My Native Home

Appalachia Homeplace

The word Home brings to mind different thoughts and images. Mother seems to be a common thread in the vast subject of home. From “mother kept us cleaned and fed” too “mother kept the home fires burning”.

As we grow older thoughts of home seem to appear in our minds more often. I believe these random recollections come from a gained experience and a knowledge of the importance home played in our life. I know I never valued Granny until I was grown.

Estelle Darrow Rice is a phenomenal poet, who often writes of home and by gone days. I’d like to share one of her poems about Home and Mother with you.

The Back Porch Steps

Lilies of the Valley, their tiny bells

as white and innocent

as a child’s dream, grew

beside our back porch steps,

where in the evening Mother and I

watered her rose garden.

Sometimes we sang, but mostly we talked.

We planned to decorate my playhouse curtains

with rick-rack. We’d fill a window box

with pansies and petunias.

These were the things we talked about

When I was ten.

Now my dreams transport me

to that time when she and I

sat on the back porch steps.

I still hear her gentle voice,

and her laughter.

I remember the fragrance of roses

and I am certain I hear

the tinkling of tiny white bells.

By Estelle Darrow Rice

Chatter and Chitter are back for this week’s Pickin’ & Grinnin’ In the Kitchen Spot with My Native Home, a traditional Carter Family song. Like most songs it can be interpreted in different ways. To me-I envision someone returning home for the first time in many years and remembering just what mother and home meant. Realizing how very alone they feel due to the loss of both.

Hope you enjoyed the poem and the song. Are there lofty trees around your Native Home? Or maybe something else comes to mind. Please leave me a comment-I’d love to hear your thoughts on home.


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  • Reply
    Denise L
    July 14, 2008 at 9:07 pm

    I can’t seem to leave your blog — I just keep finding more to read and listen to everytime I click. I have never been to Appalachia, but your photos and stories take me there. The jam looks soooooo good, now we just need an online taste!
    thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    July 13, 2008 at 12:23 pm

    I love to see your girl sing! So sweet! The music from your site is often playing in the background while I browse the internet!

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    July 12, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    Those girls are just getting better and better!!
    My family moved to several different states as I was growing up but my family roots were always in Western North Carolina, and I have been here all of my adult life. Cannot imagine living any other place. I love these mountains, they are part of my soul. I feel nurtured and loved by them.
    My mother loved the mountains also, she was so happy when we finally moved back here.

  • Reply
    Jennifer in OR
    July 12, 2008 at 1:34 pm

    Tipper, I’ll have to come back to listen to the song, for some reason it wouldn’t load – first time that’s happened to me. I think it’s a YouTube issue, not you, so don’t worry!
    I love your photos and the poem. I thought about my Mom, in terms of what SHE would be thinking about her own mother. They were close and my Grandma was a wonderful, amazing lady. My mom grew up in Michigan around the woods, and she can relate to these images. –I can’t, I was in the desert with no porch! 🙂 –Her mom was always busy but always there. I will never forget when Grandma died how much it affected my mom. She wrote her a lovely poem, which I’ll have to find and post sometime.
    I love reading your commenter’s stories – you’re doing a fabulous job of eliciting special memories from your readers – this is a gift to us all.

  • Reply
    trisha too
    July 12, 2008 at 12:34 pm

    Tipper! Dreaded dial-up we share, but today I am at our shop NOT working, so I get to listen to your music, and hear your Chitter and Chatter. Yay for me!
    I’m with Amy; this post made me misty, but then again, a lot of your posts do, because I miss my grandma. *sigh*

  • Reply
    July 12, 2008 at 11:50 am

    I need to come back to this post when I have a chunk of time. Your writing should never be read in a hurry.
    But meanwhile, please accept an award over at Jerusalem Hills. 🙂

  • Reply
    July 12, 2008 at 10:21 am

    Yes, there are lofty tree’s around my native mountain home. I think of biscuits, clotheslines and love. My momma’s been gone for 10 years now. What I wouldn’t give to have just one of those moments again…
    Beautiful post and video!

  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 9:25 pm


  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 4:29 pm

    Such a great poem! I grew up in the tall evergreen forests of Washington – we were a bunch of monkeys in those trees!

