Tuesday, January 28, 2014

My "Jawbone"

The husband gave this to me for Christmas and I LOVE it!!



This is a remarkable piece of technology. It keeps track of how many steps I take every day, it keeps track of my sleep and how much of that sleep is deep sleep or light sleep, how many times I wake up at night. It also syncs up with “My Fitness Pal” on my phone and keeps track of the calories I eat per day.

I thought it would be annoying to wear all the time, especially at night but I can’t even tell I have it on.

I love it! It has helped me stay on track and keeps me moving! When I’ve been still for an hour, it vibrates. I know to get up and move.

If you are active – or want to be more active, if you are wanting to live a healthier lifestyle,  I highly recommend the Jawbone. I also highly recommend My Fitness Pal for your smart phone.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Take Me Away to a Tropical Island!!

During these long winter months it is easy to dream of the green tropics, the warm sandy beaches, the sun on your face.

I had an opportunity to live on one of those beautiful tropical islands. It’s just as gorgeous as your imagination makes it. Green year round. Warm temperatures year round. Unbelievable for this girl from the Midwest.

Guess what I missed the most?

DSCN5344          DSCN5346

DSCN5341          DSCN5337

Well, maybe not the leafless trees, the brown of winter – but what this is the prelude to. The green of spring, the buds on the trees, bulbs pushing their life up through the warming soil. I missed having a dormant time before the bursting forth of beauty.

I missed the seasons. It really is true that you can’t take the “Midwest” out of the girl. :  )

Today is a respite in our Kansas weather. It’s beautiful outside so I went out with my camera to get some pictures. All I could see was brown. But I reminded myself how much I missed this when everything was green all year round. I missed the seasons.

Life is like the seasons. We all hit brown patches, some are browner than others, some are longer. But when we let God have control, the dormant time is overcome by the bursting of life from our soul. That’s what the seasons show us. That we are over-comers – we do survive the brown patches, and survive stronger than before.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Saturday Bliss

This is our second Saturday in a row we’ve not had any plans. Bliss! Quiet! Lazy! Staying in out of the Kansas Wind.

We slept in, had delicious oatmeal for breakfast (?) or brunch. What a wonderful way to spend a day in January!

Saturday (2)
The husband saying, “What?

Me resting Me – reading.

Stew in the crockpot and a good book to read. I could really get used to this!! – oh wait, I am used to it!

What do you do on a lazy Saturday?

Friday, January 17, 2014

Recipe: Banana Split Cake

We had guests the other evening for dessert. I fixed Banana Split Cake. It seems as if I got this recipe from my Grandma, but I can’t really remember. But here it is.

Prepare the crust:
Melt 1 stick oleo (that’s why I think recipe came from my Grandma. I don’t know anybody else that calls it oleo!) in a 9X13 pan. Combine 1 cup flour and 1/2 cup pecans. Pat in pan to form crust. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes then let cool.

Cream together until smooth:
8 oz cream cheese
2 cups powdered sugar
1 stick oleo (margarine or butter)
Spread on cooled crust.
Top with 1 large can crushed pineapple – drained
Put sliced bananas on top (3-4 bananas)
Cover with cool whip
Garnish with pecans and Maraschino cherries

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Wednesday Wisdom!

When looking for wisdom, this week I’ve turned to Solomon. The wisest man to ever live – except for the whole 700 wives and 300 concubines thing – that alone should cause us to pause...  : )   

Anyway, here are todays words of wisdom:

Now all has been heard;

     here is the conclusion of the matter;

Fear God and keep his commandments,

     for this is the whole duty of man.

For God will bring every deed into judgment,

     including every hidden thing,

Whether it is good or evil.
Ecclesiastes 12: 13-14


Sunday, January 12, 2014

Ragamuffin, The True Story of Rich Mullins

This picture came from the face book page of

“Ragamuffin” debuted to a sold-out house at the Orpheum Theatre last week. They have 66 screenings planned across the nation and then David Schultz, the writer and director of the film believes the film may be used in churches as a ministry tool.

I’ve never been to a “premier” of anything, so that in itself was exciting. Before the movie started David Schultz, the director, Michael Koch, the actor who played Rich and David Mullins, Rich’s brother were all interviewed and it was interesting to hear a bit of the background of the movie.

I was excited about attending this movie because we lived here when Rich lived here. We worked in another church of the same denomination as Rich. I had two teenagers, a youth minister for a husband and you just couldn’t be a Christian during those years and not have Rich Mullins music impact your lives. We started out with his music on “cassettes” then moved on to CD’s when they arrived on the scene. We saw him at numerous youth activities. So – of course like so many – I have felt like I have “known” Rich Mullins.

