All posts filed under: Storytelling

Easter Bathing: Slovak Easter Traditions To Help You Stay Healthy All Year

In Slovakia, Easter signals a lot more than the resurrection of Jesus. It is a day that symbolizes re-birth, fertility, and the welcoming of spring with health in mind. As is the case with a lot of Catholic holidays, Easter is a mix of christian and pagan traditions. Looking at the Slovak tradition of bathing in cold water and whipping/or spanking of women with branches on Easter, one cannot help but think of these rituals as something nature-worshipping celts and pagans might have done. It is these traditions that make Slovakia and Czech Republic special. I know what you are thinking. Whipping? Bathing? Allow me to explain. Here is how Slovaks and Czechs celebrate Easter. While Good Friday and Easter Sunday says Easter to most of the world, in Slovakia the celebration continues on Monday. Monday after Easter Sunday is a national holiday, and it is purely reserved for eating and socializing. Artisanal eggs get displayed on trees, in vases, and around the home. Carefully arranged plates of cheeses, sandwiches, ham, sweets, and more, await …

The Artist, The Writer & The Bavarian Philospher: Talking With Beatrix Ost

Was it the hair, the style, the otherworldliness, or the art? Beatirix Ost caught my eye and I had questions. This artist likes to wear many hats, but my admiration is not necessarily for the art (although it reflects everything she is), but for her ability to live a genuinely unapologetic life. Beatrix Ost (@beatrixost on Instagram) is an old world individual, one that does not conform to trends or society pressure. That being said, her wisdom and style seem to transcend all that. I image her fan demographic ranges in age. While I admit, I have not read any of her books, it is on my to do list. Her latest book, “The Philosopher’s Style”, further explores her artwork and storytelling abilities. As an artist and writer, who grew up in Central Europe, I feel that I can connect with Beatrix. Truthfully, I am inspired by a fellow old soul. The takeaway? Dare to be authentic, explore all of your artistic abilities, and never mind your age. There is much to be learned from …

Let’s have the “Wellness” and “Self-Care” Conversation

As the last weeks of summer slow down and so do our lives, I wanted to reflect and have the wellness and self-care conversation. For those who have always been a part of the wellness and healing community, this past year has been an interesting one to watch. While visiting with a number of beauty brands and accomplished artisans, holistic health sanctuaries and spas, the wellness and self-care conversation has always come up. When I am asked to have these conversations, my mind automatically goes back to my childhood and appreciation for all things green, natural and slower paced. Being a lifestyle blogger and beauty editor since 2006 and someone who grew up a part of my childhood in central Europe, living the wellness lifestyle has always been a given for me. Growing up in the mountains, hiking amongst untouched nature, watching my mother make healing salves and my father garden, makes me feel fortunate. It has showed me that wellness and self-care matters. This natural way of living did not need labeling. So why is …

Quarterly: Letter From The Editor “Kindness is My Religion”

BE KIND TO ONE ANOTHER BUT DON’T FORGET TO BE GENTLE AND KIND WITH YOURSELF One of the many reasons I started writing and created this website destination is kindness and urgency. Writing and creating has been a part of me since I was a little girl. I even art directed and wrote my own magazine when I was 11. My sisters were my only subscribers. The arts are important, especially for someone like me. I create to survive: it is my outlet for righting a wrong, for highlighting the beauty around us, for my own well-being and to put something out there that is genuine and has integrity. For these reasons and more, I choose to write about brands and subjects that make people feel good. I research brands, not always for their products, but also for the way they treat their employees and customers. If a brand builds its empire by mistreating others, I do not want any part of it. Of course, no one is perfect and people make mistakes, but I …

The Giving and Natural Creations

This article was originally published in 2009, on the Organic Spa Magazine blog. The Andean Collection is now Faire Collection. There is no better way to spread happiness than providing the opportunity for others to enrich their lives. The Andean jewelry collection, founded by the multi-talented Amanda Judge, is not only eco-conscious but is also a humanitarian effort. Amanda’s story and her collection started in Ecuador. Amanda holds a degree in International Law and Diplomacy, which she has decided to put to use by studying the survival strategies of women in extreme poverty. The study ended up being a path to a new life for both Amanda and the women of Northern Ecuador. The Andean Collection was born. How did you meet the women that you work with? AJ: I met the women of The Andean Collection when I was in Ecuador doing research for my Masters thesis, which was going to be on the survival strategies of rural indigenous women in the face of extreme poverty. To set up the project, I had to go …