Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Catholics, Methodists,and Baptists--Oh My

Rev. Kirby Garner, Rev. Jim Sweet, Rev. Lori Ruge-Jones, Rev. Roy Erdahl, Rev. Jennifer Brooke-Davison, Rev. Nancy Day, Rev. Buddy Johnson .  Photo by David DiCarlo of Sunday Child's Snapshots

Not all communities have spiritual leadership; but Buda, Texas does. This is provided by The Buda Ministerial Alliance who sponsored the Second Annual Thanksgiving worship service at the Santa Cruz Catholic Church on Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2011.

Rev. Jim Sweet who is currently the alliance chairperson and Associate Pastor of Buda United Methodist Church began the alliance with then Sr. Pastor Teresa Welborn about one a half years ago. It has since grown to include twelve pastors from seven different denominations, sponsored a community Thanksgiving service and a monthly service at Arveda Alzheimer’s Family Care facility. The alliance is also available to provide spiritual guidance in the event of community emergency situations like the fire disaster that occurred in Bastrop, Texas earlier this year.

According to Rev. Sweet, the idea of the Thanksgiving service was selected as an opportunity for the community to have an all-inclusive worship service in which the denominational commonalities could be embraced rather than focusing on the denominational differences.

The Living Word Story Tellers
Rebekah Wieting, Brian Neidig, Luisa Ruge-Jones, Luke Ruge-Jones, Eric Mendelman, and Phil Ruge-Jones
Rev. Lori Ruge-Jones tells a story.
More storytelling from Eric Mendelman

Rev. Kirby Garner opened the service with welcoming comments, followed by singing and prayers before The Living Word Lutheran Church presented the message, presenting classic bible stories from six different books of the bible in dramatic storytelling. Rev. Lori Ruge-Jones explained that bible story telling is an important spiritual discipline that proclaims the word of God. They are available to present these stories to other churches as well.

Community choir
Community choir

A twenty-five member choir provided leadership in song and special music. When Rev. Garner discussed the choir at the start of the service, he pointed out that it was comprised of Catholics, Methodists and Baptists when the Choir Director and Pianist said, “Catholics, Methodists and Baptists--Oh My!”. 

Mayor Sarah Mangham attended the service, which was an opportunity for the food banks to collect donations of non-perishable food items from the community,

Participating in the worship service were Buda United Methodist Church, Santa Cruz Catholic Church, First Baptist Church of Buda, The Living Word Lutheran Church, Antioch Community Church, and St. Elizabeth Episcopal Church.

Rev. Jim Sweet

Rev. Sweet indicated that the next meeting of The Buda Ministerial Alliance will be held on January 19, 2012 at 9am in the fellowship hall of the Buda United Methodist Church. All area pastors are invited to attend. 

Rev. Nancy Day

copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins

Monday, November 28, 2011

Laity Lodge-It is Well With My Soul

This is the last of a four part series about the writer's retreat at Laity Lodge. Here are the links for:
 Part 1
 Part 2
 Part 3

View of the beautiful Frio River. Sept. 2011

My first writer’s retreat; I had no idea what activities to expect. I had registered for the nonfiction workshop led by David Dark. Gregory Wolfe led the other nonfiction workshop. Julia Kasdorf led poetry, Andy Gullahorn and Jill Phillips led songwriters and Jeffrey Overstreet led fiction. 

Julia Kasdorf reads

A special presentation occurred each night, along with singing. With the soft voice of Stephen Purcell opening a poetry reading by Julia Kasdorf on the first night, I felt like I was live at a PBS show. I had never attended a poetry reading before.

Singer, songwriter Andy Gullahorn

I loved that worship began each day. If every gathering, every activity in our lives began with worship, wouldn’t life so much more fulfilling and so much more of how God intended it to be? I want the life that God intended for me to have. I found it at Laity Lodge.

Author Jeffrey Overstreet speaks

Jeffrey Overstreet spoke on Friday morning with help from Kermit the Frog. a panel discussion about self-publishing and self-promotion occurred on Friday evening, with the sweeping changes in the publishing industry being one of the highlights of the discussion. Again, I felt like I was on the set of PBS. David Dark spoke that night.

Panel Discussion

Greg Wolfe spoke at the Saturday worship service, giving an address that he gave at a college graduation. That evening was highlighted by a concert by Andy Gullahorn and Jill Phillips who harmonize in both song and their relationship.

