Appalachia Blog Celebrating Appalachia Videos

My Life in Appalachia

The video I have to share with you today is about my life in Appalachia. Watch it to learn about my life as a child as well as about how I started Blind Pig and The Acorn.

I hope you enjoyed learning more about my life in Appalachia!

Help me celebrate Appalachia by subscribing to my YouTube channel!

Ken Roper’s surgery will be on Monday. They’re expecting to do at least three bypasses. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers. A big thank you to those who sent cards and/or called him. He said the calls and cards made him feel a whole lot better!


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  • Reply
    November 4, 2021 at 11:48 pm

    Tipper, I am a NOrtherner born and bred, and have lived in California for 59 years. Watching your videos makes me feel as though I have come home. Thank you for sharing your life with us. I do have one question about the chess are. You said to use 1 oz of cream cheese in the topping, but the bowl looked more like 8 ounces or maybe even 16 ounces. Would you pose arrest me? The part at the bottom of the screen does not show on my T.V.

    • Reply
      November 5, 2021 at 6:50 am

      Leslie-It is 8 oz. 🙂

  • Reply
    Angie Tevis
    October 8, 2021 at 3:56 pm

    Dear Tipper,
    I just wanted to tell you how much I love your channel. My granny was from Tompkinsville, TN. She moved to VineGrove, KY when she graduated school in the 8th grade. When she met my grandpa at the age of 16 they quickly fell in love, married, and moved to Floyds Knobs, IN. They raised 5 kids and 12 grandchildren of which I am the oldest. I was very close with my granny. I grew up on her farm with the privilege of talking to her every day. You remind me of a much younger version of her. Not just your way of life but even your looks. I lost my granny 2 years ago and have found myself drawn to your videos and your stories due to the familiarity of your ways. Many of the ways of life that you show and the sayings you teach about are some of the same exact things she taught me growing up. Thank you so much for preserving this beautiful way of life. I do my best to keep those same traditions alive that my granny instilled in me. I myself will become a granny for the first time within the week. I cannot wait to teach my grandson all about country / mountain living. I do have one question for you. I was watching a video of your girls and brother playing music at Christmas time in your living room. They played a song they said was called “Jesus Is His Name”. I have searched the internet for the lyrics and the lyrics I found do not seem to match what they were singing. I was wondering if you could email me the lyrics or send me a link? I love all music, but mountain/gospel music is my favorite. I would like to learn this song and sing it to my new grand baby. God bless you and your family all of your days! I look forward to hearing from you and watching many more of your videos.

    In Christ,
    Angie Tevis

    • Reply
      October 9, 2021 at 12:59 pm

      Angie-so glad you’re enjoying our videos!! We don’t know much about that song. Paul could never find out who wrote it nor where the lyrics are printed. He learned it from Pap and then passed it one to the girls 🙂

  • Reply
    Angie Graeber
    October 1, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    Not sure this comment belongs here, but I can’t seem to find a more appropriate place. First, let me say thank you for preserving the Appalachian dialects, stories, old ways, new ways, and history. My maternal side of the family came from the Flat Creek section of Buncombe County and I’m so familiar with many of the expressions, “mess and gom,” “eh law,” which we pronounce A-law, kilt lettuce, and many others, such as “stove up,” meaning aching or injured. I’m loving your reading of “Mountain Path” as well and hope to find a copy of it to read. Thank you for sharing. Love listening to the girls (and you and Matt) play your instruments!

    • Reply
      October 1, 2021 at 7:31 pm

      Angie-thank you so much! I’m just thrilled you enjoy what we do 🙂 My brother Paul is the one playing music with us-I know it gets confusing 🙂

  • Reply
    May 5, 2021 at 7:53 pm

    I have just discovered your YouTube channel and I absolutely love it and I love listening to you talk. It always brings a smile to my heart and face. Most of my dads family is from the mountains of West Virginia and you and your videos remind me of all those people growing up, particularly my grandma and her siblings (all are now deceased). Thank you thank you thank you!!!!

  • Reply
    December 25, 2020 at 12:59 pm

    I was watching part of one of your videos, and it sounded like you pronounced “acorn” like this: A- CORN. I live in the mid to upper South, and I pronounce it this way: A-KERN.

    I was familiar with some Appalachian words and phrases you mentioned in the video but definitely not all of them.

    You know that your fingers are not really fingers; they’re your fangers! Same with thing; that thang! You don’t go around a corner. You go around a cawner!. These are some word pronunciations that I’ve used before.

  • Reply
    October 5, 2020 at 9:24 pm

    I loved your interview and how honest you tell your story. I was most excited when you said you worked at Lake Logan for the Champion Lodge. That is the area where I was born and raised. I went to school at Bethel and my dad was a farmer. I married a boy from the Charlotte area and left my Appalachian home. I have always loved canning and putting up food. In my 70’s, I wanted to make some pickled beans and corn but was not sure if I remembered how to and this is how I found your blindpigandtheacorn. Your recipe was easy to follow and my family loves my pickled beans and corn with corn bread. P.S. I really enjoy the music you share. Thank you and God bless.

  • Reply
    Sanford McKinney Jr
    October 3, 2020 at 8:57 pm

    You mentioned going through a tough time at some period in your life and I was reading one of my daily devotionals shortly after watching and listening to your interview. This is the Bible verse in the devotional: “For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.”— Hebrews 2:18
    Succor,[ˈsəkər], noun: assistance and support in times of hardship and distress.
    I would interpret tempted in the verse as anything that is causing one some sort of trouble in their life.
    Your mention of going through a tough time made me think that God sometimes uses others to assist and support His own during times of hardship and destress.

