Time for Medieval Thymes!

Posted by Maria on September 13, 2017 under Aromatherapy, Cruising into Wellness store, Gift Ideas, Green Living, Photo gallery, Recipes, Seasonal, Self-Care, Stress Management and Relaxation, Uncategorized, Wellness | Be the First to Comment

by Maria Koropecky

As many of you know, I’m passionate about wellness and I love helping people be proactive about their health. To further support my clients with their health and wellness, I’ve opened an online store called Cruising into Wellness.

Please tell your friends about cruisingintowellness.com and if you’d like, make a purchase and I can bring your order to you at your next mobile spa appointment.

Also, for the month of September, 2017, the entire Medieval Thymes collection is on sale and here’s the story behind this unique collection.

As the urban legend goes, during the time of the plague in the 1300’s, four thieves created a secret recipe to protect themselves. Also known as Thieves Remedy, the essential oils used have many benefits.

Medieval Thymes collection

Medieval Thymes collection

Although their motives weren’t at all altruistic, (because they were pillaging), the thieves still managed to do some good for the world by creating a recipe that would be passed down from generation to generation, helping countless people with their health and wellness along the way.

I often wonder how the medieval thieves came up with this concoction in the first place back in the 14th century. I can just picture them cooking up the herbs and spices by day and then going around town stealing by night.

Apparently, when they were finally caught, the court gave them leniency if they gave up their recipe that was keeping them from catching the Plague even though they were constantly exposed to it. It looks like they “borrowed” the practice of wearing this aromatic perfume, so to speak, from the physicians of the day, who were doing something similar.

Anyway, the essential oils in this legendary recipe include Clove Bud, Lemon, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Thyme, and Myrrh, and together they have a comforting, medicinal aroma.

Personally, with or without this colourful history, I think it’s a good idea to stock up on our Medieval Thymes products, especially since we’re starting a new school year and are heading into the winter months.

And…right now…

the entire Medieval ThymesTM collection is on SALE! Save 15% on Medieval Thymes until September 30, 2017.

Visit www.cruisingintowellness.com and place your order today!

We have 4 products in our Medieval Thymes collection:

1. MEDIEVAL THYMES PURE MIX: Add 5-6 drops of Medieval Thymes Pure Mix to a diffuser. Ideal for inhalation or diffusion.

Medieval Thymes Pure Mix Essential Oil blend

Medieval Thymes Pure Mix Essential Oil blend

2. MEDIEVAL THYMES BLEND DROPPER: Massage a generous layer of Medieval Thymes Remedy Blend to the nape of the neck, bottoms of feet, on wrists, or distressed areas daily.

Medieval Thymes blend dropper

Medieval Thymes blend dropper

3. MEDIEVAL THYMES BLEND ROLL-ON: Roll-on Medieval Thymes Remedy Blend to the nape of the neck, bottoms of feet, on wrists, or to distressed areas daily.

Medieval Thymes blend roll-on

Medieval Thymes blend roll-on

4. MEDIEVAL THYMES SPRAYS: Use daily. Spray above head while breathing deeply. Spray on hands, chest, and on bottoms of feet. Use as a room deodorizer.

Medieval Thymes spray

Medieval Thymes spray

This is the perfect time for Medieval Thymes! Contact me if you have any questions or would like to make a purchase. And let me know what you think about my new store, cruisingintowellness! Be Well, Maria

Survey Says 48% Have Missed Work Because Of Stress-Related Illness

Posted by Maria on April 5, 2017 under Creating Wellness ebook, Life Coaching, Meditation, Mobile Spa, Newspapers and Newsworthy, Self-Care, Sleep, Stress Management and Relaxation, Uncategorized, Wellness | Be the First to Comment

by Maria Koropecky, Homespunspa owner

I have a Workplace Wellness Survey on Survey Monkey where I’m asking people about stress.

Because April is National Stress Awareness Month, I thought I’d analyze the results of my survey, which has been active since 2013, though I haven’t managed to collect that many responses. Although I don’t claim that this is a scientifically-accurate survey, I still think it has some merit.

Most people report that they are experiencing varying degrees of the following symptoms of stress:

  1. Headaches / Migraines
  2. Muscle Tightness/ Back Ache/ Stiff Neck
  3. Insomnia or Sleeping Too Much
  4. Sleep is Disturbed or Unrefreshing / Nightmares
  5. Lack of Concentration / Fatigue / Lethargy
  6. Proneness to Errors
  7. Acne Breakouts
  8. Nail Biting / Hair Chewing
  9. Significant Hair Loss
  10. Depression / Anxiety
  11. Anger / Resentment
  12. On the Verge of Crying / Can’t Stop Crying
  13. Confusion / Memory Loss
  14. Desire to “Run Away”
  15. Chain Cigarette Smoking
  16. Drinking too much Alcohol / Drinking Alone / Abusing Drugs
  17. Poor Judgement
  18. Menstrual Irregularities
  19. Overeating / Under-eating
  20. Diarrhea / Constipation / Nausea
  21. Rapid Weight Gain / Weight Loss
  22. Swearing / Irritability / Impatience
  23. Feeling Overwhelmed
  24. No Sense of Enjoyment / No Sense of Humour
  25. Problems in Relationships
  26. Over-Indulging
  27. Reckless Behaviour
  28. Often Get a Cold / the Flu / Allergies
  29. Accident Proneness / Clumsiness

Not surprising.

