Monday, July 29, 2013

1 Year




This July marks our 2 year anniversary in San Antonio and signifies our last year here as well.  Officially that is.  We owe the Air Force one more year of service and then we're off to finally put down some roots and start the next chapter of our lives.  We've done 4 years of dental school in New York City, 2 years of residency in Cincinnati and in one more year we'll have had 3 years of Air Force time in San Antonio.  That's 9 years!  While we're both getting anxious to settle down, we've been really grateful for the different places we've gotten to live in various parts of the country.  

The big question is WHERE.  Where are we going to settle down?  We've actually talked about staying in San Antonio and moving back to Cincinnati--both places we have grown to love.  While New York City was probably our favorite place to live, it's not a practical long term option for our family.  (Small tear drop).  However the east coast still calls my name and we've always talked about Oregon as well.  While it's not entirely up to us (it depends a lot upon the opportunities out there) we don't have one specific destination we're both in agreement upon so it really feels like most of the US is an option.  Which is actually a little scary!  We haven't always had a choice of where to live but have made the best of it and found our niche.  Now that it's our choice, and it's most likely 'forever' the pressure is really on to make the best decision for our family.  I really can't believe we're just one year away from what seems like the biggest decision of our marriage.

I'm curious--have you found your forever home?  How did you decide the location--we're you drawn by practical things like family and familiarity or did you choose a place simply because you love it?  What about things like weather, city/community size and the general region of the country?  Anyone ever throw a dart at a map?  :)  


clockwise starting upper left:  San Antonio, Portland, Cincinnati and Connecticut   

35 comments:

  1. I'm not shy about saying that Oregon is my favorite state! We are about an hour from Portland now, although Portland will always be the city of my heart. We came to this corner of the country sort of flippantly many years ago, but it just felt immediately like Home.

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    1. April-I love Oregon. And this is based on the one trip I took there when I was 12. It had that big of an impact on me. But we went to southern Oregon along the coast, and while I've always heard great things about Portland I wonder if the rain really would be a deal breaker for me. One thing I really miss about the other places we've lived is the regular 4 seasons. I like having them all, including a winter with snow. So my question is, how much does it rain there and how do people deal with it?

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    2. sometimes we get snow! ;) and the rain here is so different than I first expected. It's not the downpouring deluges I experienced growing up in the southwest. It's more of a. . . constant mist? but even during the rainiest time of the year (winter) we get bright beautiful days. And it's never extremely cold nor extremely hot. The seasons are distinct enough for me, but I have friends who miss colder winters.

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  2. My husband's work brought us to upstate NY, and since moving here, we found ourselves a little country village and now it definitely feels like home. We'd like to move to a place with land, but definitely in the same valley as where we are now - because we love it so much.

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    1. Upstate NY is beautiful. I could probably love it there too!

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    2. I live in Upstate NY also. I grew up here (in Rochester)and I love it! There is so much to do here, and they have great services for kids with special needs. AND we are so close to Niagara Falls :)

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  3. Good luck with your decision! I know choosing to move and finding a location is difficult, but I have also found that home is where your family is together. And knowing you, I have a feeling you could make anywhere home!

    When my husband wrapped up his teaching degree and we were newly married, there were lots of different options on the table for us, as we had to move as there were no local teaching jobs at the time in WV. We explored 14 hours away from home in South Carolina, close to home in Columbus, OH, and right in the middle in Baltimore, MD. In the end my husband chose Baltimore for the job opportunities, and it hasn't disappointed. I moved here sight, unseen, which is a little scary for this planning/organizing gal. But it has worked out well and we have found a great community of friends and new family. We have recently talked about moving again, either to a different community, or to a different state, due to our expanding family, and I try not to get worked up about it, b/c I know as long as we are together, everything will fall into place. Take Care!

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  4. I second Baltimore. I'm from New England, which certainly is gorgeous, and my husband from Atlanta by way of Chicago and Cincinnati. We did kind of throw a dart, back in 96, and ended up in Baltimore on a lark with no place to live and 400.00 to our name. We love the mid-atlantic and while we currently live just over the Maryland border in PA, we have accessibility to Baltimore (about 45 minutes away) and many other big cities, the ocean, tons of state parks (yay for PA!) and yet our subdivision is surrounded by farms and we pass cows even to go to the grocery store :)

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  5. greenville, south carolina. after many, many moves it's the home that we fell into and we love it. it took me one weekend to shake my really bad attitude about moving again to fall in love with this city. we are minutes from the (albeit small) mountains, 3 hours from the beach. 2 hours from charlotte and atlanta, delightfully refurbished downtown, rivers, bike trails, nice people, seasonal festivals, thousands of restaurants, small town charm, but we're really not that small. i get really excited when i talk about it. and just to be really obnoxious, here's a link:
    http://www.greenvillesc.gov/PublicInfo_Events/MediaMentions.aspx

    i actually don't want more people to move here and turn it into atlanta. i do hope you find a wonderful place to settle. good luck.

