3/29/13

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4 Foolproof Beauty Tips for Brides to Be

Perhaps one of the more difficult things to nail down when planning your wedding is your look. After all, it will live on in photos and videos.  If you are currently planning a wedding or if you are recently engaged, here are three solid beauty tips to consider when creating a perfect “look” for your big day.

We hope these tips help you look simply radiant on your wedding day ! Photo courtesy of Alleé Photography.

Plan ahead to look simply radiant on your wedding day! (photo by Alleé)

1. Choose a style that is comfortable for you. In her article “15 Wise Bridal Beauty Tips From Past Brides,” writer Sandy Linter advises brides not to stray too far from a look that is “them.” When it comes to looking gorgeous on your wedding day, Linter encourages brides to experiment with a variety of styles, but to ultimately choose one that makes them feel comfortable in their own skin. If a fancy up-do does not reflect your personality, for example, consider a classy look with your half half-up or left down. You want to be able to enjoy your day without having to worry about your hair, makeup, or dress.

2. Clearly communicate with your makeup artist about the look that you want.  To ensure that your makeup reflects the most beautiful and authentic version of you, use examples to share your expectations with your makeup artist up-front.  Collect photos from bridal magazines, Pinterest, or wedding websites, and bring these to your initial consultation.  If your makeup artist will be styling your bridal party as well, express what type of makeup you would like to see on them as well.  Adopting this approach should prevent awkwardness with your makeup artist and should also eliminate the time-consuming curve ball of everyone requiring full makeup re-dos during an already tight wedding-day timeline.

3. Opt for waterproof makeup. Speaking of makeup, in an article on theknot.com (a fabulous online wedding resource), makeup artist and hairstylist Allison Sammel advises women to choose waterproof makeup for their wedding day. Sammel maintains that many women make the mistake of assuming they won’t cry on their wedding day. To avoid this pitfall, she encourages women to use waterproof foundation, primer, eyeliner, and mascara.

4. Get a great night of sleep before your wedding day. Nothing will quell your natural, radiant beauty faster than a poor night of sleep prior to your wedding day. To help yourself relax before bed, do something that is calming for you. Whether that is a trip to the spa the day before your wedding, unwinding with a cup of tea, or writing out all of your thoughts before heading to bed, make an effort to relax. You want to wake up refreshed for your big day!

Your wedding day is just that–yours. We hope that these simple tips help you look naturally gorgeous for the day you say “I do.”

If you are planning a wedding or know somebody who is recently engaged, consider enlisting The Spa & Salon at Garden of the Gods Club to assist with your beauty needs. Whether you want full hair and makeup or a place to ease pre-wedding jitters, our Spa & Salon can help. Set against the stunning red rocks of Garden of the Gods Park, our Spa & Salon provides a serene environment to relax and rejuvenate. To learn more, please contact our Spa Concierge at 719.520.4988, or visit us online.

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3/26/13

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How to Prepare Your Garden for Summer

As the drab, gray colors of winter begin to give way to the vibrant colors of spring, now is a great time to begin thinking about your garden. Whether you enjoy growing flowers, vegetables, or other plants, you should begin preparing your garden now. To help you out, we sought out expert advice from Garden of the Gods Club’s horticulturist, Gary Schwieterman. Read on to take advantage of his helpful tips for getting your garden ready for spring and summer.

Garden of the Gods Club Horticulturist Gary Scwieterman holds a young plant that is ready to be transplanted.

Gary Schwieterman holds a young plant that is ready to be transplanted.

1. Fertilize early. “Your garden’s soil needs ample nutrients in order to produce healthy plants, fruits, veggies, or flowers,” Gary said. “Late March and early April are the best times to begin fertilizing the ground. I prefer peat moss or compost for gardens,” he continued, “and I suggest working it into the ground with a rototiller.”

2. Water your garden adequately. After you fertilize your garden, be sure to give it a few extra drinks of water. “Now is the time when bulb plants like tulips and daffodils start to come up,” Gary said. “In order to reach maximum growth, they need extra water. Water your garden once per month during the wintry months. As the weather gets warmer, water once a week,” he added. “Early morning is the best time to water. Once you start watering for the season, be sure to consistently water for the remainder of the season.”

Canna flowers are housed in Garden of the Gods Club's green house until they are ready to be planted.

Canna flowers are housed in our greenhouse until ready for planting.

3. Wait to plant most veggies until after Mother’s Day. “I think the majority of people are in too big a hurry to plant their vegetables,” Gary said. “To give your garden a fighting chance, I think it’s wise to wait until after Mother’s Day to plant items such as tomatoes and cucumbers,” he added. “There’s an old saying that works quite well for remembering what you can plant early, ‘plant your potatoes and peas on St. Patrick’s Day,’” he explained. “Generally, most other vegetables should wait until mid-May.”

