We change as we grow. As kids, we were always being asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Even in a famous song by Will Smith —
“Sometimes I wonder, what you gon’ be? A general, a doctor, maybe an emcee.” Lately, it’s led me to dream and wonder about Jefferson City and who we want to be. After having just celebrated Cole County’s 200th birthday and being in our formative years, I have to ask JC — what do we want to be when we grow up? 

First, let’s start with what we’re known for: It’s a great place to raise a family, our German roots shine through, we are a capital city, and we are a community that gives back. If we look forward, what do we want to offer? Do we want to be known as a great place for young professionals starting their careers? A hub for innovation? A tourism destination? A craft beer hot spot? The possibilities are really endless. It reminds me of one of my favorite quotes, by F. Scott Fitzgerald: “It’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be who you want to be.” 

We’ve all heard it before: Change is inevitable. For my friends who feel discomfort thinking about change, what if we looked at it retrospectively? What if we considered all the changes that have taken place in our day-to-day lives and reflected on the past 12 months — how some of the changes that weren’t welcomed at first have now become our way of life. And can we admit that some of them have left us in a better position or situation? If we apply this knowledge — that it turned out OK, and maybe even better — what does this tell us about the reasonability of fearing change for the future? 

Sally’s Garden
This summer at our office, CITY’s editor Sally Ince started a garden in the backyard. Nearly every day for at least an hour, she was out there pulling weeds, adding soil, harvesting, watering, propping plants up with stakes, and caring for these plants, making sure they were kept happy in full sun and safe from animals. It took a lot of time, and there was always work to be done. Soon we started enjoying the sweetest cherry tomatoes and crunchiest cucumbers. But our absolute favorite part was the unexpected recipes we ended up trying because we had an abundance of ingredients like Thai basil and gotcha jalapeños. We made basil fried rice, dill dip, cucumber and jalapeño salad, marinara sauce, and the best Southern-style collard greens. Had she never volunteered to start a garden and put in the work, we wouldn’t have enjoyed all these exciting new flavors and meals together. 

If you don’t already know this concept, I encourage you to Google, “how does grounding work for the body?” I won’t try to explain the science behind it because I have only one paragraph, but it’s something I’d like more people to know about. In a nutshell, it’s the act of standing barefoot outside on the Earth’s ground and recalibrating the electric waves in your body. There are countless health benefits, and you want to know my favorite part? It’s free! Totally free. And it only takes a few minutes. You can social distance while grounding with friends, you can drink wine, you can let your kids or dogs play, and you can be on a conference call. All while taking care of yourself. Now, if that’s not life balance, I don’t know what is. 

As the colors change around us, I’m thankful for all the opportunities a new season brings. It’s a chance to cultivate change, share the crop, and stay grounded. 

Proud to be homegrown, 

Missy Creed McFerron, Publisher

PS. We’ll be celebrating the Home Grown issue with a backyard launch party Thursday, September 2, from 4 to 7 p.m. with our friends from the Missouri Soybean Association at the MO Soy Innovation Center. We welcome you all to come and enjoy food, drinks, yard games, tours, a photobooth, giveaways, and celebrating everyone involved in this issue. Come as you are, but come hungry!