Thankful that I Have Two Great Cities to Call Home — Memphis and St. Louis!

For at least half of my life, I have been a person with more than one place that I called home….. while it may seem weird to some people, to me, that is a great reason to be thankful! Not because it has meant spending half of my life away from the hometown for generations of my family, but as I mentioned in an earlier post, I am thankful for the ability to pursue the career I want without having to give up my family’s hometown of Memphis.

Memphis is Definitely Home

the sibs & me in Memphis history (I'm the only redhead)With generations of my family having been born and raised in Memphis, it is the place I have ALWAYS called home.

Here are five ways you can tell Memphis is my home:

  • My mom was raised there, raised me there and still lives there. That is in and of itself, enough said! 
  • All my formative years were spent there. Whether it was kindergarten or high school, it was in Memphis. Most of the big celebrations have been in Memphis — sweet 16, high school & grad school graduation, so many weddings, baptisms, bar mitzvahs, etc.
  • The food I crave…most of it is from there like Memphis barbecue (Central BBQ if I need to be more specific, thought the drive through version of Tops will help in a pinch and there are several other places that I am glad to go as well!) and Broadway Pizza
  • I have t-shirts & sweatshirts repping a wide range of Memphis events — there are concert shirts (Memphis in May, Lyle Lovett Live at the Garden, Clapton at the Pyramid, etc) and sports shirts (University of Memphis Tigers, the Grizzlies, etc.)

Having a Second Home Becomes the Norm

I remember when I was in college, the first time I went back to Memphis for a summer…. there was this weird feeling of missing my college home. And yet, I knew I was at home. I felt like I was at home. And yet, I  was also missing home. That was when I first realized that I had been able to create a great sense of home hundreds of miles away from the only place I’d called home before.

It was a bit confusing and yet, for me made perfect sense. It still does as I’m writing this from my home in St. Louis and yet I miss my home in Memphis.

College was the easiest place to make a new home. When I moved back to Memphis from grad school, I already knew that it wouldn’t be the same again. But at the same time, it seemed to work for me to have two homes and so I was ready to move once I finished school.

Cultivating A Sense of Home

After moving several times to different cities, I learned how to cultivate a sense of home. With St. Louis, it certainly helped that I came up here to work for a week or so each month for several years. I had a chance to get to know the area, reconnect with college friends, follow local sports & events as well as become closer friends with several people at the office.

St Louis skyline panorama from the Arch

One of the things I learned along the way was that making another place home takes investing time to that objective. So for me, I wanted to be sure I met new people in St. Louis too. I started there and have built some great friendships here, have really gotten to know and love St. Louis. And I have found so many things that show it has become home.

  • That's Phoong & I with Robert Quinn of the St. Louis Rams :)

    That’s Phoong & I with Robert Quinn of the St. Louis Rams 🙂

    My house is there and it holds so many “things that are important to me. Christmas tree ornament my mom & grandmom made, the kilim I negotiated for when on vacation, my favorite flannel pajamas and that general sense of place.

  • I’ve had some great times since arriving in St. Louis! Hosting lots of family and friends here, getting to some great concerts & experiences (don’t forget Pink and the City Museum!), and celebrating two World Series’ berths and one resulted in a win! And the picture here on the right is this weekend as a friend and I met St. Louis Rams defensive end Robert Quinn!
  • The food… well I have found some pretty great food experiences here. There are these specific chips…. made of wontons and crazy yummy that I crave… And there is this deep dish pizza that is simply amazing at this hole in the wall sort of place. And just tonight I had this seafood stew that was a little like a paella but different… and wow. I’ll be dreaming of that for a while!
  • The clothing has started as I’m getting more and more red into my wardrobe….. some of it even touts the Cardinals. And I have a Blues shirt too these days. And you know how many places the St Louis Cardinals water jug goes with me!

Being able to create a sense of home somewhere other than where I grew up, where none of my family lives…. that takes several factors coming together. I’m thankful they have come together for me here in St Louis in a way that lets me appreciate my new home and old one too! Thankful for the friends who help me enjoy my new home!

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About Janice Person

I'm Janice & this blog is about my passions -- photography, travel, agriculture & whatever else comes to mind. Putting all those things together is intriguing to me…. I can spend a lot of time soaking it up! It's almost always a colorful adventure!

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