Everything Old is New Again

Good day everyone,

Welcome to Leisure Lane. I hope your day is going well.  I’ve taken a break from blogging lately because I’ve been re-evaluating things and I’ve decided to get back to my first love of creating art.  To begin this journey, I’ve taken some old things around my place and refurbished them. I love the shabby chic and romantic chic look, so I’ve been working on some projects like that.

Here I’ve taken a black metal mirror I’ve had for a long time and painted and distressed it, then added some mini roses and blue ribbon. So pretty and matches the bathroom beautifully. I almost don’t want to sell it, but a friend of mine has been selling some of my things on an online site she belongs to. So, exciting things have been happening.

I began doing this to calm my mind from a job that I really need to dump soon. Looking forward to that day. And I must say that it’s been like magic. When I’m working – creating with my hands – I’m focused in the quietness of the day and it’s sublime! My thoughts are positive, happy, and calm, and seeing the progress is wonderfully surprising.  The pieces seem to take on the journey with me and take on a life of their own.

I also had a black metal candlestick, so I refurbished it to match the mirror.  Found a very pretty shaped old silvery butter dish at the thrift store, and repainted it with a bit of decoupaging. The tray has sold and will look so pretty in someone’s bathroom, kitchen or bathroom.  I got the little jar at Hobby Lobby on sale painted the wooden top, then did some crackling and decoupaging.  Added a cute button, and voila!  Perfect for cotton balls, buttons or bows 😉

Well, that’s all for now. I’ll share a beautiful re-purposed bottle soon. Enjoy a lovely weekend, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!





Vintage Hankies Jigsaw Puzzle

Good day, my friends! Welcome to Leisure Lane. I hope you are all doing well today. Yesterday, we had our first day of sunshine since the end of January, so that was very nice, indeed!

I just love pretty things, especially vintage. And I have a special place in my soul for vintage hankies and kitchen linens.  You may remember the above photo from a past post. I had found the lovely crocheted pouch in a nearby thrift store – perfect condition – and perfect for storing my dear mother’s vintage hankies. This lovely photo is now available as a jigsaw puzzle… the lovely crocheted pouch with the hankies spilling against one of my watercolor border doodles. It simply makes me smile and I hope it does you, as well. I’m hoping to also offer more floral jigsaw puzzles in the future.

Thank you for strolling by and visiting. May your day be full of color and cheer, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!



Arts & Crafts and Elaborate Bouquet

Good day, everyone and welcome to Leisure Lane.  I hope you are enjoying your stroll here.

As you may know from my recent posts, I have a line of jigsaw puzzles created from the lovely photos on my blog – just another way to enjoy them.  I’m always adding more to the shop on Create Jigsaw Puzzles and here are my latest.

Arts & Crafts

Arts & Crafts makes me want to rummage through my craft supplies and create something pretty (though my creative flow has sadly dwindled). Too bad I have to go to a depressing job instead (the very reason my creative flow has sadly dwindled – maybe one day I’ll post about it just to get it all out of my system). Well, at least I’ve still got a very worn, thin string of faith I’m still holding onto.  Who knows….

Elaborate Bouquet

And for those puzzle enthusiasts who like more of a challenge, Elaborate Bouquet is perfect.

I hope your day is full of happy things, and you are able to do what you love – that’s the secret of a good life.



New Leisure Lane Puzzles

Hello, friends, and welcome to Leisure Lane. I expect you are all well today and finding inspiration at every turn.  I’m resting today on some very needed days off. I hope you’re having nicer weather than we are.  It’s been dreary, rainy with 80-90% humidity all month! The day is wonderful because, well, I woke up this morning :), but we could use a few dryer weather – just saying, Lord.

I have two new Leisure Lane puzzles in the shop at Create Jigsaw Puzzles.

Be Mine

And of course…

Leisure Lane

To see all puzzles available, click here, or go to my Leisure Lane Jigsaw Puzzle page here on the blog.  As always, thank you for visiting. I hope you enjoy your time here, and don’t forget to leave a comment, I always love hearing from you.

May all your dreams and wishes come true, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!


The Jig is Up!

Hello Everyone, and welcome to Leisure Lane! I hope you are all doing well today and enjoying a delightful St. Valentine’s Day.

I am pleased to announce that the lovely photos you see here on my blog are now available as jigsaw puzzles on my Leisure Lane online puzzle shop. There are five beautiful photos available as puzzles so far, and I expect to be adding more to the shop very soon.

I’ve also added the shop’s link on top of my sidebar, so you can always pop over and see what’s new in Leisure Lane puzzles.  I’m also thinking of having a line of playing cards. I’ll let you know if I do.

Thank you for strolling by the Lane today.  Be blessed, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!




Happy St. Valentine’s Day Inspiration

Hello visitors, and welcome…

St. Valentine’s Day is a day of Love, and I’ve chosen three red objects to symbolize the three parts of our being which crave our love.   If we nurture these separate parts, they will fundamentally work beautifully as a whole, allowing us to love ourselves and others more deeply and healthfully.