  • Reply
    October 2, 2020 at 8:29 pm

    I finally got a chance to listen to the entire interview and enjoyed it so much, like I do all your offerings. Hearing about you talk about your life tells me you find a lot of peace in it and I love that you keep things simple. Also, it was fun to find you once worked at Lake Logan. I was there about 4 years ago for a conference. Its now owned by the Episcopal Church. I was even in the Beejum cave! Thanks for your excellent work.

  • Reply
    Brenda Moore
    October 2, 2020 at 4:47 pm

    I second the request for your book list. I love to read and am always interested in the books and authors others like to read. So …who are your favorite top five authors as well as some of your favorite reads? The curious minded would love to know.

    Truly Enjoyed the post.

  • Reply
    October 2, 2020 at 1:37 pm

    Super interview! Thanks so much to both of you!

  • Reply
    Don Byers
    October 2, 2020 at 1:33 pm

    I said it once before, but will say it once again….Blind Pig & Acorn and my morning coffee are hand in hand in making my day!!

  • Reply
    Garland Davis
    October 2, 2020 at 12:52 pm

    Enjoyed your video Tipper!

  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    October 2, 2020 at 11:12 am

    I loved this interview. So uplifting in these hard times.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    October 2, 2020 at 11:07 am

    Both you and Matt said the word acorn in the interview. Both of you pronounced it with two syllables like a-corn (ie-korn). I pronounce it with one syllable like akern. Have you always pronounced it the way you do? How did Pap and how does Granny? Matt and Miss Cindy?

    • Reply
      Sanford McKinney Jr
      October 3, 2020 at 9:11 pm

      We learned to pronounce acorn just as you pronounce it-one syllable. That is in Upper Shell Creek, Carter County TN up in the far northeastern area of Tennessee.

    • Reply
      October 7, 2020 at 6:19 pm

      Ed-I think we’ve both always said it that way and I believe Pap, Granny, and Miss Cindy say it the same way 🙂

  • Reply
    October 2, 2020 at 11:00 am

    Wait wait! You mentioned you were and still are a voracious reader. So…. what are your favorite books, do you have a “Tipper’s Must Read” list? As always, thanks for the video.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    October 2, 2020 at 11:00 am

    Tipper–I thoroughly enjoyed the interview, and you are getting more comfortable (and better) in front of the camera all the time. What I like best is that you are, unconsciously, demonstrating one of the most prevalent and to me most appealing of Appalachian characteristics connected with speaking/talking. Namely, you punctuate, emphasize, demonstrate, and in truth converse with your hands as well as your voice.

    My paternal grandfather, who has provided me a world of writing fodder thanks to fond memories of him, was a grand storyteller. However, I’m convinced that if you had pinioned his hands so he couldn’t move them, he would have been rendered almost speechless. He relied on them that much.

    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    October 2, 2020 at 10:55 am

    Very nice visit with you two. You convince me I could just be myself in and around Brasstown. Like here, people forget we have not been here always. I like that not being self-concious.

    I think your story is more or less representative of Appalachian women of your generation. I don’t mean to minimize your story but rather to say it is so relatable to so many, as I think BP&A proves. And you all have continued it with a rich heritage to your alls’ girls, nieces and nephews; as well as your audiences in person and on BP&A.

    Of course Tipper married well Matt. She has said so several times, just not in those words. But she has let us know, and you proved it, that you like to tease her. And that is a good thing.

    I like your “pitiful cardboard” analogy Tipper; so very true. Reminds me, as I expect you recall, of the cardboard figures at Mine 18 in my father-in-law’s story. NPS did not intend them to be an allegory, but they are. Instructive if one thinks about it.

    Your efforts continually bring me back to this odd 21rst century dilemma of how do we speak of and think of our “virtual people”. It is the oddest thing, to me anyway, to have a comfortable (to both) distance; neither presuming too much nor being stand-offish. To me it feels like presuming too much to claim friendship yet too cold to claim acquaintance. and what is there in between? I guess maybe your girl’s generation has it figured out. But I may never. Perhaps it suffices to say that whatever virtual friends are, as compared to ‘real friends’, you all are that to me.

  • Reply
    October 2, 2020 at 9:32 am

    I enjoyed your interview very much. How did you choose the name of Blind Pig and the Acorn? I enjoyed understanding how your parents became Pap and Granny, Is Miss Cindy your mother?

    My brother lives near Asheville and sings and enjoys folk music. I’ve sent him links over the past few years to some of your music, We grew up near Pickens, South Carolina and are from a very musical family also, One of my sisters became a music teacher and recorded my father whistling several songs that we heard all through our childhood. Years later when he died, that recording was played at his funeral. I live in Ohio now but am always connected to my SC roots, Wanted to let you know how much your video interview was enjoyed this morning.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    October 2, 2020 at 8:28 am

    That’s a wonderful interview Tip. I’ve listened to it several times now and am amazed and pleased at the whole story brought together. Of course I’ve known everything as it it has happened because I am part of the family but hearing you talk about it gives me a little different perspective. I can’t imagine life now without the Blind Pig and the Acorn. I am also so very proud of you and what you have created!

  • Reply
    October 2, 2020 at 6:53 am

    This was really good, enjoyed it very much. Way behind on my reading.

    • Reply
      Sherry Dobbs
      October 2, 2020 at 3:00 pm

      I think your foot’s in the water! I so enjoyed your interview…no AC….wishing for snow..Yes these are wondrous memories aren’t they! Love your blogging and attachments too! ❤️

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