Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Create Your Own Personal Spa Retreat!



The bathroom is the space dedicated to cleansing and purifying the body. Soaking and unwinding in the bathtub, steaming and lathering in the shower, or simply splashing your face with water restores health and refreshes your energy and emotions. Imagine a tranquil oasis within your home where you can soak the day’s cares away and restore your sense of balance with the world. Wouldn’t that be wonderful?

Get Started Today. Apply these simple, practical and inexpensive Feng Shui enhancements to your bathroom and create your own personal spa retreat, a place of relaxation and rejuvenation:

1.        Declutter and organize your bathroom. Remove any items that have no purpose there.
2.       Keep your bathroom clean and mold free (use ecofriendly and organic cleaning products)
3.       Fix dripping faucets. We may not realize how small things in our environment can be draining our energy, our health and our wealth. This is especially true regarding the flow of water. In Feng Shui water represents wealth, prosperity, cash flow, career and business opportunities. In our home water flows through faucets. Therefore, dripping faucets adversely affect our wealth, not just with a higher water bill, but with an overall feeling of income “dripping away” each week.  Fix dripping faucets as soon as possible.
4.      Keep drains fully functionalDrains that are clogged up can result in our feeling overwhelmed or blocked. These feelings can affect our health and financesClear clogged drains as soon as possible.
5.       Proper ventilation is a must for a healthy bathroom. Open your bathroom’s window each day to let fresh air in.
6.       Toilet and Bathroom Door – Always keep the toilet’s lid down and the bathroom door closed. Keeping the bathroom door closed and toilet seat down minimizes the loss of energy and money.
7.       Make your bathroom beautiful. Bright and soothing colors (walls and cabinets) can create a serene and beautiful environment
8.      Place art that gives you pleasure and brings you good energy.
9.      The right scents are an important choice, and you can choose aromas such as calming, invigorating, or romantic.
10.    Add plants and fresh flowers to your bathroom to promote positive and uplifting energy.
11.     Bring music into the environment while in the bath.

Relax in your own spa retreat, refresh and rejuvenate often. Love Yourself.

Inspired Transformation: “Ellie helped us to transform our dark bathroom into a beautiful private spa! We started by decluttering our bathroom and painted it a soft lavender color. Then we bought a lavender-blue shower curtain, bathroom rug, a couple of lavender candles and a beautiful purple Orchid flower. These simple changes resulted in an amazing transformation of our bathroom and all for the cost of $78.39. Thank you Ellie for your guidance and creativity. We love our new private spa!" Julie and John, Los Gatos

Copyright 2017, Lavender Design + Cuisine

Monday, May 1, 2017

Ratatouille with herbes de Provence Recipe!


A Taste of Provence on Your Plate!

Ratatouille is a traditional French Provencal stewed vegetable dish, which originated in Nice, in the south of France. It’s usually served as a side dish, but may also be served as a meal on its own accompanied by quinoa or millet pilaf, couscous or rustic bread. Ratatouille is very simple to make and a very healthy, nutritious, and delicious meal. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
1.   1/2 cups cherry tomatoes
2.   1 Tsp. minced garlic
3.   1/3 cup diced shallots
4.   1 cup diced zucchini
5.   1 cup diced yellow squash
6.   1 cups diced eggplant
7.   1 cup diced yellow bell peppers
8.   1 cup diced orange bell peppers
9.   1/3 Tsp. sea salt
10.  1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
11.  2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil leaves
12.  2Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley leaves
13.  1/2 Tsp. Herbs de Provence  

Directions: 
Add olive oil in a 12-inch sauté pan over medium heat.  Add shallots and garlic to the pan, sauté until wilted and lightly caramelized about 5 -7 minutes.  Add eggplant to the pan and stir occasionally, until the eggplant is partially cooked about 5 minutes.  Add bell peppers, zucchini, and yellow squash and continue to cook for an additional 7-10 minutes.  Add tomatoes, herbes de Provence, sea salt and cook for additional 5-7 minutes. Stir lightly to blend and serve either hot or at room temperature over couscous, quinoa or with rustic bread.  Sprinkle basil and parsley before serving.  Cold ratatouille on rustic baguette with a drizzle of olive oil is absolutely divine, so refrigerate the leftover for the next day.

Happy Cooking!


Create A Garden For Your Senses: See. Hear. Taste.


Gardens bring us joy and happiness. Whether you have a large backyard, a small courtyard or just a stairwell with a few potted plants, you can turn it into a place of joy, relaxation, serenity and contemplation, a living sanctuary that refreshes your mind and spirit  Using colors and the art of arrangements, you can transform any outdoor space into a restorative garden retreat.

Get inspired! Create your own garden retreat:

1.  Make your garden beautiful and vibrant!
2.  Plant colorful and aromatic fruits such as strawberries; vegetables such as yellow squash; flowers such as roses; and herbs such as lavender, sage, mint and lemon verbena.  These categories of fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs will invite bees, butterflies and birds to your garden in addition to creating visual pleasure.
3.  Add a soft wind chime, bird feeder, solar garden lights, vibrant garden balls, eclectic stepping stones, a couple of chairs and small table. These elements are perfect for stimulating your senses. They generate and promote good energy in your garden, home and life. 
4.  Create a garden that you can smell, feel, hear and taste!
5.  Connect with nature to enjoy its soothing power on your senses.
6.  Make a habit of having your morning coffee/tea in your garden, and enjoy a glass of wine in the evening.

Have fun with your garden!

Copyright 2017, Lavender Design + Cuisine