Appalachia Blog

Blind Pig & The Acorn Turns 13

Blind Pig Home Page

Granny wasn’t the only one who had a birthday over the weekend, Blind Pig and The Acorn turned 13.

Where did the last 13 years go? It seems like only yesterday I stuck my toe into the big pond of bloggers on the interweb.

From the beginning I had a strong sense about what I wanted to do—which in a nutshell was to celebrate Appalachia.

There’s been many twists and turns over the years, but I’ve never strayed from the endeavor to preserve and celebrate Appalachian Culture and Heritage.

It’s hard to believe I’ve been sitting at my computer for over a decade typing out my feelings, thoughts, and findings about Appalachia.

Lots of things have changed in those years.

There’s been a least four computers if not five since the one I started blogging on.

I gave up my office at some point during the writing for Chatter to have her own bedroom, so now I type in a cramped space in my bedroom. After I moved my office I moved the entire blog from Typepad to WordPress—whew that was an ordeal!

My readership has reached a point I never dreamed it would. I remember when I was excited to have four readers, two of whom were friends from right here in Cherokee County and the other two were Paul and Miss Cindy 🙂

We’ve uploaded over 400 videos to Youtube, that’s a lot of music and culture documentation. And thrilling to us, Pap is in many of those videos. In the earlier videos neither girl played an instrument and they both sang lead instead of harmony.

Of course there’s also the physical changes.

My nephews who showed up in the earliest videos are both married and gone from home and one of them has two of the sweetest little girls you ever saw.

Mine and The Deer Hunter’s daughters who used to throw mud and argue about making music are now fine adult women with lives full of music and creativity.

Pap’s gone from us never to be forgotten.

The Deer Hunter, Paul, and I are all older, grayer, and I think wiser or at the very least more experienced with this ole world.

I could go on thinking about changes that have taken place in the last 13 years, but there’s a lot of things that haven’t changed since I started blogging.

My great love and appreciation for Appalachia. The people, music, food, folklore, culture, language, towering mountains and deep dark hollers—I still love it all.

The great love shared in our family hasn’t changed one iota, in fact its probably grown stronger.

You Blind Pig readers haven’t changed either. There may be more of you, but the fact remains that you ride beside me on this journey of celebrating and preserving Appalachian heritage and culture and cheer me on at every point.

I’m pretty sure Blind Pig and The Acorn readers are the best blog followers in the blogging pond.


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  • Reply
    March 10, 2021 at 5:45 pm

    I recently sent my children and grandchildren in Northern Virginia and Switzerland a link to one of your videos and told them that when I need to hear a famililar accent from my youth (I grew-up in southwest VA), I open one of your videos. But I have to be careful, since I almost drowned by mouth watering the first time I saw you make sausage gravy. Keep up the good work, please – and thank you.


  • Reply
    Darrell Keith Cook
    March 10, 2021 at 7:44 am

    Happy Birthday! I read your blog every day. Your videos and blog cause me to reminisce about by-gone days, a slower paced life, loved ones that are long gone but not forgotten. Thank-you!

  • Reply
    Donna M Wood
    March 10, 2021 at 7:11 am

    Happy blog anniversary! I’ve been blogging since 2004. A reader of my own blog told me about Blind Pig and the Acorn, knowing how I love country and folk songs. I’ve been following you ever since.

  • Reply
    SusieQ & Donnie Ray
    March 9, 2021 at 9:58 pm

    Happy Birthday to Blind Pig & The Acorn…….I too haven’t been here since the beginning , but I’m so glad to have found ya….. I have enjoyed it immensely….learned things, loved those mountains with ya even from afar….y’all are like family, and I enjoy all the other readers sharings and postings thankful ♡ . It does✨ brighten✨ your day .

  • Reply
    Ruth Binder
    March 9, 2021 at 9:02 pm

    Congratulations, Tipper on 13 years of BP&A. Have been enjoying your blog for ten years or so and have learned so very much about the Appalachian culture. Love and appreciate all you do!!

  • Reply
    Yecedrah Beth Higman
    March 9, 2021 at 7:27 pm

    happy birthday to the blind pig gang, I really enjoy the blog!

