the herbal harvest month brings about balance between day and night, peaking on the autumnal equinox. and as fall finally descends on the northern hemisphere we witness cooler temperatures, shorter days, and new produce in the market.
around the world, festivities honoring the equinox are held this time of year to reap the rewards of hard-earned harvests.
we compiled a list of recipes and activities you can enjoy with your family
your fall bucket list
your equinox recipes
combine all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor or high-speed blender. process or blend until smooth, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl or pitcher.
drizzle 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil over the top and serve with raw veggies, chips and/or crackers.
apple cider mimosas
party on, and have a happy autumnal equinox!
while many hit the beach or find haven in a mountain house, some of us prefer the comfort of our own backyard to ride the summer heat. we compiled a list of fun, family oriented things to do in your outdoor space to inspire you. some activities can also come in handy when you’re trying to chill and tan at a resort and want to make sure the children are having just as much fun
the great outdoor games
first, the inevitable, classic hopscotch! bring out the colored chalk and help your children draw a huge hopscotch path. you know this one, the numbers go from zero to ten in the squares and the one to reach the last tile first is a winner. add a little extra fun by drawing shapes in the path or adding candy: butterflies and jelly, cars and chocolate, stars and lollipops, the choice is yours!
fun and exercise go together in a good old’ game of tag! enjoy a rollicking game of family tag or flag football in the backyard. kids of all ages love to run and be chased!
in for movie night? hang a white sheet on the side of your house or from a clothesline, and project your movie using a digital projector. set up a cozy blanket with pillows on the floor, then bring on the popcorn for a perfect outdoor movie night.
alternatively, avoid any hassle and join us at zenotel with all your family!
while we usually like to remain tanned all year, and often resort to a fake tan to maintain that matte skin even in the greyest months, there are plenty of reasons why we love the sun. it boosts our levels of serotonin, relieving us from anxiety, and helps the production of vitamin D which is essential for our bones, teeth, and skin. but to avoid premature ageing and skin cancer risks you need to take care for a safe, sun-kissed glow
some tips for safe tanning
first, let’s state the obvious: apply the right sunscreen
don't just rely on SPF; on the bottle you need to look for the term 'broad spectrum' or the UVA logo plus the word 'high'. the best is to go for SPF30 over SPF50. it filters 97% of UVB rays, while SPF50 filters 98%. the latter can give a false sense of security and can be so chalky you may not reapply it every two hours like you should
tanning is in the timing
your skin reaches a tanning cut-off point when it physically can't produce any more melanin, the tanning pigment, so it's pointless to lounge by the pool all day. this differs for everyone, but a good estimate is two to three hours or less if you have a very fair skin
take a break in the shade
taking breaks from the sun will reduce UV intensity and your sunburn risk and means your tan will be healthier and longer-lasting. grab this opportunity to sip on a carrot juice in the shade
eat sun-friendly foods
certain foods are known to increase lycopene, the skin's own SPF. an antioxidant found in tomatoes, and other red and orange fruit and vegetables, it can boost your sun protection by a whopping 33%.
beneficial foods also include dark chocolate and green tea!
so before hitting the sunbeds, how about penne with tomato sauce for lunch, followed by a digestive green tea and a small piece of dark chocolate for dessert?
preparing for your child’s first communion is truly a special occasion. hosting a communion party to celebrate with loved ones is a meaningful gesture but it can be a bit stressful to plan.
here are some useful first communion party ideas and tips:
choose a venue
on the list of things to do, the most important one is to pick the right venue for your celebration. think of the number of guests you have, the type of food you want to serve, the area, and the availability of a playground for children.
party theme and favors
first do some research to see what theme you prefer for the party and select the favors accordingly. you can stick to the traditional personalized bookmark, bracelet with a cross, mini rosaries, or go for something modern like mini honey jars, custom ornaments or personalized keepsake box.
enjoy the moment
remember to let go of the stressful preparations and planning and simply enjoy the company of your family and friends
“be like a flower and turn your face to the sun” - khalil gibran
easter is a great family day, but one that can be hectic if not planned well. here are the best tips for planning a great easter day
plan a simple brunch, with muffins and fruits and cinnamon rolls and maybe some pancakes. nothing complicated. if you’ve got a few smaller families coming together, make sure it’s a potluck, so each family just has to worry about one dish. the simpler the menu, the better.
have an egg-coloring party
the day before easter, let the family and your kids’ friends join you to boil and color eggs. have food coloring, crayons, stickers, rubber bands, cheesecloth, and other fun coloring tools, and have a lot of fun. it’s even more fun for the kids than hunting for the eggs.
