My husband and I talked about moving to Orlando on our first date.

We were set up by a mutual friend who said he just knew we would get along… turns out he was right.

That afternoon at a Starbucks across the street from our college campus in Central Illinois, we covered the basics like favorite music, movies and tv shows as well as the big stuff like family, marriage and long term life goals.

I think we both knew that night was the start of our forever.

That was 12 years ago!

As our relationship progressed, we adopted a cat, got married, bought a house, had a beautiful baby girl and then another followed about 2 years later.

Our Michigan home
Our Michigan home

The last big item on our list was to move to Orlando.

We always longed for our trips to Disney World and each time talked about what we needed to have in place before we could move our family across the country. Our biggest worry was always surrounding having a job here in Central Florida that could support us. But without a Florida address, getting a job here seemed impossible.

Our trip in December of 2021 tipped the scales and made us take the plunge.

The pandemic had changed our life in a way that made our move possible. My husband had transitioned to a fully remote job within his company and he was free to work from wherever he wanted. This was our chance!

We interviewed realtors and had our Michigan home on the market quickly.

It sold in three hours.

I cried.

Thinking about leaving that cute bungalow, the home we had brought two baby girls home to and really started our life as a married couple, was such a mixed bag of emotions.





Moving across the country required a lot of planning but, for us, it was so worth it. My husband traveled to Orlando before we put our Michigan house on the market to check out a couple of towns we were interested in as well as check out neighborhoods for us to buy a home in.

Before this trip, we made a list of the things we wanted in a forever home and things that were dealbreakers for a potential home. One of the dealbreakers was not seeing a home before we purchased it, so for us that eliminated the potential of buying a home resale. The market was moving too quickly at the time to see a resale home listed, coordinate a trip to Florida, schedule a showing, see the house and make a decision.

This meant that a new construction home was going to be our best option. While we wouldn’t see the actual house we would be purchasing, being able to see the model homes in different communities gave us the feeling of each builder’s style and craftsmanship. Our realtor was an integral piece of the puzzle when deciding what company to use to build our forever home.

My husband’s house shopping trip ended with a great lead on a floor plan we liked in a community we loved. Because of circumstances outside of our control, that house is not the home we now live in. And truly, while it was disappointing in the moment, it was for the best.

Hours after that house fell through our grasp, we got a call about a floor plan we loved in a community we had adored from that trip. And in a whirlwind of 24 hours, we signed a contract, wired money to the builder and kicked off our journey of building a home from a dirt lot.

Our new home
Our new home

So we purged our belongings we were no longer using and things our girls had outgrown.

We packed up our bungalow.

Loaded 3 pods to be transported across the country.

My husband and my brother-in-law drove our car to Florida.

I flew with our cat.

We went back to get the girls.

And then we settled into our new life in Florida and we could not be happier to be here.


After 12 years.


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