Sign marking hiking trail

Circle Bluff sign

Various boats were available for use.

In between all of the workshops and presentations, there were hikes, kayaking, art workshops and an art exhibit. I tried to participate in everything and squeeze out every drop of the experience that I could. However, I have to admit that I did skip the concert to fellowship with some of the other people attending. I got to sit with published authors talking about their publishing experience--priceless!

Gordon Atkinson speaks on the last day.

Andy Gullahorn plays his guitar

Jill Phillips and Andy Gullahorn lead the last song of the weekend: "It is Well With My Soul"

The highlight of the weekend for me was on the last day. At every session in the great hall the chairs were turned away from the river toward the fireplace. This was done so that no one would get distracted by the beauty outside and fail to pay attention to the activity at hand. But on that last morning, the chairs faced the river. Steve Purcell led the worship featuring communion. He gave people time to prepare to share a few words about their experience if they felt so led. I thought, “Well, I won this retreat. I have to speak, if just to say thank you.” At that thought tears began to well up in my eyes. That doesn’t happen often. As we sang, I had tears running down my cheeks realizing that God’s grace had brought me here and he had carried me in the palm of his hand all weekend. I don’t know that I have ever felt this before in my life; not this real. We had the opportunity to share and I led it off, with others sharing that they had been given the opportunity to attend with anonymous donations from others as well.  It was hard for people to hold back their emotions as they spoke. And then, Pat Spreng broke the serious mood, inciting laughter when she volunteered, “Well, I just want everybody to know that I had to pay my own way.” We all cracked up.

The Body and Blood of Christ

After communion, I felt such joy that I was thinking that we should sing a song that is really upbeat. Andy and Jill surprised me with a beautiful rendition of “It is Well With My Soul”. We all sang this together in harmony. Looking over the beautiful river, in the room with so many wonderful souls, I sang with tears running down my face; I realized that it is indeed well with my soul….

Until next year.....

Note: To read the previous article in this series, go here.

Linking up today with L.L. Barkat at Seedlings in Stone and Laura Boggess at The Wellspring
On In Around button

copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins

Stress Relief Idea #16

Pollyanna-Power! For every one thing that goes wrong, there are probably 10 or 50 or 100 blessings. Count 'em!


I want to give a shout out to  my readers from the following countries who have visited this blog in the last week-United States, Australia, Japan, Netherlands, Russia, France India, Germany, Hong Kong, Canada and Romania. Thanks for stopping by and please come back!

copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Punt Bama Punt!

It was the best game in the history of the Iron Bowl: the annual rivalry between Auburn and Alabama. I can say that as an Auburn fan. But the Alabama fans are not so fond of this game.

I was ten years old in 1972 when Auburn was an underdog to number 2 Alabama. Those were the days of Shug Jordan and Paul “Bear” Bryant. Auburn was predictably trailing Alabama 3-16. Then Alabama had a drive that ended in a punt. Auburn blocked it, and turned it into a touchdown.

Then Alabama sputtered on another drive and once again, had to punt. Again, Auburn amazingly, miraculously blocked this punt too. They turned this into another touchdown and Auburn, in the final seconds of the game, defeated the number 2 team in the nation. The trademark phrase became “Punt Bama Punt”.

Alabama exacted their revenge the following year by defeating Auburn 35-0. This prompted the kids in the neighborhood where I lived to paint the numbers 35-0 in the middle of the road between our house and the neighbor's house across the street. They, too were Auburn fans. So, later in the evening, a new group of kids painted over their paint and changed the 35-0 with 17-16 and other various and annoying phrases. Oh, the good times. Let them roll...

I can't write this post without mentioning the stellar year that Auburn had last year. They defeated Alabama  and for the first time in history went on to become the National Champions. (Did I hear someone say 'War Eagle'?)  The score last year was 28-27, with Auburn winning. 2010 was a great year.

Today is the day of the Iron Bowl. Alabama again has a great team, under the leadership of Nick Saban. Again, Alabama is #2. Auburn is the underdog. But Alabama has a field goal kicker who has been somewhat unreliable of late. Can Auburn pull off an upset today?  I hope so. Either way, I will enjoy the game and definitely enjoy the rivalry.

