Sabrina Out on the Town – Mar/April

Even though my baby boy is almost here, I have still been out & about with my stilletos & all!

Our town has been hopping with parties, events & political kick-offs. Angel,Becky & I have been to them all. For more photos on all of the area’s events, go to our WLM Facebook page.

Let us know about your events at info@ & we will be sure to come out!

Until we meet again


SabrinaThe Smith County After School Theatre Production under the direction of Bill Reece will perform their annual theatrical production of Oklahoma starting on March 14, 16, 21, & 22 6:30 p.m. Pictured above are the cast and crew from the 2012 production of Grease. Tickets available at Smith County High School (615) 735-9519

                                                                  SabrinaMary Gordon Pawlawski, Amy Baines, Jenni Moscardelli, and Rachel Adams, will again be part of “Eggs for Gregg” April 15, 2014, a fundraiser benefiting a scholarship in honor of Gregg Baines, who lost his battle with cancer in 2011.                                                                               


                                                                                                  SabrinaWLM is now international as Christina Eichler takes all of us around the world on her world-wide mission trip. Follow her on our WLM Facebook page and read her blog at

SabrinaYouth Leadership Wilson, pictured with Dorie Mitchell, Bob Black, Kathy Haskins & Mayor Hutto                                                                                                                                 

SabrinaYours truly at my baby shower. Thank you for all your encouraging advice & support

Share This:

Joseph's Storehouse

Joseph’s Storehouse Feeds the Hungry


Joseph's StorehouseWhen we think of people who need food, our first thought is of poverty stricken third world countries. It might surprise you to know that right here in Wilson County, a county with the second highest median family income in the State of Tennessee, there are hundreds of individuals and families who would live in hunger, without the help of an area charity known as Joseph’s Storehouse Food Ministry.

Joseph’s Storehouse began as an outreach by Pastor Bob Evans and wife Peggy, who recently retired as pastors of Love One Another Church. While pastoring the church in the 1980’s and 90’s, the church would clear out their sanctuary, and fill it with boxes of food for families at Christmastime. During this time, Bob also worked feeding the hungry and did mission work in Haiti.

Pastor Bob says, “It was in 1999 that we began to see the need to feed people in our own community. Peggy and I felt led of the Lord to purchase and distribute food. We went to the grocery store, bought a small amount of food, gave it away, bought more, and gave that away. We were utilizing a building that was behind the church for distribution. Soon the word spread and more people needing food showed up, volunteers started showing up, and opportunities to obtain more food came.”

The food distribution operation has evolved over the years, and today Joseph’s Storehouse Food Ministry is a Joseph's Storehousewell-organized community-based outreach that assists many persons in Wilson County who need food. It operates under the umbrella of the nonprofit, 501-c-3 organization, Love One Another Embassy. Recipients of the food must complete an application process that utilizes the USDA’s regulation for income levels. Often applicants are senior citizens or disabled, who rely on a small social security or disability check, which barely covers housing expense. Leaving them to decide between buying food, paying for their medicines, or medical care. People who are homeless, and unemployed also come in need of food.

I will never forget my own experience at Joseph’s Storehouse several years ago, during the worst of the economic downturn. I was meeting with the Evans, and a young man who appeared to be in his thirties knocked on the door. It was on a day that the center would’ve normally been closed. My heart ached as he explained that he was a construction worker, and the company had no work, so their boss let them go. He had been unemployed for several weeks looking for work, leaving him and his wife with two children with little income. Their landlord had evicted them because he couldn’t pay the rent, and they were camping out at a local campground. I could see he was a proud husband and father, his voice broke as he explained their dilemma. He didn’t ask for money, he asked if we knew where he might find work, and said someone told him he might get food at the center for his family. I held back tears until after our meeting, but once in my car, I broke down. I saw firsthand how people could find themselves in situations to need help, especially food, and how Joseph’s Storehouse was providing it.

You might be wondering as I did, “Where does the food come from?” Many stores, restaurants, distribution centers and other food outlets send their overruns, maybe food with damaged or outdated packaging, etc. to Joseph’s Storehouse for distribution. The Evans describe it as miraculous favor. Unlike many food closets in area churches, their warehouse is filled with freezers, enabling the organization to accept large donations and preserve the food, including meat, something many food ministries cannot supply to the needy. Financial donations are also used to purchase food, and the charity partners with other agencies like Second Harvest Food Bank.

Joseph's StorehousePeggy said, “In November and December (2013), more than 1,000 families were provided a supply of food. That’s the months we see the largest need, but we feed on average 500 or more per month every month.” And when she says they “feed” people, it is not a single meal or a small bag of food. Joseph’s Storehouse provides them a wheel barrow full of food and other items, which could sustain the person or family with much of what they need for a month. They estimate they provide more than two million pounds of food, paper goods, and other personal items annually.

The Evans are quick to note that this massive undertaking could not be possible without the many volunteers who regularly work at the center, sorting and organizing food and other items as it comes in, getting it ready for the monthly distribution, then helping to get it into the vehicles on distribution days.

Volunteers also help with office work, mailings, and some offer spiritual support and prayer for those who request it. There are only a few employees, one of whom they say was a “Godsend”, Warehouse Manager, Robert Billings. Said Peggy Evans, “He showed up one day and said he wanted to help us. We had been praying for someone with the skills to manage our warehouse operation, and in walked Robert.”

Billings said, “Somehow, the food just keeps coming. We’ll get a call from someone with food, and I’ll go get it orarrange for transportation. We never know what we are going to get, or when, but at the end of the month, we always have food for distribution.”

