Texas is a country in and of itself and East Texas is like a country within a country.

People grow up here, leave, and then for some reason move back. It could be because after growing up in a small town, you crave the big city life. Then one day you realized what you crave the most is a place that feels like your own home.

Some people move to East Texas because they married someone who grew up here and came back to be near their family. Some are moving to the here because of jobs and they stay for the low cost of living (as compared to Dallas/Fort Worth and Houston).

No matter what brought you here to East Texas, you soon get past the culture shock and learn to settle in and live like the locals. You begin to blend in and make this unique place your home. Yes, you, too, end up stocking house with the same things we see in typical East Texas homes.

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    Salsa

    Forget the store-bought stuff like Tostitos or Chi-Chis. The great thing about being in East Texas is the homemade salsa. Everybody's got a recipe. Some might share their homemade recipe with you and some will cut you if you ask (they will be sweet enough to send you home with a Tupperware bowl full of it, though).

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    Barbecued Something or Other

    Out in Texas, we don't just barbecue pork, we'll barbecue practically anything: deer, turkey, duck, fish, bologna, brisket, and of course, chicken. We boast the best barbecue is found in East Texas, too! 2 bonus points if you also have a fishing pole and 3 bonus points if you own your own smoker.

  • Amazon via Totally Bamboo

    Something Texas-y

    There are many things the "others" think are stereotypically Texas-y: Longhorns on the wall, a pair of cowboy boots (or five) in the mudroom, a cowboy hat for every occasion (funeral cowboy hats, anyone?), and the good ole Texas state flag flying somewhere on a flagpole out front (or in the window).

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    Tortillas

    Being this close to the Mexican border means you're going to find a pack of tortillas (or homemade) in the house. Just because we are hundreds of miles from the Rio Grande doesn't mean that we can't boast to have THE BEST Tex-Mex food found in East Texas. Don't you agree? Or you'll find a baby in a burrito blanket like this one.

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    Take Out Menus

    If you open up your junk drawer, you will likely find several take out menus from restaurants. I must confess, I put some on the side of my fridge, kept in place by a magnet.

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    A Junk Drawer (or Two)

  • Lucky Larry, Mix 93-1

    Leftover Whataburger Napkins

    Whataburger is a Texas classic, so I know I am not the only one that would claim to have a stash of their leftover fast-food napkins at home (or in the car glove compartment). Prove me wrong.

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    Hot Sauce/Taco/Ketchup Packets

    (See #7 and replace the words "napkins" with packets!)

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    Cola/Soda/Pop/Cold Drink

    Whatever you call it (I call it a cold drink), you are likely to find a stash of Dr. Pepper somewhere in every East Texas home, apartment, condo, trailer, manufactured home, tiny house, you name it! it's just a Texas thang.

  • Shawn Knight

    Blue Bell Ice Cream

    Folks on the West Coast claim to be the "best coast" but they don't know nuthin' bout no Blue Bell Ice Cream! Practically every house in East Texas does, though!