on December 2, 2008 in Movin on up, Nash-livin' with 16 comments by

Last night, Meredith and I helped Marisa put up her Christmas tree.  After a series of unfortunate events [which had there been a camera would be a blog post in itself], we finally had the tree in place, the star on top, and it was time to string the lights.

As we would finish a strand, Marisa would have us step back, squint our eyes, and look at the tree.  “It’s prettier that way,” she claimed.  So I shuffled a few feet backwards, squinted, and sure enough.  Something about it was lovely. Like, deep-in-your-core kind of lovely.

When I finally left after much chatting and some delicious cookies, I took a different route home.  I went through town instead of using the highway.  And as I pulled up to the stoplight at the intersection of 4th Avenue and Demonbreun, I was facing downtown. The big city of Nashville. All the tall buildings had scattered lights on, proof that important people were working too late or someone was cleaning up after them.  Either way, it shimmered.

Rain was dripping, not really falling.  But my windshield had little droplets that made the light from the tall buildings refract a bit. While waiting for the red light to turn green, I squinted my eyes.

The brightness of the lights mixed with the raindrops through my squinted view- it was lovely.

I don’t recall what song was on the radio.  I thought I would.  The night sky was really black and I was the only one at the intersection.  My car had warmed up, though the outside temperature read a chilly 36 degrees. I stopped squinting and just looked.

I took a deep breath and thought, “I am going to remember this moment forever.”

Because sitting in my car right there on 4th Avenue, I fell in love with Nashville.


  1. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 8:42 AM  |  reply

    That’s kinda how it happened for me…there was just this turning point moment where I fell in love:)

    miss you girl

  2. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 8:42 AM  |  reply

    I think it was the Batman building that made you fall in love with Nash. Because that is one cool building. Or the fact that you were on the coolest named street EVA – Demonbreun.
    Anyhoo, I’m glad you love Nash. I’m fairly certain it loves you, too.

  3. Bethanne
    posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 8:54 AM  |  reply

    I knew you would love Nashville eventually. There is much fun to be had there and I hope you find all of it. I pray that you make the best friends of your life there…..

  4. Southern Gal
    posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 9:17 AM  |  reply

    I need to visit that lovely place that has won your heart.

    We squint after putting lights on the tree, also. It’s a sure fire way to find any ‘holes’ in the lighting. My hubby looked at the tree last night, squinted, and said, “You did a fine job.” Made my day.

  5. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 9:40 AM  |  reply

    Oh… chills. You just gave me chills. I’m so glad you found that place – the moment in your car, and that place in your heart. God is doing good things in you Annie. 🙂

  6. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 11:09 AM  |  reply

    YAY! I am happy for you…I know its a journey and will continue to be, but I am glad you are starting to find special places and moments that will cement your reasons for being there

  7. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 12:06 PM  |  reply

    I remember the precise moment when I fell in love with the town we now live in. Short version of the backstory: we moved here from “the city” some 16+ years ago, and rented a house just down the street from where we now live. After an enjoyable 6 years in said house, we had to move. (long story about landlord needing to live in our house). We moved to a neighboring town into a house that we just sort of tried to make the best of.

    When it came time to buy a house, God led us through some rather interesting circumstances to our current home. One night, on my way to clean our new house, I was driving along a dark country-ish sort of road, listening to country music…and…wow. Stars. Meandering road. Fields. The knowledge that I was on my way HOME. It all hit me and took my breath away.

    And then, in the next moment, I did something quite out of character for me. On that dark, quiet road, I rolled down my window and shouted out into the night, knowing no one would hear me. I shouted kind of a “Yeehaw!” sort of shout, followed by “I’M GOING HOME!!”

    I’m sure you were much more sensible and ladylike when you fell in love with Nashville.

    There is nothing like a home town that captures your heart. May we all find home.

  8. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 12:08 PM  |  reply

    OOPS! Correction: it was an enjoyable 6 MONTHS in the first house, not years.

  9. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 1:15 PM  |  reply

    good for you…you are fnally “home”. much love, Happy Holidays!! Merry Christmas!!

  10. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 2:01 PM  |  reply

    That was so beautiful Annie.

  11. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 5:22 PM  |  reply

    Beautiful, Annie. I’m going to try it (I suppose actually stopping at the stoplight is the key. On the move may not end up as pretty).


  12. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 6:21 PM  |  reply

    What a beautiful picture!

    Just a small suggestion: do NOT squint your eyes while driving by someone else’s house and looking through the window at THEIR Christmas tree. For that matter, do not squint your eyes while driving AT ALL.

    I mean, it’s not like I know from experience or anything…

  13. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 7:21 PM  |  reply

    Ahhh… Simple things, Simple pleasures.
    This was beautiful, so thank you for sharing. 🙂

  14. hollie
    posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 8:35 PM  |  reply

    i’ve been waiting for you to fall in love….with nashville! 🙂

  15. posted on Dec 02, 2008 at 10:58 PM  |  reply

    I totally get the squinting thing. It’s a different kind of glow isn’t it? My favorite thing in the world is to turn off all the lamps and fall asleep on the sofa with just the tree lights on.

  16. posted on Dec 03, 2008 at 9:29 AM  |  reply

    sigh… this is quite simply a beautiful post.

    I’m over here looking for your Elton John black eyed peas recipe. Heavens, I’m addicted.

    Like seriously thinking about those crazy peas addicted.


    Happy December friend!

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