Stefanie Van Ness

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Freedom Feet: Pampering Service Members Around the Globe

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Freedom Feet started on a sleepless night in 2007! My husband is in the Army and had been back from Iraq for a few months. I had been hearing stories about the living and working conditions. If the Soldiers were outside of their “tin cans” (sleeping quarters) they either had to be in full uniform or in their PT uniforms. Many times a workday consisted of 18 hours, and then 6 hours to clean up, talk with family (if the connections were up and running that day), write letters, unwind, and of course sleep! Then they were up and at it again the next day. That was their day if they were “inside the wire.” If they were “outside the wire” (outside of the semi-safe confines of their base) they were on duty 24 hours and would take turns cat napping, to get their required 4 nonconsecutive hours of sleep. It’s hard to hear about these situations as a wife. It’s hard to picture my husband constantly dirty, never without his weapon, rugged, tired, worn out, and away from any comforts of home.

About that time a very good friend of mine was deploying. Her unit was going to a similar area that my husband had been in. Now her job was vastly different (my husband is in the Infantry) but the conditions were not. So as hard as it was imagining my husband in that situation, it struck a different chord imagining my friend in a similar situation. Because she was a woman, with emotions, needs, and thought processes that I could relate to. It was so hard to picture her going through the same things my husband had gone through just a few months earlier.

As I said in the beginning, I was processing all of this in the middle of the night one night, and I just couldn’t sleep. Knowing the heart of Lemongrass, and knowing the heart of my good friend who was deploying, I knew there was a connection there! And I knew there was something I could do! The thought started off as making a mental note to send her a foot kit and a few other goodies in a personal care package once she was settled. Then that thought grew…”I know I have friends and family who would help share the cost of sending care packages to the women in that unit!” That’s all it took! The next day I was talking to my friend who was deploying! She LOVED the idea, stating that so often the care packages they receive are geared towards men…car magazines, shaving cream, Irish Spring soap, etc! She told me how they are supposed to blend in with the men, and not really look like girls all that much, so a girly package would give them a chance to break away from that and be girls!

I had plenty of friends and family that wanted to send packages, and as I was pulling all of this together, I realized I should probably call Heidi [Leist, Founder & CEO] and make sure that what I was doing was ok! Of course she gave me full permission to keep going, and not only gave me her blessing, but asked if her and other consultants could join with! That was it! Freedom Feet was born! Since then we have sent thousands of foot kits to deployed service members around the world! There have been many brains, much more creative than my own, who have developed Freedom Feet into what it is today, and we would be lost without those women! But most importantly, we have received hundreds of thank you cards/pictures/notes/emails from grateful service members around the world telling us how this gift allowed them to escape from the realities of war and deployment, even if just for a few moments. That right there makes every effort 100% worth it! God Bless the men and women protecting and fighting for our freedoms!

Please join the Freedom Feet Facebook Group to show support for and hear stories from service members. 

Lemongrass Spa Products is honored to now offer Freedom Feet Cucumber Foot Kits to all members of service, women and men, stationed on foreign soil. Consider sponsoring a Freedom Feet Foot Kit for $24 or Freedom Feet Foot Kit with Mini Bar Soap for $29. Let’s not forget service members returning home or the military wives and families waiting for loved ones to return to the US with a Freedom Feet Foot Kit for Domestic Residents for $28 or Freedom Feet Foot Kit for Domestic Residents with Mini Bar Soap for $33. Lemongrass Spa’s Matching Program: The home office will donate 1 Freedom Feet Foot Kit for every 10 kits purchased from 05/01/15 through 07/31/2015. Help us reach our goal of sending 2,000 Kits to soldiers around the globe!

As seen on 9News! Watch the 2-minute interview with Blackhawk Helicopter pilot who received foot kits for her battalion while stationed in Iraq in 2011, along with some footage of the Lemongrass Spa Home Office in Pine, Colorado. 

