Sunday, 4 March 2007

March's Issue ~Phobic Nest Zine!

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To catch a quick glimpse of whats been going on inside
Phobic Nest
You can always pop on here to have a quick read.

Remember~ If you'd like to read more of what goes on, and view the entire forum
all you have to do is sign in, Or indeed, join up!

In this months issue we have:

  • A helpful Letter for anyone suffering from anxiety related issues!
  • Creativity by Cloudwalking.
  • An Achievement by Carol, including feedback from her friends at The Nest.
  • Creativity by Miss Moose.
  • A cute "Medical Test" that everyone should enjoy taking!
  • Link Of The Month - posted by BBM
  • Gloomys Recipe Of The Month!
and last but not least
  • Humour!

Helpful Letter:

This letter is taken from the book - How To help your loved one out of agoraphobia.
Its very useful if a sufferer ever needs to tell someone about their condition but cant find the right words to do so. Obviously you can change words to suit you and your needs.

There are many situations that people challenged with anxiety and agoraphobia have to face that might be made easier if other people, such as doctors, dentists, restaurant owners etc. we're aware of our dilemma. The "Dear Person Letter" is a tool you can use (you can alter it to fit your personal needs and/ or preferences) to let others know about your situation and apprehensions in the hope that they will work with you to help you accomplish certain tasks. The letter may go something like this:

"Dear __________(Dentist, etc, etc, etc)________________________
I would like to take this opportunity to tell you something about myself. I have an anxiety disorder known as Agoraphobia. It is a challenge that even in this day and age, not too many people know much about. It is type of "nervous" condition that often causes panic attacks.
Although 1 in 100 persons are challenged with Agoraphobia, few people have a true understanding of the condition. It is sometimes embarrassing for me to talk about it, but it is very important to me that you are aware of it, hence this letter.
Agoraphobia is similar to claustrophobia, except that panic attacks are triggered by many causes such as crowds, distance from home, dentists, bridges, bright lights and loud noises. I can neither anticipate nor control these attacks. Therefore I often avoid situations which might arouse this extremely uncomfortable, sometimes terrifying, and always embarrassing reaction.

I am seeking help for this problem and am making progress, but I still have some reactions. At this point I have made some progress and want to make even more, but I still need a way out of situations that are frightening to me. I have found that often when I feel I have permission to leave an uncomfortable situation and know people will understand, I can do better.

It is extremely important to me to feel free to leave any given situation at any time, no matter how innocuous the situation may appear. I don't ask that you understand my condition, but I would appreciate your understanding of my predicament. (You can fill in here what your specific needs are in the situation.--.i.e. to come to the office several times before the actual appointment to familiarize yourself with it etc..)

In telling you this I an not soliciting your sympathy, but I would like your moral support as I work toward recovery. I realize that the way I confront the problem may be confusing and even seem inappropriate. Be assured I desperately tried other ways, but am convinced the approach I am using now is the only one that will work. By your acceptance you will be working with me.

Thank you very much for your cooperation,
(sign your name here)"

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I took some pics of how to make aromatherapy oils to help evoke "calmness" in ones mind...and also some pics of a bottle of anti panic smelling salts .

Carol's Achievement & some replies from her friends at The Nest.
Carol did just achieve this once, but twice, and who knows how many more times!

I did It! ~Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2007 12:37 am
Okay so since I developed the panic disorder I have not been able to pick up Jade from school especially by myself. this has been going on for a year and a half now. The problem is I am in a long line of cars that are not moving very fast at all and I start to feel very panicy because the thoughts racing through my head are what if something happens to me (panic attack for example) I am trapped here. I guess it is close to claustrophobia. Anyways due to this my mother-in-law has been the main person to drop and pick Jade up from school. Well due to circumstances ( Jeremy's Granny has been very sick and mom has been staying at her house this week) I had no choice, either take her or keep her out of school for the week , Well Jade was sick Monday & tuesday but felt better today and wanted to go to school. SOOOOOO I DID IT and all by myself too!!! and with minimal panic. I am pretty pleased with myself right now I am not naive enough to think I can do it all the time now with no panic but it's a start. XXX's Carol P.s It also tickled Jade to have Mommy to pick her up!


Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2007 9:28 am:
Wow I am so proud of you I know about being trapped thing, I get that bad if I get stuck by a train. But to do it with minimal panic is great I hope you will be able to continue doing it and maybe feel comfy doing that so you don't have attacks at all :S Heres wishing:S Good going!