Go Auburn Tigers!

copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins

Friday, November 25, 2011

A Gentle Thunder by Max Lucado

A Gentle Thunder is a beautiful collection of short devotions, and/or stories with a spiritual message presented in a way that only Max Lucado can.

Lucado uses folk stories, true stories, metaphors and scriptures to point the reader to various truths about God, and how he speaks in this confusing, modern day. He is compelling in this menagerie of devotional stories.

Then, he uses the same devices to guide the reader  into a definite answer to the voice of God: the choice. He makes the point that we are to choose. He opens this section up with a folk story about the two sons of a King who were caught in a debate about which is true: Is a man born a gentleman or can he be trained to be a gentleman? The answer, of course, is that he must be born a gentleman. This story is used as a metaphor by Max Lucado to provide the groundwork for the idea of “being born again”, as one must be to inherit the kingdom of God. It further points out our passivity in righteousness; it is only because of grace that we are righteous, not because we earn it, for our true nature is sinful.

He explains the pursuit of God for our love with a story about James Whitaker, a crew member of Eddie Rickenbaker’s B-17 flying machine during World War II. The bomber went down at sea and the crew was forced to float in a raft for a month before they were found and rescued. They had nothing to eat, but one thing that one of the men did was to read scripture in that raft and pray. It was after one of these times of devotionals that a bird landed on the head of Capt. Rickenbaker, who was able to kill this bird and prepare it into a meal that saved the crew from starving to death. The crewmembers were able to use parts of  that bird for bait to catch fish. That became the turning point for Whitaker to change from an agnostic into a believer.

One word after another, one story after another, one scripture after another Lucado, leads the reader along a path of simple, but sometimes poetic descriptions of important truths about God.

I recommend A Gentle Thunder to all readers who can use a book of devotionals that gently explain the beauty and ugliness of life, in which the beauty of Christ wins.


copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Rev. Kimberly Burke

Today, I am honored to feature the last in a series of four guest posts from Rev. Kimberly Burke in which she relates her experiences as a missionary in Uganda, Africa under the umbrella of Tree of Life Ministries. Rev. Burke serves First United Methodist Church in Boerne, Texas as Associate Pastor. I am honored to also call her my friend.

Click on the appropriate link to read Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

In Christ There is No East or West

In Christ there is no East or West,
In Him no South or North;
But one great fellowship of love
Throughout the whole wide earth.

In Him shall true hearts everywhere
Their high communion find;
His service is the golden cord,
Close binding humankind.

Join hands, then, members of the faith,
Whatever your race may be!
Who serves my Father as His child
Is surely kin to me.

In Christ now meet both East and West,
In Him meet North and South;
All Christly souls are one in Him
Throughout the whole wide earth.

John Oxenham 1908

Finally, there is a sense and practice of gratitude and thanksgiving in the East that I have not encountered before. My sisters and brothers in Africa seem to view everything as a great gift in which they give God the glory.  They truly understand that everything they have comes from God.  I witnessed gratitude and honor to God for things that I daily take for granted.  A potato for the day, an unexpected gift, a visit from a friend, a well in a community that brings fresh water, a child given the opportunity to go to school, a pair of shoes, a mosquito net, seeds for planting, a song for singing, a vitamin, the ability to teach and learn, a bible, a church to worship in, friendship and community.  I wonder what you hope for, what you depend on and what you are grateful for.  I wonder how you express that.  I wonder when you have felt so overcome with joy that you set your feet to dancing.

I wanted to cling to the Eastern way of living a Christian life.  I felt like it would slip away if I left this place, returning to my complacency.  Some might ask, don’t you appreciate all that is so plentiful in the West? I certainly do.  Don’t you think there is enough suffering and poverty here to tend to? Yes I do.  I have read thousands of statistics over the years about poverty, death, infant mortality in the third world.  But I must admit I had a deep sense of shame for all the waste in my own life.  I still don’t understand why some live in a mud hut and some live in a mansion with rooms they never use.  Why some starve while others throw away food? Why one country has so much and another so little.  I think God would ask us the same questions.  I no longer have statistics and national geographic images in my head, because I have spied with my little eye.  In the Gospel of John, Andrew and (Cephas) Peter followed Jesus.  Jesus turned to them and asked, “What are you looking for? “ They said, “Where are you staying?”  Jesus said, “Come and See.” (John 1:37-39) I for one learned more about living a true life of grace, dependence, joy, faith and love in the two weeks I spent on the red planet than I have experienced in my entire lifetime.  I pray that I can hold on to it. I pray that I can truly live it.  I pray that I will not forget that we are one planet in various stages of healing.  I am grateful to my sisters in Uganda for being such great missionaries to me.

