Happy weekend! I don’t always post on the weekends, but occasionally I like to get on here on a Saturday with some inner beauty inspiration or just a chat over coffee. So pour yourself something good to sip and make yourself comfortable. Readers have sent in questions over the past couple of weeks, so I thought I’d spill the beans about a few of the more personal queries today.
I’m a wordy writer and I’m comfortable in front of the camera or on the platform. But that doesn’t mean I really relish talking about myself. If we were actually sitting together over coffee or tea, I’d press in and ask you all the questions. Then I’d sit back and listen. That’s why you can know for sure that, while I don’t always respond to every comment here on the blog or at YouTube, I absolutely do read and savor them. I absolutely love getting to know my readers and viewers. As far as I’m concerned, this website is really all about you, not me.
But the questions have come in…and they have my name on them. So let’s get started. Then feel free to chime in on the conversation in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you today, too.
Q – Could you tell us more about your husband – how you met, how long you’ve been married, what he does?
You bet! James and I met when we were both at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. I had been called into fulltime ministry to women, but at that time seminaries didn’t offer any kind of degree for women’s ministry. So I was pursuing a master of religious education degree, whereas James was working on his master of divinity degree to be a pastor.
James spotted me in a missiology class we had together. There were probably 40-50 men in that class and three women, so it was easy for him to see me on the front row from where he sat in the back. But I didn’t notice him.
During that semester some mutual friends invited us to a home Bible study, where we officially met. We linked up again at a church we were both visiting and started dating a few weeks later. About ten months later, in January of 1988, we were married. Ha! Truth is I purchased a Bride’s magazine the Monday after our first date on a Saturday. That’s how quickly I knew he was the one.
James has been pastoring full time since 1990. He pastored a church in Georgia, two in Texas, two in Arizona and now in Ohio. He’s the senior pastor at Mt. Carmel Baptist Church in Cincinnati, and you can hear his sermons on our YouTube channel if you’d like. He is an excellent expositor of the Bible, usually preaching verse by verse through books of the Bible. But tomorrow he’s wrapping up a mini-series on heaven.
Of course James is also my photographer and videographer. He puts a lot of time into learning and perfecting these crafts. He’s very proud of the community I’ve built here, what I’m doing and how it’s growing. And we absolutely love working on this together.
Q – What pleasantly surprises you? For me, it’s daffodils waving on the breeze and the mystery of spring returning each year, in spite of a dark and harsh winter.
I absolutely thrill at spotting either a red cardinal or a true blue bird (not a blue jay). But on almost a daily basis I am pleasantly surprised at the sweet emails I receive from Dressed for My Day readers and viewers telling me that this site is making such an impact in their lives. At least weekly someone writes to say they are feeling more confident, more pulled together and more attractive. Others tell me they are being encouraged by the Blessed for My Day portion of the blog posts. One woman told me she bought her first Bible and began reading it. I never imagined my blog having this kind of profound impact on women, so I’m pleasantly surprised that it does. And I’m oh so grateful.
Q – I’d like to know more about your kids. Do you have grandkids yet? Where did your children go to college and where do they live now?
James and I have two grown children and a daughter-in-law. Daniel is 30, has degrees in math and computer science from the University of Arizona, works from home as a software engineer for a major tech corporation and loves to play games, both board games and computer games. He is married to Stephanie who is a pediatrician, and they live less than two hours away from us in Columbus. They got to Ohio first. Stephanie, who attended high school and college with Daniel (they were both National Merit Scholars), went to med school at Ohio State.
Our daughter Abigail is 27, has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in theatre performance from the University of Arizona and a masters in Psychology from Grand Canyon University, and lives in Atlanta. She currently works at Madewell as an assistant manager in charge of events. Abby absolutely loves her church, spends a lot of time discipling young women, travels all over the country by herself and speaks at youth conferences.
We love spending time with our kids, but haven’t seen Daniel and Stephanie since summer due to the pandemic. She went to work as a pediatrician this summer, so they have been very careful about staying away from people as much as possible. Abigail actually spent the first few months of the pandemic with us since she was furloughed during that time. And she visited us again just after Christmas.
Q – I would like to know what work you do. Do you have another job? Are you retired from a former job?
I have a degree in public relations from the University of Georgia, but once our kids were born I stayed home. When they got to be in middle school and elementary school I began substitute teaching and started writing for magazines. Later, when Abby was in high school, I started writing Bible studies and speaking at women’s events throughout the country, as well as in Canada and Okinawa, Japan. You can learn more about my books and speaking ministry at my other website, KayHarms.com. Also my books are available on Amazon.
But now I am a fulltime blogger and YouTuber. Yes, this is absolutely a full time job. In fact, I probably work 50+ hours most weeks. And very little of it is glamorous. As soon as we are situated in our new home, I hope to do a blog post sharing more about the behind the scenes work of blogging and YouTubing. Would that interest you? In fact, maybe I’ll make those two separate posts.
Q – Where do you live? Why did you move? How many places have you lived and how have you adapated to not living in the South? Why are you buying a new house?
We have lived in Cincinnati about a year and a half now. We moved here from Arizona when James was called to pastor Mount Carmel Baptist Church. While I absolutely love Georgia (I grew up in Cobb County, near Marietta, just outside of Atlanta), I have never regretted living in other places as well. Our family loved living in La Marque and Mabank, Texas, and in Sierra Vista, Arizona. We have met amazing people and made wonderful friends everywhere we’ve lived.
For the past year and a half we’ve been renting a very small house in Cincinnati. It took us about six months to sell our home in Arizona, and we’ve needed a little time to recuperate from the financial loss we incurred from the sale of our house during a dip in the market. But now we’re excited to be able to buy a home that we can make our own. We have big plans, including creating a studio in the finished basement, furnishing offices for both of us and having at least one nice guestroom for our kids to use when they visit…frequently!
I’m very excited to be able to do more photos from within our home when we move. We do currently video in our rental house, but we have to move all the furniture in our family room. It’s quite the ordeal. And I anticipate doing more lifestyle type blog posts once we have furnished and decorated our new home.
Well ladies, I think we’ll stop there for today. I’m still writing this post on Saturday morning and I’m eager to publish and get on with the day. So maybe I’ll do one of these each month so I can answer more of the questions I received. I really just got to a small percentage of the ones you sent. So if I didn’t answer yours yet, stay with me. I’ll get to it soon!
Now I’d love to hear from you. If you’d like for me to clarify something I shared, let me know. Otherwise I’d like to hear about where you are reading from. Tell me where you live and maybe answer one of the other questions I answered today, too. You could either tell us what kind of work you do or did, about your kids or what pleasantly surprises you. Do share!
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Blessed for My Day
Talk is cheap, so they say. Honestly, words of affirmation are one of my love languages. So I love to hear kind, uplifting and encouraging words from someone who professes to love and/or care for me. But if those words aren’t backed up by gracious actions, they do ring hollow after a while.
Today let’s think about how we can show someone in our lives that we love them. We can still speak those affirming words, of course. But let’s think of creative and meaningful ways we can demonstrate the commitment and love behind those words with gracious actions.
Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. ~ 1 John 3:18