I’ve built and designed a fair number of brand new websites here in 2013 so far as part of my new job… figured I would share a few of them here.    To see some of my web work, visit the following sites:

Girl on the Roof
Darrell Webb Band
Bill Hotz & Associates
The Restoration House


Look Up (home demo) - Greg Adkins

Look Up (home demo)

Greg Adkins

Another new song… this one from March of this year.   This song is pretty self explanatory… it’s a reminder to put down the phone and like most of my songs, I wrote this for me.  If it applies to you too, that’s great, but this is a reminder I have needed far too often.

This feels like a different world from the one that I grew up in
We are all connected but we’ve never been more alone
In restaurants and coffee shops or driving out in traffic
Everyone is staring at their phones

Look up
Look me in the eyes
There’s a wide world passing by
Up here in real life
The good parts can’t be seen
Down there on your screen
You’re missing grace and joy and laughter, life, and love
So look up

I know it’s crucial that you instagram your dinner
And the world awaits your daily play by play
But we weren’t made to isolate ourselves we need each other
To be present in the moments of our days

Look up
Look me in the eyes
There’s a wide world passing by
Up here in real life
The good parts can’t be seen
Down there on your screen
You’re missing grace and joy and laughter, life, and love
So look up

The world won’t pass you by if you are gone for just a little while
There is beauty everywhere if you’ll just look around
No status update can compare with real life converation
Is what we’ve given up worth what we’ve found

I am no different, I may even be the worst
I’ve been known to text my wife from just across the room
Once my daughter asked if I loved her more than my phone
Those words cut to my heart and made me swear

To look up… look them in the eyes
There’s a wide world passing by
Up here in real life
The good parts can’t be seen
Down there on my screen
I’m missing grace and joy and laughter, life, and love
And only half of my attention’s not enough
Look up

  • 75 plays

Claire Update
When I first started writing on this blog we had just come home from Taiwan with Claire.  She was two and a half years old.   As I write this now, she’s just a couple of months shy of turning six.   I’m not going to sugar coat things and say that these past 3 years have always been easy.   Sure, on social media we post the highlights… all the cute milestones, all the best photos… I’m sure we’ve made it look like a non stop party.   The reality is like anyone else’s reality… raising kids is challenging, especially kids who have been through as much as Claire has been through.   We’ve had some rough, rough patches when we just felt like complete failures as parents.   We’ve had tantrums.   We’ve had slammed doors.  We’ve had tears in the dark.  
Sure, that’s all part of the story, but the bigger story is that this little girl has changed our world and captured our hearts.  She is a silly girl who loves to laugh.  She loves music and wants it on all the time… usually something poppy (current faves are Taylor Swift and Adele) and she is a wonderful dancer.  Claire has an incredible natural talent for gymnastics and tumbling… if you’ve been around her at all I’m sure she has shown you her cartwheels.   Claire wakes up in a great mood 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  This kid bounces out of bed ready to go with a smile on her face.  Coincidentally, mornings are really the only times anymore when we’re reminded that she is indeed adopted.   
The whole adoption process / journey was such a big part of our lives for so long and of course we still love to follow other families on their adoption journeys but for us, that feels like a distant memory.  It just isn’t something we think about very often anymore.   There’s no more adopted or not adopted… red hair or black hair… just our kids.   A lot of adoptive parents say it felt like that right from the start and on a surface level I guess that’s true but the reality for me is that it took awhile to really get to where that wasn’t a part of my daily consciousness.   
So there’s a quick update.  There have certainly been bumps in the road but overall, Claire is a normal, happy, giggly, goofy, sometimes irrationally emotional 5 year old little girl…. and she’s got her daddy wrapped completely around her little fingers.  

Claire Update

When I first started writing on this blog we had just come home from Taiwan with Claire.  She was two and a half years old.   As I write this now, she’s just a couple of months shy of turning six.   

I’m not going to sugar coat things and say that these past 3 years have always been easy.   Sure, on social media we post the highlights… all the cute milestones, all the best photos… I’m sure we’ve made it look like a non stop party.   The reality is like anyone else’s reality… raising kids is challenging, especially kids who have been through as much as Claire has been through.   We’ve had some rough, rough patches when we just felt like complete failures as parents.   We’ve had tantrums.   We’ve had slammed doors.  We’ve had tears in the dark.  

Sure, that’s all part of the story, but the bigger story is that this little girl has changed our world and captured our hearts.  She is a silly girl who loves to laugh.  She loves music and wants it on all the time… usually something poppy (current faves are Taylor Swift and Adele) and she is a wonderful dancer.  Claire has an incredible natural talent for gymnastics and tumbling… if you’ve been around her at all I’m sure she has shown you her cartwheels.   Claire wakes up in a great mood 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  This kid bounces out of bed ready to go with a smile on her face.  Coincidentally, mornings are really the only times anymore when we’re reminded that she is indeed adopted.   

The whole adoption process / journey was such a big part of our lives for so long and of course we still love to follow other families on their adoption journeys but for us, that feels like a distant memory.  It just isn’t something we think about very often anymore.   There’s no more adopted or not adopted… red hair or black hair… just our kids.   A lot of adoptive parents say it felt like that right from the start and on a surface level I guess that’s true but the reality for me is that it took awhile to really get to where that wasn’t a part of my daily consciousness.   

So there’s a quick update.  There have certainly been bumps in the road but overall, Claire is a normal, happy, giggly, goofy, sometimes irrationally emotional 5 year old little girl…. and she’s got her daddy wrapped completely around her little fingers.  


