For the first six or so weeks of this blog, we could have been called "us almost in Orlando" or "the once and future Orlandoians" (Orlandoans? Orlandites? hmmm.)
When I kicked off this blog, we were living just outside of NYC on Jersey's gold coast. When we stepped out of our apartment building and looked right, we had a straight-line view of the Statue of Liberty. Mr. UIO is a native Staten Islander, and he routinely proclaims that New York City is the "greatest city in the world." Mr. UIO and I met while working in the West Village, and before our first stint in Orlando, we lived in both Hoboken, NJ and in Crown Heights, Brooklyn (NYC.)
So, why would we move?
The short answer is geographic arbitrage. The stress of living in a HCOLA with an infant, managing multiple jobs to make that work, and living far away from our support network is the longer answer.
More complexly put - we left Orlando to chase an NYC dream that involved different career goals. We made those career and move plans pre-baby UIO and we decided to keep them and move with a six-week-old. Needless to say ... having a baby changed everything, and the in-person work for a remote-allowed company, the in-person side hustle - those didn't matter as much anymore. The social network we had left two years before had changed dramatically, and we found months going by without getting get-togethers scheduled. The planned day-care turned into unplanned in-home childcare.
We were bringing in a household income in the top 5% of earners, yet we felt like we weren't making enough and that all we were doing was reacting and triaging. We weren't enjoying life, and we didn't feel like we were any closer to any of our goals other than our professional ones. And those professional goals that brought us north in the first place no longer felt as important.
So, after spending the holidays back in the sunshine state, we started to discuss options. We didn't want to just be "running away" - instead, we wanted to be very deliberate about the life we wanted to create. If professional gold stars weren't the motivator any more, what were our motivators? This was the true start of our FI journey. The turning point in my concept of work was listening to the audiobook of Your Money or Your Life. I followed that up with Work Optional, and then Present Over Perfect.
We realized that in Orlando, we could achieve our goals.
These changes would allow us to breathe, and to work on secondary goals of more volunteering, more time outside, more home cooking, more time with our dog, etc.
So, with that - we planned the move and over Memorial Day weekend 2019, we officially returned to Orlando!
Blog posts are all by Mrs. Us in Orlando unless otherwise noted. A former military kid, she's glad to have landed in the sunshine state and enjoys year-round summer sports, making every book a "beach read", waterside walks with the fam, and iced lattes.