Special note: Several of our readers have expressed an interest in donating to this ministry or sponsoring a child. To find out more please visit Tree of Life Ministries here

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Iron Bowl-An Alabama Tradition

Thanksgiving is two days away. The Iron Bowl is four days away. While all of the other bloggers write about Thanksgiving, I choose to write about the Iron Bowl-the annual game between Auburn and Alabama; one of the biggest rivalries in college football. 

As someone who was raised in South Alabama, I can attest to the fact that by the age of five years, each resident of the state is required to pledge allegiance to either one or the other: Auburn or Alabama. For most residents of the state, there are no other acceptable choices. 

If you were raised in the Robbins family, as I was, you were required to pull for Auburn; that is, if you wanted to continue to eat, have clothing and shelter. For my childhood best friend, the requirement was to be an Alabama fan, if you wanted to continue to eat, have clothing and shelter. I could look over this, well, except for one day of the year.

Everyone in the state knows the choice of their friends, neighbors and co-workers. For this one week of the year, alliances are drawn upon the lines of loyalty to our team. One might even hang out with someone who isn’t particularly liked during the week building up to this very important game, which decides who has the bragging rights for a full year.

I have a friend from Texas who reports that she moved to Montgomery, Alabama as a teenager. Her father was in the military and was stationed there; he hoped to retire there. On the day that they moved in, there was a knock at the door. They answered, in hopes of receiving a huge welcome to their new neighborhood. Instead, a man stood there and asked them, “Who are you for?”

“What?! Who am I for?” she asked.
“Yes! Football! Which team are you for in college football--Auburn or Alabama?!,” he demanded. 
She got a confused look on her face. She said, “Texas, why?”
Now he was the one with the confused look. “Texas?! You are for Texas?”
“Yeah,” she said. “I am from Texas and we pull for Texas in football.”
“Texas,” he said, still looking confused. “Ok, I’ll uh, see ya’ later.”
And with that last comment, he left. No more discussion. No “Welcome to the neighborhood” ….nothing. She said her dad decided not to retire there. She said that they never really felt like they blended in.

In Alabama, football schedules are consulted in the event of an important decision: weddings, parties, parades. Everyone knows that one doesn’t plan a wedding at the same time as the Iron Bowl. If, for example, someone from out of state didn’t understand and did plan one at that time, he or she would need to line up an out-of-state pastor, because none would be available in-state---not during this game. Also, all of your guests would need to be shipped in from out of state as well.

Funerals were completely out of the question at that time as well. No one would be there. There would be no pastor and no one to dig the grave. If you die around that time, rest assured that the funeral will not occur at the time of the game.

There were a few people who do shop, out of necessity. And, of course, there are the poor employees who are required to work. But, they usually are allowed to listen to the game as they work. A friend of mine from Florida had moved to Alabama for a couple of years. She was reportedly amazed when she went to a mall at the same time that the game was being played. She said that she was shopping and heard the score of the game announced over the loud speaker. She said everyone in the store erupted into one loud cheer. She said it made her jump. She said, “That never happened in Florida. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Now that I have explained the basics, I will tell more about the stunning, exciting history of the game on Thursday. You won’t want to miss it. What could be more interesting?

copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins

Friday, November 18, 2011

Book Giveaway and Author Interview

Book Giveaway

In honor of both National Adoption Awareness Month and Thanksgiving, I am happy to announce a book giveaway. I will be giving one copy of Jennifer Grant’s Love You More to a lucky winner. Love You More is a beautiful chronicle of Jennifer and David Grant’s decision to adopt a child internationally, Mia,  and everything that happened in that process. Then Jennifer discusses Mia's transition into her new family. To read a review of this book go here.

Entering this contest is easy peasy

There are two steps. First, either join this site through Google Followers at the right, or like the Facebook page for Robbinswrites. You can do this on the Facebook link at the right, or go here.

Second, leave a comment at the end of this post expressing a desire to be entered into the contest. To leave a comment, go to the bottom of the post, and click on the phrase "o comments" or "1 comment" or whatever the number of comments is at the time. That is it! Your name will be entered into a drawing to win! 