The greatest need of Joseph’s Storehouse today is funds to build more warehouse space, so they can accept additional food donations and distribute more Joseph's Storehousefood. The request from the community for assistance is everincreasing. The organization has already begun construction on a new 10,000 square foot addition, but approximately $25,000 more dollars are needed to finish and furnish the building. They are committed to remaining debt-free as they complete construction, so financial donations are the best way to assist. The hope is to increase partnerships with area churches on an ongoing basis, because Joseph Storehouse has the facilities and distribution structure, and additional funds for operation expenses like utilities, transportation costs, and food purchases would greatly help serve more of the community.

As Bob Evans summarized the goal, “We want to help all of the hungry people in Wilson County that we can.” Every month, they are fulfilling the scripture Isaiah 58:10, “Feed the hungry! Help those in trouble! Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you shall be as bright as day.” Love One Another Embassy through Joseph’s Storehouse Food Ministry is true to the organization’s motto: “Ambassadors of love, reaching out with loving arms to hurting people.”


If you would like to contact Joseph’s Storehouse Food Ministry, call (615) 453-5777. Tax deductible donations may be sent to: Love One Another Embassy, Joseph’s Storehouse Food Ministry, 1960 SE Tater Peeler Rd, Lebanon, TN 37090. Volunteers are also welcome. If you know someone in need (Wilson County residents only),the food is distributed on the last Saturday morning of each month, and the Thursday prior to the last Saturday for the disabled. Applications are taken on the food distribution days.

Also visit

Joseph's Storehouse

Share This:

Donelson CA

Donelson Christian Academy – Where Community is Family


Donelson CATucked away on the outskirts of a quiet residential area, Donelson Christian Academy’s campus is alive with activity as lunchtime has ended and students prepare to attend afternoon classes. For more than four decades, DCA has been in the business of education by providing a rigorous curriculum within the framework of Christian beliefs while encouraging community involvement. DCA Headmaster, Keith Singer has been at the school’s helm for nearly three years and explains what makes DCA stand out, “We are a school that started with an intention of integrating faith and learning together. They go hand in hand here. We want our students to pursue lives of meaning and influence. By fostering a love for learning and strong moral foundation, they can get there.”

While the school boasts top of the line technology, dual enrollment options, an impressive rosterDonelson CA of educators, and steady enrollment growth, it doesn’t mean there haven’t been any bumps in the road. Like a lot of areas in Nashville, DCA’s campus endured severe damage during the historic Nashville Flood of 2010. Parts of the campus were under as much as 12 feet of water. Most all contents on the firstfloor were destroyed. Athletic fields, playgrounds, and parking lots were completely submerged. But they didn’t let those circumstances “dampen” the mood of DCA. “During the flood, hundreds of students, parents, and community members worked together to save several hundred thousand dollars’ worth of materials. During the months that followed, thousands of people helped DCA rebuild the school building into an incredible facility.” Singer says.

Through the efforts of many volunteers and donors, DCA’s campus is now fully restored with buildings that are essentially brand new. The flood appeared to be a great tragedy, but God had a greater plan. Like many throughout Middle Tennessee, the school has a freshnew vision for the future and the blessings of a facility to accomplish that mission.

Donelson CAStrolling through one of the school’s two student art galleries, Singer says including fine arts in the curriculum best fulfills the goal of producing top notch students.

“Not every student is good at math. Not every student is good at science. Not every student understands the nuances of art. But we feel that each division can help enhance the other. That’s why at DCA fine arts is a very important component to a well-rounded education.”

Even though Singer is happy with the schools growth and future, that doesn’t mean there’s not a plan for expansion. “We have a master plan for adding on to the campus and there’s no definite start date but with the rapid growth we’ve experienced over the past two years, it may come sooner than we think.”

After leaving the visual arts classroom where students show off their state of the art 3-D copier, Singer wants to make sure potential students and parents understand that seeing is believing when it comes to the education offered at DCA. “We are not satisfied with only memorizing facts. We rigorously prepare students with foundational knowledge [grammar] and the tools of reasoning [logic] and persuasive writing and speaking [rhetoric]. We are dedicated to cultivating young people of character, intellect, humility and conviction, who are exceedingly well prepared to excel in college.




DCA At-A-Glance

Founded in 1971

Interdenominational Christian School
Preschool through twelfth grades
Enrollment – 856
Over 50% of faculty have master’s degree or Ph.D.
Notable DCA grads-Class of 2004, Hillary Scott, Co-lead singer of Grammy Award Winning group, Lady Antebellum

Class of 2012

College scholarships offered surpassed $5 million;
Earned over 500 Dual Enrollment college credit hours and 100 AP college credits hours

Over the Last Five Years:

College Scholarships offered totaled over $16 million dollars
Average ACT score 24.0
Top 25% average ACT score—28.1
Three military academy appointments
Over 9,300 hours of community service through our senior service program

Donelson Christian Academy

300 Danyacrest Drive

Nashville, TN 37214

Share This:

Changing World

A Comforting Constant in an Ever Changing World


There are few symbols as nostalgic as the red, white and blue stripes of a barber shop pole. Seeing it today as I drive around the square always reminds me of days gone by, some I was part of and some that were before my time.

A trip to the barber shop is a rite of passage for many young boys and their fathers. Among my earliest memories in Texas are accompanying my dad to the local barber shop, sitting on the wooden board so that I’d be high enough for the barber to reach my head, having my hair cut while my dad was having his sideburns trimmed, a staple of the day. We’d usually then run errands and top it off with a trip to the local drugstore for a chocolate Sundae or shake.

In later days we’d either go see Bratton Barrett on the Watertown square or Randy’s Barber Shop on West Main in Lebanon. When I was in law school in Memphis, I had my hair cut regularly by an elderly man who had cut Elvis Presley’s hair in his younger days. He had some great stories to share, as many barbers do.

