8.30.2006

Burp Reynolds

Mar-Jane


Martini

MJ Valentine

Baby Sister

MJ

Burp Reynolds

Baby Goil (pronounced GOY-YULE)

Jude is doing amazing in school. He loves it. I knew he would. He comes home and talks 100 miles a minute.

He has two best friends. Max and Amber. (like your best friend Amber he says) Wanna know what SUCKS though? Max is freaking moving on the 8th of September!! Jude is devastated. So i tried to pep talk him and tell him how awesome it will be to have a pen pal!

I just got back from eating lunch with him. Once a week I will take him some lunch (his choice) and if he wants me to stay...I'll stay. If not...I go. But he definitely wanted me to stay. Not sure when moms become embarrassing and uncool...but I hope I realize that time when it comes.

LOVE THAT LITTLE DUDE.

What do you do when you know that next summer that you will move your family into the city that you will live in forever...

  • The city that you will buy your home in.
  • That you will volunteer in.
  • That your children will go to elementary school, jr high, high school and hopefully college in.
  • That you will make friends for life in.
  • That you will be surrounded by ALL walks of life in. A complete and total DIVERSE city. (African-American, Caucasian, Korean, Chinese, Indian, Heterosexual, Homosexual)
  • You will attend NBA games in.
  • Amusement parks only driving distance away.
  • You will become a elementary school teacher in (and get paid somewhat decent)
  • Your home won't cost $500,000 to buy.
  • The weather will be amazing.
  • It will be safe.
  • There will be hundreds of things to do without spending a dime. (art galleries, museums, parks)
  • It WILL NOT be in the south.

What do you do when you know you will live there...and its coming soon.

But you just don't know where yet?

Thats where I'm at ladies...I know I'm moving. Its for real. For three years we have been talking about it, planning it, dreaming about it...but its going to happen.

Sean and I want to raise our children in the place that I described above...Can you tell me what city that is? Can you point us in the right direction? I know it sounds crazy...me asking your opinions. But want to research...learn. We can't visit every single possibility.

a

27 people took the time to say:

*~*Jocelynne*~* said...

If you don't mind the mormons, I think SLC rocks! But I've not lived anywhere else, and the NBA team is the Jazz. :( Other than that...

Anonymous said...

Well, the weather isn't all that great. But otherwise some suburbs of Cleveland, OH are exactly what you are looking for...Shaker Heights for instance. Not totally sure about house prices (haven't lived there in a few years), but the city is a train or bus ride away, there are other cool areas, awesome parks, good museums (art, history, children's, science, rock n roll), orchestra and ballet, most theater anywhere outside of NYC, basketball, football, and baseball, etc. But...hot in the summer and cold in the winter with snow. And downtown itself can be somewhat unsafe...but is getting better!

erika said...

still thinking on the wren-city...
i will have more ideas soon....
i still say HERE...but I sense that's not working.
in the meantime...
i want to hold that baby ;)
xxxe
ps.
love that picture of jude

mindi11 said...

i live in arkansas too, but we are moving next week to Austin, TX. it's still "south" but one of the most culturally diverse places i've been to in the US. the preschool we are looking into for the kids, teaches multiple languages, cultural dance, and they celebrate EVERY holiday known to man. that's kind of fun, right? :)

good luck making your decision.

Caroline said...

aww mar-tini is sooo cute.
no ideas (unless, you come to california, but home prices are outrageous here!) but g'luck with the decision!

sarah said...

Oregon is beautiful! ;)

martini is adorable...
and I love the photo of Jude.

Jen said...

oooooooh
Loev the Martini.
And you should move to Peoria, Il.
Just to be near me.
We have no NBA teams...although Chicago is only 3 hours away.
But we have everything else!
Love you mama!

gabbyfek said...

i was going to say raleigh
cuz
well
i suppose NC is the south
but this is really like the FAKE south.
although
you have to go to charlotte for NBA games
we have everything else
free museums
nice weather
(minus right now)
cheapish housing
good schools
diversity
me (& e, pretty much)
xoxoxo,
g

Anonymous said...

hey-i want to know the same thing.
taraw

Ryann said...

Indianapolis is definately the way to go. Lots of great kid stuff to do... we have the Pacers and the Colts, a great zoo, children's museum, art museums. Only 3 hrs from Chicago or Louisville. One hour to Cincinatti. Amusement parks in every direction. Summers are hot, winters are cold, so by the time you are sick of one, you've got the other. Good variety of schools and a diverse population. Depending on where you live in the city, housing differs, so you could get a great 4 bedroom for under 200,000. Worth a look for sure! Good luck with the decision making process!

Becky R.T. said...

Hi Ashley, I am a lurker...Love your kids...so cute. You could move to any town in Massachusetts. You are a short drive away from everything you described. Beautiful weather, all four seasons, very diverse. NBA team close (even though they kind of stink) Lots of history, close to the ocean...the list goes on. Plus, it's VERY different from Arkansas. I have never been there, but can only imagine.

