Building an online community for Riviera Church

With a “new normal” forced upon us in this pandemic year, we’ve adapted our offerings to include a lot more video and interaction design than ever before. Zoom, YouTube and Webinars are part of everyone’s life who had probably sworn they’d never use their crummy webcam.
In March when Riviera Church closed its in-person weekly services in response to the Covid-19 virus, I recorded a few weeks of video with the worship team and edited it into a half-hour Youtube program followed by a half hour Zoom that could only be described as a group hug. It’s now November and I’m approaching episode 40 of season 1.
Nobody really wants to see Season 2 – so the church is adapting yet again by investing in new video gear. 

Our Kazakh Adoption Resources


Unfortunately they have stopped doing adoption work in Kazakhstan, but we endorse the Maine-based non-profit agency MAPS Adoption and their fine Kazakhstan team including Libby Walch. They guided us through each step, provided timely advice and processed our files as quickly as we could have hoped for. Amazingly they helped us know all the costs in advance. We also thank our fantastic local social worker Efrat Horwitz for making the many required evaluation reports.

Kazakhstan Adoption Resources:

Kazapalooza 2009:


Kaz Tourism
Music: The Magic of Nomads

Kostanay (Qostanay, Kostanai)

Google Earth Locator for Delphin Baby House
Kostanay pics via Panoramio (cool!)″
How to entertain yourself in Kostanay
English verson of Kostanay News website″


We flew on Lufthansa from Miami to Frankfurt. Once a week there’s a flight from Frankfurt direct to Kostanay, and back. Timing your travel to this flight can save literally 20-24 hours off your schedule each way.


Eric Weiner writes for Slate on his Kaz Adoption


Resources for Assisted Living in South Florida

In 2013 and again in 2015 my parents had medical crises that led to a lot of quick research and frantic visits to assisted living facilities in the South Miami-Dade area.

Mom — who already had diagnoses including diabetes, congestive heart failure and stage-4 kidney disease — suddenly lost all strength in her legs after a minor fall in April 2013.

I started looking for assisted living and skilled-nursing arrangements for her. Ultimately – in consult with a social worker at Baptist Hospital (Kendall Main), we chose to send her home with twice-daily visits by a nursing assistant.

May 21, Mom assigned to Coral Reef Nursing & Rehab (first visit) lasted 2 nights.

Returned to Baptist on 5/23.

Assisted Living / Skilled Nursing Facilities:

Skilled Nursing / Rehabilitation

  • Signature Healthcare of Brookwood Gardens in Homestead ( Dad entered on 4/28/2015
  • Coral Reef Nursing
    • no wi-fi in much of the building (rehab wing)
    • horrible food
    • nurses ignored Dad’s distressed need for mental help
    • nurses did catch his scabies infection which Baptist missed.
  • Hialeah Rehab Hospital
  • Green Briar
  • Miami Jewish Health System Rehab Wing
    • excellent Kosher food.
    • 7 days a week rehab work
    • Very astute and observant staff.
    • Nice bright rooms recently renovated. Lovely grounds.
    • Two or three dining options instead of one.


  • Coral Reef Hospital
  • Baptist Hospital
  • Palmetto General Hospital
  • Hialeah Hospital
  • Social worker will review your case and be sure your home situation is acceptable and safe. If not, they can enforce you going to rehab.

Notes on Medicare

  • 100 days of service before you get booted from rehab, must re-enter as an acute ER case

Robert Keith Adams, RIP

ROBERT KEITH (BOB) ADAMS, 1934-2017, of Miami and born in Oak Park, Illinois, passed away on Thursday April 13th. He built a 47-year legacy with Boy Scouts of America as a leader, scoutmaster and co-founder of Troop 941 at Vineland Elementary. Through scouting, he taught hundreds of boys to swim, and dozens of them to become lifeguards.

Bob was born in Oak Park, Ill. to Marion Louise Camp and Reginald George Adams, a VP at a fire insurance company in Chicago. He graduated from Oak Park and River Forest High School in 1952. He attended Northwestern University and was a member of Phi Kappa Sigma fraternity. He left college to serve in the United States Marine Corps in San Diego, then returned to Northwestern and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature in 1959.

While working at Northwestern’s SBX bookstore, he met Marlene Enchelmayer in 1958, and they married June 24, 1960 in Evanston. In 1962 they moved to Miami just as the Cuban Missile Crisis was heating up. Bob Adams worked in commercial and wholesale sales for firms including IBM, Miami Exhibits, ACS exhibits, Sears Commercial Flooring, Bostitch/Textron, Cain and Bultman, and Homestead Transfer & Storage while Marlene Adams taught at Coral Gables High School.

He was preceded in death by his ex-wife and friend Marlene E. Adams in 2013 and sibling Phyllis Ann Adams in 2015.

He is survived by his sons Robertson G. Adams, 53, of South Miami (wife Michele Ready, daughter Morgan Adams) and Jonathan E. Adams, 48, of Stamford, Conn. (wife Karen Adams, sons Jacob and Benjamin Adams), both of whom became Eagle Scouts.

