Musings on Moving

Alex and I have gotten deep into this fantasy of moving away. The more we think and talk about it, the most excited we get. I noticed that we were both essentially shouting at each other when looking at some listings because we were so excited that we lost all sense of volume control.

While Los Angeles has been a great place to start and career and marriage, the longer I think about it, the more I'm starting to realize that it's not my "forever" place. Here's the core of it: LA is expensive. As long as I've been here, it's been an uphill battle to afford my lifestyle. I've jumped from job to job, layered them up, aspired to greater things, but I'm still constantly worrying about being able to pay the rent, the car and health insurance, buy groceries, and have a little left over for movie dates and new shoes.

That's not to say that Alex and I struggle for money. We both make a decent income, but sometimes it doesn't stretch as far as we'd really hoped. I find that I'm trying to "monetize" all of my time, and that has left little room for things like relaxation, fun, our marriage, and other interests.

The idea of reducing our spending any more than we already have here in LA is really daunting. We've already cancelled our cable, we rarely go out to eat, and I use coupons every time I hit the grocery store. So, when we think about moving to somewhere more affordable, I get this tingly feeling like there is some kind of freedom out there!

We've been looking at these beautiful Nashville houses online, some of which have price tags of around $100k. That's mind blowing. The adorable homes in Nashville which we love, would be *literally* ten times as much money here in Southern California. Seeing estimated mortgages pop up that are less than half of what we pay in rent, for quadruple the space + land galore, makes everything in me scream to get out of LA. I can't even imagine how freeing it would feel to not worry about emptying our checking account every month on housing expenses.

I like to joke that Alex could quit his business and that I would bankroll our lives.

Of course, I can't, and wouldn't want to, drop everything here and run towards the middle of the country, but I have to admit that it is tempting. As we talk about the possibility of a big change in our lives, it had become clear that really nothing too drastic can happen for another twelve months or so.

So, what do I do while I wait for big things to happen? I try to be happy with the small stuff.

Last night, while I was walking Bucket, a storm blew in and as the sun went down, the lighting on the street was so pretty. That was pretty cool.

Last week, I booked two new couples to work with. I'm so excited to be a part of their wedding days. That is something to celebrate.

I added a bunch of new things to my etsy shop and I've been pleased that people are enjoying them. That is wonderful news.

I know that there is no perfect place for me on this earth, and that every location will present it's challenges. So, while I'm waiting for Tennessee to be ready for me, I'm working on loving where I'm at. Who knows? I might miss it when I'm gone.

Annika ChaloffComment