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2007 5:14 pm
YEAH! CAROL!!!!!!! GREAT!!!!!!!
You know IF you do ever panic---just pretend the car is stuck until it passes & let them just have to go around you---don't worry! I think it's great that you were able to!!!! I bet Jade was real happy!!! hugs, Colleen

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 5:14 pm
that's brilliant carol, really well done to you. You should feel so proud of yourself right now for taking the fear by it's balls and throwing it away. Use this mentally as a signpost of what you can achieve, and know that even though you might not be able to do it all the time, there are times when you can and will be able to do it. Now you have evidence to challenge the what-if thoughts. I bet jade was over the moon

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 6:41 pm
Awwwww....i can only imagine the delight on Jades little face and the warmth you must of felt in your heart when you met her from school. I think that must be one of the best rewards for overcoming any fear! and i feel sure that its that feeling that will make you wanna do it all over again. You did so well carol! *huge huggles*

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 1:05 am
Thank You!
Well I managed Wednesday,Thursday I took her but panicked when it was time to pick her up and had to have my brother-in-law do it, Then today I took her had a panic filled horrible day BUT..I picked her up with my sis-in-law I drove but she came with kinda like a safety net incase I couldnt manage all the way. XXX's Carol

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 10:35 am
Hey Carol,
Hun this truly is great news, & let me tell you that even though the last couple of days you had someone with you, a week ago you couldn't have managed to be there at all so you're doing SUPERBLY & I'm sure that as everyone has already said Jade must be over the moon to have her mum their for school You're a strong woman & you must be so ecstatic with yourself at your own accomplishments, you must feel like & you do hun You Rule Big Time All my love & hugs xxx

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 1:03 pm
Well done that is something you should be proud of, and dont feel bad about having little hiccups during making a major achievment because its just normal and you learn from them. I really enjoyed reading your achievment WAHEY!

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 2:02 pm
Aawww that is really fantastic It was a mega achievement, and a huge first step, it is something you can deffinatly build on As other peeps have said, Jade must have been so happy when you took her to school and picked her up, i bet she's really proud of you too love and hugs, moosey xxx

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 5:10 pm
((((Carol)))) WAY TO GO!!!!! You did it again!!!!! I bet Jade is thrilled!!!! Keep it up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (((Hugs))) Colleen

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 11:17 am
doing it twice is brilliant carol. That's a great sign of progress, whether you panic whilst you're doing it or not. Maybe you're on to something with the safety net - is it possible to arrange someone to wait for you or go with you but stay in the background on those days you feel panicky, like a regular thing?

Posted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 1:34 am
Wtg carol!

Make new cards from old card

What will I need?
  • Old greetings cards
  • CardGlue
  • Scissors
  • CardEmbellishments & stickers (optional)

You can recylcle old greetings cards to make new ones by cutting out the pictures and then comeing up with your own designs.

Here are 2 cards i've made:

1. This was the origional card

I cut out all the the pictures, and then used the two sea-themed ones to make a new card, a fish and a boat.

Change 1 - The shape and size of the card.

Change 2 - The colour of the card, from blue to cream.

Change 3 - I only used 2 of the pictures instead the origional 10.

This is the new card

2. The original card

Change 1 - The shape and size of the card.

Change 2 - The colour of the card, from purple to cream.

Change 3 - I only used one of the pictures instead of the origional


Change 4- I used some funky foam to make a pair of flip flops.

This is the new card

You can see how different you can make your new cards even though you are using old greetings cards. Aswel as being able to let your creative juiced flow, you are also being enviromentally friendly because you are recyling and you are also saving money!


Time for that Medical Test EVERYONE should enjoy taking. It wont take long, and The Nest assures you it does make you come over all cute & daft!

Stare at the cats eyes for 10 seconds...

Now stare at the puppies for 5 seconds...


and LAB Tests
are now

And heres one of the nests members results!:

Carol26 Posted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 2:46 pm
I did it too!!! So cute though! XXX's Carol P.S. When do I get my results back Debs?


Cloudwalking Posted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 12:20 am

its just coming thru on the fax so you can have your results right now carol!

the cat said you are a beautiful woman who is healthy & strong! you must drink more water tho, in order to water your pretty soul and to wash any worries out of your mind.

The labrador puppies reported back that you must take at least one day a week to have time on your own in order to pamper yourself! they suggested you paint your nails (toenails too!) whilst listening to some relaxing music. they also advised you that jeremy must gently stroke your forearm to help relax you, in candle light.


