Get Yourself A Pedicure

Yesterday was the most glorious day up here in Seattle.  Blue, sunny, and warm enough to wear a t-shirt if you were out doing something energetic like leaf-blowing, hiking to a pretty lake, or lugging 30lb tubs of cat litter from your car to the garage.  I wasn’t doing any of those things, but if I had been I’d have been in a t-shirt for sure.  The weather was all the more remarkable because it was November 8th.  NOVEMBER 8th!!!  Last weekend the sun was setting at 6 pm, this week it’s dipping its lights at 4:40.  Suddenly it’s all go to work in the dark and come home from work in the dark.  And it all happened so quickly.  Looking back, the whole year happened quickly, although it sure didn’t feel like it for much of the time.

November a year ago I was just getting ready to embark upon my third cookbook.  On a side note, I made this dish from that book on Friday night when a friend came over for dinner, and boy! did we both have happy mouths afterwards. www.carriebrown.com

This November I have just come off 2 heady months of fantastical road-tripping and shooting.  How’s that for a shifting of gears and focus.  www.carriebrown.com

So much has happened in the last 12 months, and it’s a whole new world over at the Brown house and Marmalade HQ – all of it unexpected, and all of it good – but I am definitely having to recalibrate my thinking in order to navigate these new territories I find myself charting.  One of those territories is self-care.  Self-care has taken on a completely new meaning this last year, and it has become a hugely important aspect of my being in the world.

I learned that self-care – which looks different for everyone – is vital to surviving and thriving in this crazy world.  I learned that self-care – a happy, healthy, balanced Carrie – is the best thing that I can offer to the people who are important to me.  When I mention ‘people that are important to me’, I want you to know that includes you.  Yes, YOU.  Even though I know almost none of you personally, I care about your health and well-being.  If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be writing this blog or creating new *SANE recipes for you.  During the course of what has been an entirely crazy year, it has occurred to me more than a few hundred times that for me to give you what you deserve from my work, I need to be the best Carrie I can be – and that requires self-care.  You don’t deserve a tired, stressed, overwhelmed, and out-of-balance Carrie.  You deserve the best – my whole creative self, my energy, my passion, and yes, my love.  Sorry for the sap but it’s true.  Just keepin’ it real.

So this year I’ve been working on self-care, although admittedly it took a crisis for me to recognize that it was vital to my existence as well as making me more useful to the world.  In addition I learned that being healthy includes so many more things than eating good food and exercising.  Like pedicures.  Pedicures are definitely included in my own personal version of self-care.

It used to be that I equated pedicures with getting color on my toenails, something that I was more than capable of achieving myself and without having to get dressed, pull the car out the garage, drive, be trapped in a chair for an hour with someone who spoke a different language, wait, pay $30, and then drive again.  Yes.  I could definitely paint my own toenails – so much faster, cheaper, and more effectively than having someone else do it.  Nowadays I see pedicures in a whole new light, which is why today I had a pedicure that did not include getting color on my toenails.  Wait.  What??

Pedicures mean a blissful hour out of the house and away from the bajillion things within it clamoring for my attention.  For an hour I sit still and listen to beautiful, soothing music.  My back and neck get a relaxing deep tissue massage while I loll in an oh-so-comfortable leather chair. For 60 magical minutes I experience the healing powers of human touch as my feet and lower legs are massaged, exfoliated, and richly moisturized.  One glorious hour of freedom from all forms of technology.  Heavens to Betsy!  That’s time to think – or not – as the mood takes me.  The rough, gnarly bits that build up on my heels are gently smoothed away.  There’s toenail and cuticle trimming, and swathes of skin-softening moisturizer.  Which all adds up to an hour of peace, quiet, rest, and relaxation – something that is impossible to build into a 2½-minute lick of color to my toenails while sitting crouched on my bathroom floor listening to the *ping, ping, ping* of my cell phone and laptop merrily demanding attention.  Toenail polish aside, when you’re in the house how hard is it to just sit and be for an hour?  How often do you allow yourself to lie on the couch listening to beautiful music after having switched off all forms of electronic gadgetry?  Yep.  One year later and I’m all about the health benefits of getting my tootsies done at a salon.