When we had our youngest child, Neill, our boy, I finally had the chance to do with him what I had done with my dad, Bernie, so many times. The first time I took him to Pop’s Barber Shop he was hesitant at first, fearing it would hurt, he’d cry and beg to stop. Eventually, of course, the strangeness wore off and he would have no complaint. Thereafter, his ever present tendency to talk and move his head were the only impediments for poor Joe Hodges.

While the price of a haircut may have gone up and styles have changed, other than that, it’s still a matter of walking in and preserving your place in line, be it by signing a sheet of paper at Joe’s or simply keeping an eye on the order of everyone else’s entry, as is followed at Dwight Huddleston’s Barber Shop. The waiting is the best part as no matter where the clientele is in the conversation, you can quickly join in, be it politics, sports or the latest hometown gossip, and when it’s finally your turn the conversation turns to you and yours.

The last time I walked into Pop’s, I learned that Joe would be moving. The building on West Main will soon be replaced with a drug store. And while I appreciate progress, part of me is saddened by the fact that I no longer will be returning to this place where Neill and I (and Joe) have shared so many years. While Joe will continue elsewhere, and Neill and I will follow, it occurred to me as we sat there for the last time, talking about football and local politics, that Joe and the other barbers in town have become to me, a comforting constant in an ever changing world.

When I was young and my father would take me to Randy’s or Bratton’s, these fine men had no problem letting me join in their adult conversations. I was part of the big boys club, a feeling that is like no other to a 7 year old boy who wants nothing more than to be big like his dad.

When I moved away for school, the small Memphis barber shop I found close to campus, felt very much the same as walking right back into Randy’s, an indescribable feeling to a young kid who was finally on his own, but wasn’t quite as sure of himself as he liked people to think.

And these days when Neill and I get a hair cut on Saturday mornings, it’s a good feeling knowing that this experience, that he and I often make into an occasion, will leave a lasting impression on him. One that he can find comfort in later, when life takes him elsewhere.

No doubt, these men and women, who are just doing their jobs, probably don’t realize how much their time, talents and friendships have helped keep our area as solid as it is. They are the men and women who have preserved the memories of years past while being the starting point of new ones. They are a rite of passage, a constant in this fast moving world and they are, most definitely, Hometown Heroes


Changing WorldJoe got his start at Randy’s Barber Shop in 1974, before moving to Pop’s in 1980 along with fellow barber Sam Belcher, to join Buck Mason. After Buck passed away in 1988 Joe became the owner of the shop and continued to cut hair alongside Sam, until he retired in 2005.

Walk into Pop’s and you immediately know that Joe – likes the Vols. Scratch that – he loves the Vols!! The store is peppered with UT memorabilia, a fact that Neill and I have always appreciated because talking about UT football is a favorite past time for both of us, and there is never ashortage of that in Joe’s chair.

In fact, Joe’s love for UT was the source of a long running bet between he and long time customer Bobby McEachern. For over 30 years if UT won the annual Tennessee-Alabama game then Bobby had to pay double the cost, however, if Bama carried the day then Bobby got his haircut for free. Finally, Joe chuckled “I put an end to the bet,” due to Alabama’s dominance over his Vols.

Several years ago, while another barber distracted Bobby, Joe swapped out Bobby’s Crimson Tide license plate for Joe’s own Tennessee plate. Bobby, none the wiser, spent the next week driving around with the hated Vols on his plate. After a week spent with numerous people passing him by, while laughing, McEachern finally discovered the ruse. He knew immediately who had pulled the prank and called Joe telling him the Feds were now looking for him. And the ribbing continues to this day.

Joe will be moving to Yesterdays Barber Shop located at 307 West Main, Cedar Shopping Center.




Kim is a Watertown classmate of mine who followed her father, Bratton Barrett into the profession. After trying college and then a 3rd shift job and not findingChanging World her niche, Kim took her father’s advice and tried barber college. In doing so she found her calling 21 years ago and has never looked back.

She worked side by side with her dad cutting hair until he passed away. A self-described “daddy’s girl”, Kim tries to fill his large shoes. She laughingly remembers her father’s good natured complaints at seeing his long-time customers switch to her and leave her tips, something they had rarely done for him.

The barber shop was often a place where the men would come loiter and sit and talk to her father about farming, politics and life in general. Many of the men, like her dad, have since passed away, but the barber shop still remains a hub for local conversations.

After working alone since her father’s death in 2010, Kim will soon be welcoming her friend, Sonia Lamberson, to the business in the next few weeks. Times will be changing in some ways, but the conversations in the chair will remain the same.

Barrett’s Barber Shop is located at 306 Public Square in Watertown.


Changing world



My friend, Dwight and I came to know each other during a stop for a quick trim. Dwight has operated Dwight’s Barber Shop in Lebanon for nearly 25 years. A one chair operation, Dwight began cutting hair in Alexandria in 1974 for $.75 a cut. He laughingly recalls even at that price he still got the occasional complaint from older gentlemen who’d tell him “I used to get a haircut and a shave for two bits”. Since then he’s had to raise his prices to keep up with his overhead but stopped the increases altogether several years ago.

The building has only housed 3 barbers since being built in 1953; J.T. Eddings from 1853 to 1973, Eddings’ nephew Ralph Young from ’73 to 89 when he died of a stroke and thereafter, Dwight took over. Dwight has now operated his shop there longer than any other. Back in the day “you had to apprentice and I did it for one whole year under Hobart Tisdale of Alexandria. It was an art, passed down from one barber to another.”

Dwight has mastered this art by way of his extensive clientele including Terry Ashe, Don Simpson, Bev Spickard, Judge John Wootten and the late Judge J.O. Bond, along with country singer, Trace Adkins. Not bad at all, for a one man dynamo.

Dwight’s Barber Shop is located at 225 South Maple Street in Lebanon.



