Tag Archive | Writing

Creating that Long-Lasting Relationship

“What does it take to create an enduring, long-lasting  relationship?” That question was asked of me several times during our recent 50th anniversary cruise.

So what was my answer? “That’s an easy one,” I replied.

Having God as the center of any marriage for one. No one can sustain a perfect relationship without a strong anchor. For the marital-bliss-winds can shift direction at any time and chaos, tribulations and uncertainty follow.  No one can sustain happiness forever for that depends on emotional up and down days; but if God is your anchor, you’ll find true JOY and remain grounded.

Communication ranks right up there as well. Spouses aren’t mind-readers! When one asks, “What’s wrong?” and the other sarcastically replies nothing,” how is that helping? Don’t stubbornly resist, talk it over. Don’t let one’s hard-headedness dictate what Satan gleefully desires.

God created the first marriage and Satan promptly went about messing things up. Not only did they not communicate, they failed to seek God’s Will: His Word! Whenever a couple is uncertain, asking, “What should we do about . . . (whatever) ?” Don’t make decisions harder than they should be. You’ll find the answer anchored in Scripture and that should end the discussion.

Laughter! The devil hates to hear Christians joyful and God loves it! Life is too short to not enjoy it! Don’t settle for second best and don’t sweat the small stuff. Enjoy each other’s company, marry your best friend and seek to be a team even after you have children. (I’ve seen so many marriages break up because one loves their children more than their spouse.)

No matter how busy you are, spend as much time together as you can. In my book “Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese!” I wrote about marriage being a three-ring-circus. A circus has one large ring in-between two smaller rings. The large representing together time. Sometimes, for a number of reasons, those rings get lopsided . Too many spouses lose themselves in the other’s relationship, giving up their interests for the sake of the other. What happens then? They become boring. Never lose your identity – it’s what made you unique and why they fell in love with you in the first place.

Don’t become stagnant. Continually grow and change. You’ll never get bored with each other. I’ve been very fortunate to have two and my husband three diverse careers. We’ve moved twenty times in our lives as well as lived in a motorhome fulltime for six years, traveling around the States. We’ve met wonderful people and seen sites many only dream about. Our life’s been blessed!

“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.”  (Ephesians 4:2-3)

Has any reader picked up on the fact that the same attributes which create a successful marriage, contribute to a close relationship with our Lord?

What is your relationship to Christ? Cultivate a beneficial and meaningful relationship with Jesus in the same way:

Communicate: the more you read your Bible, the more you’ll understand how to please him and the closer you’ll get to a stronger, richer relationship.

Use your Spiritual Gifts, don’t allow them to become stagnant. Make your relationship with Christ your largest center ring. Grow and Blossom together. Those gifts can help others in need, but one must practice them.

Become JOYFUL. Even amidst trials and hardships, consider how God has blessed you. Praise Him for the home He’s provided, family you have, for the food on your table and the friendships you enjoy.

Love Richly!

My Book Launch: “Casey’s Journey”

Casey's Story Cover photo for CanvaEvery author who devotes their entire heart and soul to writing realizes how exciting it is to see a finished work come to life. For me writing will always be a labor of love. Therefore I am pleased to announce that my sequel to Sometimes Marriage is a Real Crime, entitled Casey’s Journey, has debuted.

Isn’t writing a novel similar to birthing a child? At first you’re excited about the prospect, happily announcing it to relatives and friends, then a little nervous wondering if you’ll even be good at parenting (or in this case, writing.)

As you discover your characters coming to life amidst an emerging plot, you can’t wait to see what the finished project will look like! But along the way, perhaps constantly editing, you’re wondering why you ever thought it’d be a good idea and simply want it over with! Did I really think I’d be the next Harper Lee, Sidney Sheldon or Jodi Picoult? (Come on, I’m sure all writers felt the same at one point.)

Casey’s Journey is classified as Women’s Fiction, Christian Fiction, YA and is a perfect beach read! It’s a coming of age, nostalgic story, partly based in Europe, mostly based in the low country of the Carolinas. As in the first novel, this one has a built-in sequel, so while reading, look for hidden clues. I hope you’ll enjoy and publicize it. I’d love to hear from you if you do.  In appreciation, Ellie

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Why does God allow bad things to happen to the innocent? The second novel in the Katherine LeVay series, follows not only Katherine’s life after the death of her philandering husband, but answers the question as to what happened to her abducted child.

