Wednesday, April 12, 2017


It's only Wednesday, and the Internet continues to provide a plethora of news stories about the doctor who was physically removed from a United Airline plan after the airline overbooked a flight.  What makes this story even more scandalous is that people recorded law enforcement dragging him down the aisle, complete with a bloody face and glasses askew.

Many questions and speculations continue to be posed about the incident, but what sticks out in my mind after seeing the video is this:  If everyone was so aghast at the man's treatment, how come none of the other passengers volunteered to take his place so he could get home?

(And before I get to the actual point of this post, let me tell you I can think of several reasons why: they were in shock at what they were witnessing, they didn't believe what was happening was any of their business, they were traveling with young children and couldn't afford to take United up on their incentives, this flight was the last thing standing between them and their homes.  There's probably a dozen more reasons to go along with these.)

But after seeing the video (and hearing that horrendous scream) several times, the thought dawned on me:  This is precisely what God did for us. He sent his son to live but more importantly, he sent his son to die for us.

When Jesus was nailed to the cross so many years ago, he volunteered to take my place.  He didn't want to see me (or any other, for that matter) miss our chance to go home.  Only instead of being forcibly removed from the flight, Jesus volunteered.  This action tells us that he valued you and I more than his own comfort, his own divine right, and more than his reputation.  He suffered so I didn't have to.

This weekend will be filled with activity.  Kids hunting Easter Eggs, Easter dinners, and Easter cantatas.  But please don't forget this Sunday will honor the One who was and is the Messiah.  Don't forget that He too bled for we could could make it home.  Don't forget that because of that great sacrifice, we can spend eternity with the One who loved us and created us.  We can spend eternity with Him.  United.


Saturday, March 25, 2017

Playlist for the Week Before Spring Break

This week marks the last five days before that glorious pocket of time known as spring break for my school district.  Here are some tunes (along with YouTube links) to get you through the week:

  • "Reveille" made popular by the Armed Forces.  Just a reminder to be up and at 'em.
  • "Staying Alive" by the Bee Gees.  I'm not a big fan of the Bee Gees unless it's the Fallon/Timberlake sketch on SNL, but this song is so apropos.
  • "Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Berry.  And the best part is you can totally change this to fit your students' names. Not that I've heard, "ROBIN! BE GOOD!" more than a few times. ;)
  • "Let It Go" from Frozen.  Confession: this chorus is sung daily in my room.  It's a reminder that it's okay to not lose your mind over little things.  Unless some one "cuts" you in line.  Then it's World War 3. And the linked version by Jimmy Fallon, The Roots, and Idina Menzel is precious.  And you can watch it with your class. 
  • "Survivor" by Destiny's Child.  
  • "Wide Open Spaces" by the Dixie Chicks.  Because after attending school since August with only 1 snow day, we pretty much each want our own zip code. 
  • "Run the World (Girls)" by Beyonce.  The beat alone is enough to get you going.
  • "For Once in My Life" by Stevie Wonder.  Science has proven it's impossible to be in a bad mood and hear this song.  
  • "I'll Be There".  When your boss asks if you plan on coming in the Friday before the break, just send 'em this song. 
  • "No" by Meghan Trainor.  Because you know it's gonna be every other word you say this week. 
  • "I Want it That Way" by the Backstreet Boys.  For when someone dares ask you why.  (And don't hate on the Backstreet Boys.  You know they're awesome.)
  • "Lord, I Hope This Day is Good" by Don Williams.  Not one wasted syllable.  Not.  One.
  • "Ready to Run" by the Dixie Chicks.  I won't insult your intelligence by explaining it. 
  • "Here You Come Again" by Dolly Parton.  Sing this internally when that one kid is by your side. Again. 
  • "The Waiting" by Tom Petty.  Are there truer words than "the waiting is the hardest part"? Enough said. 
The ultimate hype song for back to school/last week/bad day:

  • "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor.  The first two lines sum up so much, don't they?

And since my name is Robin, this song will be my personal anthem come Friday at 3.  

Hope you have a great week!  And don't let the fun end-if I've left out a song we need to hear this week, let me know it the comments!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Love Lessons From Beauty & the Beast

Youth is wasted on the young.

Like gobs of other Americans, viewing the ads for the new Beauty And The Beast movie caused instant nostalgia.  Which was abruptly cut short when I head the terrible fact that the animated version was more 25 years old.  I know I've put on weight over the years, but realizing I had gained 25 years put me in a tailspin.

So here are some of the love lessons I learned at the tender age of 11.

