Appalachian Thursday – Coffin Quilts

I love it when I discover something wonderfully Appalachian that I didn’t know about! I was researching Appalachian funeral traditions for my 2021 story (oops, I think I just gave away that someone dies–well, several someone’s actually!). I knew about cooling boards, sitting up with the dead, hand-digging graves, silver dollars on the eyes (penniesContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Coffin Quilts”

Appalachian Thursday – 187 Years of History

When my husband and I took on the family farm in West Virginia, a big part of the reason was to preserve family history. Turns out I’m pretty sentimental and I’m fascinated with history–especially my own. I’ve known for years that my brothers and I are the seventh generation to live on that particular parcelContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – 187 Years of History”

Appalachian Thursday – Getting Rid of Freckles

I have freckles. More than an adorable smattering across my nose. More than a dusting across my cheeks. I have a freckle on my lip, on my eyelids, my ears. And when I was a kid I wanted them GONE. Luckily (or not) there are quite a few folklore remedies for freckles including washing yourContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Getting Rid of Freckles”

Appalachian Thursday – Tyree Tavern

I love digging into random bits of history about my home state. Sometimes, when I’m traveling through on my way to or from the farm, I take side roads and just see what turns up. Like the Tyree Tavern aka Halfway House in Ansted, WV. It’s an old stagecoach inn that was built around 1810.Continue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Tyree Tavern”

Appalachian Thursday – Lover’s Leap

I’m currently researching a story due to release in 2021 that’s set in and around Hawk’s Nest, WV. I found a newspaper account of a 1931 celebratory dinner held at the Lover’s Leap club house at what is now Hawk’s Nest State Park. And like any good author, I bounded off on the rabbit trailContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Lover’s Leap”

Appalachian Thursday – Brush Arbor Meetings

Churches were still hosting revivals when I was a kid. Often held all week or maybe over a series of weekends, they were big community events meant to appeal to folks who weren’t coming to church on a regular basis. Out-of-town preachers might come–sometimes they were even preachers with TV programs! There was LOTS ofContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Brush Arbor Meetings”

Appalachian Thursday – Porch Swings

I enjoy looking at historic homes on-line and recently realized that porch swings are much more common to the rural south–including Appalachia. It finally hit me that northern homes don’t have as many swings–or porches for that matter–because the season for sitting outside is so much shorter. In the mountains of NC we’ve hit primeContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Porch Swings”

What Momma Left Behind – Winner

If you subscribe to my newsletter, you likely saw the recent giveaway I held for a copy of What Momma Left Behind. I did the random number thing yesterday and was delighted to reach out to Barbara Klein to let her know she’d won! I love promoting Appalachian stories–especially when they’re written by dear friends.Continue reading “What Momma Left Behind – Winner”

Appalachian Thursday – Haying Season

Thistle and I have been walking through a neighbor’s pasture lately. There’s a critter trail we take and I can’t walk through the waist high grasses without thinking about my father telling us to stay out of the hayfield lest we mash down the grasses ahead of hay season. When I was a kid, theContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Haying Season”

Appalachian Thursday – 17-Year Plague

As if 2020 hasn’t been hard enough already. The east coast–specifically NC, WV, and VA (how did TN opt out?)–are due for the emergence of the 17-year cicada. Folks often call them locusts, but they’re really Magicicada periodical cicadas. Wow–what a name! The 13-year and 17-year types fall into this category and they’re identified byContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – 17-Year Plague”