When Richard and Katherine LeVay Madison’s five-year-old daughter is kidnapped in New York City on a family outing, we discover that even the evil events in our life can be molded into beauty if God is the Potter.

Katherine’s resentment toward her husband’s indiscretion is but one of several events which ultimately leads to the downfall of her marriage. Years of living with the hopelessness that her daughter will never be found, Katherine leaves the States for a new life in picturesque Sorrento, Italy. But even her flourishing Bed & Breakfast set in a renovated Renaissance Inn won’t quell her heartache and longing to discover what really happened to her beloved daughter.

Casey is told her parents, aunt and uncle are dead and she must remain at the “orphanage” until someone adopts her. A year and a half later the child feels unloved, unwanted and rebellious. There is one couple however who sees the child’s potential and brings her into their gypsy military lifestyle. As we follow Casey’s journey through the twists and turns of life into adulthood, she sees how those who now love and protect her format her thoughts and dreams for a more promising future.

Stationed in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, golf comes calling and Casey exhibits many of her birth parents athletic characteristics. She discovers a talent and a competitive atmosphere she thrives in. That is until a family tragedy occurs, challenging her beliefs and enticing her into a scandalous situation. If it’s true that tribulation builds character, then Casey has an abundance of it.

Throughout the novel we question which shapes us more, our heritage or environment? Will Casey discover the truth regarding her past and is it possible that God meant all these tribulations for good?

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; think about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths.”  (Proverbs 3:5,6)

Now available on Amazon Kindle:

Casey’s Journey available for $2.99

Sometimes Marriage is a Real Crime reduced to 99 cents.

 

Book Tour Through Blogland

tour-through-blogland[1]Congratulations to Mary A. Perez on the release of her new novel, Running in Heels, debuting  February 23rd!

Running in Heels is her personalized coming-of-age story of a Puerto Rican girl seeking love and security. Living with her difficult mother, then married to an abusive man twice her age, she overcomes insurmountable obstacles as faith and hope never fail! It’s an intriguing premise and I urge you to check it out at  http://maryaperez.com/

It is my honor and I thank Mary, for asking me to participate in her Tour Through Blogland.

Describing My Creative Process:

1.  What are you currently working on/writing?

My current book, “Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese” (Nutritional and Life Lessons God Teaches Us) has recently been released and I am now in the midst of publicizing it. It provides light-hearted yet convicting insight regarding our mental, physical and spiritual connection to food. Physiology: Why do I crave certain foods and why willpower alone won’t overcome it. Practical Application: God does not want us to suffer through some crazy diet plan. That’s why He placed Adam in a Garden; every nutrient we need to sustain life can be found there! Nevertheless, humans needlessly create their own crazy formulas which only destroy while Satan laughs. Spirituality: Why, when we know we want to follow God’s Will, do we self-destruct anyway? 9781478731818_cov.ai

2.  How is what you write different from others of the same genre?

“Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese . . .” is not another diet book. It’s a Biblical philosophy meant to motivate and generate godly action. Using personal education through practical Biblical applications, one discovers how the past and present influences our response to food today.

3.  Why do you write what you do?

My main purpose is to motivate others to be the best example of a disciplined Christian. That is my ministry. We are commanded by God to “Be holy because I am Holy.” (1 Peter 1:16) but many fail to do so.

As a certified nutritional counselor, I realize almost every “dieter” knows what to do but doesn’t. James 2:19 states that even the demons believe in God, but fail to do what He says. Head knowledge without heart knowledge is dead. Real change occurs from within. “As a man thinketh within himself, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7) How can our mind, body and spirit control our beliefs? Through sensible solutions, the reader discovers how.

4.  What is your creative process?

I find creativity everywhere! There is a correlation between nutrition and spirituality all around us. I find inspiration not only in the Bible but as I walk my dog, drive, listen to sermons and what I read. My only challenge is remembering to transfer these to paper before they are lost in the vapors of my mind. When the muse hits however, I can write for eight hours nonstop. When one loves what they do, it’s a joy! Find yours!

Thank you again Mary, for inviting me along for the journey!

The rules regarding this project are easy:

  • Pass the tour on to another blogger (up to 4 others.)
  • Give them the rules and a specific Monday to post. (March 9th or 16th)
  • Answer those 4 questions about your creative process. (Allowing other bloggers and visitors to know what inspires you.)