Because of Your Love - Live at Powell Church

Because of Your Love

Live at Powell Church

Two weeks ago I had the opportunity to lead Sunday morning worship at Powell Church in North Knoxville.  I was on staff at Powell from 2006-2010 and they have been gracious in allowing me to come back to visit a few times in the years since then.  I have a lot of good friends on the worship team out there and I always enjoy a chance to make music with them again.  

For this Sunday, I tried something I never really had quite done before and that is replacing the normal sound (coldplay-esque-worship-soft-rock) with a more country sound.  I’ve done bluegrass a LOT over the years, but I wanted to do something that more like country radio.   Basically, a southern rock band with fiddle and pedal steel.   So, that’s what we did.  It worked surprisingly well and was the most fun I’ve had leading music in quite awhile.   Here’s just a quick rough mix of one of the songs we led… this is a Paul Baloche song called “Because of Your Love”. 

  • Drums - Adam Adkins
  • Bass - Rob Mason
  • Hammond B3 Organ - Adam Whipple
  • Acoustic Guitar / Vocals - Greg Adkins
  • Pedal Steel Guitar - Ronnie Duckworth
  • Fiddle - Cody Bauer
  • Rhythm Electric Guitar - Doug Bowling
  • Lead Electric Guitar - Chris Johnson
  • Harmony Vocals - Kim Mason
  • Harmony Vocals - Kyler Roberts
  • 29 plays

Since the beginning of my long blogging sabbatical (I’m just going to call it that because it sounds deep and intentional… neither are true) a lot of fun things have happened.  One of the highlights of the past year or so for me was the Tribute to Rich Mullins Concert I helped to put together with a bunch of my closest friends.   Rich’s music has meant an awful lot to me over the years and this past September was the 15th anniversary of his passing.   To mark the occasion we put together a fantastic band of Knoxville’s best players (including a string section, a choir, and the best hammered dulcimer player I’ve ever heard, Steven Humphries from Chattanooga) to perform a whole evening of Rich’s best known songs.   

If you want to see the whole show, it’s online over at www.richmullinstribute.com.  The song I’ve included above is “My Deliverer” with Bill Wolf on lead vocals.   


Since I last was writing regularly on this blog, a lot has changed for me, especially professionally.   When we last met, I was a full time Creative Arts Pastor, a life I was fully immersed in for almost 15 years.   As of January 1st, and for the first time since I was 23 years old, I am not employed by a church.   I am now working as the Director of Web Services for Girl on the Roof, a marketing firm here in Knoxville. I design websites, manage social media campaigns, and work with clients among other things. It’s been a pretty drastic change, but I am really loving it.  I’ve been designing websites as a hobby for years and it’s nice to get to stretch my legs doing something creative in a totally different field. 

At some point in the near future, I intend to write a post about the reasons why I was ready to leave full time paid ministry (there are many). I don’t regret one second I ever spent doing it… I really and truly loved my years working in churches and I do miss parts of it. However, now that I am technically free on Sundays, I have really been enjoying that freedom. I’ve been able to visit a few churches that I’ve been meaning to check out… I’ve been able to sit in with a few different worship teams in the area which has been a blast… and yes, I might have even slept in once or twice. Bedside Baptist was every bit as wonderful as I had heard it would be.  I’ve also been able to just attend church with my family a few times and I am hoping to do a LOT more of that in the coming months (I’m taking the summer off from music completely).   

Being away from full time music ministry has also allowed me to revisit songwriting a little bit (see my last post) and that’s a part of my life I neglected for a bit longer than I meant to these past few years.  I’m glad to be back doing it… everyone needs a hobby.   

As for the future of this blog, I really don’t know.  I feel a little bit liberated these days, not having to write under the fear of “what will they think if I say that” but I’m also not just wanting to turn this into a place where I rant and vent about things that annoy me.   The world has enough of that.   

All that to say, stay tuned… something is coming, I’m just not sure what.  


Fighting a War

After almost 6 years of not really writing any songs at all, I have recently started writing a little.   I’m nowhere near where I used to be as far as being prolific, but hey, it’s a start.  This song is called “Fighting a War” and that’s the incredibly talented Adam Whipple back there on the piano.  


Is there anyone still out there?    I would really like to get back to writing here if I can find the time…  Facebook is a lousy replacement for blogs even though it has almost completely killed blogs for part time bloggers… all that is left of the blogosphere is full time hipster bloggers and mommy blogs it seems (not that there’s anything wrong with that!) 


Panoramic View of Kaohsiung City, Taiwan
Taken from the Splendor Hotel, 56th floor.

Panoramic View of Kaohsiung City, Taiwan

Taken from the Splendor Hotel, 56th floor.


Super Family Strikes Back


Haven’t been blogging much this year and I can’t say that anyone has been too bothered by that.  I haven’t been any busier than usual… just haven’t been in the mood to put things online I guess.    I’m certainly not alone… none of my many friends who used to blog do so anymore.   Twitter and Facebook have pretty much killed all but the most serious blogs.    I’m not sure I like that but I don’t think there’s any going back.   

I am hoping to be back to blogging though in June.  My family will be traveling to Taiwan for the entire month of and we will be blogging the trip somewhat extensively, both for your enjoyment and also just as a method of journaling our travels.   Connor will play a big part in that… he’s now armed with his own video camera and has plans for his own video updates… we’ll see how that goes.   We probably won’t be blogging here but instead on a new blog we will setup just for the trip.   I’ll post a link when it gets closer to time. 


Appalledogetics #9


Papaw’s Trains


Christmas - 1976


Me and my Mom - Autumn, 1976