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Monday, November 29, 2021

Allergy Rash from Christmas Tree: Causes and Remedies

Here is your annual reminder to protect your skin as you decorate this holiday season. My daughter called me out for not following my own advice after my arms got all scratched up handling our artificial tree!🎄

It's time to get the house looking festive for the holidays and lucky for me, I have plenty of helpers.😸 
Cat and Christmas decorations
That means putting lights and decorations not only on indoor Christmas trees, but on outside trees and bushes as well resulting in scratches and rashes on hands and arms in the process! 
Scratches from Christmas tree
It happens every time for me with both real and artificial trees. People can be allergic to the sap or rosin that evergreen trees produce causing painful, burning rashes on the skin. It can be similar to a poison ivy rash for some people. The pricks and scratches from the pine needles exacerbate the allergic reaction. 

The sap may not be the only allergen. Real Christmas trees can have pollen, mold and fungus on them which can cause skin rashes and other allergic reactions. There can be many different types of mold living on a tree. Researchers found more than 50 different molds on Christmas trees!!! That is super bad news for allergy sufferers.

Christmas trees can also be sprayed with chemicals to help preserve them. The many allergens that cause rashes can also cause serious breathing problems for those with asthma and allergies. I know this first hand because my daughter ended up in the ER with a serious asthma attack after babysitting a family with a real Christmas tree.

There are some things you can do to reduce the allergens on a real Christmas tree before bringing it into your house. 

How to Clean a Real Christmas Tree to Remove Allergens

Gloves
Wear gloves and long sleeves when cleaning the tree. Even better, have a non allergic person clean the Christmas tree!!!

Shake it Off
Give the tree a good shaking and bang the trunk of the tree on the ground to remove loose allergens such as pollen. Some Christmas tree sellers have a machine that shakes the tree to remove the allergens plus the loose needles. You can also blow it off with a leaf blower.

Hose it Down
Give the tree a good hosing down outside. Let it drip dry, them move it to the garage to dry off for a couple days.

So how about an artificial Christmas tree? 
It will definitely reduce the possibility of allergic reactions. 

But, you may not be totally safe from allergies with an artificial Christmas tree either. 

People can be allergic to the dust and dust mites that cling to artificial trees. Mold can also be a problem if the artificial tree is stored in a damp basement. Allergic people get a easily rash on their hands and arms along with irritating scratches.

How to Clean An Artificial Christmas Tree


Gloves
Wear gloves and long sleeves when cleaning and assembling the tree. 

Unpack Outside
Open the box that stores your artificial tree outside.

Vacuum Away Dust 
Vacuum your artificial tree to remove dust. Use the brush attachment on your vacuum to gently go branch by branch from top to bottom if the tree is assembled. 

It is easier to vacuum before it is assembled. Do it outside if you can, otherwise put a plastic sheet to catch dust under the tree that you can dispose of after cleaning.

Blow Away Dust
You can blow the tree off outside with a leaf blower if you have a sturdy tree. A leaf blower is strong. It could damage a delicate artificial tree. I have used a blow dryer on the cool setting to blow dust off of my tree in the past.

Wipe Away Dust
Use a damp towel to wipe dust off of artificial trees from top to bottom. You can add a bit of dish washing liquid or vinegar to a bucket of water. Dip your cleaning rag in and squeeze it out really well. You should not saturate the tree. Do it outside if you can. Let it dry thoroughly before decorating it and plugging in lights. 

Store in Plastic
Store the artificial tree in plastic bags or plastic boxes instead of cardboard boxes to reduce dust mites.

Buy a New Tree
Or maybe it's time to ditch your old tree full of allergens and start fresh with a new tree. Especially with all the great cyber sales going on at Christmas time!

You can get all different sizes of Christmas trees including pencil trees at great prices on Amazon! 

Here's my handy Amazon link:


The rash from your Christmas tree, whether it's a real tree or  an artificial one, may not an allergy at all.  It can simply be irritation from the skin being pricked and scratched.
Christmas ornaments
Like I said, I also get scratches and a rash from decorating the Christmas tree, especially when only half of the pre lit tree is lighting and I have to dig through the branches and find the bad bulb. Uggggh! 

You would think I would learn after all these years of decorating experience, but I just jump right into the decorating full of creative energy not worrying about the scratches, till later when they start stinging! 

Plus, this year I have another tree to decorate. I've added this cute pencil tree in my dining room that is so easy to put together and decorate. I love that it fits perfectly in the corner and takes up very little room.

pencil christmas tree

There is a simple way to prevent the scratches and rashes...