Now, as Mary showcased me on her Tour, I have the pleasure of introducing you to another fantastic writer, who has also become a dear friend.  She has is one of my favorite authors, Carol Balawyder!

 

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Carol Balawyder has a wonderful talent for composing and defining distinct characters with whom all women can relate. She does this in her newest endeavor: Getting to Mr. Right. Each character is so richly written that you wonder if any could be your neighbor, co-worker, relative or friend? The novel emphasizes how important trust and support among women really is! Since you’ll find her protagonists gettingtomrright_kindle_small15[1]in her other novels as well,  reading her prequel is like revisiting dear friends from the past.

artistic-rendering-2[1]Carol herself, has certainly led a diverse, Walter Mitty lifestyle. Whether it was educating challenging kindergarteners, teaching poetry or English as a second language, researching at the British Museum, pursuing Applied Linguistics at Concordia University in Montreal or writing English as a Second Language manuals or freelance writing, this lady has done it all!  No wonder she writes so well; she has so many life experiences to choose from! It also confirms why her characters are so well-rounded.

Please check out Carol’s blog for yourself at http://carolbalawyder.com/   Her books are available on Amazon.com.

 

 

 

Please feel free to choose one of these pretty Tour Through Blogland Photos!

Tour Through Blogland 2 tourthroughblogland   blogland

 

 

 

 

 


Crazy or Sensible? Debating the Atkins Diet Plan

I was at a pancake breakfast fundraiser one morning, when a sweet young lady looked at what I was consuming and commented, “Wow, I never touch orange juice, that stuff is pure poison!” as she placed a fourth strip of bacon into her mouth.  Sure enough she was on the Atkins Diet. Let’s see, I was drinking something that was filled with vitamin  C, potassium, magnesium, folate, B6, calcium, vitamin A, niacin and iron.  She was eating a food that contained preservatives, nitrates and cholesterol laden saturated fat. We all have a choice – You make the call.

I Timothy 4:7,8 ” Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”

thB7VM6I7KThe basic principle behind the Atkins Diet is nothing new, it was proposed in 1863 by a London undertaker. Ironic to say the least. The Atkins Diet is not how God created us to eat.  In the Garden of Eden He advised Adam to consume every seed bearing fruit, plant and tree for food. (Genesis 1:29) The last time I checked, an orange was from a seed bearing tree. Fruits, (carbohydrates) are not allowed on Atkins. But when God speaks, I listen.

I’m amazed at how many people follow this diet! I know it can work for some people because we all have a different chemical make-up, but here is a list of physiological reasons why, as a nutritionist, I’d personally never recommend this diet plan:

  • There’s a higher risk of high cholesterol and kidney stones.
  • When your body is unable to burn glucose it turns to burning fat, which produces a body chemical called ketones. As Ketones rise, uric acid increases, as does gout possibilities.
  • Toxins fester in the fat cells due to chemicals and hormones being released in a higher body-fat environment, changing your personality for the worse.
  • The body doesn’t receive enough diverse vitamins or minerals, but does receive too much iron.
  • Too many fat soluble vitamins, (A,D, E, K and selenium) are released, which are toxic in large doses.
  • Abnormal heart rhythms rise due to a forced excretion of potassium & sodium while not retaining enough magnesium.
  • Without the high fiber intake from whole grains, cholesterol levels rise, as does a risk of colon cancer, when all waste isn’t excreted from the body.
  • This diet produces a ph on the acidic side. Cancers thrive in an acidic environment. Want to roll the dice?
  • Processed meat contains enormous amounts of nitrates, fats, dyes and salt, increasing cancer risk.
  • It works due to water loss. Carbohydrates are the nutrients that hold water in the body and the dieter’s not consuming carbs.  When they’ve gone back to eating carbs after they’ve quit the Atkins Diet, water is retained, therefore making one believe carbs are the problem.

Dr. Atkins called his idea a “Diet Revolution“.  Who and what was he rebelling against . . .  God’s perfect design to eat fruits, vegetables and whole grains??? The Atkins Diet excludes fruits and starchy vegetables which God ordained for us to eat in the Garden of Eden.

As a Christian, I’d rather not rebel against my LORD, would you?  “You say, “I am allowed to do anything”–but not everything is good for you. You say, “I am allowed to do anything”–but not everything is beneficial.” (1 Corinthians 10:23) 

It’s your choice. Choose to honor God by eating healthier.

(an excerpt from my book)9781478731818_cov.ai

“A Christmas Offer to All and To All A Good Read . . .”

