We Put Bits in Horses’ Mouths, Don’t We?

Hello, Friends, and welcome to Leisure Lane. We had a very mild winter in my neck of the woods, until the middle of February, which happens to be my birthday. I really wanted it to snow and get colder to give us a break. I said it and said it. I talked about it for months, and voila! My birthday wish came true…we not only got snow, but a freeze that shook the state of Texas’ confidence in preparedness. I promise to be a more careful with my birthday wishes 😉

Speaking of the words we choose, today I was thinking about the short story, The Turbulent Tongue, and was reminiscing on something one of its readers confided to me a few years ago. She said that every time she started to gossip she thought of the story, which convicted her to stop. It made her more conscious of her words and whether or not she was beginning to go down the gossip path. Her words did my heart good, realizing that it had the desired affect in helping her to curb her “turbulent tongue”. I had no idea she struggled with gossip and perhaps she didn’t, either. But, in truth, we all have had our share of curbing that sometimes unforeseen habit. We may not even be aware that what is coming out of our mouths is actually “gossip”. Then, there are others who not only know they’re gossiping, but find a strange pleasure in the pastime, just like our story’s loquacious main character. So, today I’d like to touch on the topic of gossip.

Some of you may not want to discuss this tender issue, and may have already clicked on to something else, but for those of you who have a desire to help yourself gain control over your tongue and help others do the same, then keep reading.

In the letter from James, the brother of Jesus, he writes in Chapter 3:3-5 , “Behold, we put bits in horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold, also the ships, which through they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm…Even so, the tongue is a little member, and boasts great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindles!”

How true those simple words are. We have the ability to change the course mighty things and circumstances with our little tongues; we can bless or curse with our tongues; and we can create either havoc or well-being in the lives of others with just our little ole’ tongues. Think about that for a moment – especially the last part. When we speak about others, what are we saying about them and in what manner are we saying it? I don’t just mean the tone with which we are speaking the words, but from where in our hearts are those words being conceived? From anger, bitterness, resentment, frustration, envy – or simply trivial boredom? Or perhaps, and many of us are guilty of this reason, are we actually concerned about someone and so decide to “spill the beans” to another thinking we are genuinely discussing the subject’s well-being? Do we understand that what we say can reach far beyond the span of our listeners, or are we oblivious to consequences and only desiring immediate satisfaction from our conversation?

There’s a fine line, my friend, in speaking about one person to another, and it’s our duty to make sure we are not crossing the line from genuine caring to trifle balking. In The Turbulent Tongue, the Gossip, in engaging in her favorite pastime, crosses that line with no thought of the consequences of her words, or how far they can travel. In the end, to her chagrin, she receives the ultimate epiphany. The Turbulent Tongue was written in the hopes that we, unlike the Gossip, can learn this lesson without any drama. If you have a problem with gossip, or you know someone who does, this short story can help. It’s perfect for book groups, study groups, bible study groups and more. And if you’re looking for a church skit, this story is perfect. There’s no room for chastisement of oneself or others who fall into the gossip trap, only room for improvement and a happier life.

I’ll leave you with more wise words from James 3:13…“Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.”

Thank you for strolling by Leisure Lane today. I hope you enjoyed your stay. God bless you, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!




Add a Little Pixie Dust to Your Creativity

Good day everyone, and welcome to Leisure Lane. I hope you’re all enjoying a wonderful day.

I have a treat for anyone who’s interested in learning how to crochet. Jean, from the delightful blog, The Creative Pixie, is working her magic again on Youtube. She’s got two brand new videos – How to Crochet a Foundation Chain and How to Crochet a Magic Ring. Both videos are very informative, and her easy to follow style will inspire you to give it a try. She also has some knitting videos, so be sure to check those out, as well.

If you aren’t familiar with her blog, be sure to stop by and give her a warm “hello”. She shares her amazing projects and talent there – featuring knitting, cross-stitch, crochet, tutorials and more.

Thank you for stopping by today. May your day be filled with joy and peace, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!


NOTE: The above photo is the sole property of The Creative Pixie and is used here by permission.



Published in ideals Easter Book

Hello friends, and happy 2021! It’s here – the 2021 IDEALS Easter edition, and I’m happy to announce that my poem, Easter Baskets, is among all the delightful poems, articles, photography and artwork found in this issue. This is the surprise I mentioned some months back that I wanted to share with you.

Ideals has been around since 1944, and if you’ve never read one before, this is a perfect time to do so. Filled with inspirational and quality treasures that will brighten your day, you just may become a lifelong fan, like me.

When I was very young, my mother had a collection of Ideals books and we spent many warm moments reading the poetry and looking at all the gorgeous pictures. It has been a dream of mine to one day be published within its pages, and I’m proud to say that dream has come true.

