Live, Faith and PLAY

Getting back to the basics and reclaiming our community parks

On a warm Saturday in April, we met for the weekly prayer walk in center city Vineland. After the walk we joined another church group at Landis Park and began to play a variety of old time favorite games- It was only a matter of time before you heard joyous shouts of “way to go” and “great catch” start to echo through the park. The smiles on the faces of everyone reminded me of how important PLAY is in creating those special memories- the kind of memories that start off with, “remember the time that you showed me how to play wiffle ball or how to catch a baseball?” Through PLAY, you learn so many important life lessons that no computer game can teach: Honesty-Caring-Respect and Responsibility!

3 John 1:2                                                                                  

Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul.



Living Faith the Healthy Way

The Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation of Harvard Law School advocates for legal,regulatory, and policy reform to improve the health of under served populations with a focus on the needs of low income people living with chronic illnesses and disabilities. The recently published PATHS: Providing Access to Healthy Solutions of March 2014, focuses on Diabetes.

They included a segment regarding Complete Streets and promoted how physical activity is a crucial factor in decreasing obesity and also type 2 diabetes. We are happy that the Complete Streets Policy is in alignment with a national campaign that will help to combat obesity!

The second part of our grant focuses on our faith based champion, Selinette Bordoy, who has done tremendous work with her place of worship, The Living Faith Alliance Church of Vineland. She started her faith-based work by implementing the program “Living Faith the Healthy Way”and broke it down into three separate phases thus far. The current phase is “Living Faith the Healthy Way: The Movement Edition”.

A few of our Living Faith Alliance Church members staying active and enjoying some fun in the sun!

A few of our Living Faith Alliance Church members staying active and enjoying some fun in the sun!

We are enhancing the access to healthy food and physical activity within our parish and community. Instead of consuming sweets and pastries after church, we offer water and healthier snacks. By cooking demonstrations, members are ultimately changing their environment by taking the time to cook from scratch instead of buying prepackaged meals. We encourage and hold prayer walks, bike to church with our children in a bike seat, and move in our class while reviewing learned verses. There is a new found awareness of learning/following Jesus in our food and exercise.

Selinette stated “This program is about following Jesus into every part of our lives. We were taught and now it’s our job to teach others, just like the disciples would”.

Stay tuned to see the next phase of our Living Faith the Healthy Way program! Continue reading

Healthy Muffin Recipe from Vineland

Here was a healthy breakfast option for the LFTHW participants. These muffins were a hit. It’s an easy, tasty option for muffins at a gathering.

First off, I only serve enough for 1 portion. No seconds.

Next, I took what seemed like an already healthy recipe from “Healthy Living” and revamped even more.

I substituted 1/2 of the all-purpose flour with oats that I pulverized in the chopper, making my own oat flour.

I omitted the 1 Tbsp of granulated sugar ( i chose this because the recipe called for jam in the middle)

I did not use the oil that was called for in the recipe.

I also used the Chobani substitution chart provided to the LFTHW class and traded the 1c of Buttermilk with 1/4 of “homemade” sour milk (1/4c of milk with 1Tbsp of lemon juice) and 3/4 cup of Chobani yogurt.

I also chose Cherry Preserves (that’s what I could find at the tme) instead of jam.

Here’s the recipe:

1 1/4 cups whole-wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup buttermilk, (see Tip)
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup blackberry, blueberry, raspberry or cherry jam
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 tablespoon granulated sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat 12 muffin cups with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Whisk eggs and brown sugar in a medium bowl until smooth. Add buttermilk, orange juice, oil and vanilla; whisk to blend. Add to the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula just until moistened.
  4. Scoop half the batter into the prepared pan. Mix jam and almond extract; drop a generous teaspoonful into the center of each muffin. Spoon on the remaining batter, filling each muffin cup completely. Sprinkle with almonds, then sugar.
  5. Bake the muffins until the tops are golden brown and spring back when touched lightly, 15 to 25 minutes. Loosen edges and turn muffins out onto a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

Tips & Notes

  • Tip: You can use buttermilk powder in place of fresh buttermilk. Or make “sour milk”: mix 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar to 1 cup milk.


Per muffin: 229 calories; 8 g fat ( 1 g sat , 4 g mono ); 36 mg cholesterol; 33 g carbohydrates; 6 g protein; 2 g fiber; 182 mg sodium; 77 mg potassium.

Carbohydrate Servings: 2

Exchanges: 2 starch, 1 fat

Learning Physical Activity Skills That Work In Home Environments

0501030831The numbers on the left represent laps. A lap for any person may look different than their neighbors, so I asked each participant to determine what a “lap” is according to their own surroundings and or lifestyle.  A lap could be around the house, around the block, to and from the corner etc. The goal is to empower them to have a say about their life and wellness opportunities, and to minimize the opportunity for complaints about time, money or resources.

The numbers on the bottom represent the specific date. The class met on 4/24 and the first day is 4/25.

Hopefully the visual of the graph will keep them accountable (for those that prefer privacy) or encourage those that like and need to see the progress immediately.

I also told them it would be a good idea to write on the page or in their journal about what it felt like to do the laps, and if they were unable to participate on a particular day, to describe why. If they did not increase the number of laps from the previous day, also provide a reason, whether it was a time crunch or lack of motivation. Most importantly, I just ask them to always be honest with themselves.

Healthy Cookie Recipe from Vineland

Oatmeal/banana/applesauce deliciousness cookie! by Selinette Bordoy

When you have a sweet tooth and want to stay on track, here’s a nice treat. Sugar is NOT an added ingredient.

  • 3 mashed ripe bananas
  • 1/3 cup apple sauce
  • 2 cups oats
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup raisins (optional) *I did opt for the raisins
  • 1tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.

I also showed the participants of the Truth For Living Course called Living Faith The Healthy Way for Body and Soul how to use vegetables already found in recipes as a sweetener instead of sugar. The recipe I chose called for carrots. Carrots as we know have sugar. Not a whole lot but when pureed and cooked they are quite sweet.