So I just wanted to stop by and share my new-found take on the magical powers of the humble pedicure.  Pedicures, I have concluded, are sane.  Maybe not all in capitals, given that they are not something one ingests, but definitely sane.  Over the last year I have come to recognize that not only do we need *SANE, we also need sane.  Things like the things in this list.  And pedicures.  Go on, go get yourself one.

Whatever makes you feel good, do more of that.

 

 

Want delicious uber-healthy recipes? Check out my Cookbooks!
  • Tina Kuhnline - Thank you, Carrie. You’re right, we all need some time to do something else. Maybe something girly. I’m happy that you have taken the time to relax and do something other than work (for us).Good for you!ReplyCancel

  • Wren - Great reminder. When it gets cooler I normally skip pedicures with the thought that no one will be seeing my toes until spring when I bring the flip flops and sandals back out. But it is so much more than just color on my toes. My friend and I were discussing today how long it had been since we’d both had a facial. Your blog is a second push in that direction so I’m putting that on my to do list for the coming week. Btw, I had cheesy cauliflower for dinner tonite, with a protein bar and minty chocolate pudding for dessert. Yum! The rest of the family had grilled cheese sandwiches (boo).ReplyCancel

  • Ellen - What a great way to reward and pamper yourself. Glad to know you’re taking care of yourself, dear friend! And your pedi sounds like a much fancier version of the ones I get here in GA. I’m envious!
    Have an awesome week!!ReplyCancel

  • Gary - I have known about the importance of self-care for a long time now, but my knowledge of it hasn’t kept me from falling out of good habits from time to time.

    Most recently, I decided that I must become a better cook for myself (and I wasn’t bad to start with). To me, becoming a better cook means adding to my understanding of what brings flavor and nutrition in meals that I make for myself daily.

    It is true that keeping a full pantry is part of being able to make good meals when I get home from work, for dinner and the next day. And as a small, but significant part of being able to do this, I realized I must be better organized and vigilant about keeping a good pantry.

    So, having bought three 5-lb organic chickens on sale for $5.00 each, I placed two of them in the freezer. With the other, I made enough stock to load the freezer with 10 one-cup portions, ready to pull out whenever I have a recipe that calls for stock. I also made a meal from some of the stock to which I added some of the chicken and vegetables. How satisfying! And then I made mayonnaise with pure olive oil (avoiding all seed oil) with which I made chicken salad for three meals from the meat used to make the stock.

    None of this was difficult. It was a matter of staying organized and reserving a bit of time for cooking outside of that done for meals. Keeping a good pantry and making good meals for myself every day makes me feel good because eating well is an important part of taking care of myself. Being able to make SANE meals the way I like them is key to staying SANE and feeling emotionally and physically good.ReplyCancel

  • Deb sanders - You never fail to bring a tear to my eye. I was just thinking that we hadn’t heard from you lately, and I was worried about you. So, glad to hear you are doing better than ever. Keep on pampering yourself. You are worth it.ReplyCancel

  • Dr Mike Keen - Ditto……nem con……..loadsa love xxReplyCancel

  • Suzanne - I love this post, Carrie! You have an amazing way of reaching out to people. You are just common sense and no nonsense! I sure love ya and miss ya – we need to get together soon! :)ReplyCancel

    • carrie - Some would say that my blunt-to-charm ratio is a little out of balance, Suzanne ;-)ReplyCancel

  • Wilson - My seven-year-old gave me a pedicure the other day. Granted, it didn’t include a flawless polish job, but it was a beautiful act of care. Pedicures can connect you through massage, root, and invigorate you in the most peculiar way. It’s true. We all need them.
    Glad all is well with you.
    Truly enjoying your driving pictures. You are a turtle :)
    I got my vitamix. You inspired me to do it. Loving it!
    Wilson from SeasideReplyCancel

    • carrie - W I L S O N !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Huge hugs :-) Your turtle in Seattle.ReplyCancel

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