Appalachia Appalachia Through My Eyes Holidays in Appalachia

Appalachia Through My Eyes – On Mother’s Day I Wear Red

On Mother's day I wear red

Mom you are like a beautiful boundless flower

Kind, caring, and loving.

Even at night when you close up

You are still watching

There is only one word to describe you-Mom


Chitter wrote that little poem for me when she was 10 years old-it still makes me smile. I wish all of you Mothers a Happy Mother’s Day and I hope tomorrow is full of smiles for you.

Here in Appalachia we have a tradition of wearing a certain color flower depending on if your Mother is still living or not. Red or pink for a living mother, white in remembrance of a mother who has passed away. This Mother’s Day I will wear a red flower for Granny, what color will you wear?


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

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  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    May 5, 2016 at 12:43 pm

    This was also the custom here in Tn. and still is observed by many. Reminds me I need to see about a corsage for my MIL to wear to church on Sunday. She will be 92 this year and is our only remaining parent.

  • Reply
    Eldonna Ashley
    May 5, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    The tradition holds in the southern part of my state, the area in which I grew up. I don’t believe it is observed here in the northern part of the same state. Culturally the two areas are very different.
    I would be wearing white, mommie passed in 1989.

  • Reply
    Carol Ann Blanton
    May 5, 2016 at 10:23 am

    Mothers Day was one Sunday my Mom made sure I had a flower to wear from the time I was big enough to sit through church. This year I will wear white as I have done for the last 19 years. Happy Mothers Day to all moms and friends.

  • Reply
    May 5, 2016 at 9:31 am

    I’ll be wearing a white rose from my mama’s running white rose bush.
    It has never failed to bloom by Mother’s day.

  • Reply
    Julie Hughes
    May 12, 2014 at 12:06 pm

    I hope you had the best Mother’s Day possible. I wore a white flower in honor of my Mother and Mother In-law. We lost them both within 15 months of each other.

  • Reply
    Eldonna Ashley
    May 11, 2014 at 6:43 am

    Let’s face it, they are our mothers. Maybe we call them mom. Sometimes we say mama.
    The term most often used was Mommy. My mommie spelled it mommie. She was married to my daddy, in IMHO, I will always say mommie and daddy and mention them as much as possible.

  • Reply
    May 11, 2014 at 5:20 am

    Happy Mother’s Day to Tipper and all the great moms reading this blog!
    Here in this corner of northern appalacia carnations are the traditional Mother’s Day flower. I will be wearing a red one and enjoying the day with my beautiful mom.

  • Reply
    Annette Casada Hensley
    May 10, 2014 at 11:26 pm

    You are so very lucky to be able to wear a red flower tomorrow. I miss my mother more each year. What a kind, giving, and loving soul she was! When I think of her, I always think of how much she loved her children even when we weren’t very lovable. In other words, she always loved us ANYWAY.

  • Reply
    Suzi Phillips
    May 10, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    This Mothers Day weekend has been so special! My 87 year old mom, oldest daughter and I are deep in Southern Appalachia exploring the places my mother grew up and going to decoration in Dog Town, AL. While the homes no longer exist, my daughter and I have definitely come away with a deeper sense of where we come from and the strong Appalachian ancestors that built us. On this Mothers Day I proudly wear red!

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 6:24 pm

    Hi Tipper,Happy Mothers Day to you and all MOMS out there.I’ll wear a white Plumeria over my left ear since I live in Hawaii now.God Bless,Jean

  • Reply
    Barbara Gantt
    May 10, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    My husband and I were talking about this. I grew up in Lenoir. My Dad always went out early Sunday morning to pick roses for my Mom and I. His Mom had died so he wore the pale yellow rose. We didn’t have any pure white roses. Mom and I always had a red rose. My Mom is living, 90 this year. My husbands Mom died 3 years ago. Too early for roses here so we will find a different flower to wear. Barbara

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    dear tipper.. may you have a blessed and peaceful mothers day. filled with love and memories…
    give granny a hug for me…
    sending much love and hugs
    hope your mothers day is a great one.. you deserve some spoiling for giving us such a wonderful site every week… i know it means alot to me.. and im sure to the other blind pig readers..

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    When I was growing up, we wore a red rose for Mother’s Day if our mother was alive or a white rose if she had passed on. I think it’s a southern tradition. I will wear a red rose; my mom is 92 years young.

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    May 10, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    There’s nothing in this world like mama.
    She died in ’86, but Monday she’d be
    101. I think of her about every day and
    will always have those wonderful
    MOTHERS!!! …Ken

  • Reply
    Sue Crane
    May 10, 2014 at 11:06 am

    sadly, I would have to wear white — but I am blessed in the fact that my mom had two sisters who were always “extra moms”. You were as welcome and comfortable with them as in your own home. You knew you were loved and cared for and that you had BETTER BE GOOD!

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 10:50 am

    I’ll wear white. My mom died in 1987, still miss her.
    Have a Happy and Blessed Mothers’ Day Tipper!

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 10:22 am

    Happy Mother’s Day to Tipper, Granny, Miss Cindy and all of the BP mothers! On this Mother’s Day, my family will wear white to honor my Mom.

  • Reply
    Don Casada
    May 10, 2014 at 9:39 am

    It’ll be white – maybe the bloom off a wild strawberry, bringing back memories of Mama’s pound cake with strawberries and whipped cream.

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 8:38 am

    My mother passed away in 2012. I’m now the oldest in the family. Some days I feel responsible for the rest of them until they reject my advice on some subject. (usually unasked for) I guess this is how Mom felt all those years when we didn’t heed her counsel.

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 8:36 am

    I will wear white; my mom passed away at the age of ninety. She had a good life with my dad, even though there were hard times. Moms are the crust of the Earth, in my eyes! Happy Mother’s Day to all those moms who were and those who wanted to be a mom, but weren’t fortunate enough to have that blessing.

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    May 10, 2014 at 8:10 am

    My Mom passed away in 1997. She was only 74, but suffered from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder. Dad is still thriving at age 91.

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    May 10, 2014 at 8:00 am

    I will wear white…
    Remembering this tradition as a child, my Dad would bring in the corsages from the store for us sometimes. At other times Mom would just go to the yard and cut an old wild rose we had growing on the back of the fence! Dad always tried to bring Mom a store-bought flower for Mother’s Day and Easter, usually an orchid for Easter or maybe a potted lily! That is if money wasn’t too tight and even if it was she got some type of little flower. Dad always wore a boutonniere’, usually a tiny red rose bud from Moms flower! This was early on, I must have been only in early grade school that I remember this and of course with the Sunday pictures to jingle the mind!
    Growing up in (the new secret city) a variable mixed Sunday school with children from all over the USA and other worldly parts, a lot of children (girls) didn’t wear the Mother’s Day Flower. It was a given if you were from Appalachia, of course.
    My Grannie wouldn’t step out the door without her flower!
    Thanks Tipper,
    PS Have a Happy Mother’s Day and Granny too…

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    May 10, 2014 at 7:52 am

    I wear white, this is a tradition here in Florida too. I remember it from early childhood.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    May 10, 2014 at 7:26 am

    White, I would wear white because my mother is gone.
    Chitter did good! That is a beautiful poem that exposes a beautiful heart.
    Happy mother’s day!

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