By Rebecca Taylor
It’s time for another COTA Spotlight, and this time it’s another COTA Original: Barbara Jones. Barbara attended COTA’s very first gathering at Ellis and Cynthia’s home, even before the other COTA Originals came around. Here’s another fun fact about Barbara: she has known Ellis longer than any other COTA member (Cynthia included!) except his parents and sister. She was one of the leaders of his high school church youth group. She has been known and loved by generations of the Brust family.
Where were you born? I was born in St. Louis, Missouri but grew up in Union, Missouri which is located 50 miles west of St. Louis.
Last Book You Read: I would like to give a shout out to a book I just finished. The name of the book is Susannah’s Quest by Joanna Stauffer. It is a true story of a young Mennonite girl in the mid-1800’s, and it is written by one of my dear Mennonite friends from the lake, Joanna Stauffer. It is a true story about the life of a Mennonite girl growing up in a Mennonite community written by an author that is also living in a Mennonite community. I found it fascinating, and to imagine that she does not have a computer or a typewriter. It is a 246 page book.
Favorite KC Restaurant: The Classic Cup on the Plaza.
Coffee or Tea: I love tea and hate coffee.
First Job: My first job was running my own “Play School” in the summers with the enrollment of 10 students. I was in the 8th grade, and I have been teaching every since.
Comfort Food: Any kind of fruit. Right now it is Bing Cherries.
What would you like to tell your 13 year old self? I would tell my 13 year old self to believe in Jesus and follow his ways which will prepare me for the journey of life. I would tell myself that God loves me and will never forsake me. Life can throw us curve balls but God will see us through all of the tough times which we all will encounter. I was 13 when Jesus assured me that my sister and I would be blessed with long and happy marriages, and that really turned out to be true. You can always trust in the Lord. I would teach my 13 year old self Bible verses to hold on to during life, especially Proverbs 3:5.
Dream vacation destination: To go back to Greece and cruise all of the Greek islands.
What have you always wanted to try but never have? I have been very blessed because I have experienced most everything that I really wanted to do. I would like to go on a hunt with the fox and have a wonderful horse to jump. I used to show horses, but my Mother would never let me jump. She was afraid I would get hurt.
Give yourself a COTA Superlative: I have no idea what that would be other than I love going to COTA.
If you could have a meal with one person, dead or alive, who would it be? I would love to have a meal with my Lord Jesus Christ, and I know that some day I will be able to join Bob in heaven to enjoy that meal.
If we could see your desk, would it be messy or organized? My desk is organized chaos.
What TV Show or movie are you embarrassed to admit you like? I really don’t watch anything that I would be embarrassed to admit. I watch all sports programs. Right now it is the US Open Tennis Tournament, HGTV and the Hallmark channel.
Three things people would be surprised to know about you: 1.) I have met four Presidents: Truman, Reagan, Ford, and Nixon. 2.) I have had dinner with my family in the Prime Minister’s home in Paris France, and his son was our exchange student who became my French son. I was able to visit him in Montreal this summer because he and his family just moved there. 3.) The manager of the Chicago Cubs when they won the National league Pennant was my Santa Clause.
Favorite COTA Memory: I have two. 1.) The first gathering we had at the Brust’s when we had our first Communion. 2.) Another wonderful forever memory I have of COTA was the blessed funeral service COTA did for my Bob. I would not have changed a thing. The song “Unchained Melody” sung and played by Justin will never be forgotten, not only by me, but by many others.
Barbara, thank you for letting us spotlight you this week! We think your superlative should be Best COTA Dancer. Here are some of our favorite pictures of Barbara dancing. If these don’t put a smile on your face, nothing will.