  • Reply
    Ron Banks
    March 9, 2021 at 5:27 pm

    Happy 13th! I stumbled across you blog several years ago. It is as familiar as an old friend now.
    Thank you for all the work you put into bringing a taste of Appalachia into our homes every day.
    I have recruited a few daily readers since I started. Some from Appalachian, some from other parts of the country.
    Being a son of Appalachia I feel it so important to keep our culture alive and you continue to do that each day.

    Continued Blessings.

  • Reply
    Tamela ("Tami")
    March 9, 2021 at 4:03 pm

    Happy Birthday TBP&TA!! Congratulations, Tipper, on your continuing endeavors from your blogging, to your gardening, to your craftiness, to your music, to your cooking, to your family, and on and on and on. Whenever I get a chance, reading your blog always makes me feel like home even though my family connections in West Virginia are now separated by 5 or 6 generations. So many of the traditions you mention are “just country” or very similar elsewhere – – the “plain” kind, the “basic stock” kind, the “real folk” kind. I haven’t been able to follow you as closely as I did for a while but it’s good to know TBP&TA is there ready for me to drop by and sit a spell. Thanks.

  • Reply
    Barbara Parker
    March 9, 2021 at 3:01 pm

    Congratulations on 13 years of dedication and information about life in the Appalachian Mountains. I can relate to much of your blogs and enjoy each and every one of them. I hope you will continue to bring these memories about good times and times from the past to your readers. I enjoy it so much. Keep up the good work. It means so much to so many of us.

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 3:01 pm

    Happy Birthday to the Blind Pig! When I read your posts, I feel like I’m visiting with neighbors.

  • Reply
    Glynda P. Chambers
    March 9, 2021 at 1:41 pm

    Hi Tipper,
    I have been reading your blog for the past 8 years or so. My sister sent me the info to get started and I have been reading ever since. My favorite ones are the ones that you share your recipes on. I really enjoy them. I’m still hoping one day your going to do a cookbook for all of your readers to enjoy. Keep up the good work and I will be reading each and every day. Glynda

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 12:49 pm

    Happy Birthday to The Blind Pig! I am so thankful you followed through on your vision, Tipper! May the Blessings continue!

  • Reply
    Donna Jo Canale
    March 9, 2021 at 12:47 pm

    Congratulations on your milestone. You bring me such joy!

  • Reply
    Rooney Floyd
    March 9, 2021 at 12:07 pm

    Congratulations and–THANK YOU–for bringing a cherished and inspiring gift each morning! You wrote of how things have changed over the 13 years around your home. I would add that you have also changed many, many reader’s attitude, interest, and knowledge of Appalachia–for the better! For me personally, you provide a unique connection to the Folk School and Appalachia that I love. May God continue to bless you and your family richly, always.

  • Reply
    Rebecca A Freeman
    March 9, 2021 at 11:56 am

    Tipper, I’ve only recently discovered the Blind Pig and the Acorn (earlier this year), but I love reading your posts. You make me feel as though I’ve known you for years! Congratulations on reaching 13 years! Thank you for sharing your thoughts, research, Family, and so much more. And you share with such passion and sincerity; your love for Appalachia shines in your posts and videos. What a treasure!

  • Reply
    Leslie Haynie
    March 9, 2021 at 11:55 am

    Well done! Here’s to 13 more lovely years of reading and listening to your words.

  • Reply
    Sherry Thacker
    March 9, 2021 at 11:46 am

    I love your blog. I haven’t been following too long but when I found it I have been here every say. It is part of my morning routine. Keep up the good work of keeping tradition alive and the old thing fresh in our mind. I love the history and I love the old ways. The main thing I never want to go back to is doing without a bathroom. I hope when the time comes when you give the blog up or can’t do it anymore that someone keeps it going . We all need to remember the past as it helps with the present. I believe that at some point we will need to know things like how to grow our own food and do a lot of the the things the pioneers did. God bless you.