Link Of The Month!

Emotional Support Animals

"Dogs that provide companionship, relief from loneliness & depression, and similar support can be allowed in housing (even "No Pet" housing) without the requirement of a pet deposit. Those dogs are called "Emotional Support Animals", but they don't have access to public places, either."
"a psychiatric service dog might bring patients their medication or lead them to a safe place when they are having a panic attack"

A few members never knew these type of dogs existed. We are loving the fact that even landlords and estate agents that state No Pets Allowed, is over written if you are in need of such a clever dog!

BBM brought this great info to the nest on another post. (thanks scott ;-) )
more info can be found here:
and here:


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Shamrock Cookies for St. Patricks!

Creatively decorate these buttery cookie shamrocks for a special St. Patrick's day treat. I would use green icing and green sprinkles.

Preparation 45 min.
Baking 7 min.
Chilling 2 hrs.
Cooling 15 min.
Standing 6 hrs.

Cookie Ingredients: * 1 cup LAND O LAKES® Butter, softened * 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, softened * 3/4 cup sugar * 1 egg * 1 teaspoon vanilla * 3 cups all-purpose flour Glaze Ingredients: * 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar * 2 tablespoons water * 1 tablespoon LAND O LAKES® Butter, softened * 1 tablespoon light corn syrup * 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract, if desired * Food color, if desired * Decorator candies, sugars, etc.

if desired Instructions: Combine all cookie ingredients except flour in large mixer bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy (3 to 4 minutes). Reduce speed to low; add flour. Beat until well mixed (2 to 3 minutes). Divide dough in half; wrap each half in plastic food wrap. Refrigerate until firm (at least 2 hours).

Heat oven to 375°F. Roll out dough on lightly floured surface, one-half at a time (keeping remaining dough refrigerated), to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut with 2 1/2-inch cookie cutter. Place 1 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 7 to 10 minutes or until edges are very lightly browned. Cool completely.

Combine powdered sugar, water, 1 tablespoon butter, corn syrup and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla in small mixer bowl; beat at medium speed until powdered sugar is moistened (1 minute). Continue beating until mixture is smooth, adding additional water if necessary, to reach desired glazing consistency. Tint with food color, if desired. Glaze cooled cookies.

Add decorator candies, if desired. Let stand until glaze hardens (6 hours or overnight).

Ingredient Substitution Index Yield:
3 1/2 dozen cookies Nutrition Facts (1 cookie) Calories: 120 Fat: 5 g Cholesterol: 20 mg Sodium: 45 mg Carbohydrates: 17 g Dietary Fiber: 0 g Protein: 1 g
11679 Copyright © 2001 Land O'Lakes, Inc. © 2006 Land O'Lakes, Inc.


Monday, 15 January 2007

Febuary's Issue ~ Phobic Nest's Newsletter & Zine

In this months issue we have

  • One of Cloudwalkings achievements

  • Exercises to REDUCE Panic & More

  • Megs Photography (visit to the zoo)

  • Step By Step creativity with Miss Moose

  • Gloomys Recipe Of The Month ~something for valentines

  • Must Have Therapy aroma dough!

  • Pet/Animal Of The Month

  • & last but not least - Humour!


One of Clouds fave Achievements.

when i was little, i wanted to be a cowboy, because i thought by being one, id get to have my very own horse. id sometimes alternate between being a cowboy, to being a red indian, it didnt matter much long as i got my horse. funny thing is...i could never ever pronounce "cowboy" say..." i wanna be a coy-boy"...instead. my eldest sister still teases me about that.
i love horses. the above tells me i always have done. um...did i mention i love horses? oh yeah..i did...but im gonna say it again
i lovehorses!

