Southern Moon Shine Down Again

The lovely Southern Moon has been shining down on me this week. The moon is synonymous with superstition, wives tales, and folklore. It’s common to hear folks talk about a full moon being responsible for craziness that seems to coincide with the Moon’s cycle.

Appalachia is full of advice related to the Moon’s cycle. I’ve heard a few of the following-the others I found in The Foxfire Book:

~ Number of days the old Moon is at the first snow-tells how many snows there’ll be that winter.

~ It will rain within 3 days if the horns (ends of a crescent Moon) of the Moon point down.

~ If it begins raining on the first day of the full Moon it will rain till the Moon quarters.

~ Plant potatoes when the Moon is waning or decreasing.

~ Harvest most crops when the Moon is growing old.

~ Cut timber in the old of the Moon-it will dry better.

~ Set fence posts in the old of the Moon to prevent loosening.

~ Don’t lay shingles or nail boards during the growing Moon or they will warp.

~ Cut hay in the old of the Moon and it’ll dry a third quicker than if you cut in during the new Moon.

For this week’s Pickin’ & Grinnin’ In The Kitchen Spot Paul and Pap are singing Southern Moon a Delmore Brothers song.

Hope you enjoyed the 2 part harmony singing and the folklore. My favorite story about the moon-When my older brother, Steve, was little he cried for the moon saying “Daddy get me that rock, I want that rock up there.” Do you have some Moon folklore or maybe a story about the moon? I’d love to hear about it-leave me a comment.


p.s. Yesterday was Pap’s birthday-he was 71 years young. HAPPY BIRTHDAY PAP I love you so. For more information about the Moon’s cycles visit Moon Connection.

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  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    July 24, 2008 at 9:28 pm

    Hi tipper, I love the moon and all its lore.
    – I birthed a child on a full moon, five days before my due date
    – Madness used to be called Lunacy. I hear that the psychiatric wards fill up when the moon is full.
    – The waxing moon increases and the waning moon decreases.
    – I’ve read stories about drawing down the power of the full moon.
    There is also a lot of the old ways that revolve around the signs of the moon like pickling food when the signs are in the head.
    I believe most of it is true and almost lost arts!

  • Reply
    July 22, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    I love moon lore. My grandparents planted and harvested all of their crops by the moons waxing and waning. Thanks for another great memory.

  • Reply
    July 21, 2008 at 10:18 pm

    How is it you make me miss a mountain home that I’ve never actually known?
    When I was VERY pregnant with my third boy, and SO ready to meet him, I stood under the full moon in the middle of the night, raised my shirt over my belly and hoped with all my heart that the silver light would work it’s magic. It didn’t, but it’s a sweet memory anyhow.
    I remember too, on long night trips to my granny’s house, leaning my forehead against the car window and watching the moon chase us. My mom would smile and say, “I see the moon, and the moon sees me, God bless the moon and God bless me.”

  • Reply
    July 21, 2008 at 10:07 pm

    I make sure that I always go for a walk under the full moon. Everything is just so pretty and magical then. When my son was little he used to sing to the moon in his sweet, clear little boy voice, “I see the moon and the moon see’s me. God bless the moon and God bless me.”

  • Reply
    jennifer in OR
    July 20, 2008 at 5:54 pm

    Tipper, fascinating moon lore! Happy Birthday to Pap. The Southern Moon song was simply magical. You know, I have a birthday tomorrow and might just have to buy myself one of Pap’s albums!
    The only moon story that comes to mind is how my brother-in-law would listen to Creedence Clearwater Revival’s song “Bad Moon Rising” and forever thought it said “there’s a bathroom on the right” (instead of “there’s a bad moon on the rise”).
    I loved your story about Steve begging his daddy for the rock up there!

  • Reply
    Julie nO'Neill
    July 19, 2008 at 8:59 pm

    Thanks for stopping by! I would have loved to have met you in NC. I love that state. We were in a beautiful section in Henersonville, rolling hills everywhere!
    I loved this post about the moon. We have been studying the moon cycles more too as my hubby is getting into Landscape photography. It’s amazing to learn that the earth’s rhythym is so closely tied to the moon – you’d think it’d be the sun!

