5 Things Appalachia

5 Things



1. There was a major upset in the chicken coop a few weeks ago…Bo the rooster passed away. He wasn’t sick, but he was getting up in years. It didn’t take Chitter long to rectify the roosterless chicken coop issue. We now have a young spry rooster named Raxter.

tire on woodpile

2. The Deer Hunter seen someone using a tire to hold their wood on the chopping block sometime back, but didn’t have any extra tires hanging around to try it. The other day he noticed some tires in the back of a buddy’s truck and ask if he could have one since they were headed for the dump. The tire really works—it saves chasing the wood all over the woodlot.

3. The famed Brasstown Carvers showed up under our Christmas tree. Chitter has a real knack for finding the old carvings and bringing them back to Brasstown where they first made their appearance in the world. She gifted me a Glenn Brown carving (the larger one) and a Katie Dockery carving. I really love them both!

4. One of the greatest guitar players, and one of my all time favorite singers, passed away recently. A few days after he died I woke up with him singing “Me and My Guitar” in my head. Go here to hear the song.

winter field

5. The winter landscape of Brasstown has it’s own special beauty.


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  • Reply
    Kevin Ledford
    January 31, 2021 at 2:04 pm

    The two geese from the Folk School. I’m pretty sure those were carved by Glenn Brown, one of the Brasstown carvers. The reason I know he was my grandpa. I watched him from the day I was born, him and his wife Hope Brown carve from buckeye, walnut, holly, apple, and many other beautiful woods. With a pocket knife and sandpaper they created works of art. I went with them on Fridays, to the John C. Campbell folk school, to sell the carvings for the week. Then go to Murphy N.C. to the A&P to get the groceries for the week. We also went to the farmers exchange to get fees for the cows and chickens. Then back to the old house on Pine Log and it would start over again. Grandpa could use a band saw like a master, I can still hear it ringing as he made the cuts for blocks to carve for the next week. Grandpa in his straight back chair, and grandma in her little rocker, would start whittlin on Monday because Sunday was the Lord’s day. They have pieces all over the world now and I saw them carve from the mountains of Germany to the plains of Africa. The northern parts of Main to the deserts or Nevada and all over. I was blessed to have them in my life. Now they are both with God and they worry no more for now they are with Jesus, I’ll miss them from now on. So if you have a carving and it’s marked GB or HB you have a piece of treasure from the hands of two master carvers.

    • Reply
      January 31, 2021 at 6:56 pm

      Kevin-thank you for the comment! Your grandparents were precious to the whole community of Brasstown! One of the geese is one of your grandfather’s he did such nice work as did your grandmother Hope!

  • Reply
    Luke Mooneyham
    January 21, 2021 at 11:31 pm

    I enjoy your writing and your Youtube channel. Am replying here acause I didn’t know how to reply to Youtube comments. You mentioned an old saying… happy as a dead pig in the sunshine…. my father used to say “grinning like a dead pig in the sunshine’ I would like to share his explanation if I had a place to send a word file. I think it probably works for “happpy” also.

  • Reply
    January 14, 2021 at 1:18 pm

    What a handsome rooster! In the winter I often see buildings and other things hidden by the foliage.

  • Reply
    January 14, 2021 at 12:08 pm

    That is a beautiful rooster!! I must say he has a commanding stare, like he is saying “all right everybody listen up here.” Looks like the hen house will be safe with him on guard. That tire for the chopping of wood is a great idea and I sure do remember tires being used for raised flower beds.
    I must say years ago I could hardly wait for winter to get over. Loved to have snow on Christmas day and then be gone. When I mentioned my feelings to a dear friend, she said, “you are missing all the beauty in the form of the trees and the branches of shrubs.” Later, I thought about that and started to really look at natures landscape. When everything drops it leaves and stands tall you can see the most absolutely beautiful forms of trees and shrubs. I have been driving down a road and come across a stunning specimen of a tree. Makes me want to paint one but I doubt I could capture its beauty.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    January 14, 2021 at 11:53 am

    Mr Raxter certainly is a regal specimen of rooster-hood, and the girls in his domain are all happy!
    I love our landscape resting posture! One day, in the not too far future, we will wake up in a riot of green soon followed by a rainbow of colors as everything starts growing and blooming! it is the most beautiful sight in the world!
    The Deer Hunter pays close attention to things, if there is a new trick…he finds it!

  • Reply
    Larry Ball
    January 14, 2021 at 11:12 am

    Shocking to learn Tony Rice died on Christmas Day while making his morning coffee. RIP Tony you were one of the all time great guitarist. Prayers up for his family and friends.

