Nashville, Part 121

Posted by Deirdre // 01-12-2013


I was so excited to read this article in the NYTimes when I saw the headline, “Nashville Takes Its Turn in the Sun.” Yet it left me wanting more – a lot more. There were some mentions of the city’s development, such as a new convention center (which will host the NRA convention in 2015 – eeks) and a bit about the city’s biggest industries such as Healthcare and anything involving Vanderbilt (in fact some friends of friends who live there are both employed by the University), that was kind of it. It was like doing an article on Brooklyn and focusing on the new condos on Flatbush.

Third Man Records

A quick mention of Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban hitting the scene, along with Vince Gill (snore). Where was Harmony Korine, certainly one the coolest of the Nashville locals, hanging out at Burger Up and getting artisinal popsicles at the uber-cool Las Paletas next door in a neighborhood that would make most Brooklynites drool? Or Jack White’s local record store? And I just know he must frequent the old school burger spot Rotiers (which my kids still talk about with stars in their eyes) when he’s in town. At least a nod to the trés annoying Taylor Swift and her almost as annoying boyfriend of the moment at her favorite coffee place? This Travel & Leisure duo at least lists some decent spots, although its more about travel than living, of course. And the more I looked, the more I found pubs like GQ and The Atlantic and Nylon were crushing on the city for the last few years, in addition to a more superficial (read: about the hipster scene and just what I was looking for) piece from the same writer in The NYTimes about the city’s food scene. And it turns out the locals don’t always love it when everyone thinks the city is only cool because Jack White lives there. Huh.

My family and I went to Nashville for a baptism in May — yep, there is a lot of Jesus stuff there, along with theaforementioned gun er, tolerance, which is what I was expecting. It is the South, after all, and many of us Yankees would have to make some adjustments if we were to end up there. What I wasn’t expecting was how much I loved the place. From the architecture – bungalows with front porches abound – to the presence of green everywhere we went, making it feel like a small city instead of a large suburb, like many small cities have become.  No overly manicured, cookie cutter front yards with ugly blacktop driveways, but lots of low-hanging trees and lots and lots of grass. It was gorgeous. And cool. Did I mention that Emmylou Harris was at the baptism, which was outside in a park on a river?

Burger Up – 12south image via

I’ve promised a post on Nashville to a group member who is lucky enough to be moving there. Consider this part 1, since I saw the article and it gave me more impetus to get the post going, yet both of my kids are sick, my husband is away and I don’t have enough time to do it justice yet.

So this will be the start of my love letter.  More to come on what it’s like to actually live there – like cost of housing and schools and stuff like that. If any of you have the goods on that, let us know!



6 Responses

  1. March 13th, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    […] the Design Sponge City Guides. Let’s say you’re thinking about a move to Knoxville (Tennessee on the brain!) and wonder what life is like there for the average cute, young woman with a perfect […]

  2. Scarlet says:
    January 17th, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    I love your writing style Deirdre! I have been living in Nashville for about 4 years and I love it here. It is very family friendly and there is so much outdoors stuff to do here too- hiking, canoeing, golfing. Very nice Adventure Science Center, Zoo, and Monkey’s Tree House. Lots to see and do!

    • Deirdre says:
      January 18th, 2013 at 2:29 pm

      Thanks Scarlet! It seemed like that was the case. I will link to those in my “Part 2” post. Anything else you’d like to share, please do!

  3. Deirdre says:
    January 13th, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    Omg I am so NOT from there, Karen! I’m from the Upper East Side of NYC – decidedly not the South. I don’t know of any connections yet but will ask the two people I know there. A good friend grew up there and many of her high school friends have settled back in the city (with good reason). I would explore twitter if you are willing – oddly they just suggested I follow someone who lives there today – before I posted this. Her blog is and it doesn’t seem to be Nashville-specific but she’d be a good person to start with! Or just google Nashville parenting blogs? You’ll find people once your kids are in school, too.

    • Deirdre says:
      January 18th, 2013 at 2:24 pm

      By the way that sounded like I was speaking ill of the city. I hope you realize how much I loved it from the post!

  4. Keren Bernard says:
    January 13th, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Deirdre thank you so much! I recently cancelled my yahoo group membership so that I would stop reading Brooklyn emails but I am so grateful for this! We have been here two weeks and are adjusting very slowly. It’s a very different speed – hell, it’s totally different but look forward to Part 2…are you from here? Do you happen to know any local yahoo groups or cool transplanted parents like ourselves? Again- thank you