This is Bill:

im sad about the ones on the marsh land as they are not being looked after properly. one reason im getting into the voluntary work on the marsh is to take good care of them, and hopefully bump into the owner, or grazier who is sposed to be looking after them. if i fail...i will get in contact with the horse protection league again. (i have already, and ive been given a phone number to contact a woman, but im holding it off for now as im hoping for a positive response once ive expressed my concern to the council)
Shy Girl spots us from afar

and moves closer

i know this post might not seem like therapy...but gimme a min..(you guys know what im like for rambling..hehe) and i will get to the therapy part of it in a min - *promises*

mark and me are constantly being told by the paid wardens NOT to feed the horses because it could lead to the "bird watchers" being bitten by them. i say my arse! i study these horses daily..and the horses dont approach anyone! - the only reason they approach us is because weve taken the time to build trust with them. it annoys me that someone who is being paid to look after the marsh and wildlife that live upon it would prefer to protect a bloke with binoculars watching birds, rather than feed horses, horses, whose ribs are like the rung of a ladder (even the pregnant ones) prutruding out so far you could mistake it for a harp. fuck them wardens i say. i mean, if a bloke has a pair of binoculars to look thru, surely if a horse is approaching him he can see if from afar!
ha...can you tell i wont get along with them!

the birds are already preparing their springtime nests. over springtime, the nests are something i will have to look after -sadly, people pinch the eggs and destroy nests for "fun"

horses have a fight or flight response. humans are very similiar but hardly ever admit it: we are flight animals too. we flee from love, we flee from the people around us and we flee from our own emotions.

This is Weepy Girl & Ray Charles (weve given each horse a name..these 2 are known as this coz weepy girl always has matted eyes that i always have to clean, and ray charles, coz she (yes, shes a mare!) does this funny movement with her head that ray charles used to do.

its been clinically proven that just being near horses changes the our brainwave patterns. they have a calming effect which helps people to stop being fixated on the past or negative events.

horse therapy, its been proven to be particulary useful with children with autism...and also other mental health issues such as panic and anxiety, depression, and even those showing severe anti social behaviour. results in horse therapy have been startling.

i have always found being in the presense of a horse calming. even when i was little i would visit fields where horses would roam. the only time id get nervous is when the horses would gather around me...but i soon learned, if i am nervous, the horses will be nervous too. - horses react as a mirror to the person who is with them...this is why being with them is good for us emotionally.

if we are agitated, the horse will beif we are feeling depressed, the horse will pick up on itif we are angry, the horse will be stubbornif we are panicky, the horse will prepare for flight.if we are happy, confident, and fearless...ta-daaaaa! we will have a good thing going on with any horse we come by.

this is why being near horses is great for anyone suffering with mental health issues and emotional problems. - in order to bond with the horse and make the horse respect us, and follow us, we have to sort out our moods and frame of mind. the more we learn how to relax when with them, they will too.

Mark sipping his coffee as he spends time with Shy Girl (shy girl also stars in the video clip!..hehe)
Shy girl is pregnant...and kinda looks chubby...but thats just her winter coat. when we run our hands over her body...we feel the sharpness of her ribcage spine.

shes so harmless and beautiful

a horse actually has much to teach us about being human. when im with them, i constantly explore my relationship to the horse, i explore my own nature, in order to bond with the majestic beauty of the horse, so therefore i am constantly examining my own body mind and spirit, which is always a great thing - getting to know ourselves more is , i of the most important qualities of living life.

whenever im feeling depressed...and im talking vegetated depressed state where i havent brushed my hair for days on end, or got thing that always picks me up, is going to see and feed the horses on the marsh. ha! i will leave here in old clothes, and combine harvvvvester wellington boots...and not give a shit if anyone sees me -*waves goodbye to bdd*all i care about is getting out to those horses so i can check they are ok, and feed them with as much food as we can afford- in return...i get the best, quickest working anti depressant on this planet - the good feeling vibe im struck with as i lay my hand upon their strong head & body is unbelievable. i even rest my body against them and my head upon their backs, to get the full whack of whatever theraputic vibes they can give me.

being around horses or even horse therapy is also known to give off a healing vibe to cancer patients, people who are withdrawing from drugs & alchohol, as well as people who are grieving the loss of a loved one, or indeed, a pet.

they have such power and healing energy. they are big, and sometimes intimidating....but because of this, interacting with a horse challenges issues of fear and confidence in people. they sense and respond to a persons negative emotion and action way before we respond to it ourselves (like bri mentioned on the forum, they have a 6th sense ;-) ) this gift they have helps people to be accountable for their emotions and recognise the effects their emotions can have on others and most importantly themselves. might wanna turn ya volume down if you choose to watch its windy..and im kinda in raised voice mode so the horses can hear me.

i so love horses. can you tell?
More achievements can be seen by logging in to
The Nest.




TIPS : Exercises on how to REDUCE Panic & More!


Remember that although your feelings and symptoms are frightening, they are neither dangerous nor harmful. Understand that what you are experiencing is merely an exaggeration of your normal reactions to stress.