By the way, the symptom of Muscle Tightness, Back Ache, and Stiff Neck appears to be the most common for this group.

I’m noticing that most people, including me, tolerate their stress symptoms and keep going as if “not feeling great” is normal. It’s like we’re used to our headaches and sleepless nights and allergies and tense relationships and irritability and however else stress shows up for us. It’s just the same old, same old stress everyday.

I understand that kind of stress, but for some people, their stress has escalated into more serious circumstances. Let me direct you to question #4.

Q4: Have you suffered from a stress-related illness within the last 1 to 2 years and have missed work as a result?

Have you suffered from a stress-related illness within the last 1 to 2 years and have missed work as a result?

I am truly surprised that out of the 27 responses to this question so far, 13 people said “Yes,” they have missed work in the last 1 to 2 years because of a stress-related illness, while 14 said  ”No.”

Let me repeat that:

Survey Says 48% Have Missed Work Because Of Stress-Related Illness.

That’s right, almost half of the people surveyed have missed work because of an illness that resulted from chronic stress. I think that’s significant.

It sounds to me that going on stress leave is fairly common.

How would you answer that question? You’re welcome to add your two cents and fill out the 10-question,  Workplace Wellness Survey on Survey Monkey any time.

In the survey, I also ask, “In your opinion, in the last 5 years, has stress in the workplace decreased, stayed the same, increased, or you haven’t noticed one way or the other.” In this case, 50% of the respondents feel or perceive that stress has increased in the workplace over the last five years.

It seems to me that stress is running rampant in the workplace. What does that say about our culture, about our economy? I’ll let you draw your own conclusions.

In the meantime, if you’re noticing how stress is affecting your own health and/or your bottom line and you want to do something about it, please contact me, Maria. I might be able to help you.

As a coach, healer, and author, I show people who are struggling with stress, how to relax and have peace of mind and I’d be happy to assist with your Workplace Wellness Program. We have options!

Option 1: Chair Massages

Remember how I mentioned that Muscle Tightness, Back Ache, and Stiff Neck were on the top of the list of symptoms associated with stress? When you hire our team of massage therapists for your workplace wellness program or special events, not only will you show your thoughtful appreciation for your staff’s hard work, your employees will experience:
  • relief from muscle tension;
  • lower levels of the stress hormone, “cortisol;”
  • less stress and fatigue;
  • increased mental alertness;
  • improved creative problem solving skills; and
  • fewer sick days
…which translates into increased productivity and higher profits for your organization. It’s win-win.

Option 2: Have an Office Spa Party

As a mobile spa, Homespunspa can provide mini spa services in the workplace. We offer mini mani’s, mini pedi’s, mini facials, mini massages, and more. Each service lasts around 30 minutes so everyone can have a turn, and you can mix and match the services however you like. Although the spa treatments are very relaxing, our clients say they go back to work feeling more refreshed and energized. Happy and relaxed employees are productive employees.

Option 3: Read my Creating Wellness Ebook

In 2015, I wrote an ebook called, Creating Wellness.

I wrote Creating Wellness because I believe many illnesses are preventable and it all comes down to a person’s ability to relax. I’ve observed that high levels of stress are lurking behind the scenes of many illnesses and managing stress is a big piece of the healthy lifestyle puzzle.

Creating Wellness is a quick read, has lots of cheery photos, and contains some practical tips on how to relax and manage stress, including Mindfulness and Wellness Coaching.

I can certainly create a talk or program around my Creating Wellness ebook and we can use the ebook as a supporting document and bonus for participating in your Workplace Wellness Program.

By offering the Creating Wellness ebook as a gift to your staff, the ebook can be a tangible take-away for the participants in your Workplace Wellness Program that they can refer to for life. Amazon has a handy feature called “Give as a Gift” which you can use to send someone a Kindle ebook via email, which will include a redemption code.

Option 4: Hire a Wellness Coach for your Staff

Coaching allows us to become the best version of ourselves and gives each member of the team, the power to make the best decisions for themselves and the people they work for. It’s also a safe place for people to express themselves which is highly restorative.

With my thoughtful questions and active listening skills, I’ll help staff members, either in a group or one to one,

  • get clarity about where they’re heading,
  • uncover what matters most to them so they focus more on their goals and not distractions,
  • clear out the blocks that may be in the way,
  • get to a place of acceptance,
  • become more self-aware,
  • trust their intuition, and
  • take action steps,
  • so they feel OK, safe, enough, and above all, empowered to move forward.

Ultimately, I will deliver results including fewer requests for stress leave.

Let me know by email at homespunspa at shaw dot ca if you think your staff and clients might find the topic of stress management and self-care interesting and I’d be happy to give a talk, bring my crew to provide mobile spa services, and offer my wellness coaching services. And even if you don’t live in Victoria, BC, that’s OK, we’re mobile, we travel!

