Saturday, August 6, 2011

the South.

Not too long ago, my blog buddy Kodi wrote a post that got me thinking. I could completely see where she was coming from and I told her so, but then it made me do a bit more soul searching.

I am ridiculously proud to be from the South. Call me closed minded or whatever, but there is nowhere else I want to live. I've lived in the Midwest, my parents live up North and they are both great places, but my heart is deeply rooted in the South.

Why is that?

When I think of the South, I think of deeply rooted family ties, pride in where you come from, Spanish moss, long summer days, history, boys in seersucker, little girls in smocked dresses and big bows, sweet tea, a big front porch, pearls, and old ladies in hair parlors. I. Love. It. Here.

I think sometimes the pride that Southerners have can come off a bit as arrogance. And maybe sometimes we are arrogant because 99% of people I know down here, truly think the South is the best. It's a deep, deep pride. People from Texas to me are sort of the same. They just love where they live.

Tradition is big down here. From how we dress our kids, to how we dress ourselves, to how we decorate and take care of our home. Things are instilled in us at a young age down here that maybe aren't hit quite as hardcore elsewhere. Manners are HUGE. Yes ma'am, no sir, please, thank you, thank you notes; they're not optional in many families and I love that. Perhaps a good dose of politeness would do this country good no?

Because we live in such a traditional part of the country, I think we fight hard to keep those alive in a country that seems to be moving so fast away from the slow, easy paced lifestyle we try to live. Maybe that comes across as snobbish to some when we talk about our stationery, our homes, our children in the way we do, but we won't apologize. This is important to us.

I'm not saying we are more polite than everyone else for sure. I've met some rude people all over this country. Another thing I think is the sign of the times. Sadness. Someone also made the comment about us not going out "not done". Well.. that's sort of true. While I will go to Wal*Mart in my pajamas, my makeup will be done. That's from my Grandma and I love it. I think it's another Southern thing. It's different down here y'all.

All this to say, the blog land is so awesome because it opens your eyes up to so many different areas of the county. Most of my closest blog friends are from up North and do things a lot different than me. And that's totally cool. They don't judge me when I dress my kid in the big 'ol smocking they don't care for while I don't judge them when their babies wear jeans which I don't care for. And isn't that the point of blogging? So you can meet people from all over and see what different areas of the country are proud of and whats important to them?

I love the South. I'll never apologize for that. So you tell me... where are you from and what do you love most about it?


Lauren said...

I'm from the south too, and I love it! That's never an excuse for anyone to be rude or judgmental, like Kodi has seen, but there's nothing wrong with having a little hometown pride. ;-) I LOVE that my kids are growing up in the Bible belt where Christian ethics aren't looked down on as quaint and old-fashioned. Love all my Yankee friends too, though! :-)

LG said...

I have to agree here and really wish everyone would come down here and take a damn manners class! I find people without that southern grace so annoying, which is because I am just used to it I guess. I also like how we are so traditional with dressing our kids and such! I have lots of yankee blog friends and I do enjoy hearing the differences and what they eat especially is so different from us!

Tracy-Girl @ Then I Got To Thinking said...

I love this post. I am proud to be from CA, but, I must say, I have always been a bit envious of people from the south. Sure, the cooking sounds amazing, but mostly because of the deep rooted ties to family. That is incredible!

Ashley said...

Amen to everything you just said!! I've always said that I will never, EVER leave the South. I absolutely love everything about it. And I totally agree-it is fun to meet people from all over the country and see how they live their lives. None are better than others. But I wouldn't change the way we live down here one single bit!

Angie said...

I am a Texas girl born and raised. I am super proud of my up-bringing :)

The blog world has really opened my eyes to so many different people and their ways of life. I am not judgy though. I love that we are all different!

Katie @ Loves of Life said...

This post is really interesting to me. I mean, I sometimes forget how different even areas within this country can be. I think that some southerners can think of northerners as rude, etc--but like the things you said in your post, I don't think all of them are just linked to a certain area. For instance, strong family traditions are very important to us, too. So is hospitality. I think some of it is just based on how you were raised, not all about the area if that makes sense.