BOB wanted a BIG party to celebrate his life – so we are inviting everyone to a fun-oriented, kid-friendly cookout party in a park on Saturday, May 13th noon to 3 p.m. at Riviera Presbyterian Church fellowship hall. Pot-luck sides, salads, and desserts are welcome.

Contact for information.

Long Shifts, Repellent And Coffee: This Is How It Is To Be A Poll Worker In Miami (The Miami Herald)

Originally published at

By MICHAL KRANZ • AUG 30, 2016

Many people who voted in Tuesday’s primary only visited polling places for a few short minutes, but poll workers spent up to 12 hours at their precincts.

Robertson Adams signed up to be a poll worker at the Palmetto Presbyterian Church in South Miami for Tuesday’s primary elections. It was his first time working at a precinct.

He said his precinct only got about a 10 to 15 percent turnout, but that’s not necessarily bad news.

“It was raining like crazy today. However our turnout today beat our turnout in March for the presidential primary,” he said.

Adams said most people showed up in the early morning, around lunchtime and just before the polls closed at 7 p.m., and that the periods of intense rain did not stop people from turning out to vote. He said his shift was long, but he was happy to be there.

“It was a lot of fun, we had Cuban coffee a couple of times and it was very Miami. The elections department sent out three or four dozen packages of DEET, you know, in case anybody was worried about the the Zika virus,” he said.

Adams says working at the polls convinced him the ballots and the ballot machines would be difficult to tamper with, because he had not been so sure about the security of voting operations previously. He plans to be a poll worker at a precinct again in November.

Phyllis Ann Adams, RIP

PHYLLIS ANN ADAMS passed away at home on April 15, 2015. She was born in 1942 in Oak Park, Illinois, the second child of Reginald George Adams and Marion Louise (Camp) Adams.  She leaves behind her elder brother Robert K. Adams of Miami and nephews Robertson G. Adams (Michele) of Miami and Jonathan E. Adams (Karen) of Stamford, Conn. She was a devoted great-aunt to Morgan, Benjamin and Jacob.

Phyllis graduated from Palatine (Ill.) Township High School in 1961 and Lincoln College in 1963. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Florida International University in 1984.

While in college in Chicago, she worked as a fashion model. Upon graduation, she worked for McElvain-Reynolds (mortgage) Co. for 11 years. After moving to Miami in 1975, she worked as a loan processor at Washington Savings and Loan on Miami Beach for 14 years, then joined AvMed Health Plans in Kendall for 19 years until her retirement in 2008.

She was always grateful for experimental valve surgery performed on her heart in 1947 by Dr. Willis Potts in Chicago. He had only developed the technique a year earler; today his method saves hundreds of ‘blue babies’ each year.

Known for her beauty and poise, she was a sensitive person who particularly loved the culture and art of Japan. She always doted on her grand nephews and neice and cheered for their pro sports teams.

There will be a memorial service in Miami at Van Orsdel in Kendall in the coming months. She will be interred this summer alongside her parents at Mount Emblem Cemetery in Elmhurst, IL.

For information on a future memorial service, please email

Phyllis was interred in the family plot at Mount Emblem Cemetery in Elmhurst Illinois on August 18, 2017.

Paul L. Bjork, RIP

PAUL L. BJORK (November 21, 1969 – March 8, 2015), of Los Altos California, suffered sudden cardiac arrest on Sunday morning March 8, 2015 while exercising. He will be greatly missed by the children he loved dearly: Stephanie, 12; Kevin, 11; and Rami, 8.

He also leaves behind loving parents Carla and Larry Bjork of Los Altos; sister and brother-in-law Kristie and Blair Ewen of Redding, CA; and former spouse Rana Khaled of Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Paul will also be missed by a large extended family including aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews, and many beloved friends and colleagues.

In his youth, Paul attended Montclaire Elementary in Los Altos, and Cupertino Middle School, where he enjoyed band and sports, especially soccer and baseball. He graduated from Homestead High School in 1988, where he had been well known for swimming and water polo. He attended California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo where he studied Management Information Systems, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in 1993.

He was a generous and endlessly energetic man who loved people, and will be remembered as a devoted father and good friend to many. His skills in deploying SAP and management information systems led him to be a widely respected consultant in the industry. Employers included Price Waterhouse, Softline, KPMG, Deloitte, Bearing Point and most recently Softtek where he was Vice President of ERP sales for North America.

A memorial service and Celebration of Paul’s Life will be held at Menlo Park Presbyterian Church, 950 Santa Cruz Avenue, Menlo Park on Friday, April 10 at 3:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution to Paul Bjork’s Children’s Education Fund, account 618909558, c/o John Lee, Fidelity Investment Center, 2580 West El Camino Real, Suite 9, Mountain View, CA, 94040.

Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Mar. 27, 2015

Marlene E. Adams, RIP

MARLENE E. ADAMS (nee Enchelmayer) of Miami, Fla. and born in Evanston, Illinois, passed away on July 12, 2013 at Baptist Hospital following a fight with diabetes, kidney and heart disease. She will be missed by her partner of 16 years Lee Schwartz and her former husband Robert K. Adams of 31 years; her sons Robertson and Jonathan, their spouses Michele E. Ready and Karen G. Adams, and grandchildren Benjamin, Jacob and Morgan. Lee’s daughter Tamsen Kopp and grandson Hunter will miss grandma Nana.

She was the eldest of seven children of Carl and Gigi Enchelmayer. They and their spouses or partners are Carlotte and Larry Bjork of Los Altos, CA; Paul Enchelmayer and Donna French of Winter Park, FL; Victor and Judy Enchelmayer of San Diego, CA; Donna Enchelmayer of Milwaukee, WI; Linda and Chris Schmidt of Aarhus, Denmark; and Peter and Kate Enchelmayer of Chapel Hill, NC.

She graduated New Trier Township High School in 1957, and graduated Northwestern University in 1961 in Evanston with a B.A. in English, starting her career as a teacher in Skokie, Ill.

She came to Miami in 1962. She became a veteran teacher of English and Cavaleon yearbook adviser at Coral Gables Senior High, 1962-1995. Also student newspaper adviser, chess club adviser and United Teachers of Dade union steward. Served as a board member, convention chair and officer of Florida Scholastic Press Association.

She was a stalwart of the Miami chapter of MENSA since the 1960s, and edited and produced its Flamenco newsletter for more than 25 years. Several times she led MENSA’s contingent in Coconut Grove’s King Mango Strut. Marlene’s retirement also included active participation in reenactments with the South Florida Historical Society.

In 1997 she founded one of the forums on, through which she met partner Lee, who moved to Miami. Marlene traveled the national parks in his R.V., adopting bears and chocolates and making friends and quilts at every turn.

She was a backbone of the Dictionary forum on Delphi, contributing 69,558 posts there since 2002. Her last words were: “I have no idea!”

In lieu of flowers please make a gift to the American Diabetes Association or to the Coral Gables High School library. For information on a planned late October memorial service, please email Robertson.Adams at gmail dot com.


Marlene’s family gathered to remember her on October 26, 2013 and scattered her remains in dark clear water running at Sweetwater Slough, where she had asked to remain.

Young At Art Children’s Museum gets kids to create, not just observe

Originally posted at on 05/14/2012

The ambitious and extraordinary Young At Art Children’s Museum is about to be a hot summer ticket for South Florida families with kids. The cavernous and bright building is a riot of bright color and art at every turn, yet clearly organized with space for quiet time too. Art is organized into themed areas for everything from surrealism (René Magritte) to street art (Keith Haring).

Young At Art will be offering day camps as well as summer camps that include ceramics, painting and other diversions for kids. Based on my own priceshopping of summer camps in the area, their summer camp weekly rate is quite affordable.

I visited Young At Art with my daughter – who’s five, attends kindergarten and has taken some art classes. She was most interested in the Stomp percussion room, a Hokusai wave inspired climbing gym, and the Edouard Duval Carrie interactive art exhibit.  Carrie’s installation was funded by a 2011 Knight grant and the museum itself was a Knight Arts Challenge first-year winner.

The museum’s target audience is from toddlers through teens, and its content is geared for participation rather than just observation. Younger visitors will find giant soft sculptures and climbing activities, manipulables, a sand pit, painting and gluing activities. Elementary age kids will disappear into the huge Hokusai wave sculpture, curate their own art exhibits or interact with touch screen computers. Kids of all ages will engage with the Stomp percussion lab/garage/noisebox and the puppet theatre area. Older kids would appreciate the opportunity to spend more than a class period painting or sculpting.

Seriously the Stomp area alone is worth the trip, and my daughter’s music class deserves a field trip to go explore it, and engage is jargon for you can’t pry them out of there. The web site for Young At Art details the opportunity ahead:

Projected to serve 500,000 children and adults during its first year, the New YAA will feature four permanent galleries – CultureScapes, GreenScapes, WonderScapes and ArtScapes – where visitors engage in an exceptional range of authentic, arts-based educational experiences, developing a new generation of tomorrow’s patrons, advocates and supporters of arts-based education; a Young At Art Institute that presents a curriculum in state-of-the-art equipped studios: painting/drawing, ceramics, printmaking, digital/ b+w photography and 4D video design; a cutting-edge Teen Center for YAA’s 300+ volunteer corp; a Traveling Exhibition Gallery presenting national interactive exhibitions; and Artist-in-Residence Studios/Installations that includes Kenny Scharf, Pablo Cano, Edouard Duval Carrie, Kenichi Yokono, Leonel Matheu, who, among others, are collaborating with museum designers and fabricators to infuse their spirit and artful voice throughout the exhibition spaces.

Young At Art has a gala event with music and food tonight – Friday, May 4. Its grand opening is set for Saturday, May 5.

Robertson Adams is parent and Knight Foundation employee. See this earlier post on Young At Art by Valerie Schimel.