Friday, January 30, 2009

Welcome, newcomer!

I am about to welcome a very special Charlotte newcomer: my second child. That means this is my last post until I return from maternity leave in late April.

Charlotte is where I became a mom. My daughter, Lucy, 2, was born here. Read my last Sunday column -- this Sunday -- on how I think Charlotte is a good family town.

Please be in touch at the end of April. Or, if you have a story idea, especially for the annual Living Here magazine, that you want to share sooner, e-mail it to If you would like a copy of the magazine, e-mail new products editor Steve Gunn,

And, if you are new to Charlotte, welcome!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Where did you move from?

We are trying to start an interactive map on that would track where people move to Charlotte from. We want to populate it with some responses early on to encourage others to participate.

It doesn't matter how long you've lived here. Here's what we want to know:

What town and state -- or city and country -- did you move here from? And how long ago? What do you NOT miss about your old place? (5 word maximum)

This would be my response: New York City. 5 years ago. Pricey housing and the cold.

Please send responses to or post them to this blog.


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Need a date night and a sitter?

Before Baby No. 2 arrives, my husband and I are going out for a nice dinner Saturday night. Thing is we are taking Baby (she's actually a toddler) No. 1. (She's actually been to restaurants quite a bit and is well behaved.)

Our regular babysitter can't be pressed into service -- something about watching to catch up on sleep after just returning from a trip to Israel. And we have no visiting grandparents to tap.

Clearly, I have not done a good job of building a babysitter network. I'm looking into that right now. It could be the last story I write before Baby 2.

So if you are in this situation and want to share -- or vent -- please be in touch and FAST. I also want to hear from you if you have found valuable babysitting resources and are willing to give them up. Send an e-mail to or call me at 704-358-5179. Be sure to leave your name and daytime phone number.

By the way, the timing for our date is perfect. It coincides with Charlotte Restaurant Week. Click here for details.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Another "Moving On" class that starts soon

Reader Marge Farris wants to make sure Fort Mill newcomers know about this class. She passed along details and class description below.

A new seven-week newcomer’s class, “Moving on After Moving In” begins Tuesday, Jan. 27. Classes will be from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at BacInTyme Coffee CafĂ©, 124 Confederate St., Fort Mill.

Do you need encouragement as you adjust to a move? Are you in unfamiliar surroundings? Do you want to make new friends? Then this class is for you. This Christ-centered study will help you let go, start over and move ahead with your life after a move. For more information or to register for the class, e-mail or call JoAnn Gibitz at (803) 548-9386 or Marge Farris at (803) 746-7699.

There are lots of Moving On classes around the Charlotte area. If you have one, please post details to this entry. Thanks.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

N.C. 3rd for new residents

In case you didn't see my story online, North Carolina was third in attracting new residents last year, according to an interstate moving study. It slipped from the top spot, falling behind D.C. and Nevada.

South Carolina ranked 7th for people relocating there.

Click here to read the story.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Moved in? Move on!

I just got an e-mail from Mary Jo Culver at Christ Covenant Church in Charlotte wanting me to spread the word that the church is about to start its third newcomers class.

It's called "Moving On After Moving In." It is a faith-based course for helping people settle that church across Charlotte and the nation are using. For example, St. Matthew Catholic in Ballantyne also offers it.

The class at Christ Covenant will be offered Monday, Jan. 19 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and on Wednesday, Jan. 21 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Child care is available on that later date. The church is at 800 Fullwood Lane. Cost for the class book is $12. For more info and to register, call Culver at 704-814-1039.

And if you have a newcomer class or group that you think others would like knowing about, please post it here or e-mail me about it and I will post it.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Who are you rooting for?

In my story today -- leading up to Saturday's playoff match between the Carolina Panthers and Arizona Cardinals -- I write about how long it takes for football allegiances to be broken.

Ten minutes or 10 years for two former Cardinals fans who live in Charlotte. Never for two others here.

Jeff Genant (above with wife Lisa at the Panthers 2007 home opener against the Houston Texans), a former Cardinals season ticket holder who moved hear nearly 11 years ago, says there's not as much team spirit in Phoenix as Charlotte. He now roots for the Panthers.

Robert McKenzie, a Cardinals fan as a boy growing up in Missouri -- before the team left St. Louis in 1988, can't wait to show his Cardinals pride in the Panthers stadium. "I'll be there Saturday, wearing my Cardinals gear and cheering them on. Having a whole year to gloat about ending the Panthers season is going to be SWEET!," he said in an e-mail. (Robert is pictured below with 2-month old daughter Olivia. He's wearing Cardinals gear he got for Christmas and is in his Cardinals-decorated exercise room.)

To read my story on football fans, click here.