I’m Back

October 23rd, 2010

This is Ms. Garrrettt back at it again. After the passing away of my father (RIP) I tried to get back on track but I couldn’t. Slowly but surely I got it together. Now I’m starting to blog again. When life strikes suddenly alot of people don’t know how to handle certain situations or they have to jump on board to handle it. Well I’m one of those people that had to jump on board because I had to for my mother’s sake. I had to be the strong child for my mother to keep her focus and busy. Now 7 months after, the family has been able to cope and move forward but we still have our days of sadness… Dad was truly our Rock.

Have you ever thought how life would be without your parents? Well my friends its life and its real. I never imagine that I would lose a parent. I suggest you cherish every moment you can with your parents. Because without them there is no us.

For those of you that have no contact with your parents for whatever reasons I suggest you put it aside rekindle or start a relationship. I wouldn’t want you to feel bad about not having the last words with your parents when they exist this world. I feel blessed that I was right by my father’s side the whole time. We had our laughs, we had our what to do list afterwards, we had our last words… I love you and I will always cherish that.

Ms. Garrrettt!

It Has Been a Minute

March 23rd, 2010

Hello Blog Readers,

My trip to Mississippi was an experience I will never forgot. I have not blog sense I’ve been home. The reason why is that I came home to find out my dad has liver cancer that has spreaded to his lungs and kidneys. Yall, its not looking good at all. Then we had a little hope to slow down the spreading with chomo but on Friday the doctors told my family and I that there is nothing they can do. Wow! What a kick in the stomache for me. My relationship with my dad has been so wonderful from my childhood years to my adults years. I’m thinking that I’m in denial because of course you believe that your parents will be here forever. I remember last October me and my dad took a motorcycle class because we were going to purchase some bikes to ride together. Well that will not happen now and my world has been torn to pieces.

Although my mom is holding up better than I am. I try to stay strong and focus because of her and my dad. He wants me to continue school and work my jobs but it is so hard to do so. All I think about is will the family be able to function without him. He’s been our rock for so long I never would have imagine this at all.

I want to apologize for not blogging but my mind hasn’t been into it. He’s home now under hospice care. I decided to blog today and try to get some things off my mind. Thank you for the shoulder.

I love you Pops!

Ms. Garrrettt!

Bay St. Louis – The Finale

March 12th, 2010




The house is completed our job here in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi is done. Way to go TEAM! Congratulations to the Ladner Family that will be moving into the house we helped build with Habitat For Humanity. We have definitely made a difference in making a family life livable again.

We are off to the airport heading back to Michigan. My TEAM and I would like to thank all our sponsors, Habitat For Humanity, Lutheran Episcopal Services in Mississippi and a special thanks our school University of Detroit Mercy, you all Rock!

All pictures coming soon or view our facebook page at:

Ms. Garrrettt!

Bay St. Louis – Whining Down

March 12th, 2010




I didn’t get a chance to blog yesterday to keep yall up-to-date on our status. We were busy all day. Well, pretty much the house is almost completed for what we’re doing as builders. The next is the drywall process and then the outer ground area, the sidewalk and driveway pavement and landscape. The group did more painting and caulking. Brian, Amy and Melissa Kin still worked on the roof trimmings. The rain was heavy the night before so puddles of mudd was every where. I stayed in one spot because I almost slipped in the mudd… I couldn’t have that happen. The weather eventually got better and it was hott! The results on the house is looking real good.

The evening came and we drove one hour to New Orleans. We wanted to check out the areas of which Katrina hit and tour Bourbon St. All I’m going to say about that is OMG!

Ms. Garrrettt!

Bay St. Louis – Another Work Day Bites the Dust

March 10th, 2010




Today Lindsey, Jeanine, Melissa and Amy did caulking inside the house, sweeping up the debry from the cut up wood. Chuck, Rashawn and I painted wood sticks to create some type of frame. Paint was all over the place. The windows and doors frames were put in. Rashawn assisted with the ventilation part for the washer and dryer area. I assisted a little with the ventilation/ductwork for the air condition. The young ladies sorted through the wood to see what needed to be trashed or kept. I circled the house picking up the plumbing, the siding and the cooling/heating paper and plastic wrappers and boxes all over the site. Melissa Kin, Amy and Brian continued to work on the outside of the house pertaining to the roof trimming. The house is coming along really good.

Rachel, Jeanine, Melissa and Lindsey fell in love with the neighbor dogs across from the house we are building. The neighbor have three dogs and one cat. The dogs were friendly and cute. I believe they were a mix of chiwawa and dodson. We spoke with the neighbor to find out if she had been living in the area when hurricane Katrina took place, she stated, “She has lived in Mississippi all her life, this was home”. The house had been destroyed, with nothing to save the family had no other choice but to leave Mississippi. The family moved to Florida but not for long. The last destination was Atlanta where they lived for two years with her parents. Her parents had moved out of Mississippi due to the hurricane damages as well. Then a job apportunity came available for her husband and they moved back to Mississippi and was able to obtain one of the Habitat for Humanities homes.

Upon leaving the building site for the day we stopped by the post office to mail out post cards for the kind donors who helped sponsored to make this experience possible. We came back to the camp grounds and played two games of basketball, the girls against the guys. That was so fun all of us was out of breath and sweaty. In the end, the guys won. SO WHAT! We were kicking their tails at first. Yes they cheated, CHUCK! Then the group played taboo and was the loudest university in the room. I believe we are bonding! AWWWWW!