I’m open to hearing your ideas and to design a program that will be of value to you and your staff. Let’s work together to take stress and drudgery out of the workplace.

Is Self-Care Selfish?

Posted by Maria on February 8, 2016 under Life Coaching, Nutrition, Photo gallery, Pop-Psychology, Seasonal, Self-Care, Stress Management and Relaxation, TV Shows & Movies, Uncategorized, Weight Management, Wellness | 3 Comments to Read

by Maria Koropecky, wellness coach @ Homespunspa

Is self-care selfish? No, it isn’t. But for some reason, many of us feel uncomfortable about putting ourselves first on our own list and taking the time to take care of ourselves. We’ve got to turn this thinking around because at the end of the day, if we don’t continue to nurture our own body, mind, and spirit, we won’t have anything more to give to anyone else.

There’s a big difference in attitude between selfishness and self-care. Being selfish is about focussing solely on one’s own interests, agenda, gains, and superiority without concern for anyone else’s needs or preferences.

Self-care is about giving yourself attention, kindness, and nourishment so you can be at peace with yourself and be there and be present for the people you love.

Selfish people don’t think about giving to others. It just doesn’t occur to them.

There are also people who want to give and are very generous — they’ll give the shirt off their back, so to speak, — but they don’t have enough for themselves. That approach is misguided also. If you have an extra shirt and you’re not using it, than that’s one thing, but if you only have one shirt and you give yours to someone who already has a shirt, leaving yourself to face the elements without any cover, than there’s a problem. Leaving yourself with some measley crumbs or with nothing at all is not what it’s all about. Sadly, people do this all of the time because they don’t feel like they’re enough.

Use fountains as reminders

Mystical poet Rumi said, "Never give from the depths of your well but from your overflow."To me, being enough is about having enough to share and giving from my abundance.

Mystical poet Rumi said, “Never give from the depths of your well but from your overflow.” I strongly agree.

Giving generously is at it’s best when it comes from your abundance, like from the interest in your bank account. If you have extra of anything, by all means, give it to someone who will appreciate it. For example, everyone has an excess of hugs and smiles to give and I’m sure everyone has at least one talent that they can share with others. Give those freely and with joy. Give from the place of having enough and that you are enough already.

However, if you don’t have it to begin with, things like time, money, interest, or energy, don’t try to scrape the bottom of the barrel and think you’re being helpful. In other words, fountains can’t fount if there’s nothing for them to draw from.

My point is, we’ve got to fill up our own well and keep it overflowing and fill our own needs first before we can give and help others. That’s why I’m a wellness coach and that’s where self-care comes in. Taking care of ourselves keeps our wells topped up. (Notice how the words “wells” and “wellness” are related). :)

Another Bonus From Self-Care

When people see you taking care of yourself and treating yourself with kindness, they will treat you well in return. If you carry yourself in a healthy way and believe you’re worth it, others will mirror that back to you and will be more friendly towards you. Also, others may even start to model your example (people like your kids, friends, co-workers) which will improve your relationships and then the idea of self-care will travel throughout the world, making the world a better place for us all.

How I Practice Self-Care

In November of 2015, I had the idea to make an appointment with my doctor to get a check up. I hadn’t seem him for over a year because of the nature of my mobile spa appointment schedule and I just didn’t want to.

My doctor’s appointment went fairly smoothly and then he sent me to the lab to get some bloodwork and other tests done. As I was going out of my way to do all of those extra tests, I realized I was doing all of this for me. I was showing myself that I care about myself and I matter to me. That was a huge breakthrough.

I haven’t heard from my doctor since then so I’m assuming all is well, thank goodness, and I’m planning to continue to make my health a priority.

As Count Tyron Rugen said in The Princes Bride, “Get your rest. If you haven’t got your health, you haven’t got anything.”

After that doctor’s appointment, I made a wholehearted decision to be healthier. I’ve taken an indefinite break from drinking wine and I’ve revamped my diet so that I’m not eating desserts or snacks and since then I’ve lost almost 25 pounds at a rate of 2 pounds or so a week. I feel great and I feel like I’m a better wellness coach as a result. Taking care of myself is having a ripple effect to the people around me and is creating better conditions in my life in general.

I’m so glad I was inspired to take my own wellness to the next level.

Ideas for Self-Care

If you’re looking for ideas of what you can do to practice self-care, have a look at this Calendar of Wellness and Health Awareness Days I’ve compiled.

Also, consider:

  • going to the doctor like I did
  • going to the dentist
  • getting your vision checked
  • getting your hearing checked
  • cooking your own wholesome meals and bringing your lunch to work
  • going on a wellness walk through your neighbourhood
  • writing in a journal
  • going to the spa for the day
  • talking to a wellness coach like me

You can pick a different theme every month. Just do something daily to tell yourself you care because you really do matter. Start by thanking yourself for coming this far already. I promise your days will be brighter if you take the time to practice self-care as often as possible.

