Nov 30, 2018

5 Guidelines to Keep in Mind when using Essential Oils

Hello friends,

As I am learning about Essential Oils I have found that you need to be careful, just because they are ALL Natural does not mean they are safe. Safety involves a state of being free from risk or occurrence of injury, harm, or danger.
Here are five (5) guidelines to keep in mind when using essential oils:

Quality - Adulterated essential oils increase the likelihood of an adverse response and hence the need for pure, authentic, and genuine essential oils is of the utmost importance. I personally use Young Living Essential oils as they have the "Seed to Seal" guarantee

Sensitivities -  Everyone has different sensitivities and allergies. Be sure to test any new oil that you want to use in a small spot first to ensure there is no reaction.  I have found a  good testing area is inside your arm where the elbow bends.  Please make sure to do this before you go soaking in the bath or applying the oil to your skin. 

Carrier Oil - A carrier oil is a vegetable oil used to dilute essential oils. Most essential oils should not be applied directly to your skin.  It is safer to use a carrier oil (e.g.  V-6™ Vegetable Oil Complex,Coconut oil, Almond oil, Olive oil, Jojoba Oil and Argan oil are just a few) before application.  The other benefit I found out yesterday from my massage therapist is using a carrier oil is good for moisturizing and nourishing your skin (she uses Castor Oil with her Young Living oils). These, along with the aromatic benefits of the essential oils are great for your skin.

Read Bottles And Labels - When you buy any essential oils they usually have some information on the label. They may say do not ingest (i.e. take orally) or outline some other precaution.  Be sure to follow these instructions.  If you have any doubts, contact the manufacturer or another reliable source for further information.

A drop will do - It is super easy to get carried away and think that when something is good or helpful for you, that more is better. When it comes to essential oils, less is definitely more. If a recipe calls for 2 drops don’t use 4. I have been guilty of this. If you are inhaling essential oils, don't do it constantly. Have a break between inhalations to give the oils time to do their job.
Using essential oils is safe and effective for most people. But, they are very powerful substances you should use with full respect.

General Safety Precautions:
  1. Keep all essential oils out of reach of children and pets.
  2. Do not use or recommend the use of photosensitizing essential oils prior to going into a sun tanning booth or the sun. Recommend that the client stay out of the sun or sun tanning booth for at least twenty-four hours after treatment if photosensitizing essential oils were applied to the skin.
  3. Avoid prolonged use of the same essential oils.
  4. Avoid the use of essential oils you know nothing about. Research and get to know the oil prior to using it on yourself or others.
  5. Keep essential oils away from the eyes.
  6. Essential oils are highly flammable substances and should be kept away from direct contact with flames, such as candles, fire, matches, cigarettes, and gas ranges.
  7. Do not use essential oils internally unless properly trained in the safety issues of doing so. 
  8. Use caution when if you suspect you're pregnant or have been trying to become pregnant
 P.S. Please share. with your friends and leave me a comment below. I read them ALL!


Nov 23, 2018

The UPS Man revisited

The doorbell rings, blankets, remote and iPad go flying across the room.  Lindi and I look around and are like - WTF is going on!  Phones ringing, doorbells ringing and now dog barking all at the same time, causing a big racket, startling me to death.

Naturally my first instinct is to go for the door as it could be the UPS, Amazon, or the Mailman with more packages for me!

Poor UPS man every-time he comes I am in my pajamas does not seem to matter what time of day it is.  He is probably thinking man this lady sleeps a lot or is a slob.

Hopefully a few more packages (Books, Christmas party dress) should be arriving before I leave for sunnier shores, but I have trusty house-sitters to look after everything while I am away.  

Really who doesn't like HAPPY MAIL!


Nov 21, 2018

Karen's Ramblings

Hello my crafty peeps!

I really must apologize that my posts are so sporadic, it has been a rough year but hoping to see the light at the end of the tunnel!  

I wish I crafted as much as I think about doing it!  Do you ever find that, especially now with Pinterest!  

I had never even really heard of or used Pinterest until I went on disability in June 2013, can you believe that! 

My friends would mention Pinterest boards etc. and I would just shake my head, and now here I am the one addicted.  Check out my Pinterest here

We have been going through a slight cold spell in November we have snow and temps in the minus 10's hopefully this will be the last of it for a bit.  Me and cold do not mix a nice 23c is good! I could live with that year round.

Would love to hear how you handle the cold and snow?


Nov 18, 2018

Where does the time go?

I find that I am increasingly losing track of time when online, whether it be Facebook, Pinterest, or just researching stuff and/or helping out friends with their pages. Most days this is okay but it does take me away from actually doing something like, exercise, chores, getting outside in the real world.