  • Reply
    Petra Michelle
    July 11, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    Hi Tipper! This post brings tears. Not of sadness, but of some of the sweetest moments a mother can offer her child. I remember how, when I couldn’t sleep due to an illness or fear, she would always “streichel”
    my arm; streichel meaning stroke in German, until I fell asleep. Or playing her beloved country, bluegrass music while she cleaned and cooked. She is to me the strongest woman I’d ever known. A beautiful post! Petra

  • Reply
    Fishing Guy
    July 11, 2008 at 2:56 pm

    Tipper: Loved the poem and your picture walk through past times. Wonderful rememberence of your mother.
    I like to hear Chitter and Chatter sing their songs.

  • Reply
    Gafarmwoman Pam
    July 11, 2008 at 2:37 pm

    Hey Tipper. I just love to visit you. It makes me wish for dsl or satellite so I could see all the videos faster. The Indian Princesses (below) are just that”princesses”. I remember how I loved to play in the woods when I was that age. Making pinestraw huts, climbing the tall skinny trees and riding them down.
    I’ll be back later when I can listen to those wonderful singers.
    Have a great weekend.

  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    Tipper, I love the poem and the girls’ singing is DIVINE! You must be so very proud of them. Due to my parents’ rising age and health issues, last month my 7 siblings and I moved them from the family home we had occupied for 45 years into an independent living community for seniors. It is an old saltbox farmhouse built in the late 1800s that the city grew around. It sits on a corner with a long side yard and is surrounded by aged maple and chestnut trees. Many magnificent memories have been relived in this past month as we cleared and cleaned to ready it for another family to occupy and fill with warm memories. There have been tears shed in the letting go of a time to which we cannot return, but what a glorious gift to have had so Blessed a childhood that one would even entertain its replay!! As always, thank you for the sharing.

  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    Your girls can really sing! Maybe they can start a clogging and singing sensation at tomorrows performance!
    I’ll add the new song to my player once I can get the problems with our sound card worked out!

  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    Mountains and lofty pines were my childhood home. Loved seeing Chitter and Chatter sing. Great job.

  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 10:57 am

    Loved the poem, the video and the Indian princesses in the post below. A delightful visit, as always.

  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 10:20 am

    What a nice post to honor your mother. The poem is lovely. I will have to wait to listen to the singing til I get home. I can’t listen to them at work.

  • Reply
    Mark Salinas
    July 11, 2008 at 10:13 am

    I truly enjoyed it…very nice. Thank you!

  • Reply
    July 11, 2008 at 8:51 am

    Love the singing! I’m gonna have to bring my banjo and join in one day!

  • Reply
    The Texican
    July 11, 2008 at 7:11 am

    Great job Chitter and Chatter. I love the note bending mountain sound of a story put to music. Mom’s are special people and worthy of praise. Pappy

  • Reply
    Carolyn A.
    July 10, 2008 at 11:59 pm

    Bravo girls! Thanks for singing that for us. I started laughing at the shocked look on Chatter’s face when she feel backwards onto the couch.
    I miss my Mom, but remember she was always there when we got home from school. I loved watching her iron my Dad’s clothes. She would put his pants on those wire pant stretchers to keep the crease in his khaki pants. Then she would stand them against the wall until she took them upstairs to hang in the closet. I can still remember the smell of the starch she used on his white cotton shirts too. I guess that’s why I don’t mind ironing. It keeps me a little closer to Mom. xxoo

  • Reply
    July 10, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    Love the video of the girls singing!

  • Reply
    noble pig
    July 10, 2008 at 9:20 pm

    What a lovely poem. Home is where the heart is.

  • Reply
    July 10, 2008 at 9:17 pm

    That’s a great story. Thanks for this. I enjoy learning about your heritage.

  • Reply
    July 10, 2008 at 9:15 pm

    I love it all! The song, the girls, the poem and the music.
    Native home makes me think of Mom, Dad and the mountains.

  • Reply
    July 10, 2008 at 8:29 pm

    I miss my mother so much – it doesn’t matter how old you are I don’t guess. I remember her standing in the kitchen baking a cake and changing the recipe so much it didn’t even resemble what she started with, but wow was it good. I remember her checking so carefully on the bird feeders making sure her little friends had plenty to eat. I remember her peeling and slicing and dicing and canning everything Daddy brought her out of the garden. I remember her sitting at the quilt frame and stitching every spare moment. Mostly I remember her smile. Blessings, marlene

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