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Huckabirds teach children life lessons from a grandmother to her grandkids

Judy Huckaby wanted to write 12 children's books to teach her grandchildren life lessons. Health challenges made her stop after two.

LOUISVILLE, Tenn. — A Blount County grandmother who spent decades teaching and learning as a professional counselor wrote children's books about what makes a person successful. 

The question Judy Huckaby asked during her years as a counselor: "What helps people live well?" 

In that search, she found 10 tools people have when they live well. Huckaby said she wrote 12 chapters of a book for adults and planned to publish it, but then her grandchildren were born. 

"I have twin granddaughters," Huckaby said. "They were struggling with comparison." 

So, she wrote her first children's book: 'The Huckabirds Learn About Self-Worth.'

"Our last name is Huckaby, so I thought why not the Huckabirds," Huckaby said. 

Judy Huckaby wrote and illustrated the books herself. Friesen Press published them. They're available on Amazon and at Neighborly Books in Blount County. 

The books have two children's stories and a section for parents at the end. 

Huckaby and her husband have 4 grandchildren, with a fifth on the way. She said she wants them to learn these lessons as they get older. 

"I have pulmonary fibrosis and that's not going to go away," Huckaby said. "At some point it will end my life." 

Huckaby is in hospice care and said she has days, weeks or months to live. She needs help breathing because her lungs can't clear carbon dioxide as they should. 

Because of her health, she hasn't been able to write the other 10 books she would like. 

"Right now, there are two that I hope and pray would be helpful to people," Huckaby said. "God makes everyone special and unique. He hopes we will not compare, but instead celebrate our differences." 

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