Monday, October 15, 2012

Why I Love Where I Live

I never EVER thought I would say I like living in New Jersey.  I was a New York City kid.  Born and bred in Brooklyn, New York.  I went to high school in Manhattan (to the High School of Performing Arts, or the "Fame" school), and then lived in Manhattan through college and law school.  When I got married at 28 and moved to New Jersey, I didn't even have a driver's license!  For months I rode around on a bicycle like Elmira Gulch in the Wizard of Oz.  But then, winter came, it snowed, and I had to learn how to drive!

But I've come to love where I live, and here's why:
  • I'm only 15 miles from New York - so I can go "home" anytime I want to.;
  • Glen Ridge is small -- only around 6000 people.  Everyone knows everyone's business, which is sometimes what I don't like.  However when something bad happens, everyone comes together;
  •  the town is very pretty -- many different styles of homes, wide sidewalks, pretty gardens;
  • both of my daughters were born here;
  • my block is great -- wonderful families and I love my house and garden;
  • it's only one hour to our lake community, Pine Lake;
  • we're only 20 minutes from Newark International Airport so traveling is very easy;
  • we're 1 hour from the beach -- the Jersey Shore!;
  • I'm less than one hour from all of my immediate family;
  • the neighboring towns have great restaurants;
  • I've made wonderful friends here.
  • great parks, nearby hiking; fun town events, lots of trees, and my town is famous for its gas lamps!
An example of the town banding together - sadly:  Last Tuesday, a high school senior died of an accident.  The town has come together for his family and peers in the most loving, supportive way.  I did not know him, but I knew his stepsister and many of his classmates.  I created this artwork for his family:
The text uses lyrics by Linkin Park, which I found through Scrapping the Music's current challenge

Thank you for visiting! If you are so moved, please leave a comment. Hearing from you means the world to me.

Linking up to List it Tuesday at Artsyville.  


  1. Jessica! I really love both of these, so much! The first one is so whimsical and fabulous - great journaling! I love your lamp post. And the second one is so moving. Just perfect for the song Linda picked!

  2. Love that gaslamp image. I have a friend who lives in Chatham not so far away from you and I love to visit there, it's gorgeous. So sad for the boy's family, but love the tribute you did.

  3. Loving the Zentangled lamp post. Also loving the multi-colored glowing sky. You're so creative!

  4. Jessica, such amazing art with your awesome list! Sounds like a great place to live.

  5. Such a beautiful tribute you made for that boy's family. I'm sure they'll find comfort in it. Love your colourful journalpage too!

  6. beautiful pages!! we have many of the same reasons for enjoying NJ!

    1. yes we do! We should really meet in person some time. We're so close!

  7. Beautiful page & love the colors! I've heard so many good things about Glen Ridge just from various bloggers I read!

  8. Beautiful pages, and a lovely tribute.

  9. What a gorgeous tribute to new jersey. He neighbor, I live in Summit. Love this list!

  10. I love your artwork - so vibrant!

  11. Thank you for sharing about your community. I love the color background on the Glen Ridge piece and adore the lamp post. I don't know why, but I like towns with lamp posts. Adds a certain charm to a streetscape, even if it's quaint. Yours with all the doodles is whimsical.

  12. What a beautiful gift for that family. Lovely work.

  13. Lovely piece you made for the family. It's always a heartbreak when those accidents happen, too often....I love your list about where you live. WE should all think about the good things we take for granted. I love where I live too! xox

  14. Great list, great journal page and some excellent reasons to like NJ - between you and Aimee, I might have to revise my stereotypical impression of it!

  15. What a touching way to offer support to a family going through such a horrible tragedy.

  16. Okay, so weird, I was talking with a woman who went to the High School for the Performing Arts today at the coffee shop! Small world.

    I love small towns and I love lakes. I've become convinced small towns are really good for us ... (well, the exception being NYC, but it's neighborhoods there, which are a similar thing.) Your art is lovely.

    And while tragedy is horrible, people coming together helps a bit. I miss that.

  17. Loved haring about your town and seeing your illustration to go with it... the colours are just perfect...and there must be great comfort in a town coming together when a tragedy strikes... I am it helps the family...xx

  18. Thanks for sharing your town with us -love the happy colors you used! And what a kind gesture to make a special piece of art for his family-beautiful choice of a lyric too.

  19. you are so lucky to live in such a wonderful place and be so close to family! your list and the tribute you created are beautiful.

  20. I LOVE the vibrant illustrations with your entry! The east coast is where it's at :)Thanks for sharing!

  21. I still love my valley but being closer to the ocean would be great!

  22. what a wonderful list. and it sounds like a marvelous community. so sorry to hear about the loss of such a young, vital member. i'm sure his family with treasure the piece you created in his memory.


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