City MIG Society is all about highlighting City Moms and It Girls who are living city life to its most. Check out our SpotLight on Tessa Wegert. Raising two gorgeous children, writing and enjoying all of Chicago's cultural offerings - in style. We asked her about her life in the city:
Why you'll never leave the city:
Every time we lose another friend with children to the suburbs we question our decision to stay. How much are we depriving our son and daughter of? Are we being selfish? Are they missing out?
Always we come back to what they're gaining by being city kids. Few major cities can offer young families what Chicago can. Our children may not have a backyard, but we can walk to the lakefront in fifteen minutes to run in the grass, play on the beach, and watch the boats in the harbor. They may call a condo home, but our family is emotionally close – closer, we believe, than we'd be if we were rattling about in some sprawling home. We don't drive them to their schools but walk them there, just as one might do in a village or small town…only our daughter is learning to speak Mandarin Chinese and our son is experiencing the same educational approach that Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin credit with their success. The Museum Campus, the Lincoln Park Zoo, the world-class ballet company from which our daughter takes lessons – all are a short drive away. It's having access to these kinds of amenities that puts our minds at ease. We aren't depriving our children of anything. We're preparing them for the cultured, worldly adult life we know they'll want to live.
Most amazing thing/place that you love to do in Chicago:
Our existence in the city isn't contingent on a single activity but on two concepts: culture and diversity. My husband and I have both lived abroad and we both speak multiple languages, and Chicago gives us ample opportunity to get a taste of "home." If we start to feel disconnected from our German heritage we can attend Oktoberfest in Lincoln Square. If I want to expose our children to the Quebecois culture I grew up with, we can find a French traveling theatre troupe or a restaurant that serves provincial dishes like poutine. In our complex alone we have friends from Canada, Germany, Serbia, and Vietnam who share our appreciation of diversity within the context of a global city. Any opportunity for cultural immersion that the city can provide – from festivals to theatre, shopping to food – is amazing in our eyes.
It's been eight years since I moved to the US and still I have a weakness for Canadian design. Easy-to-wear brands like Rudsak, Club Monaco, Lululemon, Roots, and Joe Fresh pair perfectly with US brands and international designs. My look is what my husband would describe as "European," which basically means that I wear a lot of scarves. As a business writer and communications consultant working from home I look for clothes that are comfortable but also stylish and a little different from the norm.
If not this city, than which and why?:
My husband and I often bandy about the idea of moving back to Montreal. Our children are already dual citizens, so relocation to Canada would be relatively easy, and I still have family there. Our cumulative travels have yet to unearth a city with as much history and vim – at least one that's as close to the rest of our relatives and friends. It's nice to have such an appealing alternative in mind should we one day feel ready for a major change. In the meantime we're readying our kids by sneaking in as much French into their daily lives as we can.