“A soul lightened by laughter is better able to process the weightier matters of the heart.” - Nancy Christenson

Nancy Christenson

Storyteller | Seniors & Aging

Nancy Christenson dropped out of university back in the 1970s and went looking for a general education in the variety of jobs that life had to offer. Her richest and most treasured experience came when she took a camp-cook job on Canada’s largest cattle ranch. Her four years there influenced her so profoundly that 20 years later, she wrote a book, Yes, I Really Was a Cowgirl. After the book was released, there was so much demand for her to speak at various functions that she put together an entertainment package of the same name. The presentation “Yes, I Really Was a Cowgirl” is storytelling at its finest.

Nancy’s book, Made in Heaven, Fleshed Out on Earth, and the presentation that has grown out of it, is about the journey of relationships and marriage: specifically, how baggage from the past can sabotage intimacy in marriage. “Made in Heaven, Fleshed Out on Earth” is a faith-based presentation that can be adjusted to suit any age of audience, but Nancy has a special burden for teens and young adults.

Her third topic, “Health Gone Haywire,” has evolved out of Nancy’s personal health struggles. She is not a credentialed nutritional or medical professional, but her challenges in this area―and her victories—have given her tremendous motivation, first, for research, and second, for sharing the things she’s learned: knowledge that has dramatically turned her health around.

Nancy is passionate about helping others through speaking. Her strong family relationships, her life experience, and her understanding of health issues have led her on a path to enrich other lives in any way she can. Interesting, entertaining, and interactive, Nancy changes things up with a song or a poem here and there and gives opportunity for questions and answers after each presentation.

Topic Presentations

Nancy Christenson loved her experience as a camp-cook and cowgirl on the Douglas Lake Ranch, and this shines through clearly to audiences as she sweeps them up into a panorama of adventure and cowboy tradition.

Author, songwriter, and poet, Nancy’s real gift is storytelling, whatever the medium she chooses. Her transparency draws her audience in, and her songs and poems will elicit both laughter and tears. While she loves to entertain, she also likes to build deeper messages out of her experiences. Her stories have many applications and she will tailor her presentation to meet the needs of any group.

She draws her audience in to the comedy, tragedy, and whimsical moments of everyday ranch life. What is a day like in the life of a cow-camp cook? How did the mouse end up in the soup? How did she manage to make brownies containing diesel fuel instead of cooking oil? Why did the cowboys find maggots in their coffee one sleepy morning?

What’s it like to join the cowboys on their working day, roping calves beside the branding fire in the spring―or driving four thousand cows and calves all day horseback in late November, with the mercury sitting at -30ºC, when the wind stings cold on your leather chaps and the cowboys have icicles hanging from their moustaches. “Yes, I Really Was a Cowgirl” will take you there.

There’s something about Nancy’s presentation that soothes the city-worn soul and fosters a love and appreciation for the rural roots of our great nation. It was a tradition that, as she lived it, had scarcely changed in a hundred years; a lifestyle now fast disappearing; a rich heritage that this former cowgirl had the unspeakable privilege to breathe, touch, feel, and experience.

“Yes, I Really Was a Cowgirl” is storytelling at its finest—a genuine taste of western Canada.

God has a beautiful blueprint for relationships, marriage, and sex—a plan “Made in Heaven.” We, however, have to walk it out on earth, too often subject to the whims and weaknesses of our flesh. With the utmost of candour and transparency, Nancy Christenson offers hope, humour, and help, as these delicate issues are “Fleshed Out on Earth.”

Nancy has a deep desire to help others experience God’s full potential for romantic love:

For teens and single adults, she gives a challenge―to take the higher road, to abstain from sexual involvement, to believe that God’s design is always for our blessing. For those who have already strayed a little or a lot, she offers encouragement―to lay hold of God’s complete forgiveness and restoration, and to find the true purity that only He can impute.

For those who are married and struggling in the area of intimacy, she points to faith―to believe for God’s healing and freedom.

And for those of any age who carry niggling or crippling regrets, in her presentation “Made in Heaven, Fleshed Out on Earth,” Nancy gives instruction―in taking God at His Word and learning to live in freedom, joy, and peace.

As we move into our fifties and beyond, health challenges can take more and more of our time, energy, money, and vitality. We come to realize that our health is going to greatly impact the quality of our life from here on in. Whether we are 50 or 70, there are simple, basic principles we can embrace, habits we can form, and basic nutrients we can take that will improve our health and energy and give us a new lease on life.

Nancy Christenson is not a credentialed nutritional or medical professional. She is a writer and musician by trade, but her personal health struggles―and victories―have given her tremendous passion, first, for research, and second, to share the things she’s learned: things that have dramatically turned her life around.

Accept the challenge to take more responsibility for your own health. Question whether you really need to be on those medications for the rest of your life. Take a second look at salt―unrefined salt, that is―in a more positive light and hear about its many benefits. Find out how to turn the tide on anxiety and the “thyroidism” epidemic―and also help safeguard against breast disease. Hear some straight talk about menopause, the “whys” of its sometimes-overwhelming effects, and the “hows” of getting back to feeling normal again. Discover how simple breathing exercises can alleviate debilitating stress. Consider a simple, basic nutrition program and a reasonable, age- and health-appropriate exercise regimen. Try some simple facial exercises that can give you a natural “facelift.” Be reminded of the importance of rest, relaxation, and laughter.

Interesting, entertaining, and interactive, Nancy changes things up with a song or a poem here and there and gives opportunity for questions and answers. To those who see her presentation, she also makes her notes and articles available online.

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Edmonton, Alberta

Yes, I Really Was a Cowgirl

In September of 1975, a self-described hippie went to work as a camp cook at Douglas Lake Cattle Company in the BC interior. Little did she know that what started as a short-term diversion following a summer of disenchantment would not only transform her into a cowgirl but change her life forever. Douglas Lake, the largest ranch in Canada, offered up a host of wonderful characters and a landscape that could sooth a restless soul. For a young woman floundering amid the confused values of the 70s, it was a place for healing, for introspection, and for song writing. It was a place where she would come to know a God Who would give her a frame of reference where she could hang her hat. From spring branding through to fall round-up, the author spent four years swept up in a panorama of adventures and cowboy tradition. It was a tradition that had scarcely changed in a hundred years, a lifestyle now fast disappearing, a heritage of which this retired cowgirl now says it was an unspeakable privilege to be a part.

Made in Heaven - Fleshed Out On Earth

God’s design for love and sex is a beautiful plan Made in Heaven. The tough part is that it has to be Fleshed Out on Earth, too often subject to the whims and weaknesses of our human nature. For the single Christian, it’s really hard to avoid sexual involvement. And then sometimes, surprisingly, it may also be difficult to enter in to free, uninhibited sex after the wedding. Nancy Christenson’s book chronicles one girl’s struggle to embrace God’s best, on both sides of the vows. When as a new bride, she shuts down in the bedroom, she and her husband Greg hang their hope on the faithfulness of God, believing that He will ultimately bring them heaven on earth. Indeed, He does, in the eleventh year of their marriage, sovereignly bringing enduring wholeness and freedom into their love life. For singles who have strayed a little or a lot, here is encouragement; for couples who are struggling in the area of intimacy, here is faith and hope.

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