Archive for December, 2008


Printable Cook Book Pages

December 10, 2008tbi-cook-book

Printable Cook Book Pages

Way back in October, I wrote a blog about Crock Pot Cooking. Soon after that I was off on a tangent putting together a printable handout for you on TBI and Cooking Challenges.  In this handout, I list some of the challenges with cooking a TBI survivor may experience and some strategies to help, along with some tips regarding kitchen safety.

This led me to another project of putting together some Printable Cook Book Pages for you, since reading and following recipes was another challenge I had. I developed these cook book pages to make cooking easier for me. You can find printable handouts on how to Make Your Own TBI Cook Book as well as recipes by clicking Printable Cook Book Pages. You will find the handouts at the end of the page.

Sorry it took so long to make these available. Although I had made a recipe book for myself, it was on 8 x 8” scrapbook pages. I re-did the pages so they would fit on regular 8½ x 11” paper which you could print out and slip into page protectors. I also had to take pictures of all the food items, prepare all the recipes and then take pictures of the completed meals. This became quite a huge undertaking with my progress being slowed down by fatigue, migraines and all the other setbacks we survivors experience.

I hope some of you find these tools useful.


© Angela Cramer, 2008

Photo: © Angela Cramer, 2008


Comfort Bags – A Great Gift for Yourself or a Friend

December 05, 2008gift2

Comfort Bags – A Great Gift for Yourself or a Friend

A friend recently told me that she and her boyfriend had broken up and that she was feeling very depressed. Hearing the pain and heartache in her voice, I immediately remembered the time I went through feelings of grief and depression when my husband told me “his life was less stressful” without me and our children and that he wanted a divorce.

I wanted to comfort her with some kind of words of wisdom. I wanted to share with her things she could do to help soften the pain. Somehow I managed to get through that horrible event in my life, but I couldn’t figure out how to put into words what I had done. As I looked around my bedroom, I saw various reminders of things I did at that time to nurture myself. That’s when I remembered that finding ways to nurturing and comfort myself seemed to be the key to finding my way back to joy and happiness.

My emotions quickly shifted to my recent emotional trauma from my personal injury lawsuit last year. While my emotional state is not as horrible as it was last year, the experience plus ongoing issues related to my brain injury have left me still feeling pretty battered and beat up. In wanting to find someone to nurture my friend, I suddenly realized how much I needed to nurture myself, as well.

As I began to think about the ways people can comfort themselves during times of emotional stress, I found an article on the web called Portable Comfort: How to Carry Comfort With You, by Cheryl Rainfield.

I also found a person who had put together a comfort bag for when she had migraines and could not get up from her bed, as well as organizations which had put together comfort bags for cancer patients to take along during chemotherapy.

Suddenly I had the urge to gather together all the items I used to nurture myself and place them into an unused travel bag which I would keep next to my bed for times when I was in need of some emotional first aid. This way, the items would be in one location, easy to find and readily available. I also realized that the beginnings of a comfort bag would make good gifts for the holiday season.

In the event that you would like to make a comfort bag for yourself or a friend, click onto this link which will take you to the article I wrote on Comfort Bags – Creating an Emotional First Aid Kit. I will have a printable handout at the end of this article for your use.

The various ways a comfort bag could be used for a TBI survivor or his/her care giver are limited only by your imagination. It might actually be interesting to discuss what kind of items you would include in the following comfort bags:

1) a comfort bag for family members who have a loved one in a coma

2) a comfort bag for a person with TBI attending a large family holiday  get-together

3) a comfort bag for a person with TBI who spends a lot of time being driven to appointments or sitting in a hospital, doctors’ offices or therapy waiting rooms

4) a comfort bag for the care giver of a TBI survivor

What ideas do you have? Who would you make a comfort bag for and what would you place in it?

© Angela Cramer, 2008

Clipart is the property of Jupiterimages made available through subscription:
© Jupiterimages Corporation, 2008

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December 2008
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