And I did know him well enough to speak to him. I knew him well enough to know he had had a troubled past. I knew him well enough to admire his walk with God.

I have read several very positive reviews about the movie. I have struggled with what I wanted to say in this review. - I have added the links to 2 of them below.

We’ve all known those Christians who are free spirits – and we love them. We love them for their boldness, for their honesty and for their longing for God. This is who I felt Rich was while he walked on this earth.

I believe the movie sold him short. I believe he was much more than what they portrayed. I knew of his struggles, but I also knew of his redemption.  After all, even one who had never seen him in person could know of his redemption through his songs.

I wanted to see that redemption in “Ragamuffin.” But I didn’t. It was an assumption, I believe, because of his music. But it was never shown or never spoken.

One conversation with another man that wasn’t in the movie, ”When does faithfulness to Jesus call us to lay aside our biases and when does it call us to stand beside them?” Rich asked and the gentleman answered him by saying, it’s not about being Catholic or Protestant. It is about being faithful to Jesus. The issue is not about which church you go to, it is about following Jesus where He leads you.” (from Wikipedia)

I would have liked to have learned more of his questioning, his learning about God, His spiritual growth rather than so much about the drinking and the anger. The film made me ask, “Did he ever stop being angry?” This was addressed for a bit at the end, but his anger, his problems were only a part of his life. His legacy of being a lover of God and singing His praises were a large part that seemed to get lost in the dark and the anger of the movie.

Yes, it’s true, you could hear his struggling in his songs. But you also heard of the redemption. The words he would write and sing - that although I struggle – God, you have the answers. The movie wasn’t clear on this to me.

Some of the words from  one of his songs:
“…Seems you never get too far…
…Voices are loud
but seldom clear….
when you’ve played out your last chance…
and your directions are all lost….
when the roads that you look down are all dead ends….

Definitely lyrics of a man with struggles but his chorus always has the answer to all these struggles -

You’re on the verge of a miracle
Standing here
You’re on the verge of a miracle
just waiting to be believed in
open your eyes and see
you're on the verge of a miracle.

I just kept waiting for the movie to show us Rich’s miracle. That he was an overcomer. That he did indeed have that miracle which was his relationship with God.

Here are some links to other reviews for you to read

Friday, January 10, 2014

“Saving Mr. Banks”

I’m a great fan of Mary Poppins. Ever since my Mom read a Mary Poppins Golden book to me,  I’ve been hooked. This is the book she gave to me in 1956 when I was 3.

Mary Poppins 2

Then in 1964, I remember my Mom and my Grandma dropping me off at the movie theater to watch the film version of P.L. Travers books. I was enthralled. I loved the movie and as I left the theater, I looked longingly at the Mary Poppins’ dolls they had for sale. I didn’t get a doll, but later I did get an album of all the songs from the movie. – and I memorized ALL of them!

 When my oldest 3 grands were all younger, we would have Mary Poppins sleep overs at my house. We would have good snacks and an evening of sleeping bags on the floor in the living room watching the video of “Mary Poppins.”

Then February of 2011, my oldest daughter took me to the Broadway Across America performance of “Mary Poppins.” This was a wonderful evening.


 I, again, looked at the dolls. For some reason they seemed “cheaper” than the ones I saw in 1964! Maybe it was looking at them through the eyes of an adult instead of a child. I did buy a book and a bracelet.



I wrote about this evening at the theater  H.E.R.E

So, imagine my excitement when I heard about “Saving Mr. Banks.”  I immediately made plans to see it over the holidays while the oldest grand girl was here.

Christmas 2013-2014 Movie  Madea's Christmas
The boys chose “a Madea Christmas” 

Christmas 2013-2014 Movie Saving Mr. Banks (2)
Getting ready to see “Saving Mr. Banks” 

Christmas 2013-2014 Movie Saving Mr. Banks (1)

We were not disappointed. The Husband liked it. The grand liked it and I loved it!  I cried through much of it so did the grand. Not sure if The Husband did. 

After watching the movie, and reading more back ground on P.L. Travers, I realized she was a stinker to work with!! BUT if I felt about my creation as she did, I might be a stinker, too.

It’s kind of like raising children. We do have to let them go – that is after all why we raise them, to become independent adults. P.L. Travers just had a hard time turning loose of her “children” especially to Walt Disney!

She was a women with many memories. Some were true, some imagined and over the years, it was hard to tell which was which.

 I’m always amazed when people make something wonderful out of the “bad” that they have experienced. Because of P.L. Travers (Helen Goff)  past she was able to create a world that so many of us have loved and dreamed of.

So, I highly recommend this movie – especially if you are a Poppins fan.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Healthy Eating

I am trying to improve my eating habits…  Oh, my, this is a struggle. You know I love mashed potatoes, gravy, fried chicken, – all those comfort foods.

