By Himanee Gupta-Carlson
The season of giving often feels overwhelming: The appeals from charity, gift lists, card lists, parties’ lists, cooking lists, and the push –commercialized – to be festive and jolly, no matter what. Amid this frenzy, it seems only appropriate to ask whether you have put care of the self on your holiday to-do list.
Year-round, the Saratoga Farmers’ Market’s offerings of healthy, locally produced food are all about self-care. During the holiday season, the market ratchets up self-care up further, with several holiday products that allow you to take care not only of others but also most importantly of yourself first.
To begin stocking up on self-care, stop by Creations & Spells and check out owner Megan Canell’s artfully designed candles, lip balms, soaps, and other gift items. Canell, a young artist from Schenectady, crafts all of her items through recycled and/or repurposed materials, often using such things as the rippled rings of a discarded water bottle to create candle molds. She creates self-care that also cares for the earth through her approach to repurposing materials that no longer serve their initial use.
“I love making things out of materials that no longer seem useful, and I’d like to encourage others to do same,” says Canell.
The inspiration for her business comes in part through her grandfather, a military veteran who suffered post-traumatic stress disorder and found relief through art therapy that had him collecting life’s discards to create art.
Other self-care items shape how we eat, drink, and care for our bodies and homes. For instance, Karie Pastore emphasizes good health through all natural, allergen friendly laundry detergents, body sprays, room fresheners and other items at Wash Green and Clean. Mary Jane Pelzer’s handmade soaps are laden with healing, all natural products. Rick Green encourages sweet health with his bee balm and aromatic beeswax candles at Ballston Lake Apiaries, Bobby Chandler talks up the health benefits of mushrooms in his teas at Mariaville Mushrooms, and Sydney Peyser’s fresh vegetable and fruit juices will give you an explosive flavor of great health at Clarity Juice.
And if you need self-care while shopping, try Armin Hrelja apple strudel at Euro Delicacies, made with local apples and handmade phyllo.
Visit the Saratoga Farmers’ Market from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays at the Lincoln Baths Building in the Saratoga Spa State Park.
“Do It Yourself” Lip Balm
Shared by Megan Canell of Creations & Spells
*Ingredients currently available at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market
• ½ teaspoon coconut oil
• ¼ teaspoon almond oil or black seed oil
• 1 Tablespoon beeswax*
• Optional: For a colorful lip balm, use 1 whole crayon chopped into small pieces in place of beeswax. Use the color crayon of your choice
1. In a mason jar, slowly heat coconut oil, almond oil, and beeswax
2. Pour the liquid into small container(s). Try using your empty lip balm containers and make this a recycling project as well.
Note: Have paper towels or rags readily available because the process can get messy.