My mom is visiting us in Charleston this weekend! And as I prepare (read: deep clean, scrub, sanitize, dust, vacuum and deep clean everything again) my apartment for her visit, I’ve been making a little mental list of thing I’m excited to show her. Besides our fabulous new Swiffer wet jet and wedding album-she has heard ravess about both but never seen either in person- I realize that I am incredibly excited to show her “my” stuff.

No, I don’t just mean show her all my shoes and cupcake tins and stuff considered “mine” instead of “ours” in my husband’s and my home. I want to show her “my” market, “my” car wash, “my” drycleaner, “my” Walgreens, “my” vet, “my” Target, “my” nail place, “my” China food place (ok, that one might be “ours”) and all the fabulous little finds I’ve carved out for myself in my new surroundings. We’ve only lived in Charleston for about five months, and in that time we’ve made little routines. We drive to work, drive home, and hit up all these great spots along the way.


I’m reminded when my parents visited me when I was studying abroad in Paris in the fall of 2009. (swoon, seems so long ago) They had been to Paris many times- both with my sister and me tagging along and without us- so they had seen Notre Dame, Montemartre, and far more fabulous places than I could introduce them to. But when they arrived, and I promptly showed them the list of places I wanted to take them (can you tell I’m into lists?), my dad said so genuinely “We’ve seen Paris. We want to see your Paris.”


So I proudly paraded them one of my absolute favorite places in Paris- where my two girlfriends and I had spent many an evening. You won’t find it in any Zagat or tour guide, and you will walk from le Metro 8 stop at L’Ecole Militairre all the way to La Tour Eiffel and just pass it by. “La Terrasse” had become our favorite local haunt- we could actually afford more than one glass of vin and could sit outside under the heated lamps and just watch the Parisian world go by. And their croque-madame was very likely my only source of protein in five months. I also took them to a teeny, tiny Italian restaurant off la rue Cler (jealous? You should be!) that they actually said they preferred over the fabulous restaurant Laduree. We did the touristy, fabulous stuff- shopping at Christian Louboutin store across from Carla Bruni’s house and indulging in a dinner at Fouquets, 99 avenue des Champs Elysees-but the moments I remember the most were riding “my” Metro line or enjoying a quiet cup of chocolat chaud at the little café on my street, peeking up at La Tour Eiffel in le septieme arrondissement, my home for four months.

It might not be Paris, but Charleston is my new home, and I am so excited to show off the little treasures I have discovered! But first, I must get back to cleaning my apartment before Mom arrives!


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