Posts tagged urban
open letter to my neighbors:

The produce section at our local grocery store is the worst, right? To be fair, I hate it so much. Sometimes I’m simply not in the mood to to fight the poor floor layout and I go to the better grocery store two miles up the road. But their parking lot is a mess. Honestly, it’s horrible.

The fancy Kroger 9 miles north of town is a dream. It has a Starbucks!

Between us chickens, sometimes my friends and I go to Whole Foods because we’re in search of a musician trying to be humble and normal while buying $18 cheese. Our lives are not the same as celebrities.

The Publix in Belle Mead is my favorite. Nothing makes me happier than passing grocery store after grocery store in search of one that fits my perfectly-curated list of demands: seamless layout, decent prices, fresh flowers, choice of gluten-free brownie mix.

We’re all such pretentious jerks. Yeah, you and me. We’re the worst.

Per a quick google search there are at least 20 grocery stores within a 10 miles of our house. Ten miles. That does not take into account convenient stores that have begun to fill their aisles with fresh produce or the brick and mortar farmers market. Or that I can throw a deflated football at three must-visit restaurants and am a hop, skip and a jump from an on-ramp to a major interstate. Growing up in a small town in central Oklahoma, our house was 18 miles from Walmart. I mean, technically it still is, but now it’s 21 miles from a second Walmart. Options!

We’re so fortunate to have such solid options in Nashville. And, to be honest, you and I have it better than most. We have a cars allowing us to drive to the store of our heart’s desire. Some are fully dependent on their own kicks or the bus. Add in a few more hurdles like childcare, schedule, etc., etc. and you have yourself a food desert. (Do you live in a food desert? This map is helpful.)

We have to stop taking our good fortune for granted.

My challenge to you:
Leave town for a beat. Drive north, take a random left, the maybe a random right and see how truly close you are to your food supply.


You might surprise yourself.

Take a minute to look past the Instagram opportunities and soak in how fortunate you are to live in a place with access to safe, sustainable and affordable food.

rural gone urban – gone really, really urban

I’ve grown up with this blog, it seems. When Rural Gone Urban breathed its first breath of blogger air, it was authored by two fresh-from-college girls who wanted to share their urban adventures. Then, Dallyn moved to what some will call God’s Country – NW Oklahoma. Typing. I just kept typing through a Master’s Degree, international travel, job changes, heartbreak, adventures, new friends and love. Truly, I was rural gone urban.

Looking back, it was a transition period. In life? Sure. Every weekend I’d fill up my gas-guzzling SUV and head west or north depending on my mood to fill my soul with winter wheat, dirty shops, friends and family: urban during the week, rural on the weekend. Think of it as a life mullet, the best of both worlds.

Then, life threw the most amazing curve ball. The good news – I’ve never had trouble with the curve. I was made for curve balls.

I fell in love.

I fell in love with a southern boy with blue eyes that can cut deep into your soul. From the second I turned around in that Plaza District bar, I knew I was in trouble.

As many of you know, emotions are hard for me. I knew moving a few hundred miles would be rough. I was prepared. But, I wasn’t prepared to blog about it.

What could I possibly say?

“Yo. I got lost again. I miss my friends. CHARLOTTE IS AWESOME. T makes me use coasters. I wanna go to Oklahoma. I miss cows. I found this awesome store!! I made a new friend. Whoa – I didn’t like that new friend. New church! I’m chubby – shouldn’t have stopped working out. I can see T on weekdays! Ouch – working out is hard! New friends! Bachelorette party!! Almost football season.”

Well, that’s basically what I would have said. Except in a lot more words. Basically, you’re welcome for not writing about it.

Anyway, I’m back. Missed you.

Also, I’m now rural gone urban – gone really, really urban.

Hope you can handle that.


A perfect week.

Do you ever look back at your college days and think, "How in the world did I survive that?" I'm not talking about too many nights at the bar, I'm talking about balancing leadership positions, multiple jobs, and too many credit hours. Sometimes I look back and think, "I wish I was still that good."

Because, if I was... I wouldn't be so tired.

Don't get me wrong, my life is completely worth being tired.

Last week was interesting, to keep state it simply. T was in Dallas for work, so made a mini road trip to Dallas after delighting in a few peaches in Stratford. Not a day passes that I'm not thankful for my amazing job that allows me to work from home every now and then, or in this case work poolside in Dallas.

