Wintertime Self-Care, From Home Products to Feel-Good Events

Photo courtesy Salsa Con Todo

As January chugs along, we’re having fun testing soothing products, trying out new apps and  finding uplifting events (listed toward the article’s end) that speak to the wellness theme so often associated with this first month of the year.Here are a couple ideas we thought you might want to try out, too:


Many are familiar with ClassPass (sometimes critiqued for its ever-changing credits system); did you know a new multi-studio fitness membership has landed in Seattle, too? FitReserve recently launched its sixth market here in our city, offering monthly classes at dozens of studios/gyms. (We’re hopeful the list will expand even further soon!) Members can mix and match between: yoga, Pilates, barre, indoor cycling, HIIT and boot camp, boxing, aerial, pole, dance and more. Starting at $55 per month, FitReserve offers a simple “one-credit-equals-one-class” membership model.

We’ve written before about City Sweats, the state’s first infrared wellness spa (here, for example). Now they’ve opened a location in Bellevue, too. Here’s the pitch (and we have to admit it feels pretty darn good, especially in chilly temps!): “Infrared saunas use heat and infrared light waves to heat the body deeply in order to release stored toxins more efficiently than traditional saunas. Up to 7 times more efficiently to be exact!”

Looking to shake up your exercise routine this year? Sign up for a class at Fremont’s Salsa Con Todo, celebrating its 13th year. Owner Vassili William is known globally for what he has created at this lively dance academy and community hub, “establishing progressive standards for a modernizing dance community.” The studio focuses on six major dance forms: Salsa, Bachata, Brazilian Zouk, Argentine Tango, Swing and Kizomba/Urban Kiz, taught by a lengthy roster of 40-plus highly-trained instructors.


If you have a love-hate relationship with working from home (we do, too!), consider
looking into Deskpass, a monthly membership plan that lets you take advantage of coworking spaces and meeting rooms around town. (The concept is very similar to Classpass, but for worker bees.) Choose between more than 300 coworking spaces across the country, including 15 locations in the Seattle area (like The Riveter and Impact Hub Seattle). You can book instantly using the Deskpass app.


Hand Sanitizing Wipes - Travel Pack, 10 Count-Pack of 8
Courtesy CleanWell

Fend off wintertime sickness with CleanWell‘s botanical-based, germ-fighting disinfectants, sanitizers and soaps. (CleanWell uses all-natural, kid-friendly ingredients that kill germs botanically. Buy them here.) In addition to hand sanitizing sprays and wipes, CleanWell’s household botanical disinfectants are said to kill more than 99.9% of household germs and cold/flu viruses. ‘Tis the season!


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Courtesy Selfkaire

Treat your body right with this awesome Selkaire kairetool—the ultimate deep tissue detox and skincare solution that fits in the palm of your hand (making it travel-friendly, too). This 3-in-1 facial and body tool claims to “detox, sculpt and smooth problem areas,” by ‍drawing toxins to the skin’s surface using natural, non-invasive heat and friction. It’s said to “improve circulation and lymphatic health.” Though the jury’s still out on long-term effects, we admit we feel pretty fantastic after using this nifty little tool!

Courtesy Four Seasons Hotel Seattle

Or, go to the professionals this season for some pampering at the luxury-tinged Spa at Four Seasons. They’ve recently introduced 10 new holistic treatments like the Digital Detox, Seattle Sugar Buff and the Radiant Face Massage. Afterward, consider grabbing a delicious bite from the brand-new plant-based menu being served at Goldfinch Tavern. (Think Raw Cauliflower Ceviche, Butternut Squash “Risotto” and Cedar-Baked Tempeh.)


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Bath products courtesy of Canna Bath Co.


Check out goods by Canna Bath Co, a woman-owned business that has created CBD-infused bath products for sensitive skin. The company creates bath bombs, salts and body washes “that help with sleep, post-workout, energy, arousal to help elevate your bath experience to the ultimate level of relaxation.” (Their motto: #plantsoverpills.) All  products are perfume-free and handmade in Oakland. You can also cool and soothe sore muscles after a workout or help ease chronic aches with their CBD Muscle Rub.


In the midst of all this bodywork, don’t forget to tend to your mind and soul, too. Sarah Farris, the founder and principal of Vibe Elevated, is dedicated to helping people develop greater emotional awareness and resilience in the workplace and beyond. As an emotional intelligence expert who believes we are responsible for the energy we bring to all facets of life, Sarah has recently rebranded her Energy Sessions offerings. (Here’s an interview we conducted with her a few years back!) She invites you to “raise your vibe, elevate your life”  through her 30-, 60- or 75-minute one-one-one sessions.


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Photo of Bamboo Sushi’s The Big Island rolls, by Charity Burggraaf

Seattle’s recently-opened outpost of Bamboo Sushi now brings its delectable sustainable sushi and other eclectic Japanese cuisine to crowds visiting the U Village location. (In 2008, Bamboo Sushi became the world’s first certified sustainable sushi restaurant.) They’re now serving lunch (11 a.m.-3 p.m.) and have opened a walk-up, to-go window during lunch and dinner hours. The to-go lunch menu features sustainably-sourced poke bowls, hand rolls and Bento Box, with all packaging made from materials that naturally break down, like bagasse and sugarcane, plus paper products from all-recycled sources. Bamboo’s orders are now being taken on Caviar for delivery, too.

