Friends are an important part of our daily lives. They can help decide the paths that we take and the choices me make. I love listening to old stories about families members and how they interacted with their friends. Some stories still baffle me. Uncle Denny was sharing with me yesterday about how Papaw Kell used to own a second hand shoe shop in Grundy, Virginia back during the Depression. I still don’t know why the family ever moved to Grundy. Denny will ask Tom and get back to me on that. I was trying to track down any link to any of the early Adkins in Grundy to our line. So far, the only connection I’ve found is to the family Surname of “Morgan(s).” I thinking it must have had to do with a friendship of some sort. Secondhand shoes was a good business to be in, back in the day, since you couldn’t buy a pair of new shoes. Tom was the only child to stay in Grundy, when the family moved onto Ohio. A man named Walter Benders gave my uncle Tom (nee Alfred Roscoe Adkins – he named himself Tom) a job at the local Drive-In running the projectors. He loved it then moved to another theater, I think before he took a job as the local Building Inspector. Friends in High-Places( wink-wink… a lighthearted joke)!

Papaw Kell also would haul coal from Grundy to Waverly, Ohio, for Ishmael Montgomery. I wish that I had asked about his truck, I can only imagine what it must have looked like. I hope it was a Ford. Anyway, both he and Ishmael were raised in Magoffin County, Kentucky. I’m assuming that’s how they met. I guess we could consider that Networking(insert chuckle here). Ishmael was the son of Ollie and Dennie Montgomery nee Montgomery. He married Zula Montgomery, the daughter of Greenville and Mary Elizabeth (nee Howard) Montgomery. Ishmael and Zula, together had a daughter named Flora aka Flory; their only child. Flory married and divorced my late Uncle Lee. His full name was Charles Lee Adkins, but like most people he went by his middle name. I also found that odd since most people claim to hate their middle names, but anyway, I digress. Zula died a just few short weeks after my Aunt Flory was born from Septicemia following childbirth – delivery by midwife. That was common back then. A lot of women died of what my Grandma Dorothy “Child-Bed Fever.”

Ishmael then married my late Uncle Ben Adkins’s daughter Ethel Mae Adkins aka Mae Adkins Montgomery Williams. Mae married Rodney Williams after Ishmael passed away. Mae never had any children of her own either. Uncle Ben was Papaw Kell’s older brother. Mae was from Ben’s second marriage, also brief, to Cora Howard. Cora passed away and Ben married Ethel Montgomery daughter of Bruce Montgomery and Lula Blanton. [side-note: I love the story from Mary Alice about her two Grandpa’s – Brucepa & Flempa. Her Grandma Lula had married Flem Nickell after a questionable divorce from Bruce.] They had a lot of children so my late Uncle John Lewis Adkins (Kell & Ben’s oldest brother) and his wife Loula (don’t know her maiden name) Adkins raised Mae and Mae’s brother Robert, since they had no kids of their own. It sounds a little complicated, but times were hard back then and people did what they thought was best for their kids and for family. Well, most people anyway. But had they not had that network those people may have otherwise, never met.

When you’re journaling today, don’t forget to jot down the names of your friends, old and new. Describe each one very briefly and note when and where each was a friend.

If you had a childhood boyfriend or girlfriend, note his or her name, when you were friends, and briefly, what the relationship was like.

If you ever had an imaginary friend, describe this “friend” and when, where and how they were a part of your life.

Name the people besides family and friends who were important in your life. Note their relationship with you and what made this person memorable.

Name other people or social groups you tend to hang out with.

Think of your best friend(s), where or how did you meet? What drew you together? What did you typically do together, after school, on weekends, and or during vacations?

What are your fondest memories with your friends? Did you have any secrets or secret places that you’d go? Did you ever have a fight? Did you compete? Did something happen to end the your friendship(s)?

Who else was important to you? What did they look like? How did they act? Where did you meet? What happened between you? What made them stand out? What events or occasions happened that involved them?

Were there any “hangouts” places that you tended to go be with others your age? What was it like? What type of people were generally there? What would happen?

I had a friend named Bucket Woods in elementary school. No, I’m not joking. She lived on the main drag in Trenton, Ohio at the time and we lived on the corner of Madison Ave. She lived in light green two story house. Her older sister Tina and my oldest sister Shirley were very good friends at the time. That’s about all I can remember, but I still talk about her today, so it must have meant a lot to me at the time. That’s usually how most friendship’s and marriages for that matter, start. A common bond or relationship. Sometimes, it’s easier to track somebody down through their friends than it is to call a family member. The stories are usually better too.

When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares. ~ Henri J.M. Nouwen, Out of Solitude: Three Meditations on the Christian Life

Self-Evaluation. I love & hate reading and rereading old journal notes, Study Guides are the hardest; especially when you realize that 21 years has past, since you had made the note, things are still the same.

I’ve been taking a long look at how I’ve changed (or not) over the last few years; seemly not for the better either. I just read a line that I had written in an old study guide, under a section on “The Male Ego,” Q: What is an “unsafe subject” in your house? A: Religion. Only one word written, which in and of itself was odd for me. I tend to talk a subject to death.

I didn’t date the quiz, but the next page says, next to Q: #6… he would dress differently. A: “’92 He has greatly improved because I buy all of his clothes.” (Guessing here, that I should have said, I pick them out). Followed by 2 “buts,” yep, there’s always a “but” in every plan. I think that is what ultimately gets us.

The carrot was next to a list of things you’d want your spouse to change, next to #8 I had unlined “church.” …Pyrrhic victory. Any change a wife forces on her husband is at best temporary. Alexander Pope once said, “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.”

So, love your husband as he is — faults and all — and trust God to deal with him as HE wills. I did notice that I had primarily noted his faults – not my own. Which in and of itself, says a lot about mine.