  • First appearances can be deceiving.  When we first meet Mr. Beast he's ...a beast.  With a major attitude problem. Don't write someone off without learning more of the situation. Give people a chance.
  • Being good looking without compassion can be a serious no-no.  Gaston seems to epitomize the opposite of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.  He is not patient, nor kind.  He is definitely boastful. And proud.  And rude.  And he totally does not rejoice in the truth.  
  • Love involves sacrifice.  Belle took the place of her father in the castle,  And lest we forget, the Beast took one for Belle at the end of the movie.      
  • Love involves being vulnerable.  When the Beast was hurt and Belle was trying to nurse him back to health, he had to expose a physical vulnerability.  When he invited her to dinner he exposed an emotional one.
  • Love involves being aware of your partner's likes and dislikes.  When they are eating, Belle daintily sips on her soup/porridge/chowder as the Beast wolfs it down.  When he realizes Bell is all but aghast at this method, he tries his own spoon.  But that does no good-it's hysterical to watch him try. 
  • Love involves compromise.  After they realized they couldn't eat in the same manner they simultaneously eat soup the same way-by lifting the bowl and drinking from it.  It's the perfect compromise for the two of them.
  • It's okay to try new things.  Remember the two of them in the snow?  And the Beast looking like a telephone poll wire because so many birds were sitting on him?
  • The things you take for granted are the same things someone else is praying for.  Remember that all but abandoned the castle?  Beast had tons of books but no desire to read.  And Belle would read anything she could put her hands on.
  • The Celine Dion/Peabo Bryson version of the song "Beauty and the Beast" is the best.  John Legend killed it on the new version, but their version is priceless.  You could even say "tune as old as time".      
  • Brunettes can rock the color yellow like nobody's business.
  • Take dancing lessons so you can waltz, fox trot, and do all those other kinds of dancing.  You just never know when you're going to be whisked into an immaculate, ornate ball room to dance the night away.  Thanks to the movie, the precedent's been set.   

So, world, here's the advice for the next generation of kids.  You can thank me later.  

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Rocky Road

For a non-living object, the Bible sure talks a lot about rocks.

There's the small, smooth stones with which David armed himself in the battle against Goliath.

There's the rock which Moses struck to produce water to quench the Israelites' thirst on their journey to the promised land.

Jesus knew how cumbersome stones can be.  He saved a woman from being stoned to death.

Jesus even referenced stones and their importance when he told the parable of the wise and foolish builders.  When he gave Simon a new name, he specifically chose the name Peter because it signified how Peter was the rock upon which Christ would build his church.  

And then there's my favorite stone-the one that the angel rolled away to confirm that Jesus Christ is indeed the son of God, that he had been resurrected!  If that stone had not been placed in front of the tomb, people could speculate that someone had merely come and taken away Jesus' body as a cruel, merciless hoax.  But since that stone was not only placed in front of a lifeless body, but sealed, with armed guards around it, that stone becomes even more crucial in relaying the truth of Christ.

I have the You Version Bible app on my tablet and often use their devotionals.  My most recent one is titled "Remembering All God Has Done" and it focuses on just what it says-remembering God's acts.

The first day asked me to read Joshua 4:1-24 and I read it and cannot get the central message of it. The story talks about when the Lord told Joshua to have one man from each of the 12 tribes remove a stone from the Jordan River.  However, these were not just regular stones-they came from the Jordan River the was completely dry as the Israelite priests crossed it.  The Lord flat out told Joshua that these stones would serve as a reminder that the Lord cared.  He cared enough to make sure they had safe passage out of freedom, from bondage to Pharaoh to freedom as God's chosen.  He made a miracle happen.  He didn't want them to forget this occasion so the Israelites had 12 rocks that when their children asked why the rocks were there, it was a way to share that God's undying love and devotion to his people.  The rocks were symbols of God's love, his provision, and his unwavering commitment.

The devotional part asked us to reflect on what God has done for us.  It made me stop and think, "What are the stones that help tell my story?"  What mementos do I have that remind me that God is there, that he cares and provides?

I will readily admit that it took some pondering to think about what those rocks would be.  Then I realized that this is a way I can honor the Lord.  What every day items (like a rock) help remind me that God is there?

How about you?  Are there any rocks in your life that help others understand God's grace in your life? I would love to hear them!  

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

I Can Only Imagine

It's been one of those weeks.  It's only Wednesday, and three people (none of whom could be considered elderly) I know have passed away.  All three of them dealt with serious illnesses, and while they have gone on to be with the King, my heart and spirit still hurt.

