A quick snapshot into life in the Big D from yours truly.
In Dallas: We live in one of the hottest food spots in the country. And we love it.
Old-school. New-school and everything in between - Dallas is home to some of the best food in the good ol' USA, including exceptional sushi and the best Souffle' you'll ever have in your life. (Just don't order the Ranch dressing with your pizza at Cane Rosso.)
We like our food spicy. Our margaritas salty. Our burgers cooked medium.
Sunny afternoons on the patio, glass of Rose' in hand, are glorious days. Especially when brunch is involved. Rooftop cocktails as the sun sets are also always a good idea (except during a spring Tornado warning, a hail storm or when it's an unbearably hot 110 degrees in August.)
In Dallas: We live in our cars. And it's a love-hate relationship.
If only cars could talk, they'd have some tales to tell because we commute for hours in them. We cart our lives around in them (or at least I do). We cruise around with the top down on gorgeous Sunday afternoons in them. They are more than just four-wheels but rather an extension of ourselves. Regular car washes are a must especially for those who valet often.
One thing we could do without, though, besides the aforementioned hail storms, are all those darned potholes. It's a wonder our cars make it home and into the driveway in one piece. Yes, Dallas could use some help in the infrastructure department. We could also do without those growing-longer-every-day commutes due to tremendous growth coupled with the onslaught of construction projects designed to make it all better... eventually.
In Dallas: We live in an increasingly healthier place. (Most of the time.)
Healthy eating isn't such a battle here anymore, with new restaurants offering West Coast-inspired fare, smaller portions and low calorie options. Although, it must be said chips, salsa and QUESO are always acceptable. This is Texas after all.
People actually get out and exercise, now, too. Yes, these days Dallasites can be found jogging on the Katy Trail, cycling, boxing or my preferred method of doing heel lifts at Bar Method.
Of course, being healthy all of the time is a bit of a battle. Especially if you visit the Texas State Fair or get near a soda fountain. If there is one thing that's the hardest for Dallasites to do, it's give up their sodas. (I did 12 years ago when I moved to San Francisco and it's the healthiest decision you can make.) One thing I will never give up however is that glass of vino on the patio.
On the up side in terms of quenching our thirst, juicing is now officially a thing in Dallas. Juice bars are sprouting up far and wide like weeds.
Speaking of which…
In Dallas: We live with the frustration of allergies. Every. Single. Day.
Allergies are pretty much the bane of our existence here. I actually use it as a full-disclosure deterrent when people ask me if they should move here.
We carry our boxes of kleenex and over-the-counter antihistamine with us at all times, but not as badges of honor. They are for our runny noses and our constant sneezing. Oh yes, allergy suffering is very real friends (as yours truly knows.)
Still we brave the springtime, anyway, to check out the gorgeous bluebonnets that dot the landscape or visit the blooms at the Dallas Arboretum.
In Dallas: We live in A MORE culturally diverse PLACE every day. A good thing.
Word is definitely out about our tasty restaurant offerings, lower cost of living and the fact we have no state income tax. For many, Dallas is one of the last remaining bastions of opportunity.
This all means more people from more corners of the world are arriving in Dallas every day. Big companies like Toyota are tuned in, too. So we've become a bigger melting pot, but without the rub.
Dallas hasn't lost its identity. It hasn't lost its friendly, welcoming Texas charm. We live in neighborhoods where people still talk to each other. Parents still join in each other on the lawn for Saturday afternoon cocktails while their children play. Restaurants still welcome regular customers like a scene straight out of Cheers.
IN DALLAS: WE LIVE, WORK AND PLAY FOR OUR FAMILIES. IT'S CALLED PRIORITIES.
Family, marriage and kids encompass the single biggest part of life in Dallas.
Tying the knot before you are considered a spinster over 30 is pretty important for a gal. Still. Then it's about having and raising kids. Sending them to the right school. Scheduling their days, weeks and months with sports events, music recitals and birthday parties. While not a parent or married myself, I see this daily from my friends who do have families of their own. It's a life spent juggling balls, er, schedules of often multiple children. Unless you have a nanny to do all that for you. If not, you are most definitely a supermom.
If you’re not taking care of your own kids, you just may be helping out your baby boomer parents. And they are likely helping you, too. Because that’s what we do. In Dallas, we are all in when it comes to family.
In Dallas, we live like entrepreneurs now. working at all hours.
Dallas is the headquarters for a lot of big business. But there is a healthy startup community also at play. A lot of people are working from home or at coffee shops as entrepreneurs, working 24/7 to do or build something they love. I don't have enough time to count the number of fashion bloggers that call Dallas home.
Which brings me to...
IN DALLAS, WE LIVE TO SHOP.
Neiman Marcus is the gold-standard by which we all do our Christmas shopping (in fact NM ran Barney's out of town.) Indeed, shopping is right up there with eating on the list of how we spend our time. When you can sip some bubbles and shop at the same time, it's a match made in heaven. Hint: If you're going shoe shopping, Nordstrom is also a must visit, especially during its Anniversary Sale.