A question is then asked, “List here specific things God has shown you in this lesson. Pray about them.” I have two different responses. One immediate and one when we revisited this at the end of the study. My immediate response was: Realize many problems are my own fault. (Wow! I can’t even believe that I had written that.) Later after completing the study, I wrote, “I have to support Anthony in every aspect of his being to fulfill mine.

I know, I can hear every feminist on the planet screaming right now, but if you had taken this study, you’d know they were trying to instruct us on how to relate to one another equally and on an individual level. Understanding each other as an individual, then as a couple.
I think many marriages fail because we think that if we try hard enough, we can make them into whom we want them to be, not whom they really are. As we try and do with our children, but that’s an even deeper subject.

Lastly, I had written, “Respect his ever changing personality and include his differences, not as a joke, but as part of who he is. (Yes, I wrote that. In my own handwriting. I know right!)

I don’t know if I need to set some “New Goals,” or just try and live up to my old ones.

It’s very hard to change long term because circumstances change everyday. New problems – old problems; people!

Reality check: Do I need to change?

Just thinking out loud today.

What are some ways you plan for a Valentine’s Day?

If you’re like me in the morning, your body arrives in the kitchen a couple of cups of coffee before your brain makes an appearance, working on little to no sleep & I have so much planning to do today. I did start planning my Valentine evening last week, although I still not completely done, but I’m getting there. Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, but if you haven’t had a chance to think much about how you’ll make your loved ones feel loved. You should try surfing the net for more ideas; I did.

I know I’m using a red & white theme. I bought a huge lot from Pier1 & a few other things here & there. The menu is going to Chicken Alfredo, garlic bread, toss salad and sugar cookies for dessert. I bought Anthony gift(s) last week as well, so I’m ahead of the game. The hard part is trying to put it all together right before he comes. I need a trial run, I think.

I plan on using Netflix to order a movie to watch while we’re having dinner. What’s your favorite romantic movie? There are SO many romantic movies from which to choose, it’s a little hard to pick one. I do love “Sleepless in Seattle” & “When Harry Met Sally…” The storyline in “Love, Actually” with Colin Firth falling in love with his Portuguese assistant ranks right up there in sweetness & romance. You can’t argue against a classic like “Roman Holiday” or “Casablanca,” either. What’s your favorite romantic movie?


Pinterest – For those of you who may not have heard of Pinterest, it is a brand new search engine for finding beautiful ideas around the web, and it allows you to photo-bookmark your favorites and pin them to your “bulletin boards”. Here’s my board for Valentine’s Day:

We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. ~ Elie Wiesel

Word on the street is that today is Chocolate Day, so Happy Chocolate Day! I have no idea if this is really a real thing, but I’ll use any excuse to celebrate chocolate. Are you a chocoholic? What’s your favorite chocolate concoction? My standby is a chocolate, peanut butter, banana shake, and/or some chocolate covered strawberries, if I can get them. Hello, Winan’s Fine Chocolate and Coffees (that’s not a plug; it’s my favorite). And yours? Wipe off your chocolate milk (or mocha latte) mustache & share your chocolate faves with us…

Writing is the only profession where no one considers you ridiculous if you earn no money. ~ Jules Renard

by Rumi

From the beginning of my life
I have been looking for your face
but today I have seen it.

Today I have seen
the charm, the beauty,
the unfathomable grace
of the face
that I was looking for.

Today I have found you
and those that laughed
and scorned me yesterday
are sorry that they were not looking
as I did.

I am bewildered by the magnificence
of your beauty
and wish to see you with a hundred eyes.

My heart has burned with passion
and has searched forever
for this wondrous beauty
that I now behold.

I am ashamed
to call this love human
and afraid of God
to call it divine.

Your fragrant breath
like the morning breeze
has come to the stillness of the garden
You have breathed new life into me
I have become your sunshine
and also your shadow.

My soul is screaming in ecstasy
Every fiber of my being
is in love with you

Your effulgence
has lit a fire in my heart
and you have made radiant
for me
the earth and sky.

My arrow of love
has arrived at the target
I am in the house of mercy
and my heart
is a place of prayer.

Write list of New Year’s resolutions was on my calendar today, I decided not to for many reasons, the main one was, that I didn’t complete last years list.

Someone once joked that a New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other. Each year we all sit around and try to think of ways to put a new spin on the same old problems. Mine is to just find out more about what I already know. To finish some old projects and not to start any new ones until they’re done. I hope I can do that.


Wishing everyone a Happy New Year!


Dear Amanda,

In response to your comment,

I was looking for my family tree found out my gggggrandfather peter tuner was born in virgina 1826 I think his father was charles or thomas but that were im running into the adkins anyone got info on them?

I found so many listed, but none married to an Adkins or Atkins or Atkinson? The Peter Turner’s I found married:
• Susanah Kinsley
• Ann A. Norsworthy
• Elisa Ann Edwards
• Penina Brammer
• Amanda R. Cooper
• Emelina T. Blair

What Adkins’ did you find?

I’m sorry that I couldn’t be of more help. I will continue to look, but will need a few more details than that. I need: who he married; names of known children; where he lived; and when; follow up on noteworthy experiences, or anything that ties him to the family.

Thanks for you comment and Welcome to the Family,
Sheila Jean Adkins Metcalf

Top Searches

jacob harley earl of oxford, william metcalf 1800, mitha parker, bio of william v. adkins, mary bluesky cornstalk.


In The New Year

In the New Year,
we wish you the best year you’ve ever had,
and that each New Year
will be better than the last.
May you realize your fondest dreams
and take time to recognize and enjoy
each and every blessing.

Happy New Year,
And many more!

By Joanna Fuchs