  • Reply
    Glenda C. Beall
    March 9, 2021 at 11:41 am

    Congratulations, Tipper
    Your blog has been a permanent address on my computer ever since you began. The work you do is phenomenal and lasting. I have learned so, so much from your posts and now your YouTube videos. Thank you. It has been a great journey watching your girls grow up and watching you become the fine woman you are today.

  • Reply
    Paula Rhodarmer
    March 9, 2021 at 11:40 am

    Tipper, congratulations on the huge success of the Blind Pig! I have deeply benefited and enjoyed all of your writing, and now your videoing. Keep up the great work, you are truly appreciated.

  • Reply
    Gina Smith
    March 9, 2021 at 11:30 am

    I don’t remember how I stumbled onto your website but it sure has been a blessing.

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 11:13 am

    Well the Blind Pig and I have something to celebrate. My Birthday is tomorrow. So Happy 13 yrs. I know you have to love it Tipper or you wouldn’t have done it this long. We all love your blog. Thank you getting up each morning and giving us something to start with and enjoy. Congratulations!

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 11:01 am

    Happy 13th Birthday!!!! I stumbled across your blog maybe 5 years ago, not really sure of the year, but I know it was a delight to hear your beautiful music and hear those old words again. As others have mentioned, I get a cup of coffee in the morning and sit down to read your blog. It is always a special treat for me. Having worked full-time and taken care of a family, I sure KNOW you don’t have a lot of free time so I thank you for all your hard work to put your blog out every day. That is really an amazing amount of work.

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    March 9, 2021 at 10:29 am

    Happy Birthday to you and the gang. Looking forward to thirteen more.

  • Reply
    Melissa P. (Misplaced Southerner)
    March 9, 2021 at 10:28 am

    I’m so glad you had your wonderful inspiration to start this blog and share your love of Appalachia. It’s my link to the people, places, memories of the life I love. Somedays my work has to wait until I’ve had my first cup of coffee and read your blog. Thank you for keeping on and continuing to remind us all of the richness and fullness of life there is in those hills and mountains.

  • Reply
    Rick Shepherd
    March 9, 2021 at 10:13 am

    Great job, Tipper!…..I wonder how long I have been following your amazing and most welcome writings?…..Memory fades these days but I’m pretty sure it was even before I retired from central Ohio…..Little did I know that I would become your neighbor just across the Georgia line a few miles near the Nottely Lake Dam…..Thank you for the memories current and past!…..Rick and Mary

  • Reply
    Don Casada
    March 9, 2021 at 10:01 am

    Happy Birthday, BP&A. Tipper, you, Pap, Deerhunter, Paul, Chatter & Chitter, Granny and your whole family have become a vital link for many of us to this place that we call home. You’ve become an integral part of the daily pattern of life, whether read first thing in the morning or not until well into the evening.

    The words of Paul’s letter to the Corinthians come to mind when I think about your work:
    Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

    You never speak about the challenges, but your love for Appalachia and her people has shown through, day after day, in times of sickness and health, for richer or poorer, solid as a mountain, fresh as spring water, comforting as a secluded holler.

    You’ve blessed us all beyond measure.

  • Reply
    Patricia Price
    March 9, 2021 at 9:57 am

    I am also a newer reader. I told one of my friends that, sometimes, I get so far down the White Rabbit’s hole of your blog that, when I look up an hour later, I am shocked to find I am still in northeast Ohio and not down home in Bradley County TN. What you are doing is a gift and a blessing. Look at all your responses! You have created another community by talking about your own community: Tipper’s People.

  • Reply
    Janice McCall
    March 9, 2021 at 9:55 am

    I don’t remember when I discovered you, but have only missed only one or two days … was in hospital. When it’s cold here in north central Florida and we take our nightly stroll, I wear the crocheted cap you sent me. I’m originally from north Alabama, and my family were coal miners, so I relate to so many of your posts. Thank you!

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 9:37 am

    Congratulation on 13 great years of blogging. Every post brings back memories while reminding me of words and sayings I have not heard in years. It’s always exciting to find out what I am going to learn when I read The Blind Pig & The Acorn every day.

