Appalachia Through My Eyes – Teenagers

My life in appalachia Light - Teenagers

He’s going to toss me out like yesterday’s meatloaf. I just keep putting my hand in the fire. If you fool me once it’s your fault if you fool me twice its my fault.

OK if that’s what you tell yourself to sleep at night. Daily walking close to thee. I can’t be still or quiet.

I really don’t care the world can know. I got something in my eye and I just drove it right down in there too.

Dear Lord let it be. Look at me in the mirror.

You’re such a nut.

I want to do anything else but my homework. I said it’s a tornado.

You’re distracting me from my homework and you made me lose my pencil.

Looser you are. I’m going to come up there and use my elbow as a screwdriver. I will make you eat week old jelly.


No I’m not crazy. Above is the conversation I was forced to endure from Chatter and Chitter while I was wishing they would be quiet. I just started typing what they were saying since they ignored my pleas for silence.

Also thrown in were talk of English 111, Gavin DeGraw, Bibles, Pap, fiddle practice, and Honors Geometry. Just a typical teenage conversation from Appalachia-well maybe not so typical-but definitely normal from my holler of Appalachia.

Even though they’re sorta kooky-Chatter and Chitter are dandy singers-maybe you can tell one of them was half way singing during the wacky conversation they were having.

We recently went on another old church singing expedition. You remember the last one right? (if you missed the first one go here) We even captured some silly out-takes on this trip. They include a farewell death song to a katydid and a song about wood block feet. Believe me it’s as riveting as it sounds-well at least the singing is-it’s truly outstanding.


Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.


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  • Reply
    faye Leatherwood
    September 6, 2014 at 2:44 pm

    Enjoyed the comments, enjoyed the blog about chitter and chatter more. I’ve said before that type of life intrigues me. How much happier LOTS of folks would be if they were privileged to live like this!

  • Reply
    brenda s 'okie in colorado'
    November 28, 2012 at 1:30 am

    This reminds me of when I had my wedding shower back in the late 60’s. One of the girls wrote down everything I said while I was unwrapping my gifts, then read it all back after I finished. Nervousness and too young to get married, none of it made sense. Now adays I talk a mile a minute and still make no sense.

  • Reply
    Ann C.
    November 27, 2012 at 7:24 pm

    This had me laughing out loud! I’m stuck up here in Michigan, and miss all the interesting speech from East Tennessee! Up here, teens don’t even talk to each other; they text, even if they’re sitting on the same couch. Your girls are a breath of fresh air, even if they are “fussin'”. Oh, and that CD sure would make this homesick southerner happy…..Thanks for writing this blog. It helps me keep perspective!

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    November 27, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    What did we do for a standard before ever there was a TV? And no, I don’t think your girls twins are normal. I think they are exceptional.

  • Reply
    Susie Swanson
    November 27, 2012 at 6:58 pm

    I love this , it reminds me of myself some and my son for sure..

  • Reply
    Tim Mc
    November 27, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    Do you remember the “Waltons” I loved that show, actually got the dvds, but they even fussed and fought like a real family does, but in the end they all couldn’t live with out each other, so your house hold is normal, even by “Waltons” standards….

  • Reply
    Peggy Lambert
    November 27, 2012 at 6:12 pm

    Tipper, I forgot, but I would like for my name to be put in the pot for the CD.
    Peggy L.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    Tipper,I’m going to use that one,”elbow becoming a scewdriver”on my G-son when he comes in from school today!Thanks Girls!God Bless, Jean

  • Reply
    Peggy Lambert
    November 27, 2012 at 5:02 pm

    Tipper, did your girls have their own
    language when they were babies? Our two Great-Grandsons 9 & 10 years did. Only they could understand it. Hope you had a good time and keep up your good work and the rest of your family.
    Thanks for all you do.
    Peggy L.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 4:07 pm