 Larry was the one barber I didn’t know well so I called on my friend, Yancy Belcher, to inquire who was Mt. Juliet’s Hometown Hero. Yancy immediately saidChanging world “you got to talk to Larry Capps.” And I have since realized why.

Larry has been cutting hair in Mt. Juliet since 1964 and knows everyone and everyone’s story. He was led to his profession by having had the misfortune of suffering a badly broken arm in a car wreck. While looking for some light work while his arm healed, he was directed to Tennessee Rehabilitation, an organization which agreed to pay his way through barber school and also paid for an additional surgery on his arm.

For almost 50 years now, Larry has had the good fortune of cutting hair and today does so alongside his daughter Robbie Capps. He recalls an occasion, years ago, when an obviously inebriated customer came in for a haircut, Larry cut his hair and sent him on his way. The following day the same customer came in again, sober this time, and told Larry to ‘cut it like you always do’. Larry chuckled and said he went ahead and did just that, as the man obviously had no recollection of the previous day.

Politics is a frequent topic of conversation at Larry’s and once when asked by a client if he was a democrat or republican he replied “it depends on who is in the chair.”

While Larry has probably cut every notables hair at some time or other, two he quickly mentions are gubernatorial candidate Lamar Alexander, during his walk across the state in 1978, as well as Mt. Juliet native and astronaut, Barry Wilmore, who even inscribed a photograph for Larry that proudly hangs in his shop

 Larry’s Barber Shop is located at 11884 Lebanon Road in Mt. Juliet.



Changing World


When I was young, Randy would cut my hair, so I thought it fitting that Neill get a Randy “cut” at some point in his life, asChanging world well. He insisted on a buzz cut, a cut his Mother dislikes, but one Neill loves – claiming it makes him run faster because there is less friction. I’m not sure about that, but I know that if a simple buzz cut makes him happy, I’m probably going to let him get one, over and over again.

Randy has cut hair at his West Main location since 1969 and in Lebanon for a total of 51 years. Others who share his shop are Al Grisham who has been with Randy for nearly all of his 35 years in the business, as well as Bill Stephens, Chris Hallums and Zach Clemmons. Randy estimates more than 40 barbers have cut hair at his location at one time or the other. He notes that cutting hair is an ever changing proposition from the barber’s perspective, as changing tastes result in different requests but he continues to be up for the challenge. And Neill was one satisfied customer after getting his Randy’s famous buzz cut!

Randy’s Barber Shop is located at 1028 W. Main Street in Lebanon.

Share This:

Styles & Trends

Local to You

With the new season, brings new “stuff”. Stuff to try on, stuff in new colors, stuff to absolutely fall in love with. That’s the excitement of a new season. Outside of all the “stuff” though, why don’t we just focus on you and your look. One of the first things people notice would be great hair. A gorgeous hair day goes a long way in making a day good ((did I hear an AMEN))? With that in mind, on the next few pages, you will see everything from bright Notice Me colors to the exquisitely natural, subtle highlights that are seriously trending. Our all local team of experts weighed in on what they see as fresh style for Spring 2014!

Lucky us, all stylists are located right here in Wilson County! Peruse what they have to offer, letting them help you find your signature style this season.


! color experts and hair stylists in our hometown get downright gabby on the new trends they see as THE looks to have this spring…

“For this spring there is a color for EVERYONE! From ice blonde, to chocolate browns, to rich reds.” -Alene Gibson Co-owner/A & B Hair Co

Styles & Trends

On Savannah we used a melting technique.
A chocolate brown was chosen and we then
melted the chocolate brown color down the
hair to a Cherry Cola red.

Styles & Trends

For Brandin’s look, we used the “smudged”
technique with the edgy dark roots and
blonde highlights along with a textured cut

Styles & Trends

On Brittany we went with blonde and incorporated
an even mix of golden blonde and bronzey-brown
to give a sun-kissed look

“For Spring 2014, I’m very excited about the ‘tone on tone’ color.” -Jessica L. Dodds Stylist/Trendz Salon and Boutique/Locks & Lashes

Styles & Trends

Various shades of the same color are used, as seen in the picture with violet and copper as the foundation color.
This technique alsoStyles & Trends looks gorgeous with blonde and brown tones.
My favorite color line to use for these looks are Schwarzkopf  and Moroccan Oil as the “at-home” care line.

“We are forecasting lots of highlights for darker hair and blonde on blonde for spring 2014…” -Necole Bell Owner/Beauty Boutique Salon, Spa and Apparel

Of course, most of our clients are not walking the catwalk, so making these looks relative for the client’s lifestyle is key. I recently read that your best hair color is the color your hair is when you were three. Ha!! So natural is essential. Beach highlights are a great look for our brunettes who want to brighten up their natural color.

Styles & Trends
Our model Lindsay Boze (owner of Van Loo’s Traveling Boutique), Styles & Trends
was given low lights and highlightts to complement her skin tone as well as eye color

Lindsay’s hair was blown dry with a large round brush using J Beverly Hills Bodifier at the roots.
Using a wand curling iron, our stylist, Laura Beth, rolled the curls in different directions,
then straightened the ends with a flat iron, giving Lindsay a sexy & relaxed look for evening or day

“What we see for the spring of 2014 in hair color are the cool-toned tips with darker roots. –  
-Lisia Tucker Owner/Aqua Bella Day Spa and Hair Studio

We’re seeing lots of orange-red copper looks in color. Very rich and natural dark colors with beautiful red tones are big now as well. Concerning styling of the hair: messy-wavy with all kinds of braids to enhance the overall look. A simple singular fish bone braid is another way to think outside the box in styling this spring, as inspired by Katniss in the movie The Hunger Games.


