30 minutes in a “wellness cocoon”, Friday kudos, wine for your weekend

I’m a big advocate of self-care. Want to be your best self? You need to feel like your best self. Your self care routine should be custom tailored to what makes you feel good. Mine, for example, includes a regular massage.

Most people think of massages as super luxurious and indulgent, and they certainly can be. For this reason, I feel like most people who hear that I have regular massages think that I just like to chill and pamper myself. They’re not wrong, but my routine massage is not exactly indulgent. My massage therapist beats me up for an hour every time I go in to see her. She digs into my knotted neck muscles as hard as she possibly can, lays into my back with her elbows, and often times pushes me to the edge of my pain comfort zone.

I also fall asleep on the table 75% of the time. It cracks her up when it happens. She’ll be digging into my neck, and I’ll tell her I’m right at line of it being too much, and five minutes later I’ll be asleep. As far as self-care goes, I’ve found that massage is as good for my mental health as it is my physical. I’ve learned to breathe and meditate during the hour that she’s working on me, and sometimes I’m able to put myself to sleep in the process. Cheers to nailing mind over matter!

During my most recent massage, I was not able to fall asleep. My neck was messed up from sleeping funny the last few nights and Nikki, my masseur, went to town trying to undo whatever it was I had done. After my hour as I was checking out, Nikki and I were joking that I hadn’t gotten my hour nap in, and the desk attendant looked up quizzically and asked if I’d like to spend 30 minutes taking a complimentary power nap in the new wellness cocoon. Power nap? Wellness cocoon? This sounded awesome and weird, and I obviously had to try it!

This is a wellness cocoon…


As you might be able to discern, you lay down in it and they close the lid. Your head pokes out the end with the pillow, and they put some noise cancelling headphones on you along with an eye mask to block the light. Inside the pod, all kinds of things start to happen. There are massage balls that roll and vibrate over your back and legs. There’s a customized heating system that warms your muscles and core temperature. There are Himalayan salt crystals and essential oils to heighten your experience and enhance your energy. There are infrared lights that do…something. And mood lighting, purple mood lighting, to make the whole thing look awesome!

Lots of stuff going on!

Why spend time in a wellness cocoon? Well, it’s supposed to be good for you. Raising your core temperature spurs your metabolism, so it can help with weight loss and management. The massage rollers felt good. It was a little bit like being in a mini sauna for 30 minutes. Something about what they were doing was supposed to help my lymphatic system drain. And the whole thing was a stress management and relaxation tool.

To that end, I should be forthcoming and say…I fell asleep in the pod. So the 30 minute power nap option turned out to be a legit 30 minute power nap. Would I pay to power nap in a wellness cocoon? Probably not. Did I feel good coming out of it? Sure. But I feel good waking up from a 30 minute power nap wherever I can take one! A little research revealed that you can have one installed in your house for $10,000. In truth, it seems like the kind of thing that will become a celebrity trend with the next 18 months, and I did lay awake for the first three minutes wondering if it would be weird to ask the desk attendant to take a picture of me in the cocoon for Instagram! #cocoonersofinstagram Nevertheless, I’m glad I did it, if for no other reason than “So I spent my morning in a wellness cocoon…” makes a great story starter.

Friday kudos to…

I try hard to protect the identities of people who may not want to be explicitly named as part of this blog. I also try hard not to embarrass the people I do name, and to make this blog something that people want to be associated with. I’ll keep this one buttoned up, but this week a situation arose in which I asked someone to stand with me against something difficult, and they came through without hesitation, and it’s great to have people like this in the world. Should you read this, you’ll know who you are.

It’s bridal shower weekend, as in I’ll be attending two and was invited to a third I can’t make, so kudos to all my engaged friends getting ready for their big days. Sorry the showers conflicted, but I’m looking forward to all your amazing celebrations in the next few months.

Let’s Go Tacos, the new Mexican place in Pine Island, has the best street tacos for lunch and is owned by the nicest family. I may have indulged multiple times this week during teacher inservice, and I’m not sorry for it. If you’re a local reader, go check it out!

Wine for your weekend

klinker-brick-zinfandel-lodi-old-vineI’m partial to Zinfandels, and I’ve found a great one. Klinker Brick Old Vine Zinfandel is the original wine offering from Klinker Brick Winery in Lodi, California, and it’s a winner. Unlike other vines, Zinfandel vines produce smaller yields and higher quality fruits than the younger vines. The average age of the vines used in Klinker Brick Zin may be over 80 years old, but this isnt’ your grandpa’s red wine. Klinker Brick is bright with berries on the nose. It’s best after it’s been allowed to breath at leat 15-20 minutes, after which rich, mildly sweet fruit flavors burst on the palette layered with a spicy hints of black pepper. Klinker Brick is bold, plush red wine, so pair carefully with your meal as it will fight for attention over other flavors. But it would also make an excellent choice for an after dinner drinkable dessert. Decant overnight for an even richer flavor profile experience.



Published by Kate

A former Wisconsinite, Kate now resides in southeast Minnesota with her husband where she teaches high school English and theater. She recently completed her master's degree in learning design and technology, and continues to study and advocate for arts integration in the classroom. A recipient of the RISE America grant for high school theater, Kate is working to innovate and expand theater opportunities for the students at PIHS. An avid distance runner, concert pianist, and want-to-be wine aficionado, Kate's blog "ink." is a passion project, embodying all the best parts of life: friends, food, wine, thoughtful conversation, style, and sass!

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