4. Don’t forget about indoor plants. “If you enjoy houseplants, take the time to give them some extra TLC,” Gary said. “Now is a great time to prune plants to promote branching and fullness,” Gary continued. “You can also add additional water to houseplants to leach out any extra calcium that may have accumulated in the plant,” he added. “Other options for taking care of houseplants include adding fertilizer to their soil or giving them a gentle shower. The shower should feel like a gentle, cool rain; it will feel cool to your hand.”

Over the course of a year, the horticulture department at Garden of the Gods Club maintains nearly 22,000 plants! In addition to applying Gary’s tips, check out Colorado State University’s helpful timeline for when to plant certain vegetables along Colorado’s Front Range.

What are your own tips and tricks for gardening in Colorado?  Aspiring green thumbs want to know! Please share your ideas in the comment box below.  Enjoy the season!

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3/22/13

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5 Tips for Teaching Your Kids About Fitness

Childhood is a valuable, vulnerable time when memories are made and personalities are forged; it is a time like no other. Yet when obesity enters the equation, children are often forced to deal with problems such as increased risk of disease and social isolation. Although parents play a huge role in instilling healthy habits in their children, many parents are not sure where to start. To provide expert insight on how you can teach your children about health and fitness, we consulted with Lauralee Beerman, manager of The Sports Club at Garden of the Gods Club. As the mother of three (now adult) children, Lauralee shares below what worked well for her when trying to teach healthy habits to her kids.

Encourage your children to develop healthy habits by making fitness a family activity.

Help your children develop healthy habits by making fitness a family activity.

  1. Expose children to a variety of healthy foods. “It’s important not to label foods as ‘good’ or ‘bad’; instead, expose children to a wide range of healthy foods from an early age,” Lauralee advised. “By introducing them to many different healthy foods, they can decide which ones they like and which ones they don’t,” she added. “Also, I made a point not to designate junk food as off-limits. Instead, I allowed treats once in a while. When you make things totally off-limits, it sets the stage for children to have a negative relationship with food.”
  2. Encourage children to participate in physical activities that they enjoy. “I never forced my children to stay in sports or other physical activities that they didn’t genuinely enjoy,” Lauralee explained. “I encouraged them to follow their passions from an early age, even if those things weren’t passions of mine,” she continued. “For example, my daughter preferred dance classes and jumping on the trampoline over group sports, so I let her go for it! Each of my kids had their own niche. By promoting enjoyment over competition, your children will naturally gravitate toward the activities that best suit them.”
  3. Model healthy behaviors.  “Children are master imitators. They love to play copycat. It’s a bit scary, actually,” Lauralee said. “The best way you can teach your children about health and fitness is by consistently modeling healthy habits yourself,” she explained. “My kids grew up watching me work out consistently. I tried to eat healthfully as well. As my kids got older, they would come to the gym with me.”
  4. Make fitness a family activity. “It can be difficult to find time to spend together as a family. Instead of doing something sedentary, try to incorporate physical activity,” Lauralee said. “Take your family for a hike or a bike ride. If the weather’s bad, you can do something indoors like bowling. Even small amounts of physical activity make a huge difference.”
  5. Be a guide for your children.  Rather than harshly forcing your children to eat certain foods or participate is specific fitness activities, Lauralee maintains that it’s important to be there as a guide. “An appreciation for health and fitness should be developed internally, so that children grow up to become passionate about taking care of themselves,” Lauralee said. “This care will funnel over into other areas of their lives,” she added. “If healthy activities are forced, children will eventually rebel against them.”

When it comes to teaching children about health and fitness, consistency is important. Encourage your children to participate in physical activities that they genuinely enjoy, and expose them to a variety of healthful foods. The upcoming spring and summer seasons at Garden of the Gods Club are full of opportunities for children, youth, and families to enjoy healthy activities.  From junior golf, junior tennis, and youth day camp programs, to swimming lessons, a family pool, family dinners, and other events, summer at the Club is a great time to cultivate healthy habits.

Interested in learning more about your place in the Garden of the Gods Club community? If so, please contact Membership Director Tracey Kalata at 719.520.4980 or tkalata@ggclub.com.

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3/19/13

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Get Organized for Spring: 3 Expert Spring Cleaning Tips

By the time the spring season finally arrives, many of us are ready to dust the “cobwebs” from the corners of our homes, retire our winter clothing, and enjoy the longer days. To help make your transition from winter to spring a seamless one, we consulted Garden of the Gods Club housekeeping director Krystyna Pudlo for her thoughts on effective spring cleaning. “Taking the time to clean and get organized helps me to mentally prepare for a new season,” Krystyna said. “It’s a great way to stop, take a breath, and get things in order.”  Read on for Krystyna’s expert advice on beautifying your home for spring.