A&B Hair Co. – 102 Webster St, Lebanon 615) 444-5900

Aqua Bella Day Salon and Hair Studio – 151 Adams Ln, Mt Juliet (615) 754-7311

Beauty Boutique Salon, Spa, and Apparel – 107 Signature Pl, Lebanon (615) 547-4468

Locks & Lashes – 4110 N Mt Juliet Rd #200, Mt Juliet (615) 754-5274

Trendz Salon and Boutique – 107 Public Sq, Lebanon (615) 449-1555

Share This:

Women In Politics

Women In Politics


What would you do if you were not afraid?Women In PoliticsGo to WLM’s FB page or to watch a video of the cover shoot.

That’s the question that has run rampant on the internet since Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, gave a commencement speech to gradutes of Barnard College, asking them that question. Her hope was to inspire them to face their fears, not hold back and do whatever they wanted in life.

The question seems easy enough but not many have the guts or stamina to follow through with the answer. Those that do however, reap the biggest rewards, even those that fail at first.

March is Women’s History Month, a month to pay tribute to the women who have not only contributed to the events in history and society but also a time to honor those women who are paving the way for the younger generation.

To many women in their 20’s, 30’s and 40’s, women in leadership roles in business, industry and politics seems natural but less than 100 years ago women didn’t even have the right to vote. Equally as astounding is the fact that almost 100 years after women received the right to vote, we still have never had a female President.

But progress comes in steps and WLM is proud to honor our local leaders in government both in the public eye and behind the public eye, who are stepping up and taking a seat at the table. These women are working hard each day to make life better not just for other women but for the communities that they live in. They have faced their fears and conquered them all!


Women In PoliticsSusan Lynn – Mt. Juliet Republican House member Tennessee General AssemblyWhen did you first get interested in politics and why?

Growing up my parents were active in our county Republican Party, and my mother was a leader in the county Republican Woman›s group. We often had meetings at our house, and my mother brought my sister and me along to the local headquarters. As I grew, my parents always advised “never stop paying attention,” adding that it is always prudent to have a healthy skepticism of our government leaders.

When we moved to Mt. Juliet in 1997, I became involved with the local Republican club. For several years, we battled the threat of a state income tax together. To my great surprise, my friends drafted me to run for state representative in 2002 and “We” won by receiving over 50 percent of the vote.

What do you feel your role is as an elected official?

Let me first explain that I am a born again Christian so for me my public service is my mission field. Professionally, I feel I have several roles as an elected official – duties actually. My first duty is to guard, protect and defend the Constitution. I have a duty to be of service to each person I represent by providing excellent constituent services. I also have a duty to study the bills and issues tirelessly so that when I vote on their behalf, they may trust that I have sought to be informed.

What advise would you offer other women considering running for office?

As Jackie Kennedy said, “If you bungle raising your children, I don’t think whatever else you do matters very much.” Life has many seasons, make sure you are in the right season of life should you ever run. In other words, we can have it all – just not all at the same time.


Women In PoliticsKathy Warmath – Lebanon True Conservative Ward 6 Lebanon City Council

When did you first get interested in politics and why?

I am a fiscal conservative and have tried to apply this philosophy as I work with the City of Lebanon on a dayto-day basis. I served as the President of the Republican Women for years and actively became involved to promote those, who like I, believe the private sector plays a huge role when it comes to how a city develops and its prosperity.

What do you feel your role is as an elected official?

I believe that my job is, and has always been, to understand that I am responsible for how we spend other people’s money – meaning “YOUR” Money.

What advice would you offer other women considering running for office?

My philosophy is to be true to what you believe in and vote accordingly, overlook the criticism that you may experience for voting your values and stand tall. I believe and have confirmed women are uniquely prepared to govern and work together and call it like it is when needed. We should get out as women, moms and young ladies and make a difference. You go girls!

Just a word of guidance, ladies: you need to make sure your partners and families are “all in” because in your capacity as a public servant, it can be very demanding, but also a rewarding job.


Women In PoliticsAnnette Stafford – Lebanon Democrat 20th District Wilson County Commission

When did you first get interested in politics and why?

While in Leadership Wilson, I learned a lot about how our community operated and felt I could help make a difference. I believed in the idea of more women in government, more women representing our citizens, more women with a voice and a fresh perspective.

What do you feel your role is as an elected official?

First, to serve my constitutes of the 20th District and Wilson County, not just the East, West, North or South of Wilson County, but the whole entire County. As the county’s legislative body our primary role serves as the policy making body for the county. Our job as a commissioner is to appropriate funds for each department. As a County Commissioners we do not regulate the sheriff’s office, school system, Road Commission or W.E.M.A. We merely deal with their budgets. All fee offices are regulated by that elected official, not the commission.

What advice would you offer other women considering running for office?

Running for office is a big decision, a huge decision, that means painstaking campaign efforts and a jolting shove into the spotlight, but it’s an opportunity to obtain a platform from which to represent the needs of fellow women. I personally know that to run for local office, you serve as a public servant and not everyone will agree with you, so believe in yourself. As the first African-American female elected to both the Lebanon City Council and Wilson County Commission, I learned to be resilient and stringent, as well as compassionate about the convictions in which I believe. I felt it puts me closer to the community that I serve


Women In PoliticsCarol Andrews – Smith County Vice President and Senior Editor Grindstone Research, LLP Nashville and Washington, D.C.

When did you first get interested in politics and why?

Dad was a World War II veteran who preached the value of voting and involvement. I have always felt I owed it to my country to participate. More than anyone, my mother taught me to stand up for things I believe in and to fight for things that just aren’t right.

What do you feel your role is as a political consultant/adviser?