  • Reply
    July 19, 2008 at 4:07 pm

    Hey Tipper.
    I love the Foxfire books and have several of them also.
    My Mama always went by the moon signs. She said people were crazier on a full moon and more babies were born too.
    I love the quilts below..but was unable to leave a comment earlier in the week on it.
    I wish your Pap a late happy birthday!
    You all have a great weekend.

  • Reply
    Petra Michelle
    July 19, 2008 at 8:12 am

    Hi Tipper, Wanted to say thank you for voting! The winners are Judi Dench and Donald Sutherland
    in “Happy Grooming.” I think you’ll find the current mini-script a bit of a tear jerker in “Wayworn Home.” Hope you and your family are having a wonderful weekend! Petra :))

  • Reply
    July 18, 2008 at 10:10 pm

    My sister’s Mother-in-law is the lead nurse at the birthing center, and she swears there is much more ‘business’ on full moon nights. More babies are born when there’s a full moon and they adjust staff levels accordingly! I love listening to your family’s music! Thanks so much for your posts about my chicken saga! I appreciate the support!

  • Reply
    July 18, 2008 at 10:06 pm

    I remember the one about potatoes, but had forgotten the others. I guess I need to pull my Foxfire books out and read them.

  • Reply
    Fishing Guy
    July 18, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    Tipper: 1. Pass on a sincere Happy 71st Birthday to Pap. He looking pretty healthy and that is great.
    2. Pap and Paul sound wonderful on the ‘Southern Moon’ song, way to do it guys.
    3. Loved your Moon post, the Moon has always fascinated me. As a fisherman I know the Crappie will always spawn on a full Moon. It does work and I base my Spring fishing around the Moon cycle.
    Thanks for sharing all your Moon lore.

  • Reply
    Stacy A
    July 18, 2008 at 8:43 pm

    I am behind again, but I will catch up. Your posts are my favorite to comment on. I also love reading the other comments, you have some wonderful readers!
    You know I had never heard any of those moon tales. I know when I was bar tending we could always tell the full moon by the large number of crazy drunks. It never failed. I do believe that the moon can have a huge influence on us physically. The oceans are very affected by the moon cycle, and we too are made up of 90% water. It makes sense to me that we would be affected too, if the oceans are. Now and again I will be feeling odd and can’t figure out why. It is usually a full or dead moon when that happens.
    I love staring at it though. I studied the moon once in a class, learned about it’s oceans and mountains. It made me feel a lot closer to it, this immense ball of rock that reflects light for us at night. One of natures many miracles.
    Tipper, I was wondering how you know Dana. I have some questions for you but I will email you. The song was beautiful once again. I can listen over and over. They really capture your culture and family life. Happy Birthday to Pap and may he have many more. Love Stacy
    p.s. I have my angel right next to me, she watches over me day and night. I can’t thank you enough for such a special gift!

  • Reply
    Renae du jour
    July 18, 2008 at 7:34 pm

    I’ve heard that if a woman lives outside so that she only sees natural light her menstrual cycle will coincide with the moon cycle. I’m not sure about that, but it’s an interesting idea.

  • Reply
    The Texican
    July 18, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    Happy birthday Pap! I sure enjoy the picking and singing in the kitchen. Who are the other musicians present? The old timers knew from observation and hard experience what to do and when to do it. Amazing how many things our moon influences. Interesting post. Pappy

  • Reply
    July 18, 2008 at 4:57 pm

    My foot was tapping right along with Pap and Paul’s!
    Anyone who works with the public knows that when there is a full moon, people ask the dumbest questions and do the strangest things. They seem a little more irritable, also.

  • Reply
    July 18, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    That was a great post, Tipper. I have always been fascinated by the moon. I also appreciate the light which a full moon sheds. There’s nothing like a moonlit walk.
    The only ‘moon’ story I have isn’t so much a moon story as a cute story about my son, and my dad. When my son was little, he heard my mom comment to my dad one day that the grandkids thought he ‘hung the moon’. After that, my little tot of a son began calling the moon “Pappa’s Moon”. It was a few years before he realized his Pappa did not, indeed, hang that moon! 😉

  • Reply
    Petra Michelle
    July 18, 2008 at 10:58 am

    Hello Tipper! If ever a welcome I feel, it’s at your home. Your father and brother playing so beautifully together, your kinship, your folklore, crafts, just make me want to stay for more than just a bit. Thank for sharing yourselves. I can only speak for myself, but I feel magic with every visit. Petra :))

  • Reply
    July 18, 2008 at 8:30 am

    My kids are crazy when there’s a full moon…people think I’m crazy when I talk about it, but it’s real.
    I also wean my kids by the signs of the moon. Worked wonderfully.