I have taken steps to try and fix this when hubby home, turning off my phone from 7pm till morning, turning off electronics for a few hours every evening so we can spend some time together. But usually you can find iPhone, iPad and laptop within arms reach or sometimes I am using all 3 at once. 

Hubby asked me the other day what did you do before computers, my reply was "had a life". I actually did crafts, went out with friends, read lots and lots of books. But with the onset of my M.S. and Fibromyalgia I slowly started pulling away socially and eventually I had to stop working so even further isolation occurred. 

But I can seriously say I need something other than social media to entertain me during the day. My goal for 2019 is to be more connected to my environment and family.  Who knows maybe one day this crippling fatigue will be gone. (I originally wrote this November 2014 and not much has changed sadly)

Does any one else find they lose themselves when on computer or working on a project?

P.S. Please share. with your friends and leave me a comment below. I read them ALL!


Nov 16, 2018

How to help out at your local Animal Shelter or Rescue this holiday

Hello friends,

As many of you know, I really love animals and especially cats and dogs.  My furbabies have usually been rescued and I have friends who foster for rescue organizations which brings me to write this post on how you can help out your local shelters during the holidays or any time of year.

A wonderful way to help your local shelter is to volunteer your time. You may not be able to offer yourself for a regular time slot each and every week, but shelters often have more work to be done than workers to do it. Think about some of the talents you have. Could you create newsletters or fliers? Could you repair animal cages and fences? Could you clean or take dogs for walks? Could you spend time socializing with animals at the shelter? Ask your local shelter about their needs and you might be surprised at what you may have to offer.
Donate Supplies
Shelters always tend to run short on supplies. In fact, cat food, dog food, and cat litter is only the tip of the iceberg for supplies that a shelter really needs in order to function. They often need cleaning supplies, bleach, paper towels, rubber gloves, pet beds, old newspapers for bedding, office supplies, and many other things. Ask your local shelter for a wish list of their needs and see what you can do to meet those needs. You might even go a step further and organize a donation drive to aid the shelter. You can organize a community drive or even a donation drive among your coworkers (make sure you get permission from your employer first).  One of my Facebook Friends Janet makes and sells her cards and donates the proceeds to her local Humane Society.

Raise Awareness
One of the reasons shelters are overrun with unwanted pets is because people don’t have their pets spayed and neutered. Devote a little time to being an advocate and raising awareness about the homeless pet population. Find advocacy groups on Facebook to follow then share their posts. Tell people you know about the importance of taking proper care of their pets and have them spayed and neutered.Spread the Word
Offer to help promote the shelter or rescue and spread the word about its needs. This is a great way to help your local shelter if you don’t have a lot of extra time. You can promote and share their Facebook pages and posts and even hang up fliers about the shelter and events.

Your local animal shelters such as SPCA, ARF, Pawsitive Match and AARCS, just to name a few here in Calgary are always in need of help. Whether you volunteer your time at the shelter or use some of your time to promote the needs of the shelter, you can certainly help out. Find out the specific needs and see what you can do to help meet those needs during the holidays and all year long.

P.S. Please share. with your friends and leave me a comment below. I read them ALL!


Nov 14, 2018

How common colds, cold weather affect my MS/Fibromyalgia


It has been a long 3 months, battling the flu and cold weather, which in turn caused me to flare up. Now is this MS fatigue or a Fibromyalgia fatigue or both. 

Trying to do things even the smallest seems to drain me of all energy, this can be really hard for your friends and family to understand.  I have cancelled massages, plans and doing any form of housework, in turn this can make me feel guilty and depressed.  

One thing I did do is go to one of my massage appointments.  I had myofacial cupping done which is said to help enhance circulation, help relieve pain, and pull toxins from your body’s tissue.  It often gets good results for patients who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome, flu, colds, back pain, coughs, allergies, muscle pain, fevers, bronchial congestion, arthritis and anxiety.   I always feel a lot better after getting a deep tissue massage combined with the cupping. 

Luckily I had another massage appointment a few days later where along with the deep tissue I get Cranial Sacral treatment.

With respect to having the flu or common cold (not sure which I am suffering from) I need to resign myself to more days sleeping, laying on the couch and being unproductive much to my dismay. This is because my body is not able to respond to the illness in an efficient, focused manner. This tends to result in being sicker than normal for a longer than normal period of time. 

Aside from an impaired ability to fight the illness, already existing deficits caused by MS – such as fatigue, muscle aches, numbness and heat/cold intolerance may become more pronounced.

On top of being sick, you throw colder weather into the mix and I also feel tired, headache, numb cold feet, pain all over and lastly fatigued from the weather changes. So this begs the question is fatigue and pain worse in the winter or in provinces that are extremely cold?