Here’s a Calendar of Wellness & Health Awareness Days in 2016

Posted by Maria on February 1, 2016 under 31 Blog Posts in 31 Days, Aromatherapy, Ayurveda & Elemental Nature, Bath and Body, Books, Magazines, Music, Creating Wellness ebook, Dating, Dear Homespunspa, Energy Healing, Esthetics School, Face, Facials, Fashion, Feet, Fitness, Gift Ideas, Green Living, Hair, Hands and Nails, Home spa, Homespunspa, Homespunspa Wellness Tour, How to throw a home spa pajama party the Homespunspa way book, Humour, Ingredients, Life Coaching, Manicures, Massages, Meditation, Mobile Spa, Newspapers and Newsworthy, Nutrition, Pedicures, Pets, Photo gallery, Pop-Psychology, Recipes, Seasonal, Self-Care, Skin Care, Sleep, Spa Party, Spa Review, Spa and Sleep Dictionary, Spirituality, Stress Management and Relaxation, Supernatural Spa on VoiceAmerica, TV Shows & Movies, Travel, Uncategorized, Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games, Weight Management, Wellness, Yoga | Read the First Comment

by Maria Koropecky, Wellness Coach

Here’s a calendar of Wellness and Health Awareness Days, Weeks, and Months for Canadians in 2016. Hopefully, these health promotion days will inspire you to practice self-care throughout the seasons. (For a deeper look at why self-care is so important, please read my blog post “Is Self-Care Selfish?”

On occasion, I’ve also included links to blog posts I’ve written about practicing on-going self-care that tie into these events and to my Homespunspa Mobile Spa and wellness coaching services. I’ve just realized how much writing I’ve been doing over the last few years! :)

As I’m compiling this list, I’m counting my blessings and I’m really grateful for my good health. With these special days and holidays as door openers, there are literally hundreds of ways we can all reach out to the people around us and celebrate life together.

Please visit Health Canada for active links to the websites of the health-related organizations. Also, if any of these organizations resonate strongly with you, consider volunteering, donating money, or participating in their events. As you can see, there are lots of needs to fill in this world, so help where you can (especially if you’re looking for your life’s purpose) to make the world a better place for all of us.

P.S. #1: As you read this list, you might find yourself saying, “There’s a day for that?” more than once. To answer your question, yes, yes, there is. Thank you to all of the creative and caring people out there who have worked so hard to make these dates official on local, national, and international calendars.

P.S. #2: I’d really love it if you’d share these blog posts via social media with your friends, family, co-workers, and clients. Thank you in advance.

P.S. #3: If you know of a special health- and wellness-related day, week, or month that I haven’t mentioned, please leave a comment and let us know about it and I’ll update the list.

P.S. #4: If you have a wellness blog like mine, here’s a editorial calendar with tons of ideas of what you can write about over the course of the year. You’re welcome!

Wellness Oasis12 Months of Wellness and Health Awareness Days

In January, we have…

  • Alzheimer Awareness Month
  • Birthflowers of the Month include: Carnation, Snowdrop
  • Birthstones of the Month include: Emerald, Garnet, Rose Quartz
  • Cervical Cancer Awareness Month
  • Hot Tea Month (Tea Association of Canada) — Please see my blog post, “Less Caffeine is a Sleeper’s Dream.”
  • Human Trafficking Awareness Month
  • National Bath Safety Month (U.S.)
  • National Blood Donor Month
  • National Hobby Month (U.S.)
  • National Oatmeal Month (U.S.) — Please read my blog post, “Orange, Coconut & Cinnamon Cookie Recipe”
  • National Soup Month (U.S.)
  • National Train Your Dog Month (U.S.)
  • Walk Your Pet Month — Please read my blog post, “Highlights from my dog-sitting retreat to White Rock.”
  • New Year’s Day on January 1st — Please read my blog post, “Happy New Rear!”
  • Polar Bear Swim on January 1st
  • World Hypnotism Day on January 4th — Please read my blog post, “What is a Holistic Practioner?”
  • Clean Off Your Desk Day on January 11th
  • Human Trafficking Awareness Day on January 11th
  • National Rubber Ducky Day (U.S.) on January 13th
  • National Dress Up Your Pet Day (U.S.) on January 14th
  • SHE Day (600 Women talk business and leadership in Winnipeg, MB) on January 15th
  • Colour Days!!! Rainbow Day (let these colours inspire you throughout the day) (public Facebook Group) on January 17th
  • Ditch Your New Year’s Resolutions Day on January 17th — Please read my blog post, “Remember Your New Year’s Resolutions?”
  • National Non-Smoking Week from January 17th to January 23rd — Please see my blog post, “Is 2016 Your Year to Quit Smoking?”
  • National Popcorn Day (U.S.) on January 19th
  • Weedless Wednesday on January 20th
  • National Hugging Day on January 21st
  • National Answer Your Cat’s Question Day (U.S.) on January 22nd
  • Change a Pet’s Life Day on January 24th
  • Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day on January 25th
  • Family Literacy Day on January 27th — Please buy my Creating Wellness ebook on Amazon and read my blog post, “Sharing a Tip from my Creating Wellness Ebook on how to Sleep Better.”
  • International Lego Day on January 28th
  • Women’s Right to Vote in Canada 100th Anniversary on January 28th.