Do not fight your feelings or try to wish them away. The more willing you are to face them, the less intense they will become.

Don't add to your panic by thinking about what "might happen." If you find yourself asking, "What if?" tell yourself "So what!"

Stay in the present. Be aware of what is happening to you rather than concern yourself with how much worse it might get.

Label your fear level from zero to 10 and watch it go up and down. Notice that it doesn't stay at a very high level for more than a few seconds.

When you find yourself thinking about fear, change your "what if" thinking.

Focus on and perform some simple, manageable task.

Notice that when you stop thinking frightening thoughts your anxiety fades.

When fear comes, accept it, don't fight it. Wait and give it time to pass. Don't try to escape from it. Be proud of the progress you've made. Think about how good you will feel when the anxiety has passed and you are in total control and at peace.


Use abdominal breathing.

See, touch, and feel the objects around you.

Tell yourself the feelings are not harmful.

Tell yourself the feelings will pass.

Visualize a peaceful scene. Let your mind go blank. Passively accept your symptoms. Meditate. Sing or hum a tune. Read a book. Talk to a friend. Pet your dog or cat. Take a walk. Take a warm bath. Splash cold water on your face. Clean the house or wash the car.


44 tips from people with anxiety-


Yoga, because it incorporates breathing, and it is deeply meditative as well as being centering. Aerobic exercise because it lifts my mood, and allleviates my "sluggishness", and strengthening exercises, such as situps, pushups, squats, because a strong body, a capable body, can translate to a strong mind. I am a very physical person, when I am well, and I use this as health maintenance and insurance against getting sick again. When I am sick, my body often gets lost, becomes just a lump of dead meat I drag around with me. Exercise attacks that feeling.

GARDENING. It is meditative and absorbing. It means I have managed to go outside , but still feel safe. It extends my safe boundaries beyond the inside of my house. It gives me exercise, and a connection to the earth. I have a sense of achievement, which is absent when I am ill. It is a small step which can translate to much bigger steps. SELF HELP, of many varieties. Especially researching, reading lists, understanding my disorder, breaking it down to it's root parts, not concentrating on it's symptoms, which is dangerously self fulfilling for me.


POSITIVE SELF-TALK A LOT OF SUPPORT from spouses (safe person and confidant) and keeping busy with children.

LIMITING MY PROFESSIONAL LIFE Realizing the fact that I was happier and less PA prone by limiting my professional life and by not trying to reach for the pinnacle of my profession. This was a conscious decision since I think I had the tools to do it.

MY TWO DOGS, I believe therapy through contact with animals is a possibility for some of us, with positive end results. Some cats and dogs have really found a new line of work. Every week, they have to visit humans in hospitals, nursing homes, retirement homes, etc.

STOPPING, SLOWING DOWN, and examining my feelings because find most times when I have a lot of anxiety it has to do with anger, hurt, or feelings of both which are conflicting.

ALLOWING MYSELF TO EXPRESS MY FEELINGS, whether verbally or through tears.

POSITIVE SELF-TALK Positive self-talk, believing in the stronger parts of my survivor self.

ANYTHING THAT KEEPS MY MIND OFF MYSELF and the physical symptoms that go along with anxiety ie. light headedness, palpitations, shortness of breath etc. Examples: puzzles, video games, basically anything that requires you to concentrate on something besides yourself.

ANXIETY INFORMATION It helps to know that I'm not the only person experiencing these terrible symptoms. I'm convinced that if I had been diagnosed properly from day 1, I wouldn't have the phobias that I have now. I went for 6 months not knowing what was wrong with me and it was terrifying.


REMEMBERING THE WORDS of a therapist who taught me to say "To hell with it!" (Strategy for putting things in perspective!)

THE REALIZATION that "Dust is a protective covering for my furniture!"

SIMPLIFYING AND PRIORITIZING my life. Things i have to get done get done, everything else gets its turn when i am feeling up to it.

TAKING A NUMBER OF DEEP BREATHS about every half hour.

SITTING IN SILENCE for a short while.

CHANGING MY THINKING. I am allowed to make mistakes. What I think of myself counts, not what other people think. I don't have to please everybody. It is okay if someone gets mad at me as long as I know I am doing the right thing.

GETTING INFORMED about the problem through research, this list, and good counsel.

GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP FAITH - I believe in God, but probably any spiritual awareness would be good.

MEDICATION - To finally get relief enough to try and challenge myself.