  • Reply
    Sallie the apple doll lady
    March 9, 2021 at 9:24 am

    Congratulations Tipper! The words that come to mind are “labor of love” and it seems from the reader comments it’s well worth your efforts. You are bringing joy to so many people. Thanks again.

  • Reply
    Kimberly H. Glenn
    March 9, 2021 at 9:16 am

    Thank you so much for what you do. Always look forward to seeing what you have for us each new day!

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 8:55 am

    I guess you’ve reminded me of where I came from and who I am during the time I’ve read your efforts. Next month we’re leaving these ‘flatlands’ and moving to the top of a hill in Transylvania County.

  • Reply
    Ed Karshner
    March 9, 2021 at 8:46 am

    Happy 13 Tipper and to the whole Blind Pig gang! I was trying to remember how long ago it was I found your blog. But, I’m thinking maybe 6 or 7 years ago. I remember the first blog I read, though…it was the one you did on “fatalism” in Appalachia. I’ve gone back to that and quoted you many times in my academic papers.

    So, I’ll say again, when I decided to shift my academic work to focus on my own region, I didn’t want to do the same old stuff. Your work became a model for how I wanted to write about Appalachia and the 3 short stories and my big academic essay are all thanks to you.

    Thank you Tipper and I’m proud of all y’all.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    March 9, 2021 at 8:40 am

    BP&A is now a teenager! I recall you posting once most blogs don’t last as long as your’s has. I’m sure there are a host of reasons but one I suspect is high on the list is that others do not have your stick-to-itiveness. (My Mom called it “gumption”.) And I suspect a big part of your gumption is loyalty to your readers. You didn’t tell when you were making your switch to WordPress that you were physically moving as well. Not to mention 4 or 5 computers. That took gumption.

    You and the BP&A “gang” just seem like good neighbors to me now. For quite awhile I hesitated about calling you Tipper because it felt like taking an unwarranted liberty to use your nickname. But somewhere along the way that reversed and now it would feel all wrong to even think of you as having another name. Strange how machines have created a virtual neighborhood. Who was it said something about “the fellowship of kindred minds”? BP&A gets more valuable every day because it is like your place on the ridge, a refuge from the babel of the “madding crowd”.

    Off the subject, but I wanted to share a few of my Dad’s sayings you help me remember. “About as much use for __________ as a hog has for a sidesaddle.” “Pore as Job’s turkey. ” I take it this was not the biblical Job but I have no idea who Job was or why his turkey was pore.

    Happy birthday BP&A and many, many more.

    • Reply
      Ed Ammons
      March 9, 2021 at 8:47 pm

      ♪Blest be the tie that binds
      Our hearts in Christian love:
      The fellowship of kindred minds
      Is like to that above.♫

      John Fawcett

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 8:35 am

    Tipper, I ‘m one of the new readers, about 6 months, but reading your blog is one of the first things I do each morning. Happy Birthday to the Blind Pig and The Acorn Blog. I live in one of the most rural areas of Greenville County, SC and have lived here all of my life. The life I know and have lived is very similar in a lot of ways to your Appalachian life. I especially like to her the Gang singing the old time hymns. I hope you will be able to carry on with the blog, I am sure it is hard on you.

    • Reply
      Ed Ammons
      March 9, 2021 at 9:23 am

      In case you didn’t know, six counties in Upstate South Carolina are considered part of Appalachia. Greenville County is one of the lucky few to be included. You are Appalachian! Be Proud!!

      • Reply
        March 9, 2021 at 9:57 am

        Ed, I really hadn’t thought about it and didn’t know it was considered a part of Appalachia. I have been accused of a lot of things but no one has ever accused me of being smart. Maybe that is why I think of the mountains, especially in the spring and fall to be heaven on earth. It just seems like I feel closer to God when I see the beauty of the mountains.

        • Reply
          Ed Ammons
          March 9, 2021 at 8:27 pm

          I’m not too smart either. I just know who to got to for answers.

          • Ed Ammons
            March 9, 2021 at 8:29 pm

            and who to go to, too! “got to?” see I said I wasn’t smart.