  • Reply
    January 14, 2021 at 10:26 am

    It never ceases to amaze me all the beautiful colors chosen by our creator for everything on this planet. He blessed many creatures with dull colors so they might hide from predators. Baxter has such bold colors, and he reminds me so much of so many of the noisy strutting roosters I saw growing up. I hate to admit a rooster crowing was the most hated sound I could hear on my Grandpa’s farm. Early to rise was Grandpa’s motto, so if those ole roosters did not wake you up, then that good natured man would lightly sprinkle water on your face.

    Chopping wood is not for the faint of heart, and is in fact one of those things that becomes more difficult with age. I have a 79 year old cousin that takes all Summer to chop as much wood as he used to chop in a week. He probably saves a bundle in the Winter, so he keeps chopping thus continuing to get that cardiac workout needed by so many. The Deer Hunter is also saving a fortune in gym memberships where you pay to get on machines and pretend to be working. I still see those tires used for small raised flower beds on drives in the country. They made use of something we now pay to let a dealer dispose of. Another great post, Miss Tipper.

  • Reply
    January 14, 2021 at 9:31 am

    I have split a lot of wood in my time, but this is the first time I ever saw or heard of the tire trick. My days of cutting or splitting wood and a lot of other things are over now, I have several bad disc in my back and can not stand for long and the doctors don’t think surgery would help.

    I must be an older person ( more mature) now because Raxter also looks like a game rooster to me. I mean for this sentence to be funny. I heard this the other day, older people don’t have gray hair, it is called mature blond!

    • Reply
      January 14, 2021 at 9:40 am

      Randy-Raxter does look like a game chicken! He’s actually a Welsumer breed which is supposed to be a docile chicken. I sure hope so. The first rooster we had was a huge game rooster named Rex and he was mean! We finally gave him to one of Matt’s friends up in Junuluska 🙂

      • Reply
        January 14, 2021 at 1:17 pm

        Tipper, we had a game rooster when I was about 5 years old, he and the chickens would be loose in the yard and every time I came out to play he would flog me. After a couple of times of doing this, daddy caught him and took him to the chopping block. He sure made some good chicken and dumplings! Mother separated the meat from her dumplings so we may not have ate him.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    January 14, 2021 at 8:56 am

    There is a lot of good therapy in a wood pile. I like to split wood. It is a great way to get some value out of a mad spell that would otherwise be judt a big problem.

    About the tire, I can remember at one time people used them to make a raised bed planter in tbe yard. They were cut and rolled somehow so they didn’t look like tires. And most of them were painted. I have not seen one in a very long while. Kinda like the pink yard flamingos that used to be around.

    In the East, winter let us see the bones of the land that summer puts clothes on. And that includes, as your picture shows, the bones of the trees to, the branch patterns of the hardwood trees. They have their own kind of beauty, like black lace until.snow falls or hoarfrost forms, then they are black and white lace.

    • Reply
      January 14, 2021 at 8:56 am

      Ron-My Granny Gazzie had those tire planters 🙂 Makes me wonder now who made them for her.

  • Reply
    Catherine Spence
    January 14, 2021 at 8:14 am

    Love the view around your place! My husband (the Musician) idolized Tony Rice’s guitar picking and tries to emulate him whenever he can.

    Raxter’s a good looking dude. May your hens be safe from predators when he’s around!

  • Reply
    Sanford McKinney Jr
    January 14, 2021 at 7:59 am

    Raxter is a fine looking rooster! Raxter looks to have some of what the older people used to call “game chicken” in his bloodline? I only say that because of the beautiful colors he possesses. The four other posts were wonderful, also.
    Thank you.

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    January 14, 2021 at 7:14 am

    Love the tire trick but thank heavens I don’t have to chop wood anymore. RIP Bo.

    • Reply
      Margie Goldstein
      January 14, 2021 at 8:38 am

      Heeeeeere, Raxter, you adorable, big, fluffy, proud boy! Why you’re as pretty as a rooster with his socks on!!! RIP ole man rooster. The carvings are beautiful and I’m sure will bring you lots of joy through your years. One day you’ll say “your mommy got me these and they’re dear to my heart!” The Pressleys are what I call good people! God bless you all. I’m sorry to hear of your beloved musician’s passing. God bless all! Keep the faith and put on your full armor to withstand a bitter and desperate enemy while he’s pushed back and denied.

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