In February, we have…

  • Birthflowers of the Month include: Primrose, Violet
  • Birthstones of the Month include: Amethyst, Bloodstone, Moonstone, Onyx — Please read my blog post, “Cheers to the Chi Machine.”
  • Heart Health Month
  • National Cherry Month (U.S.) — Please read my blog post, “Top off your day with a cherry.”
  • Psychology Month — Please read my blog post, “How to feel a sense of wholeness within.”
  • Eating Disorders Awareness Week from February 1st to February 7th
  • Groundhog Day on February 2nd
  • Winter Walk Day on February 3rd — Please read my blog post, “Walking in a Winter Wonderland.”
  • World Cancer Day on February 4th
  • International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation on February 6th
  • White Cane Week (for the blind and vision-impaired community) from February 7th to February 13th
  • Chinese New Year Day of the Red Monkey Year on February 8th
  • Family Day in BC on February 8th
  • Sexual and Reproductive Health Awareness Day on February 12th
  • Valentine’s Day on February 14th — Please read my blog post, “Tips for Lips.”
  • International Flirting Week from February 14th to February 20th
  • Family Day in AB, SK, ON on February 15th
  • Westminster Kennel Club Annual Dog Show on February 15th and February 16th — Please read my blog post, “Highlights from my dog-sitting retreat to White Rock.”
  • Colour Days!!! Pink Day (let this colour inspire you throughout the day) (public Facebook Group) on February 17th
  • Random Acts of Kindness Day on February 17th
  • Love your Pet Day on February 20th
  • Walking the Dog Day on February 22nd
  • Tennis Day on February 23rd
  • Pink Shirt Day (anti-bullying movement) on February 24th
  • Oscar Sunday on February 28th — Please see my blog post, “SPARTY! So Glamourous!”
  • Floral Design Day on February 28th
  • National Science Day on February 28th
  • Leap Day on February 29th

In March, we have…

In April, we have…

In May, we have…

  • Birthflowers of the Month include: Hawthorne, Lily of the Valley
  • Birthstones of the Month include: Agate, Beryl, Chrysoprase, Emerald, Saffier
  • Celiac Awareness Month — Please read my blog post, “How to get rid of rash under breasts.”
  • Cystic Fibrosis Month
  • Food Allergy Awareness Month — Please see my blog post, “Can’t Have your Dairy and Yogurt Too?”
  • Foot Health Awareness Month — Please read my blog post, “It’s Footbath Friday.”
  • Hepatitis Awareness Month
  • Huntington’s Disease Awareness Month
  • MedicAlert Month
  • Multiple Sclerosis Month
  • National Hemochromatosis Awareness Month (Iron Overload)
  • National Pet Month (U.S.)
  • National Physiotherapy Month
  • National Skin Cancer Awareness Month (U.S.) — Please read my blog post, “Mountains or Molehills?”
  • Speech and Hearing Awareness Month
  • Vision Health Month
  • Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanups from March 1st to July 31st — Please read my blog post, “Clean Up Crew Heads to Gonzales Bay Beach.”
  • Executive Coaching Day on May 1st
  • Lyme Disease Awareness Day on May 1st
  • National Hospice Palliative Care Week from May 1st to May 7th
  • National Pet Week (U.S.) from May 1st to May 7th
  • Olympic Torch Relay for the Rio 2016 Games begins in Brasilia on May 3rd — Please see my blog post, “Olympics Day 1 and Homespunspa Was There!”
  • Walk So Kids Can Talk (event for Kids Help Phone) on May 3rd
  • World Asthma Day on May 3rd
  • World Press Freedom Day on May 3rd — Please read my blog post, “Homespunspa is Featured in Spa Life Magazine.”
  • May the Fourth Be With You Day (National Star Wars Day) on May 4th
  • Melanoma Monday on May 4th — Please read my blog post, “Mountains or Molehills?”
  • National Orange Juice Day on May 4th — Please read my blog post, “Put your feet up — home spa masque recipe for your good ol’ feet.”
  • Cinco de Mayo on May 5th
  • National Day of Prayer (U.S.) on May 5th
  • Save Lives: Clean Your Hands (WHO’s global annual call to action for health workers) on May 5th — Please read my blog post, “Washing Dishes — Good Clean Fun.”
  • World Pulmonary Hypertension Day on May 5th — Please read my blog post, “Do you have Insomnia?”
  • International No Diet Day on May 6th
  • National Tourist Appreciation Day (U.S.) on May 6th
  • Space Day on May 6th
  • HerbDay on May 7th — Please read my blog post, “Sage: A Scent for the Season.”
  • Join Hands Day (dedicated to bringing a union between the older & younger generations) on May 7th — Please read my blog post, “We Love Referrals! :)
  • National Babysitters’ Day (U.S.) on May 7th
  • World Labyrinth Day on May 7th — Please read my blog post, “Find Peace of Mind As You Walk a Labyrinth.”
  • Mental Health Week from May 2nd to May 8th — Please read my blog post, “There’s no crying in baseball.”
  • Mother’s Day on May 8th — Please read my blog post, “Give the Gift of Homespunspa Mobile Spa this Mother’s Day.”
  • White Lotus Day (encouraging meditation) on May 8th
  • World Red Cross Day on May 8th
  • Naturopathic Medicine Week from May 9th to May 15th — Please read my blog post, “I’m going on a Wellness Tour.”
  • National Nursing Week from May 9th to May 16th
  • Sun Awareness Week (U.K.) from May 9th to May 16th — Please read my blog post, “Ask Maria about Aveda.”
  • International Awareness Day for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, Fibromyalgia and Multiple Chemical Sensitivity on May 12th
  • International Nursing Day on May 12th
  • International Hummus Day on May 13th
  • Friday the 13th on May 13th, 2016 — Please see my blog post, “Are you a Superstitious Sleeper?”
  • International Migratory Bird Day on May 14th
  • International Coaching Week (ICW) (International Coaching Federation) from May 16th to May 22nd — Please read my blog post, “How to use the Acceptance Factor to Shift Subconscious Beliefs.”
  • Colour Days!!! Turquoise/Teal Day (let this colour inspire you throughout the day) (public Facebook Group) on May 17th
  • International Day Against Homophobia on May 17th
  • World Hypertension Day on May 17th
  • International Museum Day on May 18th
  • World Autoimmune Arthritis Day on May 20th
  • National Learn to Swim Day on May 21st
  • World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development on May 21st
  • Paramedic Services Week from May 22nd to May 28th
  • Victoria Day on May 23rd — Please read my blog post, “Victoria is the Fashion Capital of Canada.”
  • Sunscreen Day on May 27th
  • Amnesty International Day on May 28th
  • International Jazz Day on May 28th
  • National Multiple Births Awareness Day on May 28th
  • World No-Tobacco Day on May 31st
  • Bike to Work Week BC from May 30th to June 5th