SUPPORT - therapy and sharing with other sufferers, such as the wonderful people here, and my friends on IRC #anx/pan.

WATCH THE CYCLICAL NATURE OF THE FEELINGS. Note how a high state of anxiety will be followed by a low, followed by a high, followed by an eventual low. Watch the sine curve of your emotions.

WRITE IN MY JOURNAL Lie on the bed on my stomach and write in my journal--noting the sinusoidal movement of the stress, describing my feelings. One or two or three pages and then walk around a bit, and go back and write a little more.

REPEATING GENERAL AXIOMS OF ANXIETY ACCEPTANCE to myself: "bear the unbearable", "you are responsible for you feelings", "this is nothing new-you survived the last ones", "suffering is a privilege" etc, etc,

MAJOR ATTITUDE CHANGE. Being happy, feeling good about myself etc.

GETTING ANGRY and fed up with PA's and Anxiety FACING FEARS directly and not caring about the consequences.

TO REMEMBER A PARAGRAPH I read in an anxiety self-help book (wish I could remember the name and the exact words), but, in effect, it said to consider an anxiety attack as caused by a simple nerve impulse. That to consider it as that simple of a phenomenon, you can realize that you are bigger and stronger than that one part of your body, and can therefore handle it.

TRY TO THINK OF ONE THING YOU LOOK FORWARD TO doing, even as simple as going shopping for something you really want, or baking a cake you really like, or renting a movie you've been wanting to see.

REMEMBER THAT PANIC ATTACKS ALWAYS END, and you'll feel ok again when it ends.

COOL, WET CLOTHS stop my attacks.

TRYING TO READ or concentrate on something else.


MAKE SURE YOU'RE INVOLVED in something that interests you intensely (preferably something done with and/or for others). I feel this helps to distract from anxiety.




Megs Photograph ~ A day out at the Zoo!

Megs says she isnt a pro at photography, but her members at the nest think otherwise!

Megs has allowed us to share some of the great shots she has taken of the animals at the zoo, as well as see the amazing colours of the flowers she captured with her camera.

(TIP For suffers of panic attacks~ did you know that if you take your camera out with you whilst venturing out it can help distract you from panic - next time you do exposure therapy with the outside world, why not try taking your camera along, and snapping some shots to help keep your mind occupied on something else rather than the "what if i panic" thought process.

I love this picture because it looks like the giraffe is stuck in the tree but he is actually walking between them.


Card Making made easy

I have used a sea theme for my design, but you can use any embellishments you want to.
I just wanted to show you different effects that can be used in a simple but effective way.

Time taken to make this card 10 minutes

Level Beginner

What will I need? Some card (either a sheet of card or pre-scored card)
Coloured paper (optional)
Embellishments (These are what you will use to decorate your card with)
Stickers (words or pictures, can also be used instead of embellishments)
Scissors (Straight edged or curved edges)

Where can I buy these things from? You can by your card making supplies from craft shops (which I find is the cheaper option) or from the Internet. is the website where I buy my craft supplies, and where you can by the boat embellishments that I used to make this card, I also buy lots of pearlescent paper from here as it’s cheap and really great quality.

Top Tip - Search for pictures that you like on the Internet and print them onto glossy paper and back them onto card, you can use them as your own unique embellishments.

You can also cut up old greetings cards and re-use those.

What will I need to do first? Clear a space on a table and lay out all of your craft making materials, as well as making it easier for you to get to what you need when you need it, it will also help to inspire you and get your creative juices flowing.

How to make my boat card

Step 1 Place some card in front of you, it can be any size but I find A5 works best, if it isn’t already pre-scored then you will need to fold the card in half.

Step 2 If you have plain white card then cover it with coloured paper, dark blue or black if you want a night time scene, sky blue if you want a day time scene.
If you already have a blue card then you can skip to Step 3.

Step 3 The card is your background (sky), to make the sea, take a piece of blue paper (I used pearlescent paper to it that shiny effect). It’s up to you how big you want to cut the paper, I made mine so that you could see half sky and half sea.

You can cut out the sea either using scissors with a curved edge, or you can cut in the waves your self with normal straight edged scissors, or just have a straight sea as if to look at the horizon.

Step 4 Turn your card length way and glue on the “sea” at the bottom

Step 5 Now for the fun bit! Stick on your embellishments in which ever way you want to, this is where you can really let your creative energy go mad.