I’m trying to do better. I got a book from the Mayo Clinic on “heart healthy” eating. I’ve been following most of their guidelines. So far the husband and I have been very pleased with the taste of the recipes and with the amounts we are eating.

Yesterday for lunch we had turkey wraps which included whole wheat tortilla, 3 oz of smoked turkey breast, lettuce, tomato, onion and salsa. At first we were reluctant to add the salsa, it seemed out of place with the other items on this wrap but we did and we LOVED them. We also had a tomato and cucumber salad with fat free Italian dressing. And of course fruit. The Mayo Clinic adds a piece of fruit to every meal.

Since it’s January in the Midwest, good fruit is not always in abundance. Instead of a large variety we are just buying the fruit that is good and having it more than once or twice a day.

For dinner we had 3 oz flank steak, a half of a baked potato, vegetable, and fruit. We were even able to have 2 tablespoons of light sour cream on our potato.

I have never fixed flank steak. The Mayo Clinic said to marinate it with the same Italian Dressing – which we did and it was delicious. And I broiled it. However, when I looked Flank Steak up on google (for recipes) I found many different marinades and a few of them even looked low cal but did have more salt. i.e. – soy sauce. – and it seems the preferred way of cooking is to grill. – Which we are going to do next time.

Today for lunch, I’m using the leftover Flank Steak  in a salad.

My goal here is not to “diet” but to change our eating habits. – To replace my style of cooking to a more healthy style. That’s one reason I was so excited to try a few new things and discover they are easy to make and they taste good. That’s the purpose of this “project!” Ease and good!

So, to those of you who already are healthy eaters – can you share some recipes with me?  Would love to accumulate many healthy meal ideas.

Saturday, January 4, 2014


Life is filled with worry. From a young age we can be taught to worry. 

The way I look.
Blending two as one.
Family - children.

And this isn't taking into account the big worries - a death, a job loss, many other catastrophe's that can come up.

The Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale helps us determine how stress and worry can have long term impact. You can learn more about this Stress Scale and grade yourself H.E.R.E.

I realize that "stress" and "worry" are two separate events but yet they go hand in hand. They both cause physical damage.

In Matthew 6:25, Jesus says to us,"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?"

That is so easy to read - often much harder to apply to my life.

Then in verse 27, Jesus goes on to say,"Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"

Which is exactly what the The Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale tells us, too. Worry, stress causes damage to our physical bodies. 

The answer? Only trusting God. Reading His Word and Praying.  Sometimes this answer seems so trite. So simplistic. So non-effective.

But trust me. It is the only answer that works. Sometimes I feel like it's one step forward, two steps back. But God helps us become over-comers and with a relationship with Him, I can overcome. - Even worry.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Christmas Visit to the Farm

I try to make a trip to the farm every other week. With the holidays it’s not been every other Wednesday but I’ve made it out there anyway.

I had planned on going out the Monday before Christmas day but the weather played havoc with that plan. The grands were going to come visit us the Saturday after Christmas Day so we just postponed our trip until then and on our way back to Kansas picked up the grands to come for a week. Good times!!

My Mom and Dad were excited that Jonathan was able to come with us and we were able to get a few pictures.

We had a good meal and a good visit and since it was Saturday, we missed Gunsmoke but did get to watch  The Virginian.  (for those of you reading my blog for the first time – when I go to the farm we always watch Gunsmoke!)

We took ham, scalloped potatoes, peppernuts and chex mix! So they decided they had enough leftovers to last a LONG time! - Oh, and I threw in a bag of beans for the ham bone!

Dad, Me Mom, Randy 2013 (1)

Dad, me, Mom, Jay (1)

I never really believed I would reach the age of caring for my parent’s. Not sure what I thought would happen. But here we are, so far they care for themselves – not the way I would like but the way they choose. It’s such a pull on ones heart to watch as the parent’s become more feeble. I am just so very thankful for the time I have with them. So many of my friends have lost parent’s. My husband’s parent’s have died. I really am very fortunate - very blessed.


Anxiety is more than a fear of something tangible happening. It goes a step beyond that. It is a dread over something that is unlikely to happen.

God addresses our anxieties.

In Luke, Jesus says, “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap.” Luke 21:34

This is talking about the day of Christ’s return and Jesus is telling us to get our lives in order. Do away with the dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life so we will be ready for His soon return.

Aargh… I looked up dissipation* in the dictionary. In these days of certain sins being bandied about as worse than others… Well, this verse shows us that sin is sin. All sin is sin. Not just the ones we choose.

And Jesus wants us to get our anxiety under control to be ready for His return. 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to “Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.”