☼ Red gogi berries ~ to nourish and restore our bodies

☼  A red candle ~ to restore tranquility to our minds

☼ A red heart ~ to feed our souls

It’s also my birthday on Valentine’s day, and a reminder for new beginnings.  And those new beginnings begin with me.  A new beginning of harmony and balance ~ peace and love.

Love begins in the home ~ not only the geographical home, but the inward one as well.  I’ve chosen to be re-illuminated to these fundamentals of perfect living.

So I wish everyone of you a Happy St. Valentine’s Day full of balance, peace, and love.  A day to remember to love not only those dear to us, but also, and most especially, ourselves.  A day to restore wholeness to our being so that we can love more richly.

Until next time, may happy days abound.


Note ~ the little heart pendant was a Valentine gift, made and given to me by my son when he was in kindergarten 16 years ago.  I wear it every year.

The Lighthouse

Good day everyone.  I hope you are all well.  I saw a photo of a lighthouse today and it inspired me to write the following.  May something simple inspire you to do something great today, too.

The Lighthouse

The lighthouse stood before me;
‘Twas not so very tall,
But its light, it shone most brightly
For all to see its call.

“Beware,” it warns the ships at sea;
“Beware, and come not near.
For there are rocks beneath your sight.
Make haste, make haste to veer.”

The light within her never dims;
Her purpose never fails.
Not through clear and moonlit nights
Nor fog or stormy gales.

She knows the light she carries
Is the One who dwells within.
As long as He remains in her
The ships will always win.

The lesson learned so plainly
From the lighthouse sure and true,
Is for anyone who wonders –
It’s for me and it’s you.

For your height it doesn’t matter;
Nor your strength or muscle power.
The Light that lives within your walls
Will conquer every hour.

Marianne Coyne

Thank you for visiting Leisure Lane today. I hope you find other things here to inspire you. Have a good week, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!


Note: The Lighthouse poem by Marianne Coyne is ©2018.  The above image is a painting by Andres Orpinas. 

How to Write a Sympathy Note with Confidence

Your best friend’s father has passed, a co-worker just lost his wife to a long illness, or the unspeakable; someone you know has lost a child.  You’ve looked at every sympathy card available only to realize each fall short for such a time as this. You decide to write your own in a blank note card, but still, you can’t imagine how any words can bring comfort.  Most of us, at one time or another, have experienced this.

It’s true, to some degree, that there are few words which can comfort someone in their time of tragedy; trying to reach into that space of sorrow, so isolated and dark, seems like an unconquerable task.  Nevertheless, when you reach out to such a one during this time you offer a consolation and reassurance so desperately needed.  It let’s them know you care, and they are not alone.  What better way to express that than in your own words.

“But, how do I write a sympathy note without saying the wrong thing?”  That seems to be the question most of us have.  During such life altering circumstances we aren’t always sure what to say or do, which in turn makes us uncomfortable.  To remain responsive to the bereaved individual, and to diminish any misgivings we may have about our ability to respond appropriately, perhaps it’s best to first define the word ‘sympathy’.  It will help us to understand the purpose of a sympathy note, and give us a better viewpoint from which to write it.

The Webster dictionary describes the word in part as “…the art or capacity of entering into or sharing the feelings or interests of another.”  From that perspective we can see that the purpose of writing a sympathy note is to let others know that we are allowing ourselves to share their feelings by sympathizing with their experience.  No matter what our personal experiences, we share in the emotions of another solely for their sake.

The word ‘sympathy’ is usually associated with times of adversity, which is the association we are referring to in this article, but sympathy can also be offered in times of joy; such as a friend’s job promotion, or the birth of a co-worker’s baby.  It’s the process of moving out of ourselves, regardless of happy or troubled circumstances in our own lives, and showing a genuine interest in what is happening in the life of another.

Now that we’ve established what sympathy is, let’s discuss six ways ways which will help us to write a sympathy note we can feel confident about sending.

Step Up To The Plate:  Sad emotions are not preferred ones for most people, but they’re a part of life.  Shying away from them, whether they are yours or someone else’s, doesn’t make them non-existent.  Before you pick up the pen, acknowledge the sadness; understand that there is a purpose behind it, and be willing to communicate.

Determine The Relationship:  Your relationship with the bereaved and/or the deceased will determine what and how much you say.  If the individual you are writing to is an acquaintance, a brief, but sincere note may better suite the situation.  “I heard of your mother’s passing, and I wish to acknowledge your loss.  You and your family are in my prayers,” is sufficient, since you are not in familiar standing with the individual or the deceased.  If, however, you know the bereaved or knew the deceased through a familial bond or friendship, you may wish to share a memory. This can strengthen the bond, and create a warm moment for the bereaved.

Offer Comfort, Not Healing:  Don’t place pressure on yourself by trying to heal the emotions of a grieving individual with words.  Healing is within the bereaved, and it will manifest in its own time and in its own way.  Offering comfort, and any assistance that is in your power to give for that moment, will be more effective.  “I offer my condolences to you on your wife’s passing.  I am preparing some meals for you, and I will deliver them Tuesday,” reassures the person that you care, and you are willing to be of service.  If you are not in a position to offer them physical comfort, supportive words are sufficient, “You are daily in my thoughts and prayers.  May this spiritual excerpt bring you solace.”

