This topic contains 11 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Brittany Foster 1 month, 1 week ago.

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  • #19841
     Brittany Foster 
    Keymaster

    Recently, one of our members mentioned her love of crafting. She states, “I love to do arts and crafts so I make fairy houses out of polymer clay” .

    I think that this is such an amazing talent to have and doing things like crafts, artwork, or other hands on projects really can have a positive impact on mental health. I know that personally, when I do an art project or just simply cut things out of magazines to make collages, it helps my brain stay distracted from whatever might be really bothering me and causing anxiety.

    I like to do projects that require some sort of baking too. For example, for my sister’s baby shower I made a cake pop display. It was fun to bake the cake pops and also fun to decorate them and arrange them in a creative way that was really presentable. Even just making dipped oreos, especially around the holidays is one of my “projects” that I look forward to.

    Do you enjoy doing art projects, crafting or other types of hands on projects? Do you think doing this helps your mental health? What benefits do you get from tapping into your creative side?

  • #19842
     V.R. Peterson 
    Participant

    I love to knit! Knitting can soothe my soul and ease my mind when things get stressful. As long as I’m doing it for a gift or a charity (not knitting for sale, which feels too much like work), it helps immensely. Anybody who’s interested can see some of the projects I’ve done (and patterns I’ve written) over the years.

    MamaBear’s Craft Pages

    • #19845
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      WOW!! This is amazing that you have a collection of the ones that you have done. I’m sure it feels so much better to do things for charity and to give as gifts vs doing it for selling it. When money gets involved it starts to feel more like a chore sometimes and less like a hobby. I always wanted to learn how to crochet, I feel like it would be really good for me. I love things that are repetitive like that. When I was a kid I loved doing the friendship bracelets that all followed a similar pattern. I would love to check out the collection you have.

    • #19877
       Colleen Steele 
      Keymaster

      @robin-webster that tree of life pattern is gorgeous! You have serious talent. The closest I have come to knitting is using the loom kits. A co-worker introduced me to that when my son’s PH worsened and we were spending more time in the hospital. I made a few scarves that were ok…it was more about the peace I felt while making them then what the final product looked like.

      Needle point is something I always wished I could do. I’ve tried to teach myself a few times but found it too complicated.

      Gardening, as you mentioned, I really enjoy. For some reason petunia’s are my favorite. They are a simple flower and rather hardy but I’m always drawn to them. I’ve done some potted vegetables but haven’t braved my own veggie garden yet. I always used the excuse that I couldn’t devote enough time to it but now that my boys are older I should make that happen next summer.

      • #19883
         Brittany Foster 
        Keymaster

        Colleen,
        my mom also enjoys gardening so much. It is her “peace of mind” and relaxation for sure. I wish I was into gardening. I love having greens and plants in my house and can take care of the ones indoors but the outdoor ones I guess I just don’t have that “green thumb” that you need haha!

        I made tons of loom bracelets with the little girl that I watch and it’s surprising how addicting it is. It’s just that mindless activity that we need to do sometimes to get our minds off the little things.

  • #19851
     Robin Webster 
    Participant

    I suppose I should also have said cooking and baking. That’s what constantly keeps my mind occupied so I don’t sit around and focus on everything wrong with me. Without cooking and baking, I’d probably have lost it by now.

    • #19884
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      Cooking and baking really are great. What are you favorite things to bake? Mine are brownies and cake pops or no bake desserts (even though I guess technically it’s not baking) but it still requires a lot of mixing and preparing the ingredients. I love doing different kinds of no bake cheesecakes. They always are a hit at parties and don’t feel as filling as the heavy actual cheesecakes are. I LOVE eating the remaining batter from it too 🙂 egg free !

  • #19850
     Robin Webster 
    Participant

    I used to enjoy cross-stitch needlepointing, but my vision isn’t good enough for it now. (I’m having cataract surgery Oct. 31 and Nov. 7, so maybe that will change!) I also used to enjoy doing decoupage. I found that relaxing. Not even sure why I quit doing it, but maybe because I person can only have so many decoupaged items without it getting weird. lol! The hands-on thing I most enjoy doing is gardening. Because I could no longer safely bend over to the ground repeatedly without losing heart rhythm and getting out of breathe, my husband bought me raised gardening beds so I can just stand normally and tend them. It’s wonderful. I do all kinds of veggies. I have also started doing indoor hydroponic gardening with Aerogardens. It’s a particular joy for me to be able to have fresh lettuce, tomatoes and herbs (during the winter when I can’t garden outside) that I know are organic and I don’t have to worry about all the scary stuff in the news about listeria and e.coli and whatever new thing has contaminated the food supply.

  • #19876
     Colleen Steele 
    Keymaster

    Brittany, I enjoy scrap-booking and have mine own unique style of putting it together. I’ve made some very special ones for my parents and a close friend. I haven’t created one yet for Cullen’s transplant but that will be my next priority. I agree that creative projects are such a welcome distraction. My friend was embarrassed to ask if I would make him one for his anniversary because of my responsibilities to my son. I explained how therapeutic it is for me and that it brings me great joy.

    I also make the fleece tie know blankets. I have arthritis that affects my fingers a great deal so it takes me a while to finish one but it’s always worth it. I make them as gifts for friends and family.

    I admire your love of baking. That is something I never really got into and am envious of those who are good at it and enjoy the process.

    • #19886
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      Colleen,
      These are great crafts and project ideas too. My sister used to be really into scrapbooking and I liked to find pictures with her. It really does take a creative eye to put all of that together and find the right backgrounds, cut out words, pictures etc. Definitely great for getting your mind off things and doing something that others can enjoy. There aren’t enough photo albums anymore !

  • #19891
     Carol alexander 
    Participant

    Yes I love to knit and crochet I have been doing this for years and gardening now I do gardening with small plants inside my home

    • #19892
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      I just starting getting into doing the small house plants and I love it ! So glad For my “life” inside my new house .

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