Melissa said...

Sounds like Charlotte to me...hint hint! The reason we chose it is because its a few hours from the mountains and a few hours from the beach, and very metropolitan with lots of cool stuff to do! Good luck with your decision!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like Orange County, California to me...except you can't even get a condo for $500,000!

Jessica F said...

L.A.! ;) Minus the "your house won't cost 500,000 to buy". It won't. It'll cost a heck of a lot more. So yeah... cost of living and housing, not so good. But good: Beaches! Diversity! Art! Jessie! Disneyland! Great vacation spots in all directions just 1 hour!

I hope wherever you end up, you guys are amazingly happy! xo

Anonymous said...

MICHIGAN
Excellent schools
Affordable homes
Nice midwestern people
VERY diverse
Home of the Pistons
Near 4 amusement parks
Close to Amber
Teaching salarIEs very HIGH
Affordable homes
Amazing weather 9 mths a yr
The weather will be amazing.
It will be safe.
Tons to do!
VERY safe
Not in the south.

Tina said...

Charlottesville, VA has been rated the #1 city in America to live. 1 1/2 hours to DC, 2 hours to VA beach, close to the mountains, University of Virginia brings in a wide variety of activities, concerts, museums, ect. Charlottesville is a very rich city in history. Prices of homes are a little on the high side, but area's just outside of the city are very reasonable. King's Dominion Amusement Park is about an hour away, 4 seasons, very safe...I can go on and on, but here's a link for you to check out.
Good luck!
http://www.charlottesville.org/index.aspx?recordid=11&page=635

sarah.b said...

I'm tellin you Denver and /or surrounding areas are AWESOME, We have EVERY single thing on you list. We also have the MOST art galleries per capita of ANY city in the US. It is AWESOME here, I used to live in FL,(thumbs down, yuck, too damn HOT!) Plus we have the mountains too, it is kind like lving in California WITHOUT the price tag!!!! You definitely check it out! Dang, I sound like a travel agent or a real estate broker, UGH!! ;0)

courtneybenedix@comcast.net said...

I was totally gonna vote for Atlanta, but then you said not in the south, to me ATL is not the south, but it is...am a native Floridian, but I love NYC and have lived there too, love ATL, big enough,great teacher salaries, always somethin to do, cheap housing, great shopping...totally different from flippin arkansas!Even though it is still the south, it is forward thinking and modern, I promise...can't wait to see where you end up! Martini is a doll!

Have a great weekend!

Plastic said...

It's not Houston. We have lots of the great things on your list, almost all - but it IS in the south - and it gets freakin hot here. As another poster listed Austin is nice. I have also heard great things about Indianapolis. Of the places I have been - I would probably go with San Deigo. I loved it - but the whole house price thing could be a bummer

Christy said...

Sounds like SAN DIEGO is the perfect lil' place for the Wren fam, hint-hint! lol. Of course I'm a bit biased but how cool it would be you were to move to MY neck of the woods! We've got beautiful weather year round, it's VERY diverse indeed, TONS of 'free' schtuff to do (awesome parks, gorgeous beaches, lots of museums), amusements parks within driving distance, NBA games... all that good schtuff. Unfortunalty, you're lucky if you can buy a place for $500,000 or under BUT it's San Diego - you're paying for atmosphere I guess. Good luck with your decision girlie! Oh, and gorgeou pix if of miss MJ - love her!

tara said...

well except for the weather i LOVE LOVE LOVE where i just moved, Plainfield IL 33 miles south of the city of chicago. and tons of peas live here too (janet O., cari (haliriley), christine traversa etc.)
cheap houses, tons of free stuff, GREAT for children! and TONS of schools to work at...they are building a new one every year for the next 5 years! awesome possibilities!
tara

viv said...

i know... i know...
the other side of the world, but...
a great place to live ~ perth australia. we don't have NBA but the Australian version (haha) and beautiful ocean and sunshine. can you tell i want you to move HERE???
:o) great pics... little MJ is gorgeous!

Sarah said...

I only have the south to recommend. I did love Atlanta. Very diverse in the city.

Just so you know. My son is in 2nd, and he still likes me to come and have lunch. (note to self: go have lunch with Bo at school)

MJ Valentine= sighs of delight.

tRicia said...

hey girlie.
i am in dallas/fort worth.
it's pretty awesome.
everything checked off (except the weather..prob. pretty same to where you are now)
Also...Austin. It's really an amazing city.

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southern hospitality said...

I can't help you because there is nothing better than the South!!

Kelly S said...

I put a vote in for Long Island. Good schools, beaches in each direction, nyc a train ride away, great shooping, total diversity, great weather,Six flags is in jersey but we have splish splash water park, fall festivals, polish festivals, italian festival, etc.etc. NBA,the YANKESS! But the price of housing is a little high. We are an Air Force family now but one day I would love to move back.
Good luck with your decision!
PS-your family is beautiful!