Don’t Make Assumptions:  People grieve in different stages, therefore it’s best not to make an assumption about their present emotions.  Writing, “I know how you feel,” even if you do, may seem presumptuous.  A phrase such as “I, too, have experienced the loss of a child.  I’m willing to listen if you wish to talk,” or “I can only imagine what you are going through, but I’m willing to listen to you, talk with you, or just be present with you,” allows your sympathy to be expressed without making assumptions.

Focus On The Present Moment:  Using phrases such as “This will pass”, or “Time will heal”, are usually irrelevant to a person who’s lost a loved one.  A grieving individual is not emotionally within time and space as you are logically experiencing it, and trying to convince them of those concepts is futile.  Reference the present moment at all times.  “You are in my heart during this sorrowful time,” or “Your father had a gift to bring out the best in people.  He will be remembered by many,” allows bereaved individuals the freedom to feel within the present moment, without the pressure of hurrying the healing process.  For most individuals, in a sense, time has stopped for them, and for a period they will be living life minute to minute.

Keep Your Words Sincere:  Remember, the purpose of a sympathy note is to express genuine interest in what another is experiencing.  Write only what you mean and can follow through with.  If you offer to bring meals for the family during a specific time, follow through.  If you mention in your note that you will call them, make time to call.  During this period in someone’s life they need to know your words are reliable.

My friends, don’t be afraid of words.  I must admit that when I sat down to write this article I knew what I wanted to say, but as the article progressed, I found myself doing the very thing I wished to alleviate for you; agonizing over words.  But the more we agonize over the “right” words the harder it will be to write the note.  You have good instincts; trust them.  You will write a sympathy note that you feel confident about sending if you

*Acknowledge sadness is a part of life, and has a purpose;
*Determine the relationship you have with the bereaved and/or deceased;
*Offer comfort with supportive words and, if possible, assistance;
*Don’t make assumptions about how someone may feel;
*Use phrases which focus on the present moment; and…
*Write only what you mean and can follow through with.

The more you let go of self, and relate to others from a place of love and compassion, expressing with the written word will come more easily to you.  Truthfully, that’s what the recipient of your note really wants; words that are genuine and sincere – your words.

Thank you for strolling by the Lane today.  May your day be full of joy, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!


It Should Always Be Spring in Our Hearts

Welcome to Leisure Lane, my friends. I hope you are all enjoying a delightful day.  I am sitting here all cozy with a cup of tea, as the icy ‘rain’ comes down. A perfect day for writing the poem I promised myself I’d write on my next day off.  It was inspired from Psalm 118,”For this is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice in it.” I’m sharing it here and hope you enjoy it and, perhaps, it will speak to your heart.

It Should Always Be Spring in Our Hearts

Some days are sunny and some days are not.
Some are successful and some come to naught.
No matter – our thoughts should always be taught,
It should always be spring in our hearts.

If I should awake with gloom in my soul,
I throw off the covers and go for a stroll
And listen for church bells to ring out the toll,
“It should always be spring in our hearts.”

Life is so precious, as everyone knows,
Though it’s not always filled with larks and meadows.
Yes, even when an icy wind blows,
It should always be spring in our hearts.

A wise book has said it’s the day the Lord’s made.
So, notice the flowers and every grass blade,
While taking a moment to rest in His shade.
It should always be spring in our hearts.

Autumn’s my favorite and yes, winter, too.
Summer’s just fine with its sweet morning dew.
But no matter if skies are drab gray or deep blue,
It should always be spring in our hearts.

Marianne Coyne


Thank you for joining me today. May your heart be full of spring no matter where you are, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!

Marianne ♥

Note: The above poem by Marianne Coyne©2018.  All rights reserved.

You Never Know What Blessings

Good day, friends…

Have you ever received a rejection letter? I have – countless times – and just received one yesterday. It’s needless to say they’re disappointing. But, today, I ‘accidentally’ came across a poem in my files that I wrote last year, which was perfectly pertinent for moments like this. So, I posted it on my blog. I hope you enjoy it and it speaks to you, as well. It also helps to have a good friend to help you laugh about it – I had that perfect friend today, and I’m grateful for her. In fact, she was one of those blessings – unexpected, spontaneous, and refreshing. Enjoy!

You Never Know What Blessings

You never know what blessings
May come your way today.
Or how they’ll bravely find their way
Through clutter that you say.

But when your thoughts you quiet
And gently breathe each breath,
While you meditate on things of Life
And not the things of death;

Then you’ll hear the quiet knocking
Of a blessing sent to you;
Through the unlocked door within your heart
It will easily slip through.

So, put aside your frets each morn
And make a holy vow,
That each thought and word and deed today
Will permit a blessing now.

And if you do this faithfully,
You’ll find that more and more
You will never lack for all things good
Upon this earthly shore.


Marianne Coyne

Thank you for strolling by Leisure Lane.  If you missed my last post, The Old Square Kitchen Clock, just click here.  Your visits and comments are always appreciated.  May this day bring a blessing of pure joy to you, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!


Note: The above poem by Marianne Coyne©2017.  All rights reserved by author.


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