Ms. Garrrettt!

Bay St. Louis – Volunteering Day 2

March 9th, 2010

img_0499Today was cloudy and rainy. We could have stayed in Michigan for the type of weather we’re getting. But over all it was a productive day. We started putting plywood on the roof today. I wish I could upload pictures but I’m getting an error message. I will at a later date so check back. Some of us was on the roof top nailing and placing the plywood in the right position. Of course not me, I tried to do some but the height was a little to much for me. I applaud Melissa Kin she was up there like the men pounding away and walking on the roof like it was the cement ground. Just my luck I would have slip off. The other Melissa was a trooper as well. Chuck, Brian and ReShawn was on the roof like they was the contracters. ReShawn was having a blast! Jeanine, Amy and I was the only three that was scared to get on the roof.

Tomorrow we start the sidings on the house.

We’ve made two trips to Sonic, three trips to Walmart, we plays cards, ate at a restaurant that was not so good and I blog. That’s how our evening goes! Woot! Woot!

Ms. Garrrettt!

Bay St. Louis – Volunteering Day 1

March 9th, 2010

Today we started at sunrise. Breakfast was at 6:30am then we made brown bag lunches for our one hour lunch later in the afternoon. The group arrived at Creekside subdivision to start our first day of building two homes. Chuck the chaffauer and I almost got us lost, ok I didn’t pay attention to the directions. LOL. We hammered, hammered and hammered all the wood we could possibly find around the two homes that we were constructing. We nailed the wood together and made walls, window & door frames. If you didn’t know, like I didn’t that there is a technique to placing the nail in the wood slightly slanted then hammering the nail in the wood for an easy hit. We placed the walls on the cement foundation, put up plywood on the wall frames and put a roof on one of the homes. This was fun but our fingers, hands and arms were in pain due to muscles that we have not used before especially to hammer nails into wood frames. This was definitely an all day experience and we are looking forward to continue tomorrow.

Ms. Garrrettt!

Bay St. Louis – Traveling Through The States

March 8th, 2010

Well, we left Detroit to Memphis on Saturday, March 6th with a three hour layover before headed to Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. Nothing much was going on while waiting to depart from Memphis. I will say, our group entered as strangers, but will leave as friends. One excitement that chuckled the whole group was when one of the group members was approached by the same gender, a flight attendant. I won’t tell the name but all I’m saying, meeting new people same gender or not could be an incentive sometimes. LOL. Arrived at Bay St. Louis/Gulf Port stayed at the Days Inn over night. The weather was just like Michigan, COLD! (http://blogs.udmercy.edu/asb)

Ms. Garrrettt!

Bay St. Louis, Mississippi Volunteers

March 7th, 2010

Bay St. Louis Group

Hello everyone! I’m Hawanya Garrett. I will be your blogger for the Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. There are a total of ten volunteers in my group.


Melissa Kin – freshman
Melissa Zuteck – freshman
ReShawn Wilder – freshman
Rachel Clippard – freshman
Lindsey Parks – freshman
Brian Chang – Sophomore
Chuck Hokett – CHARLES THE CHAFFAUER (Audio visual)
Jeanine Connell – freshman
Amy Meldrum – freshman
(ME) Hawanya Garrett – Senior

Our mission is to help build homes from the Katrina hurricane over four years ago in Bay St. Louis. We have joined with Habitat for Humanity to help out the people of Bay St. Louis, building one life at a time.

Ms. Garrrettt!

It Takes All Of Us

February 25th, 2010

I recently signed up to become a volunteer at The Reading Corps with the Detroit Emergency Finance Manager, Robert Bobb.  This program is to empower children in the Detroit Public Schools system to be successful and help a child learn to  read.  (http://www.detroit.k12.mi.us/readingcorps/). 

I remember my years of growing up through out my elementary and my middle school years of being ashame to read.  I didn’t like to read out loud in the classes, I didn’t like to read a book for an English class, to give an oral report.  I scored low in reading on every MEAP test that I took.  For me the MEAP test was taken back in the 80’s.  Ooops I’m telling my age.  LOL.  I was always afraid to read in class out loud because I would stumble over my words.  Mainly because I didn’t know how to pronounce them correctly, being afraid that the class would laugh so I never would volunteer to read. 

Another example of being afraid to read I can recall is when my third grade teacher separated the “smart” kids from the “not so smart” kids from seating together.  Just imagine how that made a child feel.  Yep I was classified as the “not so smart” kid that sat on the opposite side of the “smart” kids.  I’ve never forgot that because that teacher singled us out. 

So as I put myself into the children shoes at DPS because I was once there.  I want to help them over come being afraid to read and to read out loud.  Robert Bobb as come to the rescue of the children, as a leader he has guided the city of Detroit to stand by his side all the way.  He has encourage others like myself to step up and show the children a different path for success. 

As Adults, Professors & Teachers, Mentors, Parents and Volunteers we CAN make a difference for the children.  IT TAKES ALL OF US!

If you have any questions please ask, post a comment or email me at garretht@udmercy.edu

 Ms. Garrrettt!