Ideals Easter issue should be in bookstores around January 26, 2021. If you prefer, you can pre-order a copy from Barnes and Noble.

Well, I’ve got my tea poured, and I’m ready to savor every moment inside my complimentary issue. Have a glorious day, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!





For God So Loved the World, He Gave…

Good day, dear readers. In John 3:16, Jesus said to Nicodemus, “For God SO loved the world that He GAVE His only begotten Son, that WHOEVER believes in him, shall not perish, but have EVERLASTING LIFE.” That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.

I spent yesterday looking up the key original Greek words in my concordance, and my heart was filled more than ever. I don’t know why the world spends its energy rebuking this love, this precious grace, this precious gift of Jesus. Even the Hallmark channel in all their Christmas regalia and their desperate attempt to be so inclusive cannot even show a nativity, let alone mention His name.

But, for those of you looking for grace, for love, for everlasting life, let this be the gift you unwrap under the tree this Christmas. Let this be the thing to contemplate no matter what religion you belong to. For He did not come to start a religion, but to lead the way to the everlasting Father.  It will not disappoint you. Perfect love never will.

Be blessed, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!

Amazon Kindle author

The Mis-Aventures of Kare and Mare: New Book on Amazon Kindle


Good day everyone, and welcome to Leisure Lane. I hope you’re enjoying the last of autumn. It seems to go by much too quickly for me. Today is raining and quite lovely – a perfect autumn day to curl up and read a good book – after the real Good Book, that is ;).

Speaking of books, I’m happy to announce that those two beloved characters, Kare and Mare, and their unique way of looking at life are now on Amazon Kindle. The mis-Adventures of Kare and Mare: You’re such a goddess, contains all their funny goodness in one place, where you can enjoy them any time/anyplace. Life can have challenges, but learning to see the cup half full with a bit of humor makes the journey so much more enjoyable – don’t you think? I know Kare and Mare do.

Thank you for strolling by the Lane today. I hope you enjoy what you see. God is good, and His mercy endures forever, and that Truth never fails. May you be blessed today, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!



Veteran’s Day Tribute

Good day everyone, and welcome to Leisure Lane. I’d like to give a big THANK YOU to all of our veterans, whose bravery and sacrifice is appreciated now more than ever. THANK YOU and may God bless you and your families!

In tribute to you, I’d like to post a short story I wrote in 2015, called A Veteran’s Cap. I think it holds more meaning now. I hope you enjoy it and it speaks to your heart in some way. Have a great day, and…

Until next time may happy days abound!


A Veteran’s Cap

I like to walk on cool days when the sun is shining on my face. It makes me feel warm and alive. Sometimes I walk into town. Everyone’s in such a rush to get where they’re going. Sometimes I wonder if they see me…really see me; or am I just another blurred face in the crowd. Do they notice me at all?

Sometimes I wear my Veteran’s cap, and someone will greet me with that special kind of smile, or thank me for my service and reach out to shake my hand or pat me on the back. It’s usually the older folks. I ask myself, “Is this why I wear the cap?”  Sometimes I think it is. Or maybe I wear it for my war buddy, Bill, who was running next to me when they shot him between the eyes. Or maybe I wear it for Kevin who came in as a new medic, but never made it to the front line. Man, that day, no medic could help him. Maybe it’s for Adam, who now lives his life in a wheelchair, staring out the window thinking of what could have been, as he watches his children play in the yard. I don’t know anymore.

School buses and automobiles whiz by transporting unfamiliar faces. I wonder if they know what I’ve been through. Every night I pray they could understand. The sun is still warm on my face and the cool breeze balances the warmth so that what I’m feeling now is – comfort. God, back in those days I never thought I’d ever be able to think, let alone say that word again.

I stop at a corner and wait for the light to turn green. An elderly man comes from behind me. He stands a little to my right. I can hear his labored breath. I turn toward him, and notice a familiar cap. It reads ‘Veteran’. He knows…he knows. “Are you alright?” I ask.  “Here, sit for a while,” and I lead him to a little bench outside of a coffee shop. I gently help him to sit. “I’ll be alright, son,” he replies through heavy breaths. I go inside the shop and bring out a cup of cold water for him and a coffee for me. We sit together for a while. He came home safely from the Korean War, married his high school sweetheart, and had 3 children. After 45 years of marriage his wife passed away, and his children are dispersed throughout the country. He made it alright on his own for quite some time, but now his health is beginning to wane. He walks every week to the clinic because he can’t drive due to failing eyesight, and the bus doesn’t stop near where he lives. He’ll be going to live with his daughter, but that won’t be for another two months.

We continue on our journey, and I walk the rest of the way with him to make sure he arrives safely. I help him up two flights of stairs to the modest, little apartment he calls “home”.  “Look, what about if I pick you up next week, and drive you to the clinic,” I say. There’s a pause, then he looks at me with tearing eyes. “You’d do that for me, son?” he asks surprised. “Sure! We veterans have to stick together, right?” “Can we have some ice cream after my appointment?” he asks. I smile.  “You got it!”