Photo courtesy Montinore Estate

Feeling thirsty? We’d like to suggest keeping it local by supporting Oregon’s Montinore biodynamic wines. Established in 1982, Montinore Estate is one of the country’s largest producers of certified estate wines made from Biodynamic® grapes. With their 200-acre Demeter Certified Biodynamic and CCOF Certified Organic vineyard located in Oregon’s north Willamette Valley, they focus on producing “superior Pinot Noirs, cool climate whites and fascinating Italian varietals.” Try their Reserve Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris (showing off a minerality and complexity not usually found with this grape) and Red Cap Pinot Noir, described as “the perfect combination of funk, fruit and earth.”

For wines that come from farther afield, try Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite), with rich options like Los Vascos wines, that blend Lafite tradition with the unique terroir of Chile. The vision of Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) to expand their estates took them to South America in 1988, as they became the first French viticultural investment in modern Chile. Today, planted in a single block 40 km from the Pacific Ocean and 200 km to the southwest of Santiago, the vineyard is one of the largest in the central Colchagua valley (located at the foot of Mount Cañeten). The soil is of volcanic origin, and the vineyard is planted with Cabernet Sauvignon (85%), Carmenère (5%), Syrah (4%), Malbec (1%) and Chardonnay (5%). Traditional growing techniques are still used, drip irrigation is adjusted to correspond exactly to the vines’ requirements, and green harvesting is carried out when possible.


Courtesy Alderbrook Resort & Spa

In Hood Canal, Alderbrook Resort & Spa is now offering quintessentially PNW adventures ideal for foodies wanting to experience gastronomic authenticity. For example, check out the Gathering Grove, where guests walk through private, forested trails to learn about local foraging and mushroom picking from a knowledgeable guide, afterward enjoying a locally-sourced, seasonally-inspired meal out in nature.

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Courtesy Visit Sweden Inc.

And speaking of foraging for one’s own meal, last week Seattle’s Nordic Museum hosted folks from Visit Sweden and Swedish embassies/consulates across our country to talk about an amazing new initiative called The Edible Country. Sweden is attempting to turn its vast, beautiful and mostly uninhabited land into the “world’s largest gourmet restaurant,” while breaking down myths that healthy food must be complicated and expensive. Looking for an excuse to travel to Scandinavia this summer? Learn more about ‘The Edible Country,’ and book tables for dates between May and September on their website or via Four of Sweden’s Michelin-starred chefs have helped create do-it-yourself menus from ingredients that guests can forage in Sweden’s forests, fields and lakes. And, as they say, don’t worry if the tables are fully booked, “there’s another 100 million acres of fine do-it-yourself dining available for you.”


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Photo courtesy Edourado Jordan

The Soul of Seattle, presented by two-time James Beard Award–winning chef Edouardo Jordan and the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle (ULMS), takes place on February 7 at the Northwest African American Museum (NAAM). This cultural celebration of culinary arts, celebrating Black History Month and the ULMS’s 90th anniversary, includes a multi-course dinner curated by Chef Jordan and celebrated author, historian and James Beard Award winner Toni Tipton-Martin. Funds raised from the event will go to local nonprofits that support and empower youth of color in Seattle.

Chocolate Glass
Photo courtesy Pike Brewing Company

Pike Chocofest returns to Pike Brewing Company on Sunday, February 9, from 6 to 9 p.m. As one of Pike’s biggest events of the year, known for selling out each year, the festivities welcome more than 25 vendor partners and 500 attendees. Enjoy beer, chocolate and savory bites at the sweet event that benefits Long Live the Kings, a local nonprofit that works to restore wild salmon and to support sustainable fishing in the Pacific Northwest. Tickets are on sale now.


Dustbowl Revival photo by Shervin Lainez

On Saturday February 1, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., The Bellevue Collection, along with Seattle Chinese Culture and Arts Association and the Overseas Community Affairs Council – Republic of China (Taiwan), welcomes the New Year by celebrating the cultural heritage of the community at its Lunar New Year Celebration. Located in Bellevue Square’s Center Court, these Year of the Rat festivities feature traditional and contemporary cultural demos including martial arts, music, dance, visual arts and food sampling.

Dustbowl Revival plays Nectar Lounge on February 22, and we can’t wait to check it out. This Los Angeles-based ensemble, known for an adventurous style of Americana, is touring in support of their new album “Is It You, Is It Me” (out January 31 via Thirty Tigers). Dustbowl Revival has been revered for the group’s high-octane live shows, with previous recognition coming from NPR, Rolling Stone Country and the Los Angeles Times (with a Billboard feature forthcoming).

Looking ahead, Tractor Tavern celebrates folk with upcoming shows like one on February 22 spotlighting Tall Heights, presented by KBCS. This electrofolk duo got their start as buskers on the streets of Boston but have since built a reputation for themselves.

And on Thursday, March 12, folk originators/ dynamic duo, Robin and Linda Williams play the Tractor, too, during a seated show. The couple, who began in 1971 playing “a robust blend of bluegrass, folk, old-time and acoustic country that combines wryly observant lyrics with a wide-ranging melodicism,” have no plans of slowing down anytime soon. Their music has been covered by such fellow country legends as Emmylou Harris, Tom T. Hall, Tim & Mollie O’Brien, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Kathy Mattea and The Seldom Scene.

Last but not least, on March 7, the massive community celebration Balkan Night Northwest fills Saint Demetrios Hall with “winding lines of dancers, buzzing Balkan bagpipes, giant costumed monsters, lots of delicious regional foods and wildly frenetic brass bands.” Another highlight of  the event?  The kukeri, giant costumed monsters from Balkan Mardi Gras, who lead a processional in to kick off the unique festival.