I searched blogs, websites and asked friends with Fibromyalgia for answers and this is what I found:
People that go south to say Arizona or another warm place, seem to have less symptoms.  It just seems like the cold gets into our bones and makes everything tighten up and ache.  The cold can make our skin hurt, itch (myself and another friend with FMS have been dealing with this) and when we get chilled it can be extremely hard to warm back up. So what do you do if you also have MS as many of us are heat sensitive, and some are sensitive to both heat and cold.  I fall into the last category, but I do find heat easier to endure than cold.
Photo courtesty of Fibro Colors Awareness on Facebook.
I tend to have more pain, more fatigue and less energy in the winter than in the spring, summer, and fall but spring seems to be the best season. (not that we get much of a spring in Calgary)
On About Health they posted the following:
We can pretty definitively say that cold and heat impact us more than they do other people -- it's even used in research because it reliably causes pain in us more readily than in healthy folks. To see the rest of their post please click the above link.
Here in Calgary we also deal will weather changes continuously and this seems to be the major contributor of pain, fatigue and migraines in myself and others I know.
I am fortunate to have many friends I talk to in several Facebook groups that deal with the same issues and we have become a great support system for each other.  

Do you get colds often?  Do you notice they affect your multiple sclerosis or Fibromyalgia? 

Nov 11, 2018

Sunday Tips and Inspiration

Heat and Stick is the best thing to keep glitter in place and not rubbing off on everything that it touches, including you. Update it looks like Stampin' Up! no longer carries the Heat Stick powder

Supplies you will need:

  1. Stamp image with VersaMark or Ranger Emboss It. 
  2. Apply Heat & Stick powder to the inked image. Shake off excess powder onto the tray and funnel it back into its container. 
  3. Heat image with the heat tool just until powder turns to liquid. Do not overheat. 
  4. Pour glitter onto the inked image, making sure that the image is coated completely. 
  5. Shake off excess glitter as described in Step 2.  It also makes cleanup a snap!
  6. Heat again briefly to set. 

P.S. Please share. with your friends and leave me a comment below. I read them ALL!


Nov 9, 2018

Cozy Mysteries

Hello friends,

As you will have seen my little blog took a hiatus and taken a few turns.  Besides crafting and my health journey I have started to get back into reading mysteries, my first love since about age of 5.

I am helping on a Facebook group called "Cozy Mystery Book Corner" where we post about books we like as well as monthly book discussions.  It is a great community of readers and authors, much like our crafting community.

With this said I am learning to do more in depth book reviews, as the authors really need us to do them, even if you just say Loved it! 

I am now following a few cozy mystery blogs that are fun and diverse:  

Kim bakes her way through books . She posts recipes from your favorite books, along with yummy looking pictures and videos of her creations.  I always leave her site with one or two recipes bookmarked to try in the future. For those in the United States she always has great Giveaways

The Cozy Chicks blog is created by a team of cozy mystery authors (Lorraine Bartlett, Duffy Brown, Mary Kennedy, Maggie Sefton, and Karen Rose Smith) and provides fresh content daily.  It goes beyond the books and the authors give you a sneak peek into their world.

This is a site created by cozy mystery authors for the readers and the first one I signed up for. 
If you are a fan of cozies that feature food, this is the blog for you.  It features authors who have recipes as a part of their books, and they take us into their kitchen and cook up the goodies right along with you.

A fellow Canadian and Karen! A personal blog of writer Karen Owen aka Karen Mom of Three. 
Put the kettle on, grab your favorite tea cup & saucer, pick up a cozy and join her...  
Karen is a writer, crafter, cozy mystery & tea lover. Enjoy!

Snuggle up with your fur-baby, a hot cup of tea and a Cozy Mystery - best couple of hours you can spend. 

P.S. Please share. with your friends and leave me a comment below. I read them ALL!


Nov 8, 2018

Merging Life revisited

Hello friends,

As some of you may know I had 3 blogs at one time one for cards, one for Multiple Sclerosis and then one for Essential Oils.  I am in process of merging them as it's hard enough to get up most days let alone write for 3 blogs.  With this said I created This and That with Karen and Lindi 

In 2018 I had hoped to write more about all things that interest me not just cards and with that said it did not happen ...

It is almost 2019 and all I have done is a few posts and recycled ones from years ago.  But I am hoping 2019 will be the year i do some writing and crafting again.  I am hoping to spread my wings and do some book reviews as well.

I hope to encourage people to take care of each other, perform random acts of kindness and let others with chronic illness know that life will and CAN go on.

Hoping you will stick around for the journey.


An Intrigue of Witches A Secret Society Mystery by Esme Addison

Hello my cozy friends,  Today I am reviewing “An Intrigue of Witches” by Esme Addison the first instalment in A Secret Society Mystery .  Wh...