  • Reply
    Dona DiBernardo Silver
    March 9, 2021 at 8:34 am

    I am new to the Blind pig and acorn but the stories, culture snd love are all intertwined in my life as well. It all starts with loving family and a respect of this beautiful earth we share.
    I enjoy every word and memory you share with us Tipper. They make me happy. Thank you and Happy Birthday to the and acorn

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    March 9, 2021 at 8:21 am

    I’m sad to say I haven’t been along for the entire ride but I did manage to jump on the runnin’ board before you got going too fast. 13 years ain’t nothing. You’re just a teenager. The biggest and best is still ahead!

  • Reply
    Margie G
    March 9, 2021 at 8:20 am

    Happy 13 Birthday BP&A!!! Tipper, we are along with you for the ride. I saw a meme of a cat driving a car and it said a good friend will go with you no matter what. “Get in. I will explain when we are sitting in jail!” I hope it doesn’t come to that but…. lol

  • Reply
    Sanford McKinney Jr
    March 9, 2021 at 8:04 am

    Happy 13th and wishes for MANY more!
    Your blog is a daily joy for me. May it long live.
    Thank you.

  • Reply
    Ann Applegarth
    March 9, 2021 at 8:00 am

    Congratulations! Blind Pig & The Acorn has blessed my life immeasurably!
    Thank you for all your hard work, Tipper!

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    March 9, 2021 at 7:58 am

    Tipper–If you set aside guest posts and maybe a few which were especially brief (such as the “Overheard” ones), I reckon you’ve tallied somewhere well north of 3,000 original, informative, in-depth offerings to share with your readership. That’s quite an accomplishment and adds up to a great body of work. Although there’s no way of know or measuring, I think that the numbers will be even more important for posterity. You’ll catch another prolific chronicler of mountain ways, John Parris, before too long. He wrote “Roaming the Mountains” for the “Asheville Citizen-Times” for more than 40 years, but the column only appeared three times a week.
    Congratulations on the milestone.
    Jim Casada

    • Reply
      Miss Cindy
      March 9, 2021 at 12:45 pm

      Jim, thank you for all the support and encouragement you’ve given Tipper along the way! She is a very special Lady!

  • Reply
    Bob Dalsemer
    March 9, 2021 at 7:56 am

    Happy, Happy Birthday, Blind Pig & The Acorn! Thanks so much for all your hard work!

  • Reply
    Susan C
    March 9, 2021 at 7:39 am

    Happy Birthday, Blind Pig. Thank you for keeping Appalachian heritage alive and well. You are an inspiration to many, so wishing you many more years of posting all things Appalachian.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    March 9, 2021 at 7:28 am

    Well said Tipper! It has been a journey for all of us. The Blind Pig is my family just like you , the Deer Hunter and the girls.
    CONGRATULATIONS! There have been times that amazed me as I been on this journey with you, never imagining the growth and your magnificent following of Appalachia lovers!
    Happy Birthday!!

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    March 9, 2021 at 7:19 am

    Happy Birthday! Glad you are here!

    • Reply
      Larry Paul Eddings
      March 9, 2021 at 7:52 am

      I’m retired now and one of my favorite things to do in the morning is to take a look at the Blind Pig & The acorn while I drink my first cup of coffee. I live on the Cumberland Plateau northwest of Chattanooga and I love these old mountains. It’s clear that you do too. I really appreciate what do do to share the beauty of life here.

  • Reply
    Denise R
    March 9, 2021 at 7:10 am

    Love this post!

  • Reply
    Glenna Smith
    March 9, 2021 at 7:04 am

    I also love everything about Appalachia and I have enjoyed reading about it through your eyes. I don’t live there any more but my heart is there and will always be there.

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 6:14 am

    A great 13 years looking forward to 13 more. I live n the foot hills of Virginia and try to never miss a day of your blog, it brightens up my day. Keep up the great work.

  • Reply
    March 9, 2021 at 6:07 am

    Congratulations on a successful venture.
    We all reap the fruit of your work each day, enjoying the wealth of knowledge that comes from your efforts.
    Thank you !

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