April 2015 archive

Not a Bit of Decent Pimento Cheese Anywhere

We moved to Chicago and I can barely believe it.

Being Southern is ingrained in Will and I. From the tops of our heads to the tips of our toes and down deep in our souls, we are the South.

We thought our kids would be the same. We imagined them to grow up saying yes ma’am and no sir and y’all. They would have snappy, colorful fashion sense and enjoy their grits and one day their bourbon. They would love a good Steeplechase and a tasteful monogram.

And maybe they still will. But for now, we’ve left the South. And one week in, all I can complain about is that you can’t buy a decent pimento cheese anywhere. The rest of this town is fantastic!

We’re temporarily living in Streeterville with views that will drop your jaw. Here’s what you can see from our living room at night.

Streeterville Night View

We’ve walked to the grocery store, the neighborhood Italian joint, and (three times a day) to the dog park. There’s a playground in downtown where Clara totally flipped her lid. The Chicago Children’s Museum is colossal and the Shedd Aquarium has penguins. What more could a kid desire?

One week in we feel exhilarated by our ultra-urban lifestyle. And while we know the new will eventually wear off and we’ll be grateful for a new version of city living that caters more to families than tourists, we plan to live it up in the meantime.

I’m going to try to write! Not just for the other Southern ex-pats here in Chicago who might relate to my tale. Not just for our friends and family back in Nashville who have asked for a glimpse into life here. But because I believe there aren’t enough women executives talking about both their careers and their families. You see, we moved here for my job. I’m the newly-appointed General Manager of the Chicago and LA offices of my company, Critical Mass. I love that for the rest of my kids’ lives, when they speak of the adventure of living in Chicago, they’ll say we did it for “mom’s big job”. I feel so proud and humbled to have been given the responsibility of the health and future of our office here. And I’m ready to take this town by storm!

That’s all for now. I’ve got to have the grocery delivery folks add a few ingredients to our cart so we can whip up some Masters-Style Pimento Cheese. Where there’s a Will (capital W intended), there’s a way.

– Julia