Jackie Watts sings with The Heaven Seekers
by Margaret Anderson
Special to The Star
May 22, 2013 | 1103 views |  0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Jackie Watts and her husband, Greg, have been married 34 years. For one third of their marriage – 24 years – they have sung in a gospel trio, the Heaven Seekers, with Greg’s sister, Wanda Turner.

They sing for churches, organizations and special events.

“We’re a good group because we’re family, and it’s easier to work things out better when you’re family,” said Jackie. “Usually, we agree on everything, but when we don’t it’s usually Greg that makes the final decision.”

Jackie sings lead most of the time.

Her favorite song is “I’m In A Place Called Heaven.” She lost her father, and Greg and Wanda lost their father, around the time the song came out.

“The first time I heard it, I knew we had to sing it,” said Jackie. “It’s helped us all three. We were all so down after losing our dads. A lot of people like to hear us sing it and have requested it.”

Jackie’s father, Grady Barnette, who lived in Cartersville, Ga., was on his way to visit her on Christmas Eve in 2005 when he was killed in an automobile accident. Her mother, Betty, died of a blood disease in 1997.

Jackie was born in Cartersville and graduated from Cass High School there. She and Greg met one night when her parents insisted she go with them to a CB jamboree at the National Guard Armory.

“They made me go with them,” Jackie said. “I didn’t want to go but they didn’t want me to stay home by myself.”

Greg was helping with one of the games when they truck up a conversation. That was on Sept. 26, 1978. They married three months later, on Dec. 21.

Jackie worked at Garcy 32 ½ years. “I did a little bit of everything,” she said. “I built showcases, packed parts and shipped them out and put things together”

When it closed, she took English and math classes at Gadsden Community College in Centre.

“I’d been out of school for 35 years, and I wanted to take these courses to freshen up,” she said. “It helped me improve on some of the things I had forgotten.”

She is now a substitute worker in school lunchrooms in Piedmont, Calhoun County and Cherokee County.

Greg works at Garcy. They are members of the First Baptist Church. They have a son, Jeromy, who lives in Douglasville, near Albertville, with his wife, Ashley. Jermony and Ashley have four children -- Rhian, Reese, Hunter and Braylon.

Jackie enjoys making baby quilts. About two years ago, she and Greg began planting a vegetable garden.

“We both like vegetables and it saves a lot of money,” she said. “We have a lot of sweet pepper and banana pepper because we both like to eat stuffed peppers.”

Jackie said she could cook most anything she wanted from an early age. She was one of five girls and they were taught to cook and clean early on. She cooks most weekdays, but on weekends she and Greg usually eat out. She likes to cook the following dishes for her family, church events and friends.

Contact Margaret at pollya922@gmail.com.


Banana Split Dessert

2 servings, 3 points each
6 whole low fat graham
1 small box sugar free, fat free banana cream
Pudding mix
½ cup fat free sour cream
8 oz. fat free Cool Whip
20 oz. crushed can pineapple, in juice
3 large bananas, sliced
12 cherries
¼ c. chopped nuts

Place crackers in bottom of a 9x13 pan. Set aside. Mix pudding mix, sour cream and undrained pineapple together. Fold in Cool Whip. Gently stir in bananas. Spoon on top of crackers and garnish with cherries and nuts. Refrigerate before serving.

Stove Top Turkey Bake 8 servings, 6 points each

1 2/3 c. hot water
6 oz. stove top stuffing mix
4 c. chopped turkey breasts
14 oz. broccoli florets, thawed and drained
10 ¾ can reduced fat cream of chicken soup
¾ c. water
1 c. low fat cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add hot water to the stuffing mix and set aside. Mix turkey and broccoli in a 13x9 pan. Combine remaining ingredients and pour over turkey mixture. Top with the stuffing mix. Bake 30 minutes or until heated through.

Crock Pot Taco Soup 8 servings, 4 points each

1 lb. extra lean ground beef
1 cup chopped onions
16 oz. can pinto beans
15 oz. can kidney beans
1 c. frozen corn
2 c. water
2 14 ½ cans diced tomatoes
4 oz. diced chilies
1 pkg. taco seasoning

Brown ground beef and drain well. Add all ingredient to crock pot and cook on low for 8 hours.

Strawberry Cloud Pie

2 c. Fiber One cereal
4 T. reduced fat margarine, melted
2 small pkgs. sugar free strawberry jello
1 1/2 c. Cool Whip

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Crush cereal in a food processor or blender Mix with margarine and press into a pie pan. Bake 10 minutes and set aside. Dissolve jello in 2 cups of  boiling water Add 1 cup cold water. Refrigerate for 1 1/2 hours just until jiggly, not set. Mix with a mixer. Mix in the Cool

Whip, pour into the crust and refrigerate until firm.
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Jackie Watts sings with The Heaven Seekers by Margaret Anderson
Special to The Star

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