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  6. We are in the same boat, this being our last year in residency. After so many temporary spots, it feels surreal to actually have to decide to stay put somewhere! And stressful! It is the rest of our lives, so a pretty big decision. Right now we are focusing on Texas and Arizona opportunities, but we really could end up anywhere - though like you we have probably ruled out NYC. Good luck, it will be interesting to see where we all end up:)

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  7. Stay in SA!!!!!!

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  8. I live in Portland. I grew up in San Francisco and moved here when I was a senior in high school. I went to U of O in Eugene for college and moved back here after graduation. I LOOOVE IT HERE.

    The weather, you ask? Yes, it rains. And rains. And rains. And by April you can sometimes feel like you're going to go crazy. But for me, it isn't the rain that can make it difficult as it is the grey. The lack of blue sky affects this heart of mine.

    But with all that, I can't ever see myself leaving here. What makes up for all that is the bounty of things to do here! It truly is endless the amount of activity there is here. A few others: the food. The beer. The people.

    Come for a visit. You can stay with me! My kids (Grace, 7 & Myles, 3) would love to meet your children...

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    1. MLS--See, you make it sound so enticing...I actually really want to come visit. If we do I'll let you know. :)

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  9. I've lived in Portland for the majority of my life. The rain is hard. As a child it didn't bother me one bit, but with each passing year (I'm 40 now) it becomes more and more unbearable to me. Yet, the summers are lovely and there is lots to do outside here, besides it being breathtakingly gorgeous and the quality of life is very good. Just remember you can have a lot of rain for 6+ months of the year.

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    1. Stephanie--I appreciate the honesty here... but it's not helping me want to move to Oregon! :) I think any place with an extreme season that you have to 'get through' is making it tough on us. We like San Antonio, but the summers (with the exception of this one--it's been so mild) make it a tough sale. Same with one of my favorite cities--Boston. I LOVE Boston but thinking about the long cold winters is a huge turn off, especially for my husband. Strangely, mild weather year round is also not something I'm really keen on...I want the variety of seasons, but just nothing too extreme.

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  10. Brittany8:16 PM

    You don't know me but I thought I'd comment anyway (I love your blog!). My husband and I are in the exact same boat (he's in his final year of OMFS residency). I have the same feelings as you. It's kind of overwhelming and definitely more than a little scary. We're currently in Knoxville, TN. We could stay here and have it made financially within just a few years. It's gorgeous and cost of living is cheap. However, there is no family nearby and we've both decided that we could live in a mansion but if our families rarely visited, we'd feel lonely and empty no matter the size of our home. So, we're probably going to end up back west, hoping for southern Cal, which was always totally out of the question until we finally realized we may as well end up where we always want to be on vacation anyway, even if it means a smaller house and crazy taxes. At least that way we know we'll always have company and that means more to us than anything. :)

    By the way, if my husband would go for it, I'd end up in northern Virginia /D.C. without fail. Heaven!

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    1. Brittany,

      I feel like I have the opposite feelings... if I choose someplace in the midwest, then we can afford to actually vacation, pretty much anywhere and anytime. I don't want a huge house either way, so that's not really a big draw for me--but I like the idea of being able to afford my 'dream house' before I'm in my 60's :) Plus, California weather doesn't really appeal to me... that being said, there is something about California. Although in general the high cost of living is just a turn off. Also, I know I'm the exception here, but living close to family isn't a priority for me. I know...what kind of good Mormon girl am I? I love my family and I love seeing my family but I also like having our own family traditions and doing our own thing. Perhaps that's just been since we've always lived away from family during our marriage, but it works for us. And yes, I'd sign up for DC too!

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  11. Christine8:42 PM

    My 3 favorite cities are Boston, Charleston (SC) and San Diego!

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  12. What I have got from reading your blog in the ur husband was going to stay in the military. Is there a reason why he is leaving? Colordo is a great state!!!

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    1. Bryna,

      My husband was never planning on being in the military long term. We signed up during dental school and therefore they paid for 3 years of school and now we owe them 3 years. There are people who decided to stay in longer once they've had the experience, but my husband is pretty antsy to get out and actually practice dentistry (he doesn't get to do much actual dentistry right now). And I love Colorado too! That's where I grew up (after Nebraska)! If there was a good opportunity there I think it would be a consideration. :)

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  13. I've lived in Southern Ohio (2 hours E of Cincy), central Ohio, upstate NY, Utah, Arizona and now Savannah, GA. I also have spent a great deal of time in Bloomington, IN. Of course, people are different, but my favorite places have been OH, IN and NY. I love love LOVE the Midwest and we will settle there eventually (we hope!). But Upstate NY was gorgeous too and I loved it there.

    Just my two cents!