Step 6 You can now personalise your card if you want to. There are plenty of stickers that you can buy with different texts on them such as, “Happy birthday”, “Happy anniversary”, “Thank you” etc

Alternatively there are alphabet stickers that you can buy with each letter of the alphabet on so you can really personalise your card so that someone special will know you have spent time and effort making a card especially for them.

Useful websites These are the websites that I use, they have lots of project idea’s, though you can’t order anything from the hobbycraft website.


Something for Valentines?

These Chocolate Heart Ice Cream Boats are perfect to serve to kids for a Valentine dessert.

Estimated Times: Preparation - 20 min Cooking - 2 min Cooling Time - 1 hrs refrigerating Yields - 6

* 18 NESTLÉ CRUNCH Hearts, unwrapped, divided * NESTLÉ BUTTERFINGER Hearts * 1/2 cup miniature marshmallows * 1 tablespoon butter * 1 tablespoon light corn syrup * 1 1/2 cups corn flake cereal, crushed * 1/4 cup shredded coconut (optional) * Vanilla ice cream * NESTLÉ NESQUIK Chocolate Flavor Syrup

Directions: GREASE 6 muffin cups.

MICROWAVE 12 Nestlé Hearts in medium, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on MEDIUM-HIGH (70%) power for 50 seconds; STIR. The Nestlé Hearts may retain some of their shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10- to 15-second intervals, stirring just until melted.
COMBINE marshmallows, butter and corn syrup in medium bowl. Microwave on HIGH (100%) power for 15 seconds. Stir until marshmallows are almost melted. Add melted chocolate, cereal and coconut; mix well.
PRESS mixture onto bottoms and up sides of prepared muffin cups. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Remove chocolate boats carefully with a small spatula. Let stand at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes.
PLACE small scoop of vanilla ice cream inside each boat. Top each with 1 whole Nestlé Heart; drizzle with Nesquik.


Must Have Of The Month!

Remember "Play Dough" & "Plastasine"

how good it felt to squish and squash it as a kid?

well now theres aromatherapy dough which helps soothe our mind!

Its a great stress buster!

Aroma Dough Stress Squeezer
The perfect gift for anyone who needs a little de-stressing. A formulation of Lavendar, Neroli, Geranium and Basil. Calming, enhances mental clarity. Aroma Dough is delightful therapeutic squishy stuff, beneficial and fun for adults, children, and everyone in between ! A perfect therapuetic alternative to the traditional stress balls, with the added benefit of aromatherapy from the essential oils!

Also available in these and MANY more!

Aroma Dough Motion Magic
Ever felt a bit queasy on a cross-channel ferry, the Irish Sea, or a bumpy flight ? We understand. Aroma Dough "Motion Magic" is a blancing blend of grapefruit, geranium and peppermint essential oils with moisturising oils, beeswax, and cocoa butter. Take your mind off the swell of the journey by squeezing the dough ... but NOT if you're driving! Aromatherapy dough infused with essential oils selected to settle, ease travel sickness and jetlag, and facilitate travel in comfort

Aroma Dough Sweet Dreams
Had a busy day ? Difficulty "switching-off" and drifting off to sleep at the end of the day. Here is a simple non-fattening, non-addictive solution: Aroma Dough "Sweet Dreams" is a peacful blend of sweet orange, mandarin, and neroli essential oils with moisturising oils, beeswax, and cocoa butter. Aromatherapy dough infused with essential oils selected to encourage quiet play and induce sweet dreams. Don't miss-out on beauty sleep, enjoy sweet dreams

So, tell me more about the use of Aroma Dough for therapeutic purposes?

Aroma Dough is being used in the following areas with fantastic results:

Depression, Panic, etc;

Alertness, mental focus and concentration;
Counselling - both adults and children;


Children with Special Needs;

Trauma counselling - such as child abuse;

Post stroke recovery;

HIV and Aids Centres;

Osteoarthritis and hand injury;

Self-smooth and emotion regulation skills;

Multi-sensory play.

Aroma Dough can also be customised to suit the specific needs of physiotherapists, occupational therapists and counsellors.

The above products and much more can be bought here:


A lady found the fawn under her step (they think the doe might have been hit by a car). The family's Ridge Back dog, Hogan, is helping look after it. The family named the fawn Bella. Once she has regained her strength (she was not in good shape when they found her) they're going to send her to some friends who (in the past) raised two orphan deer and released them to the wild. Right now Bella is being bottle fed. Hogan has basically taken over. The fawn even shares his bed.



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