The drawing will be on Wednesday, November 30 at noon. Then, I will announce the winner.

To kickoff the book giveaway, I have interviewed Jennifer Grant. The interview follows. Happy Thanksgiving!

Jennifer Grant is a journalist with particular interests in parenting, family life, and international health and development. Jennifer writes feature stories on health and parenting for the Chicago Tribune and is a guest blogger for websites including Fullfill, adoption.com, Sojourner's "God's Politics," eatdinner.org, and Patheos. She is also a regular contributor to Christianity Today’s her.meneutics blog for women. Her work has been published on britannica.com and in magazines including Chicago ParentChristianity TodayDraft, and Conscious Choice. For more than a decade, she wrote features, restaurant profiles, and columns for Sun-Times Media newspapers. She is a founding member of Redbud Writers Guild. Her memoir, Love You More: The Divine Surprise of Adopting My Daughter was published in summer 2011 by Thomas Nelson publishers. Jennifer is currently at work on a second book, Momumental: Adventures in the Messy Art of Raising a Family to be published in August 2012 by Worthy Publishing. Jennifer lives with her husband, four children, and a mutt named Shiloh outside of Chicago, Illinois. Find her on Twitter @jennifercgrant and onlineat http://www.jennifergrant.com 

1.  How is life these days at the Grant household?

With four kids, there are countless details and schedules and personality quirks to manage in our household. There are many days when the kids are going in different directions, but we all come together at dinner most nights of the week to check in, hear what is happening in each of our lives, and just take a big breath and be together.

     2. Your book Love You More is a memoir about your family going through the adoption process, with everything that it entails. Mia is the child that you adopted. How old was she when the process started?

She was four or five months old when we began the adoption process. 

3.  How old was she when you finally were able to go and get her?

Mia was 15 months old when her adoption was finalized and we were able to bring her home from Guatemala.

   4. How old were your other three children when you brought Mia home?

Theo was 6, Ian was 4, and Isabel was 3.

5. What are their ages now?

Theo is 15, Ian is 13, Isabel is 11, and Mia is 9.

6. What was the most rewarding part of this process for you and your family?

Adoption has affected our lives in too many ways to name. It’s opened our eyes in new ways to struggles families in resource-poor parts of the world face. It’s opened our lives to other families who have grown by adoption.  But most of all, it brought a vital part of our family home.  

7. What was the most frustrating?

Waiting, second-guessing myself, and not having any control over the process (Would the adoption fall through?  Would she bond with us?  Would everything be all right?) were the most difficult parts of our adoption journey.

8. If you had it to do all over again, knowing what you know now, what would you and your husband do differently in the adoption process?

I can’t speak for David, but I know that I would be easier on myself in the weeks and months after Mia arrived home.  I was so eager to prove to her that I loved her and was a good mother to her. I was overly eager to bring her “up to speed” in terms of language and fitting into our family system.  I also wanted others – our extended family, friends, and community – to accept her and to know that she was always meant to be in our family.  If I had it all to do over, I would slow down and breathe more in those early months and trust that all of this would work itself out in time.

9. You made the decision to pursue adoption at the international level. What was the main reason that you chose international adoption over domestic adoption?

My husband and I had traveled overseas extensively in our work lives before beginning the adoption process and had witnessed street children and other children who did not have families caring for them.  We both had an intuitive sense that ours would be an international adoption.

10. Your describe adoption as a spiritual journey. Can you explain that characterization?

As a Christian – I’m a member of the Episcopal Church – I see my life as a spiritual journey so I look to God for guidance as I make decisions and navigate my life.  Of course, then, I prayed for help and direction when we decided to welcome a child into the family by adoption.  It was also a spiritual journey because my faith grew during the adoption process.

11. Could you see this book being made into a movie?

I’ve not been approached about making the book into a movie, but sure!

12.  If asked about making it into a movie, would you be willing to pursue this?

Yes – I think so.  I love the idea of highlighting and telling the stories of nontraditional families– whether they are families like mine (that are created by adoption and are transracial) or many other kinds of families. 

13. November is National Adoption Awareness Month. What do you think is the biggest issue concerning adoption about which we should all be aware?

