A common theme in our blog posts have referred to how brutal Wisconsin winters can be; we won’t revisit that topic, but reference it in the fact many Wisconsinites dream of moving to Florida, especially in the months November through March. To us Florida is an exotic location, with sunny skies and palm trees, while we sit with piles of snow and sub-zero temperatures. As we finalize our move, a recurrent comment we hear from people is: “I’m jealous”, mainly made in reference to not having to survive another winter.
It’s easy enough to observe us and feel like we have it made; to feel jealousy over the fact our winters in Florida will be spring weather in Wisconsin, and that we’ll never have to shovel again. The truth is, we consciously made the decision to make this our reality, and we have worked hard to make it happen. It has not been an easy road for any of us, but we feel the effort is well worth any sacrifices we have to make in the meantime.
One thousand, two hundred and eighty seven days ago we first dreamed the dream, of relocating to Florida close to Walt Disney World. We write out that number in words because it really seems surreal right now that we are only ten days away from realizing our dream. There were many moments of doubt that we experienced. The first twelve to twenty months it was merely a dream that we talked about; something that would occur in the future but we had no idea when, and we did nothing towards making it a reality. It seemed so far away in the future that it seemed pointless to expend energy at that point in time. The basement boxes and just the accumulation of possessions that we owned really overwhelmed us as where to start, so we did nothing. After our Disney trip in 2009, we were more enthusiastic than ever about moving to Florida and this is when we let the kids in on our dream, that someday we would move to Florida.
The dream first became real to us last summer, in June 2010, when we first set a date of September 2012 and started the blog. Even though we now had a date, it still seemed like it would never happen; and we didn’t really believe it would happen. How much difference a year makes! Since that time we backed the date to September 2013, and then in January of this year, we decided to take the plunge and move this summer. “Do you really think we can do it this summer?” is the question that propelled us forward.
We can’t say how many times we doubted ourselves, but it was a lot. Over the past six months since we made the final decision, we haven’t doubted our choice, but there have been moments of fear: fear of the unknown, fear that what we are doing is not in the best interests of our children, and fear that we will fail.
We are now ten days away from leaving Wisconsin. We can honestly say that this is the best decision we could have made for our family; our kids are uber-excited about moving to Florida, and while we won’t be traveling with as much money as we’d like (thanks to car repairs); we are very thankful we were able to take care of the repairs now and not have them happen along the way. We won’t be able to purchase as much furniture right away as we had previously planned, but we’ll make it work. An empty, unfurnished apartment in Florida is way better than our current home in Wisconsin, and because it is an apartment our expenses will be less than if we rented a house: we won’t need to do lawn care, maintain a pool, or spray for bugs; and we will have access to a business lanai (with wireless internet and printers) and fitness center, should be choose to utilize these amenities.
Thanks for following along~ we appreciate your comments and feedback!
July 12, 2011 at 6:20 AM
This resonated with me: “The first twelve to twenty months it was merely a dream that we talked about; something that would occur in the future but we had no idea when, and we did nothing towards making it a reality. It seemed so far away in the future that it seemed pointless to expend energy at that point in time. The basement boxes and just the accumulation of possessions that we owned really overwhelmed us as where to start, so we did nothing.”
For me, it was paralysis of analysis doing nothing to make my dreams come true–any of them! Where to start? How do you start a dream? How do you know if what you want is what you will want 2 years out? That two years out does make you think that action now is pointless. Well, after wanting it for many many years, I’m pretty sure I’ll still want this in two years LOL! You’re one of the leaders paving the way for others (me), who have a very similar dream, to figure out how to get it started. I thank you both for that.
I suppose the doubt is also the Yin and Yang of life in that you’re excited for the future (Florida) and melancholy about what is left behind (Wisconsin). Here’s to new Yin’s and Yang’s in life! Cheers!
July 12, 2011 at 8:51 AM
I toast you both for having the courage to live your dream
July 12, 2011 at 11:26 AM
this is wonderfully written and I love that you are willing to share both the easy and the hard parts of this relocation….the ‘fear of failure’ is very scary and it’s nice to be reminded that everyone goes through it.. Florida & WDW are magical but at least your eyes are already open to the fact that life will still get in the way, it’s just that this time you will have WDW sprinkled in there too… 🙂
July 23, 2011 at 6:32 AM
I lived in Orlando for 11 years, then for family and job reasons, moved back to PA last year. After surviving a winter (and realizing how spoiled I’d become) I high-tailed it back to Florida! I have a whole new appreciation for the weather and will NEVER complain about the heat! Now when you go back to Wisconsin for visits in the winter, you’ll wonder how you ever lived there! LOL!