After a few fun days in Dallas, including a Darius Rucker concert, I woke up in the 4 o'clocks Wednesday for a too-early road trip back to Oklahoma City. Our church group meets at our house each Wednesday, so early to bed wasn't an option. Courtney's surprise birthday party followed Thursday evening and an Avett Brothers concert Friday. I had a fun work event on Saturday, catching some zzz's wasn't an option then, either.

With all that said, Saturday night I wanted nothing more than to curl up in my faded Oklahoma State sweat pants and watch a few hundred episodes of the Golden Girls.

But, as a proud big sister, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to watch my little sister run barrels while people watching with my little brother. So, I pulled a pair of starched jeans from the closet and headed to a small-town rodeo.

Wait. Hold on. I feel obligated to confess my love for starched jeans. If I'm going to wear boots, I need my jeans to have the ability to stand by themselves. It's odd, I know, but I feel as strongly about this as I do that spending more for quality high heels is better than mostly everything else.

I love more than anything that after a long busy week of urban living, I can sit in the stands with my dad (yes, those are our boots and starched jeans) and talk his ear off about things that don't really matter while he says all of four words.

He didn't even roll his eyes when I snapped this picture. It's a Christmas miracle, really.

My little brother, one of my favorite people in the entire world, is going to be a high school senior. I can't begin to explain how much this blows my mind. This picture taken around 9 p.m. when the sun was still glaring heavily into our eyes and the temperatures were still in the triple digits. Honestly, I don't care how gross we look because my brother is smiling and this never happens. This, too, is a Christmas miracle.

I will trade all the quality nights of sleep in the world weeks like this. Weeks incorporating everything I love about life - rural, urban, family, T., adventures, family, friends - are exactly how I want to live my life.

My porch is rockin' the fall colors.

This post was almost a "fall is my favorite time of the year...." post. But, that would be a lie. Because, winter is my favorite. I love snow, boots, coats, ice skating, sledding, Christmas music.

So, instead it's a My Flowers are Still Alive post! (insert happy dance!)

And, they happen to make my front porch look really festive.

I told you a few weeks ago I have a budget and I try to stick to it. Purchasing these fall flowers fell into the "shopping" category. And, thanks to the budget I really had to think about purchasing these flowers that will only last a few months - and the possibility of purchasing a pair of shoes.

Obviously I picked the flowers. Note: I only picked orange and white flowers to keep with my theme of orange this month.

I'm not sure if it's my rural upbringing, but I enjoy the responsibility of caring for plants, even in an urban agricultural setting.

This little pig is starting to grow on me. A present from my mom when I worked at an agricultural organization promoting pork, he never was quite my favorite.

I'd be willing to swap him out for a reasonably sized chicken and name it whatever Beyonce decides to name that baby bump.





It happened.

My sister recently said to me, "everyone thinks Will {my little, her big - brother.}  has a lot of money." Without even thinking about it I replied, "of course he does. He doesn't pay rent, buy groceries, pay the electric bill, pay for insurance."

Man, I wish I was 16.

I think this conversation is going to repeat it's self frequently thoughout the next several years. My response will change ever so slightly. "Of course he does, he's not paying into college funds, paying for kids, scheduling doctor appointments, buying school supplies."

On second thought. I'm cool with being a solid twenty-something. Right in the middle of not-paying bills and paying too many bills.

On another note. I'm really getting into this whole do-it-yourself thing. I found this table in my mom's barn. She [and my aunts] love to find bargains.

 The only thing wrong about this table was [beside the solid layer of dirt ] they mod podged leaf stickers. I'm still uncertain in what century this was a cool thing to do.

This is still a work-in-progress. I'm going to destress it a bit. And, yes, I took the easy way out and used spray paint. [High quality spray paint]

Planted a few flowers, too. If you remember back to last year this probably means we're about to encounter a hail storm. Knock on wood.

The lunchbox.

Recently, I was asked what someone does for fun in OKC. My knee-jerk reaction, "eat?" I'm as guilty as the next gal when it comes to entertainment. It seems our plans revolve around food.

So - why not blog about it?

Usually, I'm pretty good about bringing my lunch to work. However, there are the occasions I spring for lunch with Dallyn or fend for myself.

On the latter, I have a go-to.

Johnny's Lunch Box is my absolute favorite. The price is perfect [under $10] and the food is great.

This is a no-frills establishment with a handwritten "reserved" seat for the regulars. It's a throwback to the small-town atmosphere.

My go-to is the Meatball and Parmesan sandwich with macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes for sides.

I haven't gone to the back to see who is in the kitchen. But, I'm pretty sure it's someone's grandma. And, she's using hand-me-down recipes.