I made it back to the land of the free – free to show kindness, free to help a buddy in despair, free to still serve my country. I don’t know why he trusted me – a stranger.  Maybe it was the comradely cap. Maybe that’s why I wear it.  Yeah!

Marianne Coyne©copyright2015

An Immigrant Story That Will Melt Your Heart and Make You Smile

There’s a lot of hoop-la today about immigrants and immigration. This country (America) was built on the backs of immigrants and their longing and ability to do what it took to maintain and support moral values and family, while acclimating to a new culture and country. The Italians were just one group of immigrants who persevered through prejudices and hard economic and changing times. Some became well-known for their fame or infamy, and some were known only in a familial setting where their stories of heroic greatness were passed down within the confines of generational knowledge.

This is a story of one of those unsung heroines – a woman, who in spite of hardship, grew in grace because of her love of God and family. A woman, who but not for this book, would be unknown to the rest of the world. Her humble light makes our world a little brighter in order to see what’s truly important – the value of real love. The kind of love that heals, forgives, and challenges each one of us to be better than we were the day before.

I’m descended from such stock as these fine Italians, who first and foremost considered themselves Americans and taught me not only to take pride in being an American, but to also live my life in the best way that contributed to this country’s consistent and hopeful expectations of equality for all. It was my deepest pleasure to pen this biography and bring to light…

Available on Amazon Kindle

A romance in every sense of the word, this book is based on the true story of Annie – a young woman who, in youth, surrendered herself to God and learned His faithfulness in trying times. As we follow Annie from 15 years old into mid-life, we experience a soul’s beautiful transformation in the midst of human and personal struggles and the goodness, unity, and wholeness that can come from a humble and surrendered heart. We discover with Annie that no matter how well meaning our hearts may be, it is not until we surrender them to God, will He give us His strength to conquer.

Step into Annie’s story and allow your heart to experience every emotion – from her pride in living in America with all its opportunities available to a youthful imagination, to her joys, her heartbreaks, her fears, and her strength. The Heart of Annie…The Strength of God is the immigrant story you’ve been waiting to read.

Thank you for strolling by Leisure Lane today. God bless you – stay safe and healthy, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!


Fifteen-year-old Annie Salvatore loves the opportunities and excitement of growing up in early twentieth century America. It’s her dream of falling in love and escaping the tradition of an arranged marriage just as her mother did in Italy. But sometimes life doesn’t give us what we want in the package we had envisioned. Undertones of an arranged marriage are overshadowed by the love and duty Annie feels toward her family. But as the years pass, Annie discovers that the love in her heart is not enough without strength. Through life’s joys and woes, Annie presses closer toward God. He gently teaches her heart to forgive and to love more deeply. In surrendering her heart to His strength, Annie discovers the ability to conquer. Step back in time, slip into Annie’s shoes and walk her journey, as it leads her to make the decision that will alter her family’s life and fill it with the true promise of Christmas. Based on a true story of faith, courage, sadness and joy. A life-changing and heartwarming story.

Review quote: “This was one of the best books I have ever read. It was such an emotional read and the characters just grabbed your heart and showed you the way all through the book… I am looking forward to reading other books by this author.” Janet E. Stricklin


Thanks for coming by today. Looking for a pleasant distraction? My novella is featured on eBookChristian. A simple, engaging and enjoyable reminder that if you keep faith, even in the midst of your own chaos, life will present the wonderful.

Pinterest Good Reads

Homemade Vaseline-Style Balm/Ointment

Hello friends, and welcome to Leisure Lane. I hope you’re enjoying your day and ready for some homemade inspiration.

I’ve always liked doing and making things the old-fashioned way. Though I had gotten away from that for a while, this past year of free time, peaceful healing and time with God has given me a new perspective and the desire to get back to my true self. Pinterest has really helped with keeping the creative and inspirational flame alive.

I’ve always liked Vaseline, but stopped using it when I became more informed about petroleum products. But now I can enjoy a vaseline-style balm without all the bad stuff. So, using it on my lips and skin gives me all the benefits and none of the guilt. Here’s a super easy and delightful recipe that I altered a bit for my own liking and I think you’ll like it.

The first and most important thing about making products like this is to make sure all your utensils are completely clean and dry, and the container you choose to store them in is clean, dry, and sanitized. I clean my glass jars with soap and hot water (or I put them in the dishwasher), and then I either sterilize them by putting them in boiling water, or wiping them well with a 70% or more rubbing alcohol before adding the product.

So, let’s get to the recipe, because I know you’ll want to make this today…

Vaseline-Style Balm/Ointment


Makes about 2 ½ – 3 oz.