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  14. Anonymous10:40 AM

    Chicago's like NYC, but better. ;) It might hit a lot of your requirements in terms of lots of culture/big city experience, but be more affordable than NYC especially in the near suburbs. We also have four beautiful seasons. I'm sure a dentist could find a job here and we have some of the best hospitals in the country for special needs kids. It's easy to get anywhere because O'Hare is a hub. I'm not sure about the Mormon community here and I've never met a Mormon personally in all my years here but I'm sure there is one somewhere because I see young men in suits riding their bikes around.

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    1. Anon--Those are fightin' words. :)

      Kidding--I've only been to Chicago a couple times but really like it! I could see it being a great city to live in. And yes I'm sure there are plenty of Mormons in the area. Although I like to have a mix of friends in and outside of church. :)

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  15. Anonymous12:52 PM

    I've read your blog for awhile. You are so inspirational. Granted I don't have children or a husband but about 6 years ago I decided to buy a one-way ticket to Portland. It was a great decision. I feel like there's something for everyone here. And it's not so expensive here and yes the rain and grey can get crazy but the summers are AMAZING!

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    1. Ahh! Another plug for Oregon. :) I seriously know I would love, love, love everything about Portland... and I even think the rain would be doable for a while. However, it's the long term I worry about. Like another commenter above, I wonder if over the years it would only get more and more intolerable. Sigh. That plus I think my husband is even more adverse to the idea...so as much as I love the idea, it seems like a long-shot at this point. But I love hearing from so many Oregon/Portland lovers! I definitely want to visit.

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  16. We live and own a home in suburban Dallas, but it doesn't feel like a forever home to me. We moved here sight unseen for a job. While that part is wonderful I wish we had a deadline of when we had.to move. I would love to go back to DC but don't see that happening. :( North Carolina is at the top of my list.

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  17. Anonymous9:13 PM

    We left Illinois for a job in the Pacific Northwest (Seattle area) before we had our kids 15 years ago. Besides feeling far from the rest of the country, it has it all. Yes, it is gray in the winter but at least it's not cold and it stays green all year. I say Oregon! Have fun figuring out your next move. ;-)

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  18. Anonymous12:33 AM

    San Antonio is our forever home now. I teach at UTSA and hubby works at a large engineering firm here in town, so we are very established. We are currently buying a second home at the coast (EEK), and that will make it seem even more forever.

    But, if I had a chance, I'd be very tempted to settle back in Nebraska, probably Omaha or my high school town, Lincoln. Hubby would never agree--no place to sail.

    I did a conference talk in Portland a few years ago, and I loved Portland. But, the cost of living seemed high as did unemployment.

    Laura

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  19. Long time reader here! I am from Baltimore and also have lived in PA and Seattle. We LOVED seattle, but came back east for my husbands job and frankly to be a bit closer to family. If you decide on Balto/DC let me know - I have lived here almost my whole life so could give you some pointers for different areas to look. Best of luck in your search!

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  20. Anonymous9:40 PM

    Hi Miggy!

    We just moved to Greenville SC and we LOVE it! It is a beautiful city with a ton of outdoor activities. Plus there are a lot of good restaurants - always a plus in my book.

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  21. I grew up in Washington state and Beau grew up in California....we both said we would NEVER raise our kids in Utah. Guess where we are living and staying forever. hahaha! we LOVE it here. I really don't miss Washington at all (although it and Oregon are sooo beautiful) The rain isn't as bad as the grey was. After a day or two of cloudy weather here, which rarely happens I'm so bummed out. I think living somewhere cheaper and taking awesome vacations is a great idea!

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  22. We are in St Louis. We wound up here (after 14 yrs in Boston) because my husband grew up here. Once we had children, we wanted to be near family. I never would have lived here before children. BUT, I LOVE it. Like, seriously love it. This is my forever home. The people are so nice, I've made some of the best friends of my life here, the towns are so pretty, housing is affordable, schools are good and there is a lot to do with children (free zoo, science center, art museum, etc). Wherever you land, I wish you as much contentedness as we have found here.

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  23. I'll be the third person who is pro Greenville, SC. It is the best kept secret of the south. It has four seasons, but each is mild. Just a short trip to mountains and the ocean. Low cost of living. A very family friendly community. Vibrant downtown. Great schools. Two LDS stakes (we are in our favorite ward ever!) It's a great place.

    Good luck on your search!

    Lauren

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  24. Thanks for sharing your post. San Antonio is really a wonderful place. I think you had enjoyed it with a great joy.http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MiY41ijpzuI

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  25. Stay in San Antonio! It is close to Austin and a relatively short drive (or 50 minute flight) from Dallas, where the Scottish Rite Hospital resides, and few hours from the beach. I live in Plano, a suburb of Dallas. I pray everyday that we are able to move back to SA, where my family is and where things are just a little bit more easy going. San Antonio is so beautiful and friendly. I am a true Texan by blood and I just love it. The summers are a bit unbearable but the winters are mild and nice. I wish you the best wherever you end up. I have been reading your blog for some time now and I think that your family is truly inspirational and of course, beautiful. I always hope that I spot you out and about when I visit my family there.

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