Sometimes marriage is a real crime photo“The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” (Jeremiah 17:9)

Just in time for Christmas I have reduced my Kindle e-book, Sometimes Marriage is a Real Crime, to 99 cents on Amazon.com.  It will only be available at this price until the New Year. I admit I am no Margaret Mitchell – but it was a blast to write!

Sometimes Marriage is a Real Crime is a memorable novel conveying how all our beliefs, traditions and tragedies occurring while we are young, transform us into the people we ultimately become.

Smart, spunky, tomboyish Katie LeVay is a seven-year old “Daddy’s girl” thriving in a typical 1950s family environment; until life becomes complicated after her father abandons the family. Divorce is rare in the early ’60s, but small town gossip is not. Comfort foods might be Kate’s antidote . . . but curiosity her downfall.

Beginning in nostalgic 1957, we pursue seven-year old Kate’s coming of age saga through her complicated childhood, complex marriage and aspiring public relations career. Life would finally be perfect if only her womanizing husband would change his deceiving ways. He doesn’t and Kate has just discovered the perfect untraceable crime. Layered with plot twists and humor, find out if Kate Madison will prevail.

Although not Christian fiction, it sets the stage for the sequel which is. This novel addresses what causes us to act as we do and how easily we can be drawn to the psychological edge of despair.

The idea for this novel began when a former patient of mine intrigued me by a conversation we had. We had just begun our counseling session and I was glancing over her food diary. (I had all new patients keep a journal for the first two weeks, so together we could recognize patterns of behavior.)

I noticed something amiss.  I asked her why she had prepared a certain dish that week?

“Well Ellie, I had to! It is my husband’s favorite,” she replied.

“But Ethel,” I responded, “don’t you realize that you are killing him with kindness?”

Hmmm. A thought-provoking idea evolved. Wouldn’t this be the perfect untraceable crime? I wondered how the authorities could ever trace this back to an unhappy wife? Therefore the plot concept of Sometimes Marriage is a Real Crime emerged and grew into a novel, five years in the making.  (Why so long you ask? Because I was afraid if anything happened to handsome hubby, I’d be in trouble!)

If you believe we never really outgrow our childhood and we are responsible for our own actions, I believe this novel will intrigue you. It’s basically a combination of chick-lit and psychological fiction.  There are two versions, both the same – download whichever you wish, but the one for 99 cents is available only until New Year’s as a Christmas present from me. I hope you’ll be entertained it if you do.

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”  (Proverbs 4:23)

 

 

Coming Soon To A Bookstore Near You!

Those of you who have been published, know it’s always so exciting to see your years of hard work going into its final production stage! I’ve been assured that it won’t be long before mine will be available. As much as I enjoy my Kindle (and this will be available as an e-book too) there is nothing like touching the pages of an actual book, agree?!

The title of my book refers to an expression I proclaimed to many a patient while practicing nutritional counseling for over twenty years: Don’t settle for second best!

This is not meant to be just another diet book; it is meant to be a positive philosophy on how to honor God with our earthly bodies by choosing wisely.

“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.”  (1 Corinthians 6: 19-20)

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“Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese” (Nutritional & Life Lessons God Teaches Us) addresses how God never meant for us to live on complicated, fallacy-laden, restrictive diet plans which clearly reject our Maker’s fundamental psychological, physiological and spiritual truths.  God set Adam in a Garden and provided the perfect Master Plan for health.  Today however, people needlessly consume “sticks and twigs,” processed packaged foods, drink tasteless protein shakes or restrict their diet needlessly. Why?

God has already given us the perfect dietary plan in Genesis 1:29 and 9:3. Healthy living is not about denying oneself chocolate, cheese, eggs or any other food while consuming only rice cakes and celery. There is no need to suffer through some restrictive, unappetizing diet plan in the quest to obtain health. If one concentrates on nutrients, they will naturally be healthier. Since most already know that, why do we do what we don’t want to do? (to paraphrase the Apostle Paul.) We would never think of throwing trash in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, so why do we trash our own temple of the Holy Spirit with so many unhealthy foods? 

“Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese” is filled with useful illustrations, realistic applications and common sense! I pray that this encouraging and intriguing non-fiction work will encourage you to tackle the many mental, physical and spiritual connections to food which challenge you. Discover your true vitality through sensible eating, honoring God in the process!

“Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for God’s glory.” (1 Corinthians 10:31)