village (of oak park) people and places

On Monday, I made the 12-hour hike from Jackson, Mississippi, to Oak Park, Illinois. I loved the drive through north Mississippi. So many trees. So green. The rest of the drive was kind of a slog, but I made it (with one dog and cat in tow) to Oak Park by about 6 p.m. The apartment/flat is cuter/bigger than I remember. (Always a good combo.) Noodled around the Village the last two days, and here’s what I found.

The Village people (I guess I’m one of them now) are very nice. They sound a lot like me, which is equal parts odd and comforting.

As for places, the Village has some neat ones to explore. The Oak Park Conservatory has the most fantastic Ponderosa Lemon tree. For real.

Oak Park Illinois Oak Park Conservatory Ponderosa lemon tree

The public library is a campus. I could easily get lost in there for hours, I’m sure.

Oak Park Illinois Oak Park Public Library

And then there are many murals, which I quite love.

Oak Park Illinois Murals Street Art

Oak Park Illinois Murals Street Art

Spring seems weeks away–very few flowers or much green right now. So for the time being I plan on enjoying cheer and color in places where I find it.

moving to jackson, mississippi? here’s what you need to know

Thinking of or planning on relocating to Jackson, #Mississippi? It’s a nice place to call home. Warm weather, abundant trees and flowers, affordable living. Here are my suggestions on how to get acclimated:

  • Utility providers are Entergy Mississippi (electricity), Atmos Energy (gas), and the city of Jackson (water service). You can register online for Entergy and Atmos Energy. Easy peasy. For water service, head on over to the Metrocenter Mall and bring your checkbook and a copy of your lease or deed. Credit/debit cards are not accepted.
  • Trash pickup is twice a week–Tuesdays and Fridays in Belhaven.
  • When you apply for a license plate (tag, as it’s called here), you pay an ad valorem tax on the value of your vehicle. The newer your car is, the more you will pay.
  • Commute times, depending on where you work, are breezy, compared to where I’m originally from. Everything seems to be a 15-minute drive. Twenty minutes max.
  • Like to bicycle? The best trail I found was the multi-use path, 14 miles in length, in Ridgeland, which is north of Jackson by about 15 minutes.
  • If you have pets, my vote is to take them to the Animal Health Center in Madison. It’s a bit of a hike from Jackson, but the awesome staff and quality of care make it so worth it. Highly recommend.
  • As for food/dining out:
  • If you’re like me and never have lived in Jackson before, a few notes:

    • Many locally owned businesses are closed on Sundays. If buying local is your vibe, you really need to get it done on Saturdays.
    • If you buy or rent a home in Jackson, I would budget for mosquito/pest control spraying. Mosquito spraying once a month beginning in March and then through October. Pest control every three months.
    • Due to the expansive soil in Jackson, foundation/wall cracks and road potholes are the norm, so don’t panic and then drive accordingly/keep an eye on the road.
    • If you like to garden, welcome to paradise. Jackson is a great place to create year-round gardens with perennials and annuals.

    moving is

    Moving is an intriguing, in-between kind of journey. I spent yesterday packing up my belongings and somehow my lovely, much loved home is now a property.

    A structure with painted walls, hardwood floors, appliances, lighting, and mechanical systems. Also pipes and functional faucets. But the feel of my now house? All the cute is packed up for a different place and hopefully brighter days–fingers and toes crossed.