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Comments

  • Guest
    Itza valdez Saturday, 01 October 2016

    So I am currently station in Afghanistan as soon as I got here my left foot started suffering all kind of problems, some body left a kit of freedom boots and I started using it and love it, the swelling on my foot went down. But iam running out of it.. and was wondering how can I get more. My Internet is not the best here so I don't see the entire website. Can you please email me information. Thank you

  • Guest
    Stefanie Van Ness Monday, 01 May 2017

    Itza, it's been seven months since you posted this, and I'm just now seeing it! I'm so sorry! If someone hasn't already contacted you, please email our home office at admin@lemongrassSpa.com, or myself at freedomfeet@hotmail.com and we'll get you taken care of! God Bless your for your service to our country, and the sacrifices you've had to make!

  • Guest
    Jennifer Sunday, 30 April 2017

    HI Stephanie. I am also a Lemongrass Spa consultant and a Full Time Military Spouse. I do direct sales as we don't know where we are always going to be as duty calls. My husband is in the Navy and has been for 24 years. He is a CWO3 a Commanding Officer whom actually takes command and has a unit. They recently returned home from Okanwa Japan with his unit and his feet were so bad. I doctored them before he left in hopes that it would help and I am sure it did for a couple days but he can't be without these products. His feet particularly 1 is so bad from living on the submarine for years and some kind of chemical got in his foot in a certain area and there is no cure. At times if I do not work on it for more than 2 days or so it looks like a diabetic foot. I treat his foot nightly with essential oils, the mineral soak, the healing elements and now the amazing recovery balm for the severe pain. Whenever they are in Japan he and his unit go to a spa in the mall but it's just for the feet. I am so thankful for Lemongrass Spa and their support of our military he is about to leave again on Navy orders and Lemongrass Spa is sending some foot kits for his entire unit. They are very excited and not this trip but the next Navy trip the Navy spouses are going to go and not only will these help their husbands feet but some of the soldiers of his unit are actually women and I know them personally and they are so freaking excited. I am very proud to represent a company that cares about our military first. In addition to these Freedom Foot kits I will be sure to add a catalog :) as these products help my husbands feet so much that I kinda think the women soldiers or their spouses would love to be a consultant with Lemongrass Spa. This is a nightly routine. He has been to the doctor and the dermatologist and the prescriptions he receives as we have Tri-Care do nothing for his feet. The only success we have is with the natural Lemongrass Spa products. I am so thankful for the new recovery balm he actually asked me to order it last month and I did I purchased the big tube and it helps his foot so much. When he is away his foot gets really bad. I told Lemongrass Spa that he had 15 in his unit because that is what I thought but he told me not all the soldiers go on the same orders so he actually has 25 soldiers on his unit. If they message me back I will let them know. Thank you so much for starting this program and I am serious when I say it's a nightly thing - the mineral soak and all ! Go USA :)And Stephenie you are welcome to call anytime. Us military spouse stick together ♡

  • Guest
    Stefanie Van Ness Monday, 01 May 2017

    Amen, Jennifer! Thank you so much for sharing your story. I absolutely love hearing how our products change people's lives, especially our military!! God Bless your family for everything you do and sacrifice for our country!

  • Guest
    Jennifer Wednesday, 03 May 2017

    Thank you as well Stefani !!!! I definitely always support his military career. No it's fine my husband is actually away on Navy Orders now ! And sorry for spelling your name wrong. Yes his feet excuse me their feet are so bad - I only speak from personal experience as I don't rub anyone else's feet but I imagine the spouses do. The new Recoveey Cream works great on them for the Pain. And the other products are seriously a necessity,essential oils, healing elements, mineral soak, and the others. No prescriptions work. There was some kind of chemical or something that messed up one of his feet as it seriously happens in the exact same area. I am very happy you created this program. So many other companies help all these other organizations and I have to say I am proud to be with Lemongrass Spa as our US Military should come first. Really sorry about your name spelled wrong. I am am spelling freak lol is there any way you can edit it to correct your name ⯑⯑⯑

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Guest Monday, 11 December 2017