Honestly, I chuckled about the jeans statement (since I just came home from the mall with two new pairs of jeans for E...and some skinnies, too!)....and I think they are so ridiculously adorable! Ha. I don't think in the "north" you can get away WITHOUT jeans b/c it gets so cold. So thats something to think about ;)

You know I'm not into smockings, but I don't judge it-I totally 'get' that its a difference of area and I think thats totally fine :)

Good post!

Jen Watts said...

I'm proud to be from the south too! I'm proud to be a Kentuckian.. While East Ky has such a stigma of being redneck it's one of the most beautiful places in the world to me. When I go on a trip when I start seeing our mountains enter the landscape I know I'm getting close to home.
What a sweet post.. :)

Fidgeting Gidget said...

I'm originally from Indiana, lived in Michigan for 6 months, moved to the Greater Toronto Area for 3 years, and am now back in Michigan.

The Midwest has a lot of friendly people, and anything's more friendly than people living in a huge metropolitan area in Canada (they don't even say hello when they pass each other in the neighborhood on a nightly walk!), but I was just in Florida in June after a long time of not visiting the South and I realized how much I've missed Southern hospitality! Everyone (by everyone, I mean locals) was SO nice and hospitable and I felt so at home. People where I am now can be so self-absorbed, people of the South never seem that way to me!

Anonymous said...

I love New England. I love being from the North. I love that there is a farm and a house in the state of New York that my grandfather built with his very own hands. I love that we have family recipes that we can count on to be present at family parties. I love the greenery, the twisty, turning roads, and the ability to be in a city and ten minutes later be in pure farm land. I also get butterflies when I see Connecticut license plates and seriously hope to raise my children in New England.

I also think that the manners situation is largely a family-based thing. My mama would have a DAY if I didn't send thank you cards to people who gave me gifts or did right by me. Another "family tradition"? We don't give you gifts anymore if you don't send a thank you note three times in a row. But, in all honesty, people need to get a manners check!

Blogging has opened my eyes to other ways of life and I enjoy that. I love hearing about the differences, and while some things are not my cup of tea, it's still pretty awesome to hear about it! Despite being incredibly protective and enamored with New England, I am probably the only Yankee that says "Y'all" in every other sentence!

Gina said...

I have relatives in Texas. One of them is very Southern-ish, as described in this post. The other, is SO not. I don't get the vibe that either one of them think that there way is better. I love seeing differences in people. This post was great.

KTB said...

Well said!

LAURA said...

I'm a North Carolina native and I have to agree that the SOUTH is the best!

I married my husband, who is originally from New Hampshire, but moved to FL when he was a little boy so I always tease him that he's technically still a southerner.

I love the way of life in the south, the way we always offer a glass of sweet tea to anyone who enters our home, the way we bring over fresh tomatoes and cucumbers from our garden to share with friends and family, to the overall way we are. I too love smocked dresses, seersucker shorts, big hairbows, sweet tea, and a big plate of country style steak and fried squash (or okra) ha!


Lindsey said...

I love the south so much! Everyone is so polite there I didn't know where I was, lol!

Heather said...

I have an aunt that lives in Charlotte, NC and I must agree the south is pretty darn cool. I'm from the Northeast near Philly and I do love it. I love Tastycakes and Italian food. I do love manners and my kids love to say "Thank you". I love the woods and creeks and being within driving distance to the shore for the weekend.

Legallyblondemel said...

This is as fine a defense of Dixie as I've ever seen. Living in Texas, I've come to appreciate that similar sensibility you mention. I feel very at home in a place that values tradition, manners, religion, and family.

This hit home the other day when I was telling my boy to wave hello to our babysitter, "Miss K"; Miss K, a Northeasterner, then told me what I Texan I'd become with my Misses & Sirs. Yes, ma'am. :-)

At the same time, I like bringing my Southern California sense of adventure & change to things. I feel like I'm open to questioning tradition when called for than my Texas husband or friends might be.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin