Your Life, Your Song

Life often throws us into situations where we are forced into a mood or feeling that we do not want to be faced with. Let’s be honest with ourselves, if we could be happy, fun, and friendly all the time, that would be great. But – if we tried to force these feeling on ourselves constantly, we would actually end up being miserable. Times of joy, times of sorrow, times of stress and times of boredom – these are all emotions that make up who you are, and who you choose to become.

A friend and native of the North county area in St. Louis, recently shared with me that while living away from her hometown, she was overwhelmed by the amount of people who would talk about St. Louis negatively, some without knowing she is from the area. She was afraid to speak up in fear of being associated with that sort of negativity. she then said to me not “How dare they, we are not like that.” but instead, “We have got to do better.”

The past couple years, I have been faced with joyous landmarks, large successes, great change, and great new friendships. I recognize these not to boast, but to be grateful and realize how much I have been blessed. I have also gotten to have a great learning experience at my summer job here in St. Louis, and have gotten the freedom to experience many new things in my free time. At the same time – I have been plagued with sadness, anger, jealousy, frustration and regret.

Sometimes, when you are on a long string of happiness and confidence, a storm hits. It is easy to make excuses for ourself. Sure you may know that you are not all to blame in said situation, but being of any wrong is hard go through. I went through a storm this past week where I know that there was more to the situation than just my wrong, but I had to come to the conclusion, “I could have done better.”

It is okay to acknowledge your feelings. It is okay to be wrong, and it os okay to ask for forgiveness. You can choose to learn for these times, and you are who you choose to become.

 

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Welcome To My Block

What makes a city to you? Is it the food, the art, the music, the history, or simply the feeling you get when you walk down the sidewalk?

When someone lives in a city as large and spread out as St. Louis is, one can have a perspective on the personality of the city in general that is completely opposite of another St. Louisan.

Whether you are enjoying a broadway play in Grand Center, or savoring international cuisine in South City, St. Louis has endless diversity to offer to its citizens and visitors.

Here is a short list of neighborhoods I have gotten to see and explore in the short while I have been in the St. Louis and the greater area. Enjoy!

The Grove

Definitely a hidden treasure, The Grove is a vibrant and diverse neighborhood filled with music, coffee shops, art, and nightlife. Being a very prosperous business district in the late 1940’s and 1950’s – the area suffered a steep decline in the 70’s and 80’s. The Grove found it’s resurgence starting in the late 1980’s with Attitude night club. The area is known to be  home to many LGBTQ friendly businesses.

the groverise coffee

South City/Tower Grove Heights

Being the cities largest area for food and culture, South City and the area surrounding Tower Grove park is host to beautiful brick front homes in a wide range of prices. This is a thriving neighborhood that attracts young professionals and families. It is also well known for it’s many restaurants that are in walking distance to residential streets.

south grand restaurantstower grovethe purple martinted drewes

Central West End

While The Tower Grove area is a little more Brooklyn, The Central West end would be a little more Manhattan. Offering historic high-rise apartment buildings as well as brick front homes, the Central West end offers a little more upscale city style living bordering Clayton and University City, within steps of Beautiful Forrest Park.

Downtown Kirkwood

Residing in what St. Louisans would call “South County”, Kirkwood is about 20 minutes southwest of downtown St. Louis. Famous for being a railroad town, the city offers a little bit of old, and new. A perfect semi-suburban area for families, the city offers up a trendy downtown area with a vintage movie theater, specialty restaurants, and the Station Square where you can find food and patio seating right outside the train station.

the square kirkwoodthe majic house

Downtown St. Louis City

For the grand finale in our list, we have the area that most people think of when the think classic St. Louis. Downtown. You have Busch Stadium, you have the river, you have The Arch, you have incredibly historic brick roads with beautiful buildings by the river that make you feel as if you are in the 1800’s. All of these are a must-see. Before you head to the Arch or a Cardinals game, check out the incredible City Museum! Having used to be a shoe factory, the City Museum turns old into new with craft workshops, an indoor train, jungle gyms, and circus acts. Plus you can literally climb on the outside of the building, just believe me. ferris wheenthe city museumst-louis-gateway-archballoark village

I truly hope that you enjoyed our list today, and learned a little bit to take with you on your next trip to St. Louis! Here are a couple other great areas to see that did not make the list:

Webster Groves

The Hill

Clayton

Forrest Park

St. Louis is an amazing historic city and ,as shown above,  has so much to offer. Unfortunately it is a city that has seen many hard times and still to this day struggles with segregated neighborhoods, racism, crime, and slews of abandoned properties. One of these areas in particular is “Old North” the historic northern area in the city limits of St. Louis. Check out this great organization that is helping towards the renovation of the buildings in Old North!

Old North Restoration Group

Here’s a tune from some locals!

Free Fallin’

Memories of summer days in Missouri often consist of humid days, swimming in the pool, picking in the garden, slip in slides… you name it.

All of us, though, as adults will somehow or someway come to the conclusion that summer is entirely different as an adult. The weather still gets unbearably hot, but, you must put in the work hours as usual, fun right?

I consider myself as someone who gets great fulfillment in working, so I actually do not mind as much. And when you are working full time, having a day off, weekend, or afternoon off to do something fun, makes that time even more enjoyable and rewarding.

Speaking of summer activities, you can still have them as an adult! St. Louis is a city that prides itself in providing free community events to bring the city closer together. And with the weather drawing everyone outside, attractions like Shakespeare in the Park, St. Louis Zoo, The City Museum, Missouri Botanical Gardens, and The Science Center brings St. Louis citizens together from anywhere, Florissant to Fenton.

I was able the past couple weeks to take a few breaks from work and enjoy some sweet summer time in the Lou, and didn’t have to pull hardly any money from my pocket!

 

“Winds of change, they blow in my direction…”

“Time to open up a new chapter in life, and to explore a larger centre.” – Lillian Russell

People who achieve and strive for greatness never stay in one place too long, do they? This is what I like to tell myself.

Over the past few years, I have had to adjust to several different cities, traveled more than I ever have, took on more jobs than I had ever found possible, and always try to keep moving forward.

In this summer break from school at the University of Central Missouri, the winds of change have brought me to the quaint city of St.Louis Missouri. My post in this blog will mostly consist of my adventures and experiences while in the Lou, current happenings and events within the city, and my own personal observations.

Over the cold and dark winter break of 2015/2016, I was called for an interview for a internship that I applied for at a radio station by the name of KDHX Community Media. So, we packed up our car on New Years Day and took the short journey from Columbia Missouri, to St. Louis. After a short spell of wandering around South City, finding ourselves at an abandoned bakery by the railroad, we ended up at the correct location.

When I look back on the first time I drove in to the station, located in the Grand Center Performing Arts District, I look back with some sort of fondness. There was such a sense of coldness, fear, and apprehension. Today when I make the 24 minute commute to work every day around 10am, my emotions are of a much different nature. I have 88.1 playing on my radio, sunglasses on my face, a cold soda in my cupholder, and a sense of wonder as I look at the tall buildings, lights, and signs that surround me. Then every week, I get to park and walk in to the most wonderful internship I could have ever imagined.

Many will say that being in a larger city, a place with such life and potential adventure is infectious. I would say they are correct. Since living here this summer I either see something, shop somewhere, or eat something new every day. Not to mention to the new relationships built, and old ones restored!

I thoroughly look forward to sharing my summer adventures once a week in “In Lou of Things” with you all. Please stay tuned in the weeks ahead for more stories, thoughts, and pictures!

A song for your listening pleasure! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=doe1KdaywKg