In June, we have…

In July, we have…

  • Birthflowers of the Month include: Delphinium, Larkspur, Water Lily
  • Birthstones of the Month include: Carnelian, Ruby
  • National Blueberry Month (U.S.)
  • Personal Health Month — Please see my blog post, “Stay Cool as a Cucumber this Summer.”
  • Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanups from March 1st to July 31st — Please read my blog post, “Clean Up Crew Heads to Gonzales Bay Beach.”
  • Canada Day on July 1st — Please read my blog post, “My Pick for the #1 Spa Ingredient Native to Canada (2014)”
  • Independence Day (U.S.) on July 4th
  • International Kissing Day on July 6th
  • World Chocolate Day on July 7th
  • World Population Day on July 11th
  • National Nude Day on July 14th
  • Colour Days!!! Blue Day (let this colour inspire you throughout the day) (public Facebook Group) on July 17th
  • Cousins Day on July 24th
  • International Self-Care Day (ISF) on July 24th — Please read my blog post, “Is Self-Care Selfish?”
  • Parents Day on July 24th
  • Aunt and Uncle Day on July 26th
  • World Hepatitis Day on July 28th
  • Color Me Rad 5K Run (Vancouver) on July 30th
  • International Day of Friendship on July 30th — Please see my blog post, “Checklist for a Successful Spa Party.”

In August, we have…

In September, we have…

In October, we have…

In November, we have…

In December, we have…

I’m Going on a Wellness Tour

Posted by Maria on October 26, 2012 under Books, Magazines, Music, Esthetics School, Fashion, Fitness, Gift Ideas, Green Living, Homespunspa Wellness Tour, Humour, Mobile Spa, Newspapers and Newsworthy, Nutrition, Self-Care, Spa and Sleep Dictionary, TV Shows & Movies, Travel, Uncategorized, Weight Management, Wellness | 2 Comments to Read

by Maria Koropecky, Homespunspa owner

“The Road to Wellness is up the road and around the corner” was the lead in an article I wrote in 1998 when I was a reporter for the Peninsula News Review. My assignment was to interview a Naturopathic Doctor who had just opened a wellness clinic in Saanichton. At that time, I wasn’t as concerned about health and wellness as I am today (aah… “youth is wasted on the young…” as the saying goes) so I didn’t take advantage of what the clinic had to offer. But now, looking back, (I can still remember the long, white, billowing curtains in the treatment room), I think my conversation with the Naturopath and my visit to his clinic may have had more of an influence on me than I realized because within a couple of years of that meeting, I opened Homespunspa Enterprises, and have been on the road to wellness ever since.

Now, 12 years later, after going back to school to become an esthetician and adding a mobile spa to my business, I’ve come to a new stretch of road. Dr. Oksana Sawiak, who is a friend of my mother’s from childhood and also a holistic dentist (retired), has graciously invited me to spend some time with her in her new Integrative Wellness & Detox Centre, youwell.ca, in Norval, Ontario. Dr. Sawiak is a frontrunner in the dentistry field and throughout her 30+ year career, has focused on mercury-free/biological dentistry and is now delivering lectures on holistic dentistry, non-surgical gum treatment, pain control, hypnosis, and detoxification, etc.