A clean and sanitized 3 oz. jar with tight lid. I bought these cute little food-grade jars at Hobby Lobby. But you can use whatever you have on hand, as long as it has a secure lid. I prefer glass instead of plastic. But if you have a good grade plastic that won’t leach toxins, you can use that.


2 1/4 Tbsp. Olive Oil
2 1/4 Tbsp. Avocado Oil
2 tablespoons Coconut Oil
2 tablespoons Beeswax (organic pellets)

Melt Olive Oil, Avocado Oil, Coconut Oil and Beeswax in double boiler over low heat. Stir until completely melted.

Pour mixture into a clean and sanitized glass container and let it sit until it’s firm and completely cool. Cover tightly with lid.

This balm can be stored in the refrigerator if your house or climate is too warm. It will be slightly firmer, but still have a Vaseline-type consistency. I keep mine in the refrigerator, as the climate where I live is usually quite warm and humid. If you don’t refrigerate it, make sure you keep it in a cool, dry and dark space, away from the hot sunlight. I’m not going to commit to the non-refrigerated shelf life, so use common sense when storing homemade products that don’t have preservatives.

You can add a teaspoon of Vitamin E oil, if desired for an extra boost. If you don’t have Avocado oil, you can use about 1/3 cup of olive oil, instead. I love the olive and avocado mix. I also use extra virgin, cold-pressed, unrefined oils, as well.

A completely natural balm, perfect for lips, chapped or dry skin, or anytime. A little goes a long way. I rub a bit on my lips at bedtime.

I hope you get to try this. Let me know if you love making homemade, as well, and how that works for you.

Be inspired, get creative, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!


Easy Knitted Dishcloth in Dreamy Creamsicle

Good day everyone. Thank you for stopping by Leisure Lane. I hope you’re finding creative things to do and letting your imagination soar in positive ways.


Today, I’m sharing a knitted dishcloth that came out of the desire for extra new dishcloths to replace the old-fashioned waffle cotton ones I so dearly liked, but are made in China. I prefer, if possible, not using items made in China that I associate with food products.

I’ve been using dishcloths more lately for cleaning around my kitchen to save on paper towels, and well, because I’m just a vintage kitchen linen girl at heart. Recently, I ordered some from Walmart, but after they arrived, I thought, there must be something I could use to make my own other than the thick traditional cotton yarn used for crocheting and knitting dishcloths.


That’s when I remembered I had extra cotton crochet thread, and went into my stash to discover these delightful cream and peach colors. So, I took out my size 6 knitting needles, used the threads doubled together and began to knit.


I used the pattern for the mini potholders in this previous post. I made an adjustment, however. Because I used a thinner cotton thread/yarn, * I increased the stitches to 47 stitches instead of the 27 stitches in the original mini potholder instructions. That’s the great thing about this pattern – you can adjust the size by the number of stitches you increase onto the needle. The 47 stitches I added when increasing allowed for a 7-inch square dishcloth. If you want a larger cloth, you’ll have to use needles that have an appropriate length to hold more stitches as you increase. The 7-inch size was fine for me. I don’t like a lot of cloth flopping around.

The instructions are as follows:

7-inch Knitted Cotton Dishcloth

Size 6 needles
100% mercerized cotton thread – used for crocheting or knitting doilies. Any brand will do as long as it’s 100% cotton.
darning needle for weaving in ends.

Holding the two threads together, Cast on 3 stitches,
Row 1 – Knit across the 3 stitches.
Row 2 – Knit 2, Yarn Over (YO), knit across.  Knit Row 2 until there are 47 stitches on needle (for approx. 7-inch square dishcloth).

Next Row – (Decrease) Knit 1, Knit 2 together, YO, Knit 2 together, Knit across.
Continue decrease row until you have 5 stitches.
Knit 1, Knit 2 together, Knit 2 together.  3 stitches left.
Next Row – Knit across the 3 stitches.
Bind off 3 stitches.

Notes: If you want the measurement of the dishcloth to be larger, then keep increasing stitches until you reach desired .

IMG_3138Another fun and productive home project, this dishcloth works like a charm and now I can make my own lightweight cloths. I hope you enjoyed this. If you make one, let me know what you think.

Next time, I’ll share a simple healthy and delicious smoothie I made that came out like a soft-serve ice cream. Remember to laugh today – laugh hard and often, be kind to yourself and others, and…

Until next time, may happy days abound!

Author and Artist

*UPDATED CORRECTIONS May 18, 2020: My apologies for unintentionally misleading you on how many stitches to cast on. I originally said to cast on 47 stitches. That’s incorrect. You will originally cast on three (3) stitches and increase a stitch with each row until you reach 47 stitches, where you will then begin to decrease to form a square.

I have corrected the instructions, so you should sail smoothly now. I’m sorry for any frustration this may have caused you. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.







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