count the eggs before you hide them for the egg hunt
be sure you know how many there are before they’re hidden. otherwise, you may be getting a surprise a week or two after easter.
the golden egg
a great tradition is to mark one of the eggs as the golden egg. that egg might have $5 or $10 put in it by grandpa and grandma. it makes the hunt all the more fun, especially for the bigger kids.
prepare a couple of fun games
egg hunting is a blast, but your gathering will be even more fun if you’ve got a few games ready to go. an egg toss, egg race (holding an egg on a spoon with your mouth while racing), sports, water balloons, treasure hunts — the possibilities are endless.
don’t forget to have fun
no family gathering will be perfect. there will be spilled punch, broken eggs, crying babies and more. just accept the chaos and enjoy the time with your family. and no matter what goes wrong, laugh.
“happy easter…and hunting…”
mom can be one of the easiest or hardest people on your list to shop for. want to giver her a meaningful gift?
we’ve done the research and have come up with 4 awesome gift ideas for your mom
research all the most important dates in your mom’s life such as birthdays, anniversaries, celebrations or important dates that affected her life positively, paint them on a carton and create a nice design around it.
you can frame this nicely customized cardboard so she can hang it on her wall.
get your children to do their hand prints on a piece of canvas with different colors and draw “we love you grandma” under the hand prints with their names next to it.
want to combine mother-daughter time with some pampering and luxury? join our mother-daughter getaway weekend at zenotel in bhersaf.
choose your mom’s favorite bracelet design and carve yours and your siblings’ names on it; nothing is more precious to your mom than her children.
valentine’s day can feel like an overly-commercialized holiday only meant to sell greeting cards, flowers and candy. but we all still love it…
how about you go beyond the card and flowers and plan a date night out with your sweetheart
4 tips for a great valentine's date
secure a baby-sitter early
valentine’s day is one of the most popular date nights in lebanon,
which means it’s also one of the most popular days for families to hire a babysitter.
if your regular sitter has date night plans of her own, make sure you know that early on and arrange for a back-up sitter from now
show your kids some love
plan a special family breakfast or spend some extra time with the kids during the day, you can even design your valentine’s cards together
ask the baby-sitter to come an hour early so you could spend time getting ready at your pace.
take a real bubble bath, get a manicure and treat yourself to a new outfit
plan your dinner date
think outside the box! If you are planning for a dinner date why not go the extra mile and book for a room at the same hotel where
you are having dinner and spend the night with your partner away from your daily routine
“there is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved”
new year’s resolutions are a bit like babies: they’re fun to make but extremely difficult to maintain. this year, pick only one of the following worthy resolutions, but stick with it
new year, new and healthier you
lose weight. use a food journal to keep track of what you eat. it’s proven. it works!
stay connected to those who matter rather then to your phone. research suggests people with strong social ties live longer than those who don’t!
quit smoking. acupuncture or hypnosis have proven to be the most effective ways to quit smoking with ease.
cut out on stress. a little pressure now and again give us an energy boost but if stress is chronic, your health suffers overtime. so give yourself some you time.
volunteer. we tend to think our own bliss relies on bettering ourselves, but happiness also increases when we help others.
get more sleep. it does wonders for your mood and your looks.
travel. the joys and rewards of vacations can last long after the suitcase is put away. even a simple local getaway allows you to tap into life as an adventure.
“let our new year's resolution be this: we will be there for one another as fellow members of humanity, in the finest sense of the word“
does it get so hectic during the holidays that sometimes you forget that you should enjoy your time too! here are some tips to get through the stress of the holidays and still have a blast
think outside the box and consider new ways of doing things to make it easier on yourself rather then sticking to your family traditions
don’t do it all yourself:
involve every member of the family right down to the toddlers. turn decorating, shopping, gift-wrapping, baking, and even house cleaning into fun-family-time activities away from your smartphones
work smarter, not harder. finish most of the things you want to do for christmas a couple of weeks before to enjoy the spontaneous joy a the week leading up to christmas
celebrate family and community:
schedule time for fun and relaxing together. put it on your calendar and make it top priority
create lasting, loving memories:
think quality and not quantity. don’t fill every moment of the season by attending every play, concert, and party of the season. Less is more
“take a deep breath, turn on the tree lights, gather your loved ones around you, relax, and look at each and every member of your family with thankfulness, love and understanding”
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