I can’t wait to learn everything I can from her and her colleagues so I can transfer my new knowledge about this super-big topic of wellness to my readers and customers. I’ll be calling on my writing skills from my aforementioned journalism days and will be making regular updates on my blog about what I’m learning so everybody benefits.

I’ve already purchased my plane ticket and will be leaving Victoria in mid November. I’ve decided to call my adventure to the Toronto area, the Homespunspa Wellness Tour 2012. If you’d like to help support me while I’m on my wellness tour, (and I’d really appreciate this :) ) please buy a t-shirt or knick-knack from my special collection in my Café Press store. If you ask me, I think those t-shirts and mugs and blankets are pretty-darn cute.

While I’m in Toronto, I will not be available to accept any mobile spa appointments myself until I return but can facilitate any alternate arrangements with other trusted spa practitioners, if you’d like. Just send me an email and I’ll hook you up.


In the meantime, why not buy or rent a copy of the movie or book by T.C. Boyle, “The Road to Wellville” for a laugh and to catch a glimpse of the early days of how this whole wellness movement started in the first place.

10 Ways to View Water as a Metaphor for Wellness

Posted by Maria on June 3, 2011 under Bath and Body, Fitness, Home spa, Homespunspa, Humour, Ingredients, Meditation, Photo gallery, Pop-Psychology, Self-Care, Skin Care, Sleep, Spa and Sleep Dictionary, Spirituality, Stress Management and Relaxation, TV Shows & Movies, Uncategorized, Wellness, Yoga | 2 Comments to Read

by Maria Koropecky, Homespunspa owner

Recently, while attending a fashion show fundraiser, I came across a wellness poster that really spoke to me and I thought it would fit in easily with my blog. I don’t know who the original artist of the poster is, otherwise I would give her credit. I think the artwork is really cute. The poster has 10 cartoon drawings under the heading, “Today’s Healthy Woman is…” and I thought I’d use them as a spring board to build a metaphor that joins water and wellness. I hope this inspires you to stay healthy.

1. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Balanced

I’m constantly trying to balance my life (career, relationships, time, chequebook, health) and I’ve noticed that when I’m out of balance, I get tired and irritable and I eat more than I would otherwise. Imbalance shows up in a lot of different ways for different people. You can see imbalance manifest as acne on your skin, a bad hair day, insomnia or illness to name just a few on the tip of the iceberg. It has occurred to me that maybe that’s why people indulge in their addictions. I think people drink, smoke, over-eat, shop, gamble, go to tanning salons etc., etc., etc., because they want to correct some sort of imbalance in their system. They want to feel better, or at least different. Unfortunately, as we all know, addictions are counter productive. Here is a quick, easy and free way to feel more balanced any time of day. — Breathe. — That’s right. Focus on your breathing. Take a moment to picture some gentle waves curling along a sandy beach, in and out, in and out, and then follow the rhythm. Add a palm tree and a sunrise or sunset or full moon. I feel better already.

2. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Self-Accepting

Acceptance is the answer; De Nile is a river in Egypt.

Self-acceptance is about being OK with all aspects of who you are and not feeling the need to change anything in your life. Often times people forget about their strengths or talents and at the same time deny or ignore the parts of themselves they don’t like. But seeing the whole picture — sunlight and shadows — will help you live the life of your dreams.

Do you accept yourself as you are, unconditionally, right here and right now? If you were to see a pool of water with a big sign above it saying “Swimming Pool of Self-Acceptance,” would you: 1) dip your big toe in and then run away 2) wade in, ankle deep, in the shallow end 3) stand in water up to your waist or shoulders and occasionally dip your head under water and maybe do a hand stand or two? or 4) artfully dive in off the diving board and do the backstroke and the butterfly in the deep end?

If you are having trouble with this concept of self-acceptance, as many of us do, there are several exercises you can do in your daily life. Start with getting to know yourself on a deeper level and remember to be kind to yourself.

Ironically, positive change comes easier when you’re able to accept what’s already there. Remember the “Serenity Prayer.” God, Grant me the serenity / to accept the things I cannot change; / courage to change the things I can; / and the wisdom to know the difference. / Living one day at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; / Taking, as He did, this sinful world / as it is, not as I would have it; / Trusting that He will make all things right / if I surrender to His Will; / That I may be reasonably happy in this life / and supremely happy with Him / Forever in the next. / Amen. — Reinhold Niebuhr

3. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Humourous

Gather around the water cooler, everybody, I’ve got a blonde joke.

A guy called “Ken” has noticed that his girlfriend, let’s call her “Barbie,” likes to put two glasses on her nightstand each night before she goes to bed. (He’s very observant). One glass is empty and the other one is filled with water. “Why on earth do you do that?” he asked her. And she answered, “Cuz, if I wake up in the middle of the night, I don’t know if I’ll be thirsty or not.”

4. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Fit

When I first started Jazzercising back in 1998, I quickly learned to bring a bottle of water to each class. I like taking sips of water between songs to stay hydrated.

On another note, sweating is also an important part of staying fit. I learned recently that the amount of sweat you produce is proportionate to your fitness level, so if you’re sweating during a workout more than you used to, you’re on the right track. Keep up the good work!