Elections are about choices. Voters want to know where a candidate stands and how that differs from the other. From energy to land use issues to trade and defense, I look at what candidates and incumbents have said or how they have acted on a myriad issues and distill those differences. My job is to locate, dissect and thoroughly analyze the most accurate information so I can provide a true picture – the good, the bad and the ugly. That’s the only way a client can really know her strengths and weaknesses, or that of her opposition.

What advise would you offer women considering running for office or becoming involved “behind the scenes” in politics?

In the consulting world, the glass ceiling days are long gone. I can remember being the only female in the room, but it has been a very long time.

My advice: Don’t stand back and wonder how to get to that place. Stand up and take your place. Don’t think for a moment that you can’t, because you certainly can


Mae BeaversMae Beavers – Mt. Juliet Republican State Senate, District 17 (Cannon, Clay, DeKalb, Macon, Smith and Wilson counties)

When did you first get interested in politics and why?

After two million dollars went missing in the school system in our county, my husband and I were upset. My husband came home one day very upset over the situation and said one of us had to run for county commission and he didn’t have the time. I was a mother, housewife, court reporter and going to school at night. He was working 50 to 60 hours a week at his job. I decided I would be the one and my husband went door to door after work and got me elected to the county commission. I promised to pass a financial accountability act for Wilson County. I was the most unlikely person to ever hold political office since I was voted “Most Bashful” in my Senior Class. After getting a financial management act passed and getting the county on computers for the first time and hiring a CPA, a new house district was drawn in Wilson County. I ran and lost by 270 votes. Some folks persuaded me to run again in 1994 and I won. I served eight years in the house, fought back a state income tax, and the party persuaded me to run for Senate.

What do you feel your role is as an elected official?

To represent my constituents to the best of my ability, keep government accountable, taxes low, and work to make sure we keep the freedom and liberties our Founding Fathers fought for so long ago.

What advise would you offer other women considering running for office?

Be yourself, stick to your principles and stand up for what you believe even if you are the only one standing.


Women In PoliticsTerri Lynn Weaver – Lancaster, Tennessee State House Representative District 40 (Smith, DeKalb, Trousdale & Sumner counties)

When did you first get interested in politics and why?

We just had our first grandchild and while holding him I wondered what kind of world will he grow up in? So I put it to prayer and answered the call to run my first race in 2006. Campaigning was the hardest thing I had ever ever done. Knocking on every door, going to every community event became my mission so that I could know the heartbeat of the people and the issues that concerned them. It took a whole lot of prayer and another race before being elected as the first female republican state house rep in district 40 in 2008.

What do you feel your role is as an elected official?

My role as an elected official is to serve and to work hard for all those whom I represent. My role is about being “salt and light,” serving honestly, with integrity and keeping the Main thing the Main thing as a wife, mother and a grandmother.

What advise would you give other women considering running for office?

Well do not underestimate yourself. When you are called to a task, think it through and ask yourself is this something I believe in and truly care about? If so then dive in with all your might never flinching on your principles and courage to do the right thing. I will never forget the first time after being elected how moving it was to see “Weaver” on the voting board in the House Chambers. It was humbling then and it still effects me the same today after serving almost three terms. Keeping that perspective will never allow one to become callused and forget those who brought you to the dance to begin with.

Share This:

Cash in the Closet

Cash In your Closet


Have you ever felt overwhelmed by the amount of clothing and shoes that seem to accumulate in your home? Most especially if you have children the piles can grow, seemingly, overnight.

With regular purging and organizing, you can keep things in check.

These days there are so many options when it comes to recycling clothing. From consignment sales to online services to groups on Facebook if you take a bitCash in  the Closet time, you can find cash in your closet!

When it comes to closet organization, there are a few rules I always follow.

• Be merciless in your purging. If you’ve not worn it in the last 6-8 months, you’re not going to.

• Invest in good hangers. When you store your clothing correctly and keep it good shape, it will last longer.

• Be very selective in your purchases.Better to have a few good pieces, than lots of things you don’t wear taking up valuable real estate in your closet.

• Re-evaluate your wardrobe each season.

It has been said that we wear twenty percent of our clothing eighty percent of the time. Keep this in mind as you are organizing.

I worked with a client recently who felt totally overwhelmed with her closet. To compound this feeling, one of her shelves fell on Christmas day. To use her words, she was simply “afraid of the task,” and couldn’t face it. Here is what we did to get her back on track.

Cash in Closet

First completely empty the space. 

Next, thoroughly clean the space by wiping the baseboards and vacuuming.

Set up three areas to sort your items and label them donate, toss, and sell

Then go through things item by item. They only need to go back into your closet if you have worn them recently.

If not, they go inCash in the Closet one of your sorting areas.

Cash in Closet

After two hours, we had her closet in tip-top shape. As you can see, she has lots of space left in her closet.

Most times we think we don’t have enough space, when actually if we are organized, we have more than we need.

Next – This is the part I like, this is where the cash comes in!

To get the best price possible, items need to be clean and in very good condition. Always inspect for stains or holes before listing your items for sale or putting them in a consignment sale.

I’ve built my children very respectable savings accounts just on their consigned clothing. It takes a little bit of time, but the freeing feeling you get from being organized is wonderful and the extra cash never hurts!

If you are unsure of whether to get rid of an item, here’s a tip:

When you hang it in the closet, turn the hanger backwards. When/ if you wear it, hang the hanger back the correct way. In six months, if you still have any backward hangers, get rid of those items. If you’ve not worn it in that amount of time, you’re not going to.

Local Facebook Groups:

• Wilson Co. Gently Used Clothing

• Childrens Boutique Resale Group

Local Children’s Consignment Sales:

• Friendship Christian School

• Trendy Little Ones Boutique Sale

• Teens to Tots (Mt. Juliet)

• Lollitots (Mt. Juliet)

• Over The Rainbow (Gladeville)

Most of these sales have Facebook pages where you can get all their information

Online sources:








These sites are very easy to use. I’ve personally used and it was simple!

