Homemaker of the Year named

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By Calen McKinney



A group of friends who are always there, in good times and bad. That's how she describes her close-knit homemaker club.

And her network of homemaker friends recently honored her for her service to them.

Carolyn Morris was recently named this year's Homemaker of the Year.

Morris, 50, originally from Marion County, is a secretary/office manager at the Taylor County Extension Office. As office manager, she manages the office's finances and works with extension agents to make sure they have everything they need to do their jobs.

When off the clock, Morris says she enjoys spending time with a group of close friends, the Modern Day Homemakers club. She is the only charter member remaining since the club was organized in 1985.

"My homemaker club is probably my best friends, some of them," she said. "I know if I needed something, they will be there for me."

Morris said the group spends fellowship time together, performs community service and learns about a variety of topics, from environmental issues to making various items. Morris serves as a co-chair for the homemaker's environmental committee.

"I love the environment," she said. "That's kinda one of my passions."

Community service is central to the Modern Day Homemakers club, she said, from making wheelchair caddies for local nursing homes to providing backpacks full of school supplies for children.

Morris said she first learned about homemakers clubs when she began working at the extension office. She said she had just moved to Taylor County and wanted to meet new people. Many years later, Morris said, she doesn't know what she would do without the group.

"They're just a backbone to my life," she said. "I can't imagine not having them in my life."

Morris said she uses her homemaker club as an outlet, and her family understands how important the group is to her.

"It's been a big part of my life," she said. "I truly believe that everybody has to have something."

Homemaker groups are predominately female, Morris said, though men are welcome to become members. Of all the local clubs, there is only one male member. But that doesn't mean men don't help the homemakers, Morris said.

" ... Our husbands are very supportive when it comes to projects we do."

Morris said receiving the Homemaker of the Year award at a recent meeting of the county's Homemaker Council was surprising.

"I was humbled," she said. "I was shocked. I wasn't expecting it at all. I did not know it until the night they presented the award."

Morris said she asked who had won the award and was told another member of her group had received the honor.

This year's Homemaker of the Year award winner was chosen a bit differently than in years past.

Donna Kerr, president of the Taylor County Extension Homemakers, said each of the community's clubs typically nominate a member for the award and a winner is chosen from those nominations.

This year, she said, the Homemaker Council nominated the winner. Kerr said Morris stood out to several Council members as a potential winner.

"Probably one of the best deserved ones to get it," she said. "She's the type of person, if she's in something, she's in it."

Morris said being a homemaker is a passion, not another meeting on her calendar.

"It's not something I have to do," she said. "It's something I want to do."

For those who believe being a homemaker is all about baking and cleaning, Morris says that's just simply not the case.

"It's not just about 'homemaking'. It's just a really good group of women to work with," she said. "It's not a cooking, cleaning type homemakers. It's more a fellowship to grow."

Morris said she considers the group as a support system.

"We're not blood sisters, but we're like sisters to each other."

In her spare time, Morris said, she enjoys baking, cross-stitching, needle work, crocheting and has recently learned tatting. She said she enjoys making handmade gifts for friends and family.

Morris is married to Steve Morris, director of plant maintenance at Campbellsville University. The Morrises have two children, Aimee and Shane.

Modern Day Homemakers, the largest homemaker club in Taylor County, meets the first Monday of every month at 6:30 p.m. at the extension office. Morris said new members are welcome.

For more information about Taylor County's homemaker clubs, call 465-4511.