  1. Make a list of “focus” areas. Spring cleaning can seem overwhelming. To gain some perspective, Krystyna suggests making a list of the largest items that you would like to tackle. “When I think about spring cleaning, I try to think of areas that I wouldn’t normally clean on a regular basis,” Krystyna explained. “For example, I have my rugs cleaned, I organize my kitchen cabinets and throw away any expired food, and I try to clean the baseboards of my home,” she continued. “Spring cleaning is about getting to areas that may be neglected during the remainder of the year.” Other project ideas include packing away winter clothes, cleaning all of the windows in your home, deep-cleaning your car, polishing furniture, or sprucing up your home with some new art, flowers, or other décor.
  2. Put the finishing touches on your spring cleaning by adding some freshly-cut flowers to your home.

    Fresh flowers welcome spring

  3. Have fun. Krystyna maintains that spring cleaning should not be stressful. “Take an afternoon [or other time of day] and put on your favorite music,” Krystyna said. “Don’t rush. Take your time. Spring cleaning can be incredibly therapeutic. Just have fun with it and make it as detailed as you want it to be.”
  4. Spruce up your yard. “When I do my spring cleaning, I get so excited to have plants and flowers out on my patio again,” Krystyna said. “I use this time to get out my flower pots, decorate, and tend to my lawn,” she continued. “There is something so rejuvenating about enjoying flowers and plants during the spring and summer seasons.” Even if you don’t have a large yard or live in an apartment, you can add a fresh touch of spring by placing a plant in a window sill or a bundle of freshly cut flowers on your kitchen table.

Are you ready for a “fresh breath” of spring air? Taking time to do a bit of spring cleaning can help you enjoy the season with new fervor while helping you prepare for summer. Do you have any other particularly helpful spring cleaning tips? If so, we encourage you to share them in the comments box below. We hope that you thoroughly enjoy the upcoming spring season!

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3/15/13

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How to Plan a Memorable Mother/Daughter Spa Day

The bond between mothers, daughters, and granddaughters can be a very special one that requires time to cultivate and grow. One way to create cherished memories with your daughter is by treating her to a relaxing and rejuvenating spa day.  Below are some simple tips from Jeanne Smith, spa manager at Garden of the Gods Club, on how to plan a memorable spa experience with your daughter or granddaughter.

Treating your daughter or granddaughter to a spa date is a great way to make memories!

Make memories by treating your daughter or granddaughter to a spa day.

  1. Ask about the spa’s child policies. If your daughter or granddaughter is a minor, be sure to call ahead of time to clarify any age restrictions that the spa might have. Although most spas welcome mommy/daughter dates, some spas may have rules about children receiving spa services or using spa amenities.  If you have a small child, ask ahead of time whether or not the spa would be willing to paint a toddler’s nails. In many cases, spas and nail salons will only charge a minimal fee to polish a small child’s nails. “When my granddaughters were only two and three years old, I would bring them along to get manicures,” Jeanne explained. “The nail technicians would just paint their nails rather than giving them a full manicure,” she explained. “Now that they’re older, we still enjoy going to get our nails manicured together.”
  2. Make a day of it. Why end the fun when your spa service is over? Extend the spa outing into an entire day of fun by taking your daughter or granddaughter out for lunch or dinner afterward. Consider seeing a fun movie or enjoying some shopping. Don’t forget to take photos to document your special day together.
  3. Avoid multitasking. In her article “How to Plan the Sweetest Mother-Daughter Spa Night,” Amber Lipson explains the importance of focusing solely on your daughter (or granddaughter). Lipton advises moms to resist the temptation to answer any texts or emails that may pop up on their phones. Give your daughter the attention that she deserves.
  4. Invite aunts or other close friends. You may also want to invite other important women such as aunts or close girlfriends. Aunts are often like “second moms,” while close friends can bring an added dimension of fun to the day. The girls will enjoy having time to pamper themselves while catching up on each other’s lives.

We hope that you and your daughter or granddaughter will schedule time to be with each other while enjoying some relaxation at the spa.  Are you looking for a great spa for special days “away?”  Consider visiting The Spa and Salon at Garden of the Gods Club. To schedule your manicure or pedicure, please contact the spa concierge at 719.520.4988 or ggcspa@ggclub.com or request an appointment online. We look forward to helping you create treasured memories with your daughter or granddaughter!

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