  • Reply
    Ron Perry
    November 27, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    What are the girls real names? I loved your post.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    I don’t guess there’s any harm for
    teenagers to talk that “code talk”
    but it’s kinda confusing to me. I
    enjoyed my girls “cutting” each
    other from time to time when they
    were younger. Now I get to listen
    to my granddaughters. And the least one can come up with some real doozies, just when you think she’s not listening…Ken

  • Reply
    B. ruth
    November 27, 2012 at 11:49 am

    I’ve heard that twins have a lanquage all their own, that is hard for others to understand. Mix that with typical teenagers and then with special teenagers, like Chitter and Chatter…
    I would be writing things down my own self…and when you have time decipher the code…LOL
    Such sweet girls, with wonderful parents…that helps them be more special…Only if more parents took that much time and care with their children…
    I miss my young’ins being at home…
    True I have the grandchildren, and they stay on the ground for the most part, (or on my ground) but sometimes I get lost in their conversations about things…For instance, I thought “One Direction” was the only way a person could go!!! and I thought “Zoids”, (in my day was something to do with botany)!
    Who would have thunk one was a all boy singing group and the other a mechanical-armored suit-robot-like thingy!!!
    Thanks Tipper, Great post as usual!

  • Reply
    Mrs. K
    November 27, 2012 at 10:58 am

    I’m with Janet – meatloaf is better a day old! I’ve heard, “if that’s what you tell yourself to sleep at night” too. Teens, gotta love ’em!

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 10:57 am

    The part that scares me is that while I’m right up there with your Pap in age, I understood every word they said…

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 10:26 am

    HA! Your post had me chuckling to myself, teens say some of the funniest things. All of ours are grown but all still in their 20’s – for Thanksgiving it was to watch them all grown up and still giving each other a hard time.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 10:00 am

    Our daughter is almost 36 and uses a lot of the texting short cuts in emails to us. We have to call or email back to find out what some of them mean. I got somewhat even recently in telling her I hoped my surgery was CBM. That means ‘covered by medicare’.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 9:32 am

    I think they do it to drive us a little bit crazy!
    Enjoy them as it won’t be long till they spread their wings and fly.

  • Reply
    Sheila Bergeron
    November 27, 2012 at 9:13 am

    They are good girls, though and so talented.I want to win me some music

  • Reply
    Susan C
    November 27, 2012 at 9:12 am

    I can just hear this conversation going on. This is part of what makes the girls so loveable. It brought a big smile to my face on this dreary, rainy day in east TN.

  • Reply
    dolores barton
    November 27, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Aren’t teenagers fascinating? That was high school; you should try to remember the conversations from Middle School. I spent almost thirty years with these “wonder kids” as I call them, trying to dechpher their conversations. I think the girls were having fun; they understood each other perfectly. Cherish the moments. Empty nest is coming sooner than you think!

  • Reply
    Sue Crane
    November 27, 2012 at 9:02 am

    Love it!

  • Reply
    Uncle Al
    November 27, 2012 at 9:01 am

    Old memories of my daughter and all her friends “hanging out” at the house. Those conversations were most difficult to follow, but certainly sounded a lot like the one from Chitter and Chatter.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 9:00 am

    Makes me miss having teenagers in the house. I only have one daughter but she has a cousin who is the same age and it was like having twins. I really miss their company even though there were times when they could drive me insane.

  • Reply
    Bob in Young Harris
    November 27, 2012 at 9:00 am

    My granddaughter visited over Thanksgiving. I think I have lost touch with the new English dialect being spoken. OMG, it’s speaking a texting language.
    I’m reminded of an architecture professor I had many years ago. He had been a student to the architect, innovator, philosopher Buckminster Fuller. It seems at one time in his life Mr Fuller decided to quite speaking for a year and just listen to people talk. After the year when he returned to speaking he left words out of sentences because he found time was wasted with too many unneeded words. I think young peoples language today is being influenced by the short hand language of their ever present smart phone. Thoughts?