Some people don’t like to sweat, but I do. It makes me feel empowered. It’s the body’s way of cooling the system and releasing toxins and as far as I’m concerned, it’s a happy day and a great workout when I feel that first bead of sweat start trickling from my forehead.

5. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Passionate

What activities make your face light up when you talk about them or do them? Do you enjoy painting with water colours? Do you like taking photos of the world’s tallest water falls? How about going whale watching or scuba diving or fly fishing? Hula dancing on the beach after a day of surfing? Or maybe you’re like me and you like writing in your journal with a fountain pen? In any case, having a passion for something is one of life’s great gifts and I urge you to pursue your passions with zeal and fervour.

6. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Self-Nurturing

This one’s my fave because it’s all about the spa. Sprinkling the spa into your life on a regular basis is one of the best ways to improve the quality of your life.  The word “spa” splashed onto the world scene after some therapeutic mineral-rich springs were discovered in Belgium in the 14th century.

All spas have some sort of water element in them, especially the ones that focus on Thalassotherapy or “sea therapy,” a school of thought that was named after Thalassa, the Greek goddess of the sea. Thalassotherapy uses the mineral-rich supplies from Poseidon’s playground — salt, seaweed, mud and, of course, water — to create healing treatments that help relieve stress, smooth skin, stimulate circulation and eliminate toxins from the body.

You don’t have to go far to enjoy some spa time, unless you want to. I think taking a bubble bath at home, with some candles and some music for added ambiance, is one of the nicest things you can do for yourself. If you take time to take care of yourself, like getting your hair done or polishing your nails or giving yourself a facial every now and then, you’ll manage the rest of your life that much better. Remember to put some “me time” into your life. That’s what Homespunspa is all about.

7. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Spiritual

Spirituality is hard to define in a quick paragraph but in my mind, being spiritual is having a belief in an invisible energy that surrounds and permeates through every living thing in the entire universe. (I call that energy “God,” but you don’t have to). A spiritual person tries to connect with that energy through prayer, meditation and contemplation etc., to enrich their life and find deeper meaning in their existence.

I believe in the power of prayer. Praying can have an influence on people’s health and wellbeing. Did you see the 2004 movie, “What the Bleep do We Know?” At one point they talked about the work of a Japanese author, Masaru Emoto, who claims that if positive human thoughts like prayer and music are directed at droplets of water before they are frozen, the resulting water crystals will be beautiful, suggesting that invisible thoughts and their energy have an influence on the material world. It’s fascinating.

8. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Optimistic

I don’t know about you, but I immediately think of the “glass is half empty; glass is half full” saying for this one. Just out of curiosity, what’s in your glass? Water? Milk? O.J.? Pop? Beer? I always picture water with blue food colouring in it. Anyway, some people are naturally optimistic and positive in life. Others prefer to view things more “realistically” and feel they would be lying if they were to put a positive spin on things. Others tend to see things negatively, thinking that if they get their hopes up, the bubble will burst and things won’t work out and they will be left feeling worse than they would have otherwise. My thoughts? You may not have control over everything that happens in your life, but you do have the power to choose your attitude in every given moment. Here’s a quote that might help:  “It’s the same up and down roller-coaster but it’s up to you whether or not you enjoy the ride.” Why not choose to be more optimistic? It’s more fun that way.

9. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Loving

Do you remember the song, “Shower the People” by James Taylor? Here are the lyrics to the last half of the song. I don’t remember that last bit at all but it fits with my water theme, so I’m keeping it.

Better to shower the people you love with love / Show them the way that you feel / Things are gonna be just fine if you only will / Shower the people you love with love / Show them the way that you feel / Things are gonna be much better if you only will / Shower the people you love with love / Show them the way that you feel / You’ll feel better right away / Don’t take much to do / Sell your pride / They say in every life / They say the rain must fall / Just like pouring rain / Make it rain / Make it rain / Love, love, love is sunshine / Oh yes, / Make it rain / Love, love, love is sunshine / Yeah, all right / Everybody, everybody / Shower the people you love with love…

10. Today’s Healthy Woman is: Confident

Confidence has always eluded me. Searching for it is like trying to fish an eggshell chip out of egg whites. What does having confidence mean anyway? I’ve given this topic  considerable thought over the years and I’ve finally figured out that having confidence starts with positivity — being able to find something good in everyone you meet and in every situation you face. If you can see a positive outcome from the beginning, than you’re already halfway there in my book.

How does this tie in with water you ask? Well, when Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492, do you think he had a clue about where he was headed and what he was up against and how long it would take him to see land again? I think not. But I do think he had confidence and a vision and a faith that everything would work out for the best. If he and his crew approached that voyage with fear, doubt and negativity, they wouldn’t have gotten very far and I wouldn’t be blogging from Victoria, BC today. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure they had their moments, but they didn’t let that stop them from exploring the high seas.

Having that sense of adventure, taking calculated risks, stepping out of your comfort zone, facing challenges head on, braving stormy weather and reaching out into the great unknown, build confidence. And having confidence will make life more interesting.

I hope you found this post “good to the last drop.” As always, if you have any comments to add, feel free to write them.

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