And if the anxiety creeps back in? Cast it again. And again. And again. – just as if you were casting for a large fish. You do it over and over and over – until the fish is caught. Until your anxiety never returns. Sometimes I think because I’m a Christian, life should be easy. It’s not. And I turn to him daily. Hourly. Every minute I look to Him for the answers to my life.

Being anxious weighs a man down – we know that – Proverbs states this very fact. The Proverb also adds – a kind word cheers a person with anxiety up. (Proverbs 12:25) So, be kind to everyone around you. You have no idea what their lives are.

For those with anxious hearts there is only one answer. Only one.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

*“Dissipation: decadence (a decline in morals), excess, overconsumption, self indulgence, wildness, drunkenness, depravity (moral corruption, wickedness), promiscuity, degeneracy (corrupt, vulgar, vicious, sexual perversion), licentiousness (lacking legal or moral restraints, especially sexual restraints), debauchery (excessive indulgence in sensual pleasures). Squandering of money, energy, or resources, expenditure, waste.”

Thursday, January 2, 2014


There is no doubt that each of us needs the Strength of God in our lives. Sometimes more than others. When I went through a tremendous trial a few years ago, I depended on the strength and courage that was given to Joshua when he desperately needed it.

One of my daily prayers became, “Lord, please make me strong and courageous like Joshua.” A simple prayer but effective.

And He faithfully answered.

The battle of Jericho featured one of the most astounding miracles in the Bible. – And Joshua led this battle as the Lord directed him. He had strength and courage because he trusted God to do as He said He would.

And He faithfully did.

Joshua 1  9 Faith challenge (2)     
 Joshua 1  9 Faith challenge (1)
Joshua 1:9

What a beautiful promise for Joshua. What a glorious promise for you and I.  Strength truly does come from the Lord.  Depend on Him.  Let Him give you the strength and courage that only He can give.

Be strong and courageous.

Happy New Year!!!

New Year’s Eve at the Cohorn’s was filled with laughter, food, grands and friends. Good times!

New Year's Eve 2013 (1)       New Year's Eve 2013 (2)

New Year's Eve 2013 (3)New Year's Eve 2013 (4)  

We ate
We talked
We laughed

New Year's Eve 2013 (6)         New Year's Eve 2013 (7)
New Year's Eve 2013 (8)          New Year's Eve 2013 (9)

We played farkle
We laughed some more
We ate some more

We had a wonderful time ringing in 2014.

Happy New Year
May God bless you beyond your imagination!


Stress.  All the feelings, aches - heartaches that come with that one word. 


Everyone experiences it at one time or another. Christians are not immune to stress. Lives may seem perfect - but then stress shows up, knocking at the door. It seems as if the holidays can really bring on added stress. How does one deal with this everyday occurrence? Or maybe it only knocks for you once in a while - but still, how does one deal with it?

God's word shows us that stress was as common for King David and for many others as it is for us today. Because of that God addressed it through the Old Testament and Jesus addressed it while He lived on earth.

Psalm 42:11
     Why are you downcast, O my soul"
         Why so disturbed in me?
      Put your hope in God,
         for I will yet praise Him,
         my Savior and my God.

Matthew 11: 28-30
     Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Psalm 55: 22
     Cast your cares on the Lord
          and he will sustain you;
          he will never let the righteous fall.

Exodus 33:14
     The Lord replied, " My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest."

John 14:27
     Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Psalm 42:11
     Why are you downcast, O my soul?
          Why so disturbed within me?
     Put your hope in God,
          for I will yet praise Him,
          my Savior and my God.

Sometimes when stress hits, I just remember that God says to me, "Be still. Know that I am God."  I say this quietly - slowly, and  I realize He is with me. He is  in control. My life is not about "me." It's about what I can do for Him. - He will always help me through the troubled times - the stressful times. I will glorify Him.

I am always uplifted by praying scripture. When times are stressful, I don't always know what to say to Him. But I can always use His Word to pray.

"Lord, I am so downcast. I am disturbed. I am stressed. But even so, I trust in You and I praise you in all things, You are my Savior and my God.
I am weary of this burden. Of this stress. I am trusting You for rest. For spiritual, emotional and physical rest. I know You will ease this stress I am feeling.
I trust you with everything in my life and I know You will not let me fall. You give me a peace that passes all understanding. So different than what the world offers. Thank you for this peace and help me to not be afraid or troubled anymore.
I will continue to praise you - Lord thank you for taking these feelings of stress and giving me Your peace. Thank you for answering my pleas. I praise Your Holy Name. I love you. I pray all this in Jesus name.  Amen"

 God is so much more than we can ever comprehend in this life. But He is also faithful to us and keeps His promises to us.

I am trusting that any time I feel stress, God will give me His peace.