Share This:

Spring Cleaning Your Emotional Closet


Amber, I feel so stuck. I want to do more with my life, but I can’t seem to get over some things from my past. How do I overcome the junk in my closet and move forward? -Jennifer, Lebanon


There’s no better time than spring to think about renewal. Congratulations on your willingness to confront what’s holding you back! Here are the tools you will need in your caddy to clean your emotional closet:

Know You’re Not Alone

There’s the old saying that if we all threw our problems, issues or hangups in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d quickly grab ours back. That’s why it is so important to get out of your own head space and be open to the life challenges of others.

Women are especially great at commiserating, so take advantage of that! Find a women’s group, a Bible study, a mastermind or even your own group of girl friends. LISTEN to what their challenges are. HELP them overcome the demons that are holding them back. In doing so you will not only recognize that you aren’t alone in your inner struggles, you will also start to find solutions to your own problems by finding them for others.

Start a New Conversation with Yourself

Negative self-talk is a powerful thing. This is often prompted by scarring words from previous, significant relationships. If your negative self-talk is disabling, I first recommend seeing a licensed mental health professional. Otherwise, here are three steps that can help you start to change the conversation:

1. Journal your thoughts to uncover patterns.  Note when you are having the negative thoughts, what prompted them, how you felt at the time, who was involved, etc…

2. Speak in affirmations. Change the negative to a positive. Try stating things like “I am a beautiful, desirable woman,”or “I am fully prepared to lead with excellence at work,” or my personal favorite, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”

3. Lead with “I can.” Become a problem solver. Before you ever allow yourself to think, “I can’t”or “I don’t know” consider all the ways you can figure out how to do what scares or intimidates you.

Accept the Pain and Find Its Purpose

While I have always subscribed to this philosophy, I was reminded of it recently at the New Media Expoin Las Vegas. Chris Brogan had an impromptu keynote alongside Lewis Howes, from the School of Greatness. In that session he said these words, which made me want to shout out a good ol’ southern, “Amen!”:

“No great thing comes without pain.”

And it’s the truth. There is not a bit of my amazing life that I can attribute to a pain-free journey.Everything special that I cherish has come with a whopping dose of challenge and heartbreak. However, the amazing thing is that I now have a story–a purpose. I can help others navigate through their stormy seasons or help elevate their sunny seasons by leveraging the junk in their closet. Not to mention I value those “great things” even more so because of what it took to get them.

Take One Step at a Time

No one wants to trip over your proverbial junk; and stuffing it all back down when you feel overwhelmed dealing with it all will only create more unsettled and insecure thoughts. Instead, select one part that you can commit to explore. One significant fear, memory, negative thought or experience, then you can use the cleaning tools mentioned here to begin to tidy up before moving on to the next thing.

Show Grace… to YOURSELF

Finally, understand this is a journey. There is no quick fix. The emotional closet fairies aren’t going to show up and magically clean it out. Only you can work through whatever is holding you back. And there will be times to celebrate victories, as well as times to take a step back and rest. You will make more mistakes and you will figure out more solutions. That’s why it’s important to not to allow yourself excuses, yet it is important to show yourself grace.

And just like the victorious feeling you have when your hallway closet is clutter-free and well-organized, just imagine the freedom and excitement having a freshly spring cleaned emotional closet will afford you for years to come!


SAVE THE DATE – May 17, 2014 for WLM’s Women’s Day Bash

Join WLM’s Amber Hurdle, along with other notable presenters for an afternoon celebrating all aspect’s of a woman’s life. Bring a friend, your sister or daughter to learn about health, beauty, finances, fashion, motherhood and relationships. Lunch will be served and various exhibitors will also be onsite. Re-energize your spirit as we all come together to support, encourage and empower women in our community.

Share This:


Grieving With Hope



Life was good. The kids were grown and the empty nest was even better than we’d imagined. Then came my wife’s terminal illness followed by her treatments, our times of hope, our setbacks then ultimately the death of my best friend. After thirty-three years of happy marriage, two children and three grandchildren, how could it come to this?

Isn’t it amazing how our lives can be forever changed in a moment? It may arrive like a slow moving shadow or suddenlylike a streak of lightening in the night sky. However it appears, it always brings emptiness and emotional pain. We pray believing that God has the power to heal. God may choose not to heal and our loved ones die. We hurt deep within. Sometimes we become angry. We do not understand why this has happened to us and our loved ones. Then the grief begins. Grieving is not an enjoyable experience, but one that is needed and healthy. 

Grieving is OK

One of the most important things to remember when we lose a loved one is that it’s OK to grieve. As a matter of fact it is more than OK, it is normal and healthy. Some make the mistake of not admitting their pain and hurt and carry the deep wound much longer than God wants us to. That’s a big mistake. There’s no set way one should grieve or time frame of how long. But there is a timeline for grief.

Grief has a beginning and there is an end out there somewhere. Does that mean we should forget those loved ones? Absolutely not! Does it mean we should get over losing them? Not necessarily. It does mean that we have to go on living. We may never completely get over the death of a loved one but we can and must learn to live with it. Understanding that there are periods of grief we pass through and recognizing where you might be in the grieving process.

• Initial shock when you lose a loved one is the first period of grief. This could last from a few minutes after your loved one dies, it may last several hours and it could last for days. There are several emotions you might feel. One is false guilt. Another is false blame, blaming other family members, medical personnel and even God himself for not doing more to help or save your loved one.

• The second period of grief begins with our lives becoming disorganized. This could last for several weeks or months. This is the time when your lifestyle is forced to change. Hasty decisions and rash statements of what you will or won’t do should be avoided. Too many people make the mistake of sacrificing future happiness on an unneeded sense of loyalty to the past. Our loved ones wouldn’t want us to remain unhappy and grieve for them the rest of our lives. Reminders of the past have a way of surfacing and there may be some confessing to God and others because of actions and words spoken in shock or anger.

