linden & co coffee & tea facial serum || this is still in the beta testing stages but i am already begging them to make it a permanent part of their line. it makes my face tingle and adds a nice, natural, moisturizing oil to my skin.
- tilvee argan & sea buckthorn age-defying cream || i’ve been using this almost three years now and i have no intention of stopping. it’s a nice heavy cream, perfect for morning and night, that settles into the skin nicely and works its magic. ideal for dry weather climates.
- r.l. linden & co. la balmba rose healing balm || used on my lips and any random dry patches on my face (corners of mouth, edge of nose, even my forehead!).
- tom’s deodorant || what’s there to say about deodorant? besides: stop using the stuff with aluminum in it!
- kiehl’s creme de corps || i like it but i don’t LOVE it. suggestions for a good all-over body cream are currently being accepted. i’m looking for something without a ton of ingredients (i use coconut oil from time to time but am not sold on that either).
- egyptian magic all purpose skin cream || i use this on my growing belly, stretch marks (frowny face), and dry patches on elbows or knees. it took me a while to warm up to it but i love love love this heavy lotion.
- jenna hipp essential nail & hand cream || i fell in love with jenna hipp’s products at base coat nail salon. i have always been on the search for the perfect hand cream and this is where i got to stop looking.
oh hi! you remember r.l. linden? they are my new favorite skincare line and they just keep concocting and producing the absolute best products. and they’re from denver! stay tuned for an updated toiletry tuesday on how i use some of their items. but for now, let’s welcome them as new sponsors on A Denver Home Companion! we’re celebrating with a giveaway of their roll-on unisex perfume, ironwood no. 1. this was a collaboration with the denver store ironwood and features the amazing scent of palo santo, which just makes me swoon. so it’s a bonus that my love, jp, likes to wear it (and this says a lot bc he has never worn a scent before).
to be entered to win, please visit r.l. linden and tell me what product you’d be interested in trying. for more entries, share this giveaway, like them on facebook and twitter. and for even MORE entries, like me on facebook! make sure to leave an extra comment for each additional entry. (if you already follow us on other social platforms, that counts too!) i’ll contact the winner this friday, on valentine’s day.
today’s toiletry tuesday is brought to you by me dear friend, seabron, a skin-care professional who also happens to be the woman who gave me my first bikini wax(!). her skin is flawless–think porcelain doll with perfectly pink cheeks. and while some of it may be genetic, she’s […]
today’s toiletry tuesday is brought to you by me dear friend, seabron, a skin-care professional who also happens to be the woman who gave me my first bikini wax(!). her skin is flawless–think porcelain doll with perfectly pink cheeks. and while some of it may be genetic, she’s also been diligent about taking good care of it and educating others on how to do the same. i invited her here to share some of her secrets on accessible, everyday ways we can (and should!) be taking care of our skin. take it away, seabron…
Since becoming a skin care therapist, I have loved learning about how we can keep our skin looking young without invasive procedures. A huge component of this is making sure we choose ingredients in our products that combat the very things that make our skin age. Here are five reasons why our skin ages and five all-star anti-aging ingredients you should look for when choosing your products.
1. free radicals || ingredient that works: green/white tea || Dermalogica Antioxidant Hydramist
Free radicals are unstable molecules that have lost an electron. To make up for the lost electron, they steal one from other nearby molecules leading to a cascade of oxidative damage that ultimately leads to early aging. It’s like an apple slice being left on a counter; over several hours we see it turn brown due to oxygen exposure. Antioxidants are able to stabilize free radicals by donating the missing electron to the molecule. Green and white teas have a huge concentration of polyphenols that quench free radicals.
2. slow cell renewal and turnover || ingredient that works: lactic acid || Philosophy Miracle Worker Miraculous Anti-Aging Lactic Acid Cleanser
We start to lose 1% of our collagen from our dermis (the deepest layer of skin) every year after age 30. In addition to that (as if it’s not sad enough) our cell turnover slows down. Slow cell turnover leads to a buildup of dead skin cells and gives us a dull lackluster appearance. Lactic acid is able to dissolve the “glue” that holds the dead cells together, effectively exfoliating them off. Lactic acid is also less irritating than other alpha-hydroxy acids (like glycolic acid) and inhibits melanin to reduce the appearance of age or sun spots.
3. slowed collagen synthesis || ingredient that works: retinol || Image Ageless Total Retinol A Crème
I like to use the mattress analogy when thinking about collagen. When we are young, our mattress is plump, has resistance and is even on the surface. As we age, collagen and elastin get cross-linked and production slows down resulting in a lumpy uneven mattress (think: wrinkles). Retinol is derived from Vitamin A and when applied topically, activates collagen-producing fibroblasts in our dermis.
4. dehydration || ingredient that works: hyaluronic acid || Dermae Hydrating Night Crème with Hyaluronic Acid
Dehydration is a simple lack of water in our skin. When our skin is dehydrated it may feel tight, rough and become easily irritated and inflamed. There are many people who think they have “sensitive skin” who are mistaking that uncommon skin condition for chronic dehydration. I see dehydrated skin in 4 out of 5 clients (this dry Colorado climate is partly to blame!) Hyaluronic Acid holds 1000 times its weight in water, plumping the deeper tissues in our dermis and keeping that hydration there. (editor’s note: i have the day creme pictured above. the night creme looks exactly the same. i didn’t catch it until publication and i’m not changing it so deal).
5. sun exposure || ingredient that works: sunscreen || CeraVe Broad Spectrum Face Lotion SPF 50
This. Is. So. Important. It does not matter what the weather is like or if you’re going to be inside all day, or if you think you don’t have a tendency to burn. You must wear sunscreen. Unfortunately, incidences of skin cancer are going up and it is our duty to pass on healthy sun habits to our friends, family and younger generations. Physical sunscreens use natural minerals (like zinc and titanium) to block and reflect UVA and UVB rays on the surface of the skin. Chemical sunscreens act as a sponge, absorbing rays and converting them to less damaging radiation. Chemical sunscreens are fine if tolerated well, but are more likely to irritate the skin and are not immediately active (they take about 20 minutes to start working). Whatever you choose, make sure it says “broad spectrum” and get out there and practice safe sun!
seabron works at m.pulse at the cherry creek. if your skin needs a pick-me-up, contact them for an appointment and request seabron!