I live an hour or so (depending on traffic) from my school.  I stumbled upon a local radio show (102.9 FM if you live in south central Kentucky) and at 6:00 a.m. every morning they play "God Bless America", followed by a scripture reading and daily devotional thought, and a gospel or inspirational song to close.  It's becoming a favorite part of my commute.

This morning they played the Amy Grant version of Mercy Me's "I Can Only Imagine".  As I only knew of only one death, it gave me comfort.  This afternoon, when I became aware of the other two, that song seemed to be on repeat in my heart.  It's continuing to provide some solace.

Once home today, I also re-read one of my favorite Scriptures, Revelations 21:1-4.  This morning the radio was talking about how Jesus has truly gone on to prepare a place for us.  On days like today, that thought gives me comfort.


Monday, July 11, 2016

Summer Reads

I know a lot of you are still on summer vacation. Mine is winding down as a report for my first professional development next Wednesday. So for any of you who still have some time off and are hitting the sand, the lake, or even sitting around the house wanting something relaxing to read, here are some of my favorite summer reads.

When You Look Like Your Passport Photo, It's Time to Go Home by Erma Bombeck. I first read this book in high school and was so entertained by the different vignettes. Back then travel seemed like a distant dream so it was my way to live vicariously through the author. And for the record, Erma is the master of introductions. It wasn't until I was older that I realized she had the best introductions ever.  Seriously.  And it's a humor book so when your travels go awry (like delayed flights, sitting next to obnoxious people on the delayed flight, seeing your 77 year old father walk through the Punta Cana strip mall sans shirt because "I want to get a tan" or same man barging into the Punta Cana airport immigration office, or watching him cut 150 people in the customs line so he can go to the bathroom) it's nice to know you're in good company. 

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling.  I bought this as an impulse buy while waiting for a plane. You have to understand I adore the author and enjoyed realizing that I'm not the only one with those fears.
Why Not Me? Same author, same style writing, and the last chapter is a must read, especially for young girls.  She saves the best for last and helps women understand how to validate and own their successes.  This pic is one I took while on vacay last month.  I waited until the last minute to buy the book for my vacation (don't talk to me about e-books, I know they exist but have a hard time enjoying them as much as a physical book) so it took 4 stores and 2.5 hours in northern Kentucky to actually procure the book.  And it was totally worth it.

When the Game is Over It All Goes Back in the Box by John Ortberg. Love this book because it integrates personal stories, faith, and priorities. Not to mention the allegories to various games. I anticipate my family reunion every year because I love to go and play various board and card games with my cousins.  Every time I read it something new speaks to me and I'm confident it will do the same for you.
If You Want to Walk on Water You've Got to Get Out of the Boat by John Ortberg.  This is by far my favorite beach read. I always feel a little extra something reading this book sitting on the beach. The book is about Peter walking on water out to Jesus. I have carried this book with me on five different trips and always pick up a couple of grains of sand and place them in the book.  Makes me smile when I read it at home.  Read the other chapters, be sure and read chapter 7. As one who does not like to fail, this chapter speaks to me every single time.  This book encourages me in my Christian walk and I highly suggest it to anyone who loves Jesus and wants to grow in their faith. 
How about you? What's your go to books? I'd love to hear!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Search Engine

Unless you work at The WB (what I affectionately call my school because it rolls off your tongue more smoothly than The WWB), you were probably unaware that I went from the classroom to an intervention teacher.

And because it's BOY Time (that's Beginning of Year Time, not romance) myself and others have been assessing.  Which means my professional life at the moment is simply one endless DRA.

I like routine as much as the next person, but after administering this test to about 30 kids, the texts get monotonous.  I'm fairly certain if you asked me to quote a Level A-C DRA book, I can recite it verbatim while standing on my head eating peanut butter.

So last week I'm beginning the assessment like normal when I realize I've lost my pen.  Knowing the test is useless unless I have a writing instrument, I offhand-idly remarked to the 1st grader in front of me, "Hang on a sec-I've lost my mind."


The kid I was assessing loves to help.  Which was probably the reason that after the words left my mouth, the kid decided he was on a mission, so he looked on top of the table.  He looked next to the table and finally he looked under the table trying his hardest to locate my missing brain.

Yes-you read that correctly.

He tried to find my missing brain. UNDER THE TABLE.

Should you need the same service, simply let me know.  Once he's found mine I will send him your way.

Until then, you're on your own.