Sunday, April 26, 2009

Girlfriend Getaway

Last month, I had the divine opportunity to take a few girlfriends on a quick getaway to Red Mountain Spa in St. George. My sister flew in from California, and we were joined by Michael's sister and my frausisin (that's friend/aunt/sister/cousin, cause I don't really know what to call her), Jenni, who was the official photographer (hence, not pictured). While the trip was mostly fun, it was also work-related, as I wrote a piece for Wasatch Woman Magazine on the experience. Here are some pics, and the run-down on the trip.
















HOW TO PULL OFF THE ULTIMATE GIRLFRIEND GETAWAY

The Motive: Motherhood… the exhausting daily juggle of managing creative careers, the terrors of potty training toddlers and disciplining teens, and the challenges of running organized and fulfilling homes.

The Goal: To inspire all of the facets of our lives, from our spirituality to our health and fitness to our creativity to our adventurous spirits, all while bonding as sisters and friends.

The Co-Conspirators: Allison, the Pregnant Chick; Celeste, the Fitness Nut; Gina, the Go-and-Do-er

The Destination: Red Mountain Resort, a luxurious fitness and day spa in Saint George. The perfect location for our girlfriend getaway, our target is far enough away that we feel like we’re in a different world, yet close enough for a road trip. The variety of activities, from intense fitness evaluations to cooking classes to luxurious pedicures, is ideal for the diverse interests of our group.

DAY ONE

8am: Our bags are stuffed with stretchy comfy clothes and silly magazines, and the car is programmed with girl power themed music. After giving extra farewell kisses to the mister and the munchkins, we hit the road!

2:30pm: After our gracious arrival, we meander to the spa for indulgent individualized treatments: lavender mud body wrap, lava shell pedicure, pregnancy massage. We’re glad we arrived early and stayed late; it allows us time to serenely snuggle up in cushy robes and sit in the relaxing waiting room to nibble on fruit and drink water spiked with cucumbers and lemons. We definitely deserve this.

6pm: Completely immersed in this new leisure lifestyle, we calmly meet for a gourmet dinner. It almost feels awkward that we don’t have to prepare the spicy herb crusted tilapia with steamed spaghetti squash. For dessert… no dishes!

8pm: We’re feeling “outside the box,” so we decide to hit a meditation class. An expert with a soothing voice who once lived in a commune leads us in the practice of imagining our stress floating away as we breathe methodically. Celeste actually cleanses her psyche, while the rest of us agree it is pretty stressful trying to relax.

DAY TWO

8am: No crying babies or school schedules to rouse us, we all still instinctually wake early and get moving. While the rest of the group munches a healthy breakfast, Celeste gets a METAbeat fitness evaluation. The on-site health director hooks her up to special equipment for a quick run on a treadmill, which reveals her ideal heart rate to maintain optimal fitness performance. Celeste is inspired; Allison is glad she chose breakfast.

12noon: Here’s an opportunity for a take-home, a cooking class with the sous chef. We agree one of our greatest challenges is trying to create artful meals for our families that are also healthy, so we expect great things from this class. Our instructor not only guides us through three awesome poultry recipes (high-end chicken fingers, “Beverage of Choice” chicken and smoky duck), he shares the creations with his hungry students and sends us home with the how-tos. We’re stuffed… and inspired.

2pm: The gang divides and conquers. Gina, always active, hits Pilates class to learn new techniques. Celeste jogs off for a solo workout. Allison closes the drapes, snuggles under the covers, and takes a good hard nap.

Evening: Another great meal, followed by an impromptu slumber party. There’s no game of Truth or Dare, but we learn lots of funny little details about each other that absolutely cannot be repeated. We debate and laugh and cry. Having stimulating conversation with the girls, with topics from the current economy to bikini waxing, carries us well past bedtime.

DAY THREE

Morning: After a quick breakfast, we meet yoga instructor Ian White for an outdoor class in the stunningly picturesque Snow Canyon. Not one of us girls is a yogi (we’re not even flexible, really) but amongst the natural wonder of our surroundings and under the sensitive care of our instructor, we are invigorated. Barefoot on the red rocks under the soothing Southern Utah sun, we feel like warriors.

12noon: One last uninterrupted shower, with the resort’s yummy shampoo and body scrub, for each of us. Still, Allison instinctually leaves the door cracked in case a little one needs her to make a hot dog or turn on PBS Kids.

Afternoon: We check out and head home, bitter sweetly longing to hug our babies but wishing we could stay for just a few more moments of solitude. On the drive home, we reflect. We may not be able to check out in long weekend chunks with the gals very often, but we commit to finding pockets of leisurely me-time and spending little doses of energy to inspire our everyday routines. And we promise to call each other more often.


Mission accomplished.

1 comment:

Jenny said...

I need one of those weekends! It looked fabulous! I love the yoga picture in snow canyon. Lucky you.