Issue 29: Spring Will Heal You

Melody WarnickBlacksburg, Love Where You Live experiment, Place love

In early March I got a message from a reader in Calgary, Canada, who was like, “I’m really struggling to love my city right now.” I said, “Girl, everybody hates their city in winter.” It’s weird because some data from Robert Putnam suggests that levels of social capital are higher the farther north you go. The theory is that in … Read More

Issue 28: How to Live to Be 92

Melody WarnickBlacksburg

The other morning, as I drove home from a ridiculously early-morning class that I teach, I caught my neighbor, June, crossing the street in her robe and slippers. “What are you doing?” I asked. “Oh, I’m just going to put Betty’s newspaper on her porch.” I knew the answer already, because I see it from my window sometimes. June scoops … Read More

Issue 27: The Joy of #Goals

Melody WarnickBlacksburg, Place love, Virginia

As lovely as Christmas was this year—and believe me, eating cookies and bingeing The Final Table on Netflix satisfied the soul—I was like “BRING IT” to New Year’s. Fresh starts! Clean slates! Hooray! That I sing this particular hallelujah chorus won’t surprise anyone who’s read This Is Where You Belong—but it may surprise you that I still, despite all the … Read More

Issue 25: I Am Sitting on My Front Porch

Melody WarnickBlacksburg, Moving, Place love, Virginia

You don’t buy a lot and build a brand-new house without thinking for about a bajillion hours about the kind of place you’d like to have. For my husband and me, those bajillion hours distilled down to a few core principles rooted in everything I’ve ever learned about place attachment: We wanted an infill lot in an existing neighborhood with … Read More

Issue 24: The $5 Love Where You Live Experiment

Melody WarnickBlacksburg, Buy local, Love Where You Live experiment

On the Friday that the ice cream shop Sugar Magnolia finally soft-launched in downtown Blacksburg, Virginia, traffic through the doors didn’t falter for eight hours. The tables were swamped when I wandered over. No matter. I ate my $3.50 coconut chip ice cream cone among the greeting card racks. It’s the least I can do. Communities do well when their … Read More