  • Reply
    July 18, 2008 at 12:48 am

    I have heard some of the same things about the moon. I have always heard about planting on the dark side of the moon promises a better crop. Who knows? Loved visiting. blessings, Kathleen

  • Reply
    July 17, 2008 at 11:13 pm

    Like Carolyn said, there is something truly special about looking at the moon on a quiet night. Everything is somehow lyrical under the light of the moon. I heard one of my favorite moon stories from Pap when I was young. He was teaching me that I needed to be more open-minded and not so stubborn about things. He wanted me to see that being close-minded and unwilling to consider possibilities could make me miss out on things that were right there waiting to be discovered or understood. He told me about two men that he observed arguing one day. One man affirmed that the moon could often be seen in the day while the other denied it vigorously. The first one told the second one that he could see it right then if he’d just look up. The second man was so bull-headed that he refused to look up, saying, “I’m not going to look up because I already know it’s not there.” Like the parables in the Bible, pap’s story was probably more about the point/lesson than the actual events, but then again, there probably are people who are that stubborn. Thanks to pap’s lessons and occasional reminders, I try to always be willing to consider other viewpoints and the possibility (if not probability) that I could be wrong. 🙂

  • Reply
    Carolyn A.
    July 17, 2008 at 9:26 pm

    Happy Birthday Pap! You look great and can pick with the best of them!
    I’m telling you, the guys know how to play a song that you just gotta keep hearing over and over again. My eyes never leave the screen and my foot keeps tapping the whole time. And the blend of those sweet voices is beyond compare. I feel like I’m opening a surprise gift every time I hear them.
    My moon story involves a full moon, an open window and a lovely breeze moving the gauzy sheers back and forth. *sigh* I get chills every time I see that. In Autumn I stand at the bedroom window staring at the full moon and let the crisp clean air wash over me. It’s like a love song with no words. Try it sometime … you’ll see. xxoo

  • Reply
    noble pig
    July 17, 2008 at 9:19 pm

    Wow, plant potatoes has to do with the moon’s cycling? Wow?

  • Reply
    July 17, 2008 at 8:17 pm

    The other day, my son was signing and saying “ball” frantically as he pointed up at the early morning sky. I looked all around for balls and balloons up over his head until I looked up way yonder and saw that he was going crazy over the morning moon! Needless to say we had a nice discussion about the moon that day…and now he signs “ball” and says, “Moo!”

  • Reply
    July 17, 2008 at 7:19 pm

    Tipper you have me crying – you are so lucky to still have your dad. Treasure this time. Blessings, marlene

  • Reply
    July 17, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    Another comment for me. Two days in a row!! The only one I ever listened to was that many babies are born on or after a full moon due to the pull of the moon on the tides of the ocean. Hence the baby’s “water” it can throw women into labor. Of course a wives tale, however, both of my children were born within one to two days of a full moon. Interesting…..:) How about yours?

  • Reply
    July 17, 2008 at 6:01 pm

    HAPPIEST of Birthdays to your Pap! Love that Southern Moon harmony, not to mention the wonderful pickin’ throughout. Haven’t heard too much about the moon except that emergency rooms are busiest during a full moon ~ wonder if that’s true?! :o]

  • Reply
    July 17, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    Wow! A lot of folklore connected with the moon. All the rain ones would never have been come up with here, but maybe the others.

  • Reply
    July 17, 2008 at 4:23 pm

    My father always followed the Farmers Almanac which told him when to plant based on the moon. He told me I was born under the full harvest moon in September. It is the moon that occurs closest to the autumn equinox. At the peak of harvest, farmers can work late into the night by the light of this moon. Corn, pumpkins, squash, beans, and wild rice the chief Indian staples are now ready for gathering.

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