Wear gloves and long sleeves when decorating trees. Long gardening gloves work great! Long sleeves tucked into the gloves will give you the best protection.
decorating Christmas tree
If you happened to get scratches and rashes, there are a few things you can do to help your skin heal.

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Natural Oil for Nails and Cuticles
I have recently blended my own natural nail oil specifically for a client who was not seeing any improvement from nail strengthening products. It is Emollient Nail and Cuticle Oil Blend. Cruelty free, of course! It's great to help your nails and cuticles survive the cold dry winter.
Emollient Nail and Cuticle Oil Blend by Beach Ruffles
Emollient Nail and Cuticle Oil Blend Ingredients: Jojoba oil, myrrh essential oil, frankincense essential oil, lemon essential oil.

It has done amazing things for both her nails and the skin surrounding her nails!

You can find it on my Beach Ruffles Etsy Shop. There are two sizes available. The larger size is in a dropper bottle. The smaller size is in a convenient roller ball bottle.
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Remedies for an Allergic Rash from Christmas Tree


After Decorating:
Wash up
Remove the gloves and long sleeve shirt after the decorating and put them in the wash. Wash your hands and arms to remove any allergens.

Soothe the Allergic Reaction
Apply an anti histamine cream such as Benedryl cream, calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream to soothe an allergic reaction rash. A severe poison ivy type reaction may require medical attention and oral anti histamines.


Yonka Lotion
Or try our favorite all purpose remedy at the salon, YonKa Lotion. It seems to soothe and heal any sort of skin irritation with it's blend of essential oils! It's a more natural approach than hydrocortisone or Benedryl.

Treat the Scratches
Apply an antibiotic ointment to the scratches to prevent infection and help them heal a little quicker. 
Christmas tree

The Take Away:

So always do this routine every Christmas tree decorating time to help prevent an allergy rash from a Christmas tree:

1. Clean your Christmas tree whether it real or artificial.
2. Wear long gloves and long sleeves while decorating your tree.
3. Treat any scratches and rashes you received from decorating the tree to speed up the healing of the skin.

I hope my remedies help you keep your skin looking healthy and beautiful all holiday season long!  

Have a Delightful, Blessed Holiday Season!


holiday makeup
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pinecone nail design

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

The Washington at Historic Yellow Springs Review & John Serock Catering Review

Well it happened. 

My daughter's September 2021 wedding at The Washington at Historic Yellow Springs has come and gone in a flash. The day was truly magical and spectacular!!! And the weather was absolutely perfect. It couldn't has been better! The two years of planning were all worth it. 

wedding at The Washington

We chose John Serock as our caterer. He is a preferred caterer for The Washington and has catered many weddings at there. We heard great things about his food. Being foodies, having delicious fall themed food was really important for us. We were counting on the food being as delicious as it was at our tasting.

Read about our tasting at John Serock

I'll tell you all about the day, show you the makeup and hair, share lots wedding day pictures, tell you about all our vendors and give you links to find the best products and wedding services! 

I have included my Amazon Links in this post to guide to to some great products. Remember, I earn from qualifying purchases at no cost to you which help keep my blog running and supports animals in need!

Our Wedding Day

We started the day with breakfast, mimosas, hair and makeup at our house.

wedding day mimosas 

Cathy Maletsky from Styling Point and Michelle Cellini from MC Glamour On The Go arrived early in the morning at 8:00 to start the hair and makeup beautification process for me, the bride, the maid of honor and the bridesmaids. 

wedding day hair and makeup

Since it was our wedding day, I only did the makeup for my two daughters and myself. 

The Bride's Makeup

Bride makeup

The bride wanted dramatic eyes with long, long lashes and a rosey nude look to match her bridesmaid's rose quartz dress color. I applied individual flare lashes to create long, gorgeous, full lashes.

After applying waterproof mascara, I used latex free glue that is used for strip lashes to apply the lash flares. That makes the lashes removable at the end of the night. 

The Too Faced Born This Way The Natural Nudes Eye Shadow Palette with it's mattes and sparkles was perfect palette for her. There is a beautiful selection of rosey nudes in it.

too faced born this way the natural nudes eye shadow palette

We chose Tarte Lippie Lingerie Matte Tint in Whisper for her lips for the perfect rosy beige color. 

romantic bride makeup

She wore the barely there pink nude Zoya Steph on her nails.