• The third period of grief begins with a conscious decision to reorganize our lives and move on. I remember clearly about nine months after my wife’s passing, on our anniversary I laid two dozen roses on her grave. I didn’t hear an audible voice but God spoke to my heart as I wept at her graveside. He reminded me that just as he had a plan for my wife’s life he also had one for mine. He had more work for me to do and it was time for me to move forward with his will for my life. I walked away from her grave that day leaving some of the pain and sorrow with a change of heart.

There is Help!

The word of God is a tremendous comfort. Deuteronomy 31:9 reminds us that God is with us at all times. We do not have to bear the burden of grief alone according to Psalm 23:4. According to Psalm 68:19, God feels our pain and bears our sorrow. We should also look to our church family for strength and encouragement. When friends offer help or invite us to be part of their lives, we should see this as one way God is seeking to begin filling an empty void in our own lives. Learn to say yes and thank you.

There is Hope!

Hope begins with recognition of where we are with our grief. We must grieve and others cannot tell us how we should do it or how long our grief should last. One thing’s for sure. Our grief must be a means to an end. Our goal should be to allow God to help us put the pieces back together and move forward with our lives. We must ask the Lord to help us and give us the wisdom and strength to press on.

We should take positive steps to move forward. We shouldn’t preserve our homes as monuments to our deceased loved ones. Consider cleaning out closets, rearranging rooms and donating clothes to Goodwill or passing them along to others who will get use and enjoyment from them. You may want to consider downsizing and moving to a home with less upkeep and maintenance.

It’s time to reorganize.

A Final Word

If you’re in the midst of grieving, I have great news. THERE IS HOPE. I’m a few years removed from the loss of my wife. God’s gentle hand has led me forward. He led a fine Christian lady into my life and the sunshine of happiness has returned. I am a living testimony of the fact that you not only can live through this, but you can live beyond it. God’s plan for you is certain and his will is perfect. There is a great life waiting for you just beyond your grief.

Share This:


Cure for the Common Cookie


CookieTodd Davey is the owner of Old Hickory-based Vision Transportation Services, and, while he may know his way around a truck stop, he also knows his way around a kitchen, too. Davey says he’s had a weakness for a good cookie since he was a child, and recently spawned his love for cookies into a part-time business that he hopes to expand this year.

“My mom helped my twin brother and me bake cookies from the time we were about 9 or 10,” he says of his secret recipe that he has been tweaking for—well, quite a few years. “It was just a basic recipe. It was the only thing she would let us make in the kitchen. I changed the recipe as an adult over time as I learned how the quality of ingredients really affected the outcome. I have added a couple things too, so in some ways the entire recipe is new.”

Over the years, Davey says he often made his signature creations for holidays, family get-togethers and church functions, but never really considered doing it as a side business until about a year ago, when his friend and now business partner, Dr. Chris Holloway and his wife Renay, ordered some for a company function.

The cookies were such a big hit that Holloway encouraged him to start selling them commercially. Davey says he and his wife did some more ‘test-marketing’ when they sold their cookies at the Wilson County Fair this past summer with their friend Steve Spencer in his pizza trailer. Another good response. Move over Famous Amos, Mrs. Fields, and Christie Cookie. The Cookie Connoisseurs are now here.

Davey says the exact recipe for his cookies, which include chocolate chip, white chocolate macadamia nut, chocolate chip caramel pecan, chocolate chip/caramel peanut butter chip, and chocolate chip salted caramellatte, is as tightly guarded as the Coca-Cola recipe.

“Even (wife) Amy doesn’t know how I make them,” Davey says. “I finally wrote it down recently just in case something would ever happen to me.”

Davey says the challenge is finding time for the business, since his transport business and Dr. Holloway’s medical practice are both thriving. “I own a business and he is a doctor. We both have families, so the truth is we were already very busy. But the business is kind of pushing us to go forward with it so it is an exciting but challenging time,” Davey says. “We both love cookies so we don’t really consider the cookie business as work.”

So what makes the Cookie Connoisseurs products so delectable? “I believe it starts in large part by using the best quality, all-natural ingredients we can find and not being skimpy on the important stuff, like the chips, etc…” he says. “I would like to believe that the way we do things is what makes the difference. It seems like in this day and age when everything is about cutting costs, not much thought is actually given to the quality of product being offered to the consumer,” Davey says.

“It is almost like the consumer is being told they can take it or leave it. I guess I am old enough to remember real customer service and companies working hard to get and keep customers. Our motto is ‘the cure for the common cookie.’ We hope to never be seen as just another cookie company no matter how small we are or how large we become.”

Davey adds, “Most of our sales are currently for private parties, gatherings, church events, office parties, and so on, but our desire is to be in small local businesses, restaurants, and retail stores where we can supply both fresh-baked, as well as uncooked, packaged for resale products, and where we can establish strong and lasting relationships in the Mt. Juliet and the surrounding areas. Our hope is to grow to a size where we can employ a number of local people and to eventually be shipping product all over the country.”

Davey says his other three partners share his passion for cookies. “Our business meetings can be quite engaging, if you know what I mean. We are all equal shareholders and we all have an opinion about everything, but the wives usually see the practical side of things. My friend Chris and I are the dreamers, so you can imagine how things generally go. Amy is the accountant, and I am the only baker currently, but we all are ultimately the sales force for the company.

Davey notes that they just launched their website and “we are excited about the future and believe that we can one day be a large employer in Wilson County. But we need your help. So go get a dozen or so, and tell your friends about it,” he says you will enjoy every last bite!.

Share This: