From The Lowcounty To The Upstate

From The Lowcounty To The Upstate

From the beach to the mountains, there is so much to learn.
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I spent the first eighteen years of my life (and a significant part of my adult life) in the Lowcounty area of Charleston, SC. Summer was a great adventure growing up along the banks of the Stono River. I lived in a small neighborhood at the foot of the old Limehouse bridge; A swing bridge that turned sideways to let boats go through. There were only about 20 houses in our neighborhood. There was a dirt road leading off the main highway that formed a circle of about 1/2 mile. There were houses on the main river, houses on the inner circle with just a view of the water, and just off the circle was a small extension of the circle where my house stood. We had a dock in the back yard on the main canal that led to the river. The lots that were not developed were thickly wooded areas filled with trees and wildlife.

The tides played a big part in planning our day. At low tide, only pluff mud and fiddler crabs were in the canal. We occasionally braved the mud to chase the fiddler crabs as our feet sunk into the thick black goo. The tide had to be about half in before there was enough water to swim or get in the old john boat. High tide in mid-afternoon was the ideal. We would be in/on the water from lunchtime until dinner. In the evenings, we would shrimp or crab from the dock.

We loved the woods. They were filled with honeysuckle vines. We would sit and pick the honeysuckle, gently pulling the stem to get the tiny bit of nectar on our tongue. We picked wild blackberries and ate them on the spot. We were yet unaware of all the things in our world that would soon prove to kill laboratory rats. The woods were filled with tics, red bugs, spiders, and more but we rarely encountered any problems. We did come across snakes a few times but always out ran them. We loved catching Daddy Long Legs and fireflies. We would sit and dig in the sandy soil and find shark’s teeth. We had several small jars filled with them. We were always filled with awe as we thought that our homes were once covered with water and sharks.

I am going to miss Lowcountry. I am now living in the Upstate area. The Lowcountry is designated as such because many areas are below sea level. The Upstate gets its name from - well, being up at the top of the state.

I am still discovering the differences between the Lowcountry and the Upstate. The first thing I notice is that unless you are in Greenville during rush hour traffic, it is not nearly as congested here. Drivers don’t seem nearly as aggressive as they did in Charleston. There are also at least a dozen ways to get anywhere. Most of the ways will lead you along two lane roads with a variety of farms and animals such as cows, goats, sheep, cows, horses, and more cows.

The weather here is a bit milder. It isn’t nearly as humid as Charleston. The winters will bring more snow than I am used to seeing in the Lowcountry. I am excited to see the changing colors of the leaves this Fall this year. The Upstate is very close to the mountains. Ashville is less than a two hour drive. That means the beach is four hours away. No more day trips to the ocean.

The biggest difference living in the Upstate will be leaving my friends and some family in Charleston. Charleston will always be “home” in my heart. I will always be drawn to the smell of pluff mud and sounds of the ocean waves. I have already begun to see the beauty of the Upstate and the lakes. My daughter and son in law are moving here as well and my best friend and her family live here so I already have a start on my tribe here. I am excited to learn more about my new home here in the Upstate.

I would love to hear your ideas about favorite places or things to do in the Upstate!

Cover Image Credit: Carriage Properties

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Dear Mom, I Hope You Know

I hope you know that I am here for you--until the very end.
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Dear Mom,

I hope you know that I appreciate you.

You are the hardest working woman I know, continuously putting your family before yourself. Thank you for doing all of the tedious jobs that no one wants to do like keeping the house in order, cooking the food, and doing the laundry. Thank you for constantly putting up with my siblings and I. Thank you for always supporting us in our interests and hobbies. Thank you for investing in our daily lives and listening to our minor problems. Thank you for always loving us unconditionally.

SEE ALSO: 51 Things My Mom Didn't Think I Was Listening To...

I hope you know I'm sorry.

I know I can be a big pain in the butt sometimes, and for that I'm sorry. I'm sorry for yelling at you, arguing with you, not listening to you, and making dumb decisions at times, but thank you for loving me anyways. Thank you for helping me stand back up, teaching me right from wrong, and pushing me to be the very best version of me.

I hope you know your love inspires me.

You live your life with a love that is contagious. Whether its nurturing love, tough love, friendly love, or romantic love, you have it all and you show it daily. The love you and Dad share is something I hope to find one day and the love you have for your family is evident in the way you constantly put us first.

I hope you know that you are my biggest role model and hero.

Ever since I was a little girl, you have been the person I have looked to in my life. You are strong, independent, confident, loving, supportive, and nurturing-- everything I strive to be as a woman and as a future mother. You give the best advice, even when I don't always take it. Though, I should know better by now because mothers always know best. Without you in my life, I honestly don't know where I'd be.

I hope you know that you are my best friend.

Not only are you my biggest cheerleader supporting me in everything I do, you are the person I talk to about everything, whether it's good or bad. I'm honestly so thankful for the relationship we share because I've had countless screwups and you literally give the best advice. Seriously, thank you for being the person I can count on at all times, at any time of the day or even night to just talk with. I mean we really do have some of the best conversations, best laughs, best cries (when needed), and the most fun watching cheesy chick flicks together or going on crazy shopping adventures.

SEE ALSO: I'm The Girl With The Cool Mom

I hope you know that I am here for you--until the very end.

I don't mean to make you cry or anything -- even though you probably already are, but I want you to know that when the time comes, I'm going to be there for you just like all of these years you've been here for me. I will be there to support you, talk with you, laugh with you, cry with you, and love you for all of my life.

Honestly, I can't really imagine my life without you -- but it doesn't matter because I wouldn't be here without you, so here's to you.

Thank you for being you.

Love you lots!

Your daughter.

Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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Yes, I'm A Babysitter And Yes, It Is The Best Job In The Whole Wide World

It's hard. It's exhausting. But in the end, its so, so, so worth it.

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When I turned 16 years old, I started babysitting during the summer to make some extra money and get myself out of the house and off the couch. Now, I'm 19 years old and I still babysit during the summer, but this school year I've had the opportunity to babysit on the days that I don't have classes. When people ask me where I work or what my job is, I'll sometimes get strange looks and questions like, "Is that your real job?" when I tell them that I babysit. Sure, I don't have a typical job and I often wonder how different my life would be if I had a 'normal' college job, but honestly, I wouldn't have it any other way.

Babysitting, to me, is more than a job. It's giving hugs, wiping tears, and kissing boo-boos. It's listening to "Let It Go" and playing "Ring Around The Rosie," even though you feel sick from spinning in circles for the last hour, just because it makes the kids happy. It's watching "Blippi," "Barney," and "A Bug's Life" for hours on end, thinking you might pull your hair out if you hear the 'Excavator' song one more time.

It's so much more than what meets the eye. It's hard. It's exhausting. But in the end, its so, so, so worth it. I wouldn't trade the hugs, kisses, or giggles for anything in the world. So next time you ask me where I work, I'll proudly respond that I'm a babysitter. I'm proud to be a babysitter, I'm proud to be "Lowey" and I love being a babysitter. I truly have the best job in the world.

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