Zoya Steph

The Bride's Hair

The bride wanted a soft vintage romantic hair style the incorporated twists, braids and curls. Cathy nailed it!!! It really had an elegant vintage feel.
Romantic bride hairstyle

Meanwhile, my husband finished loading up his truck with the booze for the bar, the decorations for the venue and all of our dresses. It seemed like we had plenty of time to get ready but, let me tell you, it went so fast!  

Our photographer Mary Blank arrived at 1:00 pm for the "getting ready" pictures.

Mary is an amazing photographer. She has recently branched out into commercial photography and does weddings by referral only. Tell her we sent you! Windborne co


A Review of The Washington at Historic Yellow Springs 

Our rental time at The Washington at Historic Yellow Spring began at 2:00 pm for our 5:00 pm fountain garden wedding ceremony and 5:30 reception. The rental time included 3 hours for set up, 5 hours for ceremony and reception, and 2 hours for breakdown. Addition hours could be added to the event for a fee. Just another bit of info, the renters of the property must carry the liability insurance and a $500.00 security deposit is due 5 days before the rental period.

Our Arrival at the Washington

We arrived at The Washington and were greeted by Anne, the wedding day coordinator who immediately jumped it to help unload the alcoholic beverages for the bar, decorations and dresses from the truck. She was there to assist us with whatever we needed and make sure everything was coordinated perfectly. 

We had our rehearsal the Thursday night before the wedding. Anne would line us up, guide us along and keep things flowing smoothly for the ceremony.

The catering team from John Serock would move all the adult beverages we unloaded to the bar area and would put up the decorations.  A decorating plan was filled out for them ahead of time for the seating chart location, sign locations, gift table, center pieces, etc so they knew exactly how to set it up. We just needed to provide clearly marked boxes to make the set up seamless. 

All was quiet when we arrived. The hustle bustle of the set up would begin soon.

The Bride Room

The ladies got dressed in the beautiful, light filled bridal room on the second floor. It was very spacious, had a makeup area with sinks and a bathroom. It was very clean and beautiful.

the bride room the Washington

getting ready the bride room the Washington

There was a window overlooking the fountain garden where the ceremony would be held. The bride could peek out and watch the arriving guests!

bride watching guests arrive

The gentlemen got dressed in the groom's lounge which is located on the first floor far away from the bride room so there was no chance of the groom seeing the bride before the wedding!!! They had a blast in there.

toast to the groom

Our photographer, Mary, got some great shots of the boys while we girls got dressed and sipped the champagne that we brought with us for the bridal room. 

greta lace and peonies

The florist arrived complete with her cute baby on her back with the gorgeous bouquets, wrist corsages and the florals for the reception. Our florist was Greta from Lace and Peonies. Her florals were outstanding!!! 

fall bride bouquet

greens and queen anne's lace bridesmaid bouquets

mother of bride wrist coursage

Then, it was the ladies turn for photos. 

bride hug

While we were busy having pictures taken, our guitarist, Peter Delaplane, arrived. He played the music for the ceremony and cocktail hour.  Look how beautifully he was set up in the garden! 

Peter Delaplane Guitar Music

Our DJ, Binh Nguyen, from Silver Sound Entertainment arrived as did our officiant, Rhonda Leone.

rustic wedding welcome sign
Our guests began to arrive greeted on the porch with a refreshment table with apple cider, infused water while sweet guitar melodies filled the air. 

The Ceremony

ceremony sign

The fountain garden looked beautiful all set up with rows of white chairs. I made small fake flower and ribbon bouquets for the wedding chairs. Anne had them all set up. 

flowers for wedding chairs
Even the flowers in the garden were the perfect colors to go with our pink wedding theme.

the fountain garden at the Washington historic yellow springs

the fountain garden at the Washington historic yellow springs

The ceremony was lovely. My father-in-law spoke a few words. Rhonda was friendly and professional and the guitar music was just perfect. Peter is the best! 

The light from the sun lowering in the sky provided ideal lighting for photography.

Anne's services ended after the ceremony and Jenny from Serock then took charge of our event as coordinator. Both ladies did a wonderful job. 

