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Turning 60 at the L'Auberge de Sedona

February 19, 2011 Reviewed by JulieKay 10 Comments

I cried the year I turned 22. Honest. From a broken heart- soulful life-is-over weepfest. That might sound silly and self serving, but at the time, the devastation was so very real. Youth, right? Life. No doubt. Don’t you love it?! From that point on, I was fine with aging. I felt comfortable in my body, mind and spirit. I loved my birthdays! Life was and is a process. When I think back over my life, I think of it in phases. Memories and the present are separated with silky gauzy curtains flowing in gentle whispering breezes. If I don’t get distracted by the beauty of this, I might actually get on with the memories I’m seeking. Or not. I live very much in the present and attempt to be in the “now” as true as I can.  I believe in owning each moment even if it’s only breathing- especially breathing! But there are some things not easily ignored.

Sixty was a distraction. Sixty was a reality that I couldn’t ignore. A sudden speed bump in my life! So, 60 was going to need to be a celebration!

Early last year I began thinking in this vein- a celebration. I’ve never celebrated a birthday beyond a nice dinner out, maybe a weekend away. Never far- the Pacific Northwest offers so many lovely rendezvous. The strange part when I’m asked how I chose where we went:  It just popped in my head, and the idea grew into a certainty within days. Sedona, Arizona. Furthermore, I web-searched Sedona one time for lodging, saw L’Auberge de Sedona and looked no further. It was the ONLY lodging I saw, and I knew without a doubt it was where I wanted to be in Sedona. I knew nothing about Sedona, nothing. And 10 months ago I knew this is where I wanted to celebrate 60.

So, that’s where I went. My husband deigned to travel with me, which in itself is a semi miracle. I do most of my traveling with my soulmate (think: Oprah-Gayle), Melissa. Of course, she was included in my Turning 60 quest, as well. We always have a spectacular time together and turning 60 with my two loves completed the circle.

Leaving the clickity-clack and other wondrous details of my spirit quest unwritten, I do want to call out the L’Auberge Spa treatments I received during my stay. I’ve often said I’ve never had a facial, right? Before last week I’d never had a spa treatment of any sort. I have had treatments now, and how! Holy.

I had already booked spa time at L’Auberge pretty much the minute I booked my trip. Lovely Marta and my role here at TIA toed the door open a bit further, and among the lovely facial treatments I received, L’Auberge complimented me their signature Vitamin C Antioxidant facial. My esthetician, Devika, was remarkable, and with or without previous experience I know she’s good. Devika began with a gommage exfoliation followed by a lymphatic massage over my entire face and my feet. This was followed by another facial massage called Aculift after which she applied a rejuvenating mask with a Vitamin C ampoule for deep penetration. This mask was applied using a gauzy mask. I also had what’s called Eye Extreme Eye Rescue. During this treatment, Devika applied serum and collagen around my eyes, then applied an eye mask, to which she performed a cold marble stone massage to my entire orbital area. While my Vitamin C facial was finishing off, she performed a final pressure point massage on my face. Wow!

Now, truly understand- I’ve never had a facial! This was 90 minutes of pure love just for my face. The results were glorious. I looked 20 years younger. (No, I didn’t take a camera with me!) My face was so plump… think baby. My spa treatments didn’t end there… I went on to have what L’Auberge Spa calls a Hot Toddy for the Body which lasted an hour. This is an entire body exfoliation and rinse, followed by oils rubbed in massage style. Mariposa performed this treatment, and I can’t say enough about the care, time and concern of this treatment. The scents were beyond this world, and my skin was saturated with moisture when finished.

Devika and Mariposa: Thank you so very much, from my heart to yours, thank you! And to our TIA readers: If you ever get to Sedona AZ, try to put the Spa at L’Auberge on your agenda! The entire experience at L’Auberge de Sedona was beyond amazing. My spirit took flight.

L’Auberge is the baseline to which I’ll be rating further treatments, and I have a feeling I’ve already experienced the higher echelon. I felt there was so much care taken to take these treatments to a level higher than this earthen plane. I have no previous experience with which to compare. Of course I was in Sedona, and Sedona is surrounded by mystical vortexes. I am Aquarius and open to all that is mystical and celebrate it. I felt magic; I felt my hippie roots!

I turned 60. I am 60 years old!


  • February 23, 2011

    by ha ly

    You have amazinggggggggg skin for your age. I know some people in early 20s with skin that's so much worse. You look like you can be in your early 40's.

  • February 23, 2011

    by Julie Kay

    shancy, thanks for the compliment! and asking about my regimen. You can read the last one I wrote here. Taking a quick scan, I can well see I've made changes. Perhaps it's time for an update? Don't apologize! There is usually a link up top when Marta's Friends post to easily find our past posts. It's all good. You're in the company of friends- family, really.

    And, Jennifer, I'd say welcome to WA, but as you pointed out we're probably neighbors. =) I'm north of Seattle, at any rate. I do thank my lovely Pacific NW for it's good air which I think my skin benefits. ~jk

  • February 23, 2011

    by Jennifer

    I live in WA as well, Julie Kay! We're probably neighbors!

  • February 23, 2011

    by shancy

    Julie - Happy Belated! Your skin looks very healthy and Im not seeing wrinkles on your face. Could you let us know how you are taking care of your skin? If you have already posted your skin care regime I apologize.

  • February 21, 2011

    by Julie Kay

    Thank you all! Really, this was beyond a birthday. I have been approaching 60 all wrong, as I suspect many of us women (Sorry, guys, I don't mean to exclude you, but I have this wealth of estrogen- is it the same: Approaching the decade events?) do. I'm not going to wax poetic here, rather go back to "Sedona"!!! I was born in Seattle- near water, deep forests and mountains (with snow tops) all my life. It has always distressed me to be away from this geography for long. But I could live in Sedona- the magic struck my core so true and deep.

    And I have feathers in my hair! Melissa was looking at feather earrings and trying to talk me into them. I said they were too overdone. But the clerk (we were in Crystal Magic, OF COURSE!!!!) had feathers in her HAIR and said her manager could do the same for us next day. Now this... I'm down with this- Perfect for a 60 year old hippie, don't you agree?

    HAHA!!! ~jk

  • February 21, 2011

    by Jan

    What a lovely, magical birthday. Thank you for sharing your experience with us!

  • February 19, 2011

    by Stephanie

    Happy Birthday Julie Kay! Thanks for sharing your celebration- sounds lovely and you look great.

  • February 19, 2011

    by Jennifer

    Happy birthday, Julie Kay, & thanks for sharing! I did something similar for my 40th (over 10 years ago), & have been hooked on spa pampering treatments ever since! What a magical place to celebrate one of the milestone birthdays!

  • February 19, 2011

    by Wonda

    Happy Birthday, Julie Kay! Wonderful post. You make 60 look a m a z i n g!

  • February 19, 2011

    by Sunday

    Hello my Aquarius sister ~ I am so happy for you! Your experience sounds divine and makes me want to save my pennies. I've always loved our country's red rock region. There can be nothing better than relaxed supple skin with a great sunset in a red desert...Thank you for sharing.

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