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 8:55 am

    The names Chatter and Chitter were given to the girls for the exact reason of this post-their Aunt and cousin named them Chitter and Chatter for their extreme talking LOL!
    Blind Pig The Acorn
    Celebrating and Preserving the
    Culture of Appalachia

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 8:46 am

    Thank you for another treasured glimpse of ‘a day in the life’.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 8:42 am

    Those girls were hysterically funny on Saturday. We are still talking about how much fun we had. Crusty old guy still wants to know who is chitter and chatter.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 8:26 am

    Tell us how Chitter and Chatter got their names. My daughter is named Jessica and I would sometimes call her J-Doll when she was young and sometimes now at 28. She likes it and occasionally sends me a card signed J-Doll. My sons were named by their friends using their initials, which was considered a cool thing here in the 90’s. Probably not cool now. Eric became EB and Austin became AB. They are in their 30’s now and I heard one of Eric’s high school friends call him EB the other day. He graduated HS in ’95.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 8:24 am

    You should record it and pay them back in about 20 years by playing them for their children.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 8:14 am

    I love this post, made me chuckle out loud! Reminds me of when my girls were young and at home…conversation always going on especially when I was looking for some quiet:)

  • Reply
    Ethelene Dyer Jones
    November 27, 2012 at 8:11 am

    I’m sure all the give and take comes double with twins! My granddaughters were somewhat like two sets of twins–being about a year apart in age for the older two and the same for the younger two! And part of our Thanksgiving evening “remembrances” was viewing old home videos (from vacation-times) of those four with their give- and take- to each other and anyone else about! What fun to review! I’d love to be somewhere listening in the the Pressley girls’ conversations sometimes! Love and best wishes to all of you, and keep singing!

  • Reply
    Judy Mincey
    November 27, 2012 at 8:03 am

    Sounds normal for teenagers. They are really great girls, you know.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    November 27, 2012 at 7:57 am

    I don’t speak teenager. I didn’t speak teenager even when I was a teenager. I do want the DVD. My name should already be in the hat from the “It’s not my Mountain Anymore” giveaway, so my chances should doubled. But, with my luck 0 X 2= 0.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 7:42 am

    I’ve learned I can’t always keep up with the grandsons conversation. After a few of “what did you say” I just give up and hope that I say the right thing. They’re so funny and I do love having them around every chance I get.

  • Reply
    Janet Smart
    November 27, 2012 at 7:41 am

    Everything sounds kinda normal, but I wouldn’t toss out day old meatloaf, it’s better the second day…and week old jelly? Too bad I don’t have some teenagers around the house, I could come up with some good writing ideas.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    November 27, 2012 at 7:39 am

    LOL!!! Tipper I knew exactly what you were typing. In fact I could hear their voices with every quote. Some of them I can even tell you which girl it was.
    No, not typical. There is nothing typical about Chitter and Chatter. They are teenage girls, as evidenced by the above quotes, they are also both in possession of some quite interesting thinking skills. Skills I don’t see in most teenagers.
    Welcome home!

  • Reply
    Gary Powell
    November 27, 2012 at 7:39 am

    My kids are past the teen years. Now we are starting over with grandkids. 5 yr old Grandson had hearing test at school. Found out he was deaf in one ear. My daughter took him to the doctor and found nothing wrong. Turns out that after they tested one ear he didn’t want to test the other ear and told them he couldn’t hear out of that one.

  • Reply
    Tom Jones
    November 27, 2012 at 7:36 am

    I want to hear “Just A Closer Walk Walk With Thee” by your girls. That’s one of my all time favorite hyms. I’ve heard many of the lines you printed.. and many more too! lol…Love your blog,,!

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 7:20 am

    Well, I think yesterday’s meatloaf is usually better than today’s meatloaf! Been a while since I tested that theory though. Guess I’ll make a meatloaf today. Thanks for the idea, Chatter or Chitter 🙂

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    November 27, 2012 at 6:24 am

    So funny, it is a whole ‘nother language isn’t it?

  • Reply
    November 27, 2012 at 4:11 am

    I was so confused there for a minute~ but then I’ve heard the If that’s what you tell you self in order to sleep at night ~ a couple of times for mine!
    Have a great day

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