Review of John Serock Catering

The Cocktail Hour

The cocktail hour began immediately following the ceremony. Guests were greeted by servers with trays of wine as they entered the breezeway. The breezeway and the brick room looked lovely with linen covered high top tables for cocktail hour. 

high top cocktail hour table
Guests were free to grab a cocktail from the bar and wander the grounds to visit the ruins, the herb garden and the courtyard or just hang out and relax in the brick room. We provided fun bar table games like Jenga, tic tac toe and playing cards on the high tops tables.

brick room the washington

Hors d'oeuvres were butlered and there was a charcuterie display in the brick room. Our butlered hors d'oeuvres were spinach puffs, tomato mozzarella skewers and sliders. Delicious!

charcuterie board

The seating chart and welcome/gift table were also in the brick room. The large window sills were perfect to set up our memorial area honoring our loved ones who have recently passed.

wedding memorial display

Our signature cocktail, the whiskey sour, made with Basil Haydon Bourbon was a huge hit! John Serock provided sodas, mixers and garnishes for the drinks. The bar service was perfect.

The puzzle piece sign in was unique and fun!

puzzle piece sign in
The newlyweds had some beautiful photos taken at the gazebo during part of the cocktail hour. The gazebo is an amazing historic picturesque setting for photos located right across the street from The Washington. 

bride at gazebo historic yellow springs

bride and groom gazebo historic yellow springs
Absolutely stunning!!!

The Reception

The main room at The Washington looked magnificent! Everything was set up exactly as we wanted it.

reception room the washington
The tables were set perfectly with their candles with greens centerpieces and seed packet favors along with plated rolls.

wedding candle center pieces

The sweetheart table looked perfect with it's candles, roses, greens and white pumpkins. The fireplace mantle behind the sweetheart table also looked beautiful with candles and Greta's florals.

rustic bride chair sign

sweetheart table decor

rustic groom chair sign

fire place mantle flowers

sweetheart table the washington

After the bridal party's grand entrance through the double doors, the guests were served a mixed greens salad. The salad was fresh, crisp and delicious. Speeches were made and the first dances opened up the dance floor.

We chose to have stations to accommodate the various food needs of our guests, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, etc. 

There was a pasta station with Penne a la Vodka and Farfalle with Plum Tomatoes, Fresh Mozzarella and Basil. Absolutely scrumptious, just as it was at our tasting!

There was a carving station with beef, turkey, potatoes and seasonal vegetables. Our guests couldn't stop eating the moist delicious turkey! 

We had a great time singing, dancing and carrying on to Binh's tunes. He played the best music!

dancing at the reception

The dessert table was full of tasty little desserts along with coffee and tea. Mini apple pies, pumpkin squares, smores tarts, cannoli's and eclairs. One more delicious than the other.  I just wish there were more. Our guests gobbled them up so fast! 

wedding cake

The cake was supplied by The Master's Baker . It was very pretty with it's roses and leaf design. It tasted good but it was a bit sweet for my taste.

I must say, we were not disappointed with the food. The food was outstanding! Many of our guests repeatedly told me how good the food was. This makes us foodies very happy! 

There serving team was very professional and wore face masks. Jenny tended to every detail and paid special attention to the bride and groom. She made sure a tasting of all the food was packed up for the bride and groom to take home since they don't always get to taste everything in all the wedding day excitement.

We highly recommend John Serock Catering!

The Breakdown

The breakdown and clean up of the venue happened swiftly. We were responsible for removing all our decoration and remaining alcoholic beverages that night. Jenny was extremely helpful with packing up decorations and moving them to a central location so we could move them out. 

The Take Away 

My daughter's wedding was perfect. Couldn't have been better. We were extremely happy with all of our vendors and the service they provided.

The Washington was outstanding, charming, beautiful and well organized. Anne kept everything running smoothly.

Rhonda Leone was friendly and professional. The bouquets and floral arrangements from Lace and Peonies were gorgeous. Peter Delaplane was the best guitaristBinh Nguyen did an amazing job as DJ. 

John Serock Catering provided us with superb food and excellent service. Jenny kept everything running smoothly.

Mary Blank photos are gorgeous.

And of course, my friends Cathy and Michelle did their usual amazing work on the hair and makeup!

Thank you all for helping to create the perfect wedding for my daughter and son in law!

The Washington was the perfect venue for us. If you are looking for a romantic, charming wedding venue, I highly recommend The Washington. It accommodates 150 guests and offers 3 outdoor ceremony areas and one indoor room.

Click here my wedding planning visit to The Washington

Thanks for reading about our fabulous memorable!

       Have a Beautiful Day! 
xo
Licensed Cosmetologist, Makeup Artist, Esthetician

Thanks for using my amazon & direct links💋
As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases at no cost to you. That keeps my blog running and supports the care of animals in need!😸