Almost seven years ago, I packed up my puppy brood (which consisted of ”only” two canines at the time), and went in search of greener pastures. After seventeen years of life in Los Angeles, I set my sights on Nashville. Goodbye mudslides & earthquakes; hello beckoning suburbia! There’s a lot to be said for trading in the palm trees for a dose of good ol’ fashioned Southern hospitality. Not to mention, I was slightly disenchanted with being in a city that has enough car chases to warrant a television channel devoted to them. Who in their right mind wants 365 days of sun and sand, anyway? I know, I know, I’m an odd duck. Regardless, I was drawn in by the prospect of a simpler lifestyle and dreams of writing country music on the side. I was captivated by the way this town manages to be progressive, all the while remaining charming as ever. I adore the little pockets of art galleries, wine bars (my husband and I met at one of them), vintage stores, and high-end restaurants. I also love the expanse of green and trees. As far as I’m concerned, it is the best of everything. I was, and still am, overwhelmingly enamored by it.
I have also been pleasantly surprised on the music front. Nashville has taught me that not all Country music is about whiskey & women, or accompanied by fringe and a belt buckle with one’s name plastered on it. That knowledge makes for significantly less culture shock for a girl born and bred in Connecticut! That said, a semi-twangy “y’all” has crept its way into my daily dialect. The Yankee in me is cringing with dismay. Though my writing interests and style have changed a bit in the last few years, and Country music is no longer steadily on my radar, this town still reels me in with its graceful character and musical integrity. Despite what some may think, the Nashville music scene isn’t strictly Country or bust. Some incredible Indie artists have launched their careers from this town, and I couldn’t be happier about it. My brand of crazy seems to fit in just fine here! And unlike most small towns, the majority of artists who get their start here stick around. Celebrities seem to be migrating by the dozens, thanks to the anonymity factor. I guess I’m not the only one pulled in by the Nashville magnet!
Above all else, Nashville has endeared itself to me because it’s where my heart is… I met my husband here four years ago, and gave birth to my daughter here in May. I can’t think of a lovelier place to rear our children. We are certainly a long way from the L.A. grind! I‘m thrilled to be raising my daughter out of that smog-filled bubble, though a lyric I wrote in one of my songs says it best: “It’s not the smog that makes it hard to breathe…” Nashville is a breath of fresh air in more ways than one. A smile and a handshake still go a long way. Kids can ride their bikes down the street, and friendly neighbors are the rule instead of the exception. It’s a wonderful way of life that is beyond measure, so y’all should come check it out!
Until next time… Peace, Love, & Dirty Diapers,
Jenna von Oy
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*** A special thanks to my favorite Nashville Kids store, Tweed Baby Outfitters, for allowing me to photograph the fantastic boots and Nashville onesie! A second thanks to my favorite antique store, Wonders On Woodland, for letting me snap the photo of the mini guitar!