‘Til the cows come home

Have you ever heard the phrase “’til the cows come home?”  I haven’t heard it in years (or even thought about it and now you are thinking if that is what’s on my mind, I have a very boring life indeed!  And yes, I do.)  Seems to me that we used to have and use more idioms than we do now but maybe the idioms have just changed and I am no longer “with it.”

When I was a kid, my parents would “drag” us up to Ellijay, Georgia every weekend.  Drag was the word we used then, now going to Ellijay is a pleasure as it was for my parents back then.  Ellijay is in the mountains of Georgia, a back woods kind of country.  At least back then.  Lots of family lore and land, dirt roads, barn cats, corn rows, snakes, grassy meadows, stinky hogs, swimming holes and cows.  We would hear my great-uncle Glen calling his cows home each evening.  That is a sound I would love to hear again.


This is an 8″x8″ watercolor with some white acrylic ink in the background.  I was trying to make the cows pop.  Can you imagine someone with limited knowledge of English wondering about why I wanted the cows to pop?  Or any of the strange idioms we may use/used to use regularly?  But don’t they make talking and listening much more enjoyable?


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6 Responses to “‘Til the cows come home”

  1. Beth MacKinney Says:

    Cows are very thoughtful creatures. Ours used to line up by the fence and watch me pound tennis balls against the barn when I was a kid.

  2. Lesa Says:

    I do miss many idioms and metaphors that I heard years ago. Something else I miss? Regional accents. They added such flavor to the language. Eons ago, when I was in school, one of my teachers said she dreaded the day we all sound like television announcers. Now I get her point.

    Lovely, lovely cows!

    • laurenfinley Says:

      I agree about regional accents, Lesa. Growing up in the south, we had our accents only to be laughed at or corrrected by newbies to the area. Just a few years ago, I had one young lady from New York who, upon hearing me pronounce the word yellow, rolled her eyes as though I were an ignorant fool (and my accent is not very pronounced at all). Being old enough to be her mother, I wanted desperately to take her down a notch, but having grown up in the south…
      I like hearing regional accents. Even those from New York!!! Like you say, it gives such flavor to our language.

  3. Brenda E Holmes Says:

    I miss hearing Aunt Nettie ,she had such a distinctive speaking voice and I miss Uncle Glenn’s teasing me ,all the while, not missing a lick as he whittled that stick or block of wood but most of all, I miss that wonderful feeling that all was right in my world as I trudged up the hill to see my Aunt Katherine while my belly was pleasantly overstuffed with Grandmother’s biscuits and gravy. I think this “cow’ would like to be a “calf” again and follow the herd back home

    • laurenfinley Says:

      Brenda, you remember a different time than I do. I am remembering going up there before Granddaddy retired and they moved. When the trailer was still over by Nettie’s house. Makes me wonder if there is an optimal age for childhood memories…that our minds travel back to that year(s) more often than other years.

      I miss Grandmama buttering the fresh-from-the-oven-biscuit and sprinkling white sugar on it! YUM!

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