Christina  Doll    Offers      “Kid  Power”

* * *

Hail to your Kid Self  *
With the innocent wonder  *
Eager to connect   *


     Dreams come to us mostly in images. If I were a dream, I would adore being 'Imaged back' by my dreamer, as a sign of my value. We all recognize that a picture is worth a thousand words, so making our very own dream pictures could be a great way to honor our favorite dreams. Creating our own Dream Cards is one approach.

     This month I'd like to show you an actual DREAM TREASURE CARD I made named "Christina Doll." I'll share the dream that inspired me into creative action with her, then offer some thoughts on how this dream image continues to influence my life in surprisingly magical ways. Hopefully, you will then be inspired to make your own Dream Cards.
DREAM:  In 1991 a lovely little gift of a dream awakened me,
which I called

"A Gift from THE Carpenter."

 Workmen are renovating my entire home.  It's difficult
 to get in because the front steps are not built yet.  "Got
 get those steps in fast," I think to myself.  Then one of
 the carpenters ... THE carpenter (meaning to me the Christ
 Consciousness/Jesus reference) ... gives me a gift of a
 DOLL.  Unusual, very simple, almost homemade-looking
 and made in one straight piece.

     Immediately upon awakening I did a hurried pencil sketch of the doll as I recorded the dream. I felt excitement and knew I had to make this doll a reality some day. Her name would be Christina and somehow she would help me 'renovate' my spirit in some important way. But how? Time was of the essence!
     Not long after this dream, on a fateful morning news  broadcast, I heard that the Gulf War had just been declared. I felt devastated, instantly pulled back into myself to the depressing remembrances of my very early childhood in Scotland during WW2.  When the sirens screamed, Mum and I had to get up in the middle of the night and sit for hours in the air-raid shelter at the bottom of our garden. The worst was that suffocating feeling I'd get when I had to put on my hated gas-mask helmet.
     Raw fear erupted in me as I relived this trauma. Then a thought came, feeling like a gift ... this was the day to make my Christina Doll.  So, I made her the day war was declared; sewed her up, stuffed her with batting and started painting.  As soon as I did this, my anxiety about war dissipated and I felt peaceful. The thought flitted through my mind that this was nothing more than a regression to childhood things, yet I intuitively knew it was much more than that. By the time her hair was glued on, the words to the Shaker song, Simple Gifts, kept running through my mind ... “  'Tis a gift to be simple, 'tis a gift to be free....     .” The words to the song are tucked safely behind Christina's shirt.
     Special thought went into the symbols on her necklace and buttons; her face was the last part to emerge and in its rendering I felt a kind of magic. With her bright eyes and knowing smile, she seemed to be telling me that there were many mysteries to unfold and that she would help guide me to do my best -- SIMPLY BECAUSE I MADE HER MANIFEST OUT OF MY DREAM. She was to become my symbol of peace, freedom and also of my healed "Inner Kid."
     So here I am, almost 8 years later, still reaping the benefits of this 'gift of grace,' the dream, which had the gall to suggest that my entire home (psyche) needed renovating. Yikes! Little did I know in 1991 what I'd be in for! Two major happenings occurred. First, I almost died a few years ago due to a gruesome reaction to antibiotics while battling pneumonia. Secondly, as soon I recovered from that, my vision of a lifetime, 7 Arts Studio was built. This was the impetus for my creative life to sparkle like never before. By the way, this dolly keeps her eye on me everyday from her vantage point high on a shelf above my bed, where she bestows her knowing smile upon me daily.   When I choose her from my Dream Treasure Cards, I know it's a reminder to connect more with my sense of wonderment in whatever I'm doing or creating today.

     I can hear some of you muttering, "Shucks, I'm no artist, how can I do this stuff?"  True, it doesn't hurt to have some art talent but it's certainly not necessary.  It's just as effective if you use simple sketches of your own. Or you can cut pictures out of magazines or photos that remind you of your favorite potent dream images, then glue them together into a nifty collage.

     Play around with some art programs. Painter 5 and Photoshop and Kid Pics are my favorites --  the latter being quite inexpensive ($46 or so) and a great place to start in computer graphics. After all, it's for KIDS!  I love it. A color scanner is a great asset too. You can also use clip art or other images that appeal. Let your imagination soar with fun.

      My fifty Dream Cards are all 4 1/2" by 6 1/2." (good shuffling size).  Decide what would feel comfortable to you.  Jog over to your local printer and buy a pack of CARD STOCK (around 60 to 65 lbs. is good weight).  Cut a card to size and apply your design directly -- either by drawing, painting, gluing (I like good old Glue Stick the best) or printing out from your computer graphic (in which case you'd cut to card size after the print out on your card stock. It's handy to have your own paper-cutter, but sharp scissors and a ruler will do fine.

      My Dream Cards have some text on the back which ties in with the dream graphic as a reminder of whence it came.  If you like this idea, here's a tip that's useful especially if you are doing computer art and have a printer like mine that can only print card stock up to the 60 lb. range.  Cut a second card, only make it 1/4" smaller all the way around.  The reason for this is that it will give an area on which to adhere the laminated sheet (more on this later). So, after you have placed your text on this second card, make a black border around your text with a market pen to set it off nicely (I like Sharpie Fine Point markers). If you are not using a computer, you can use heavier card stock to begin with, putting graphic and text on either side of one card, or you can use the same process just described.

     This is good for protection of your card and also makes it look spiffy.  Go to your biggest office supply store and get a roll of clear and transparent laminated paper by "Coates Colours."  It's inexpensive and will cover dozens of cards. I cut the roll into strips for ease of handling. Now you are ready to laminate your very own Dream Card to give it that 'professional' look. Laminate the image card first, then carefully place the text card back to back on the image card, making sure your !/4" borders are even.  Then place your laminated sheet over the text card. I've found that the 'double-carding' effect brings the whole card to the sturdiness of weight that I desire.

      If you want your card to look even better, round the edges with your small scissors. I pencil in first, then cut.

CONGRATULATIONS:  Now you are ready to create your very own Dream Card.

The magic awaits!

EPISODE THREE:  CLICK HERE for The Amazing  Adventures of The Noseless Man.

Back to Episode One on MAIN PAGE

Email:  I'm eager to hear of your experiences in making your own Dream Cards.
BIO:  Noreen is owner of 7 Arts Studio in Milford, OH.  She is a stained glass artist, drummer, dream adventurer, writer and teacher of Tai Chi.