There are many children both in the U.S. and abroad who deserve to grow up in the loving embrace of family.  I don’t think everyone is meant to adopt a child, but I do think we all should be mindful of the fact that so many children are vulnerable and in need.  We all have something to offer – from volunteering at a homeless shelter to making financial donations to organizations that support people in need to developing relationships with kids who might need tutors, coaches, or other support people – we all have gifts to share.

14. You have a husband, four children, work and attend church. So, what is your typical day like; or since you wrote this book, is there such thing as a typical day?

A typical weekday for me is very glamorous!  I make breakfasts and pack lunches, get the kids off to school, and then go through the house picking up library books, throwing in loads of laundry, and so on. I then spend most of my kids’ school hours writing and then – like so many parents – the day begins again when they all get home from school.  I oversee homework, make dinner, take them to practices and music lessons.  

      And then, as I said earlier, we all meet up again and take a breath together at dinnertime.

    15. Your bio on your book lists you as a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Do you still write this column since your book was published, or have you had to cut back on some of those activities?

I’m doing less freelance work since my book’s publication and as I write my second book.  I still freelance for the Chicago Tribune as well as for a number of blogs and other publications.  But, yes, I take on far fewer assignments these days

16.  You are a founding member of Redbud Writer’s Guild. Tell about that labor of love.

Redbud Writers Guild is an amazing group of women and writers. I’m so proud to be counted among them. Redbud began with several women in the Chicago area meeting monthly to critique each others’ works-in-progress, encourage each other, and talk about writing and publishing. There are 13 founders of the group, including me, and we continue to meet monthly.

We recently began to accept applications from other writers, all over the U.S., for affiliate membership.  Redbud is growing! All of Redbud’s members encourage each other, offer support to each other, and network with and for each other.  The whole guild meets virtually via Facebook as a community.  We propel one another in our work as we fulfill our mission to “fearlessly expand the feminine voice in our churches, communities 
and cultur

17. You are also working on a new book with a new publisher. Please share the details of this coming book.

The new book – and this is my first interview since I learned the final title – is called “Momumental: Adventures in the Messy Art of Raising a Family.” It is comprised of stories about family life. It’s a lighter book than “Love You More” although it looks at the particular challenges that parents today face as we raise our kids – pediatric anxiety, the influence of technology and media, and other issues. It details the ways that motherhood changes us, makes us more real.

 18.  When is the new book scheduled to hit the shelves?

The new book will be released in August 2012.

19. You have blogged about working in the library with music playing in earphones to block out distracting noises. Is this your typical writing modus operandi?

When I write in public places such as libraries, airports, or coffee shops, I do like to wear earphones.  I’m a curious person and so if people begin to talk around me, I like to listen.  This eavesdropping, of course, keeps me from focusing on what I’m writing. Headphones work for me.

20.  Do you ever get writer’s block? If so, how do you work through this?

I haven’t suffered from that particular problem.  Lately I feel like I have too many pages to write and too little time.  There’s no room for writer’s block!

21.   Do you think that a writer is born or is trained?


22.  Which do you consider yourself? Inspired or driven?

Definitely inspired more than driven.

23. Which do you prefer-Coke or Pepsi? Cats or Dogs? Facebook or Twitter?

These questions are fun – they make me laugh. 
·         Diet Coke with a slice of lemon. (I know – not good for me, I usually try to avoid soda.)
·         I love dogs – we have a wonderful mutt (German Shepherd mix) named Shiloh. 
·         I like Facebook and Twitter equally well.

24.  Do you get tired of adoption questions? Would you ever, just for a day or week, like to be asked about party planning or football?

Party planning – definitely!

Football – no. I’m not much into sports.  In fact last night I was teased by my friend’s husband by forgetting what replays are called. (I referred to them as “flashbacks.”)

But, yes, answering different kinds of questions about family, books, travel, or any of my other interests – is a welcome change.  I love telling the story of Mia’s adoption, but when I look at her, I just see my daughter, not my “adopted” daughter.

25. Do you have a favorite word or trademark phrase?

I often say to my friends, when they are sharing a story about their own moments of weakness or something else that they might feel ashamed about – “No judgment, only love.”  It’s a phrase that makes them laugh but also let’s them know that I’m not sitting in wait to criticize them, but am just listening to them with great affection for who they are.

Thanks Kathy! It’s been fun to chat.

Linking up with Diedre Riggs at Jumping Tandem.

copyright 2011 by Kathy Robbins