Chickenless Soup For The Soul

Nothing makes you feel totally at ease and relaxed like a good friend and a week of sun and a pool. 🏊🏼‍♀️ My friend Laura invited me to visit her over the July 4th holiday and it sounded like a fun idea. But as all you know, I enjoy staying in the comfort of my home and routine. However, one of the promises I made to myself was to start travel and get out there a little more. So upon the invite after a few hmms and haws, I booked a ticket to visit her in Reinhold, PA. ✈️

Laura and I met when I recruited her to Hershey. Who would have known we would become fast and great friends? 👭Laura’s professional background was impressive to say the least, but the best thing is our ability to laugh (that deep belly laugh) about any random stupid thought that came our way. No one could quite understand when they found us in an office after hours hysterically laughing about nothing. Needless to say, I knew our time together over the holiday was going to rekindle our stupid antics. 😜

Coincidentally, Laura also lost her husband this year, so we have been leaning on one another to get through this ordeal. It is so interesting that a tragedy in both of our lives would bring us back together, maybe a little divine intervention… who knows? 😇Anyways, enough about the sad stuff, I packed a lite bag which mainly involved swimsuits as I knew we were going to spend the majority of time in her new pool. I was anxious to see it finally since I was there for its inception. I feel like this pool’s aunt. I remembered when it was only a dream, then the down payment, the poorly executed build and finally … it was here for Aunt Risa to see. And let me say, it did not disappoint…. ☀️

Laura picked me up from the airport, looking gorgeous and skinny. Figures mourning for her involved not eating where my situations was the exact opposite … ugh… We hightailed it to her gorgeous home. 🏠 Here I thought it was going to be a casual weekend and to my delight, I entered into “The Heaton Spa and Resort.” I kind of felt underdressed… yikes. She showed me around the house and shared stories about her art, statues and attention to incredible detail with her light fixtures, doors and decoration of her home. I had no idea she had all this in here – quite impressive. She is currently going through a “Turkey” inspired phase which involved a magnificent chandelier, towels and delicious jelly candies – yum – raspberry was my favorite.🍭

We had a very specific agenda for the next three days; lay in the pool, laugh, lay in the pool, eat, lay in the pool and exercise with THE MIRROR (which I will get to later as we did not end up doing this until 30 minutes before I had to leave for the airport). There was no need to leave the house as Laura had everything one would need. She had an incredible garden with every herb, flower and plant you could imagine.🌿🌼🌸 It was truly a farm to table experience. In the morning I was greeted with fresh fruit (on 4th of July, a red, white and blue ensemble) and home cooked meals continued to come. Laura was a vegan… way before it was cool and on trend. She is an excellent chef and whipped up these incredible dishes like it was no big deal (she knows how to do everything except connect a remote to the cable). 😘 We dined on a lot of vegetables, fruits, vegan cheeses etc… everything was amazing. She even had reverse osmosis water served in these glass containers (which I quickly stole the idea and just received them today from Amazon). 💧I never anticipated to be treated like a queen… and I enjoyed every moment.👸🏻

Putting all that aside, the best part of our time together to reconnect and talk about everything. We spoke about loss, gratitude, hope, work, professional ambitions, personal dreams and other secrets that I will never tell. We had such an easy time together just being together even if it may have involved a lot of sleeping on a raft in a pool. It was pure heaven. Laura was the ultimate hostess and made me reevaluate my skills in this area – I think you will not get the same experience in my home. You will get a bed though…. 🛏

Of course in our true patterns, Laura and I left all our action items for the vacation together to the last minute. One was to work out using “THE MIRROR.” It is a body length mirror that connects to live and recorded exercise classes. You can take cardio, yoga, stretching and other. I was excited to check it out. Unfortunately, Laura overdid it in cardio class prior to my arrival so we needed to take it easy and chose to do a stretching class. 🧘🏻‍♀️It was so cool and felt like a real class. Maybe part of the experience was enhanced because we worked out in Laura’s personal gym – which put my little exercise room to shame. It was so fun and I am actually tempted to buy “THE MIRROR” for myself… we will see…

My retreat came to an end on Saturday and it was bittersweet leaving Laura and her incredible home and of course adorable puppies (not mentioned previously but significant to this story – Stan, Nina and Louie). But the pugs were waiting and it was time for me to get back to reality and not overstay my welcome. All in all, I had such a great time and felt so relaxed. We had intended to drink and really booze it up but realistically we just hung out and found ourselves barely keeping our eyes open past 11 p.m. What wild gals…!! We did have a late night bonfire where I tried to teach Laura camp songs as she never attended as a kid. 🔥🍢However, she became quickly turned off with my rendition of the “Titanic Song”… It was sad so sad … it was sad too bad when the great ship went down to the bottom of the sea… husband and wives, little children lost their lives (I guess that is creepy when I think of it). Other than that, would not have changed a thing. This trip was truly “Chickenless Soup for the Soul” – no meat eaten or animal harmed during our time. 🐣Nothing soothes you like great friendships, deep conversations and raft in the pol. Fabulous time… highly recommend the Heaton Resort … 5 Stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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