Update on Life Here in Florida

Well, we survived our first year here, and are now living in our second Fall in Florida. I thought it was time for another update on how we are all doing, enjoy!

I have to say the first year was rough.  It’s 12 months of finding where you fit in, where your kids and spouse fit in, and how to adapt to your new surroundings.  I would characterize the first year as “Exploration.”   Even with the best blog or website out there, nothing can get you COMPLETELY ready for what you live in those first few moments, weeks, and months.  There is no learning curve for life, you just have to live it and find out- relocation is the same thing.

The biggest question I still get is about the schools- and I can honestly only tell you about the ones that my own kids attend. The neighbor kids do attend Westside, but that’s it for my knowledge of schools. I would LOVE to be able to go and get more information for you all, but the truth is they won’t allow you in the schools if you don’t have a child who goes there.  Safety first, and I fully abide by that.  If you  have found the perfect home, and you now know it’s school district- do your homework. Call, write, email to the school and get as much info as you can- you can NEVER get too much.  Research in this area is probably the biggest one that most relocating families struggle with, but it can be done.

After our first year, I feel like a blanket was lifted off of us.  Kyra had graduated High School, Emily had successfully finished her 6th grade year with Virtual school, and we were right back to the beginning of where we started.  It was a feel of a new beginning yet again with this second year, as if a page had been turned in each of our lives.  I felt like we all earned the “badge of honor” in surviving our first year of relocation.

Now in our second year, it has been SOOOOOO different!  I feel like this year should be characterized as the “Settling” year.  Even though we have been in settling mode since we arrived, this year feels like everything we do has been set in stone.  Kyra starting College- furthering her education and getting her into a great school was a dream come true for us all.  Emily going back to public school and giving it another shot- again, so proud of her. She has been thriving there, making new friends, getting A’s, and impressing her teachers.  What parent wouldn’t be estatic about that?

Craig is doing well, and plugging along with work and life.  We have our date nights, and our also our date mornings on the weekends.  We are still very fond of walking hand in hand around the water at Caribbean Beach Resort,  early in the morning, then grabbing a small treat for breakfast.  No, we are not sick of any of it.

As for me, I am doing well.  With school now in full swing, I am in Taxi Mom mode. I LOVE taking my kids to school, it’s our girl time to chat and it’s truly special to me.  Sometimes at home we all seem to retreat to our corners with computers or phones, so I really hold that time dear when we are driving somewhere.  It’s funny but I never feel MORE like a Mom than when they need me, and I am sure all of my Mothers out there can agree on that.

Life has become more of a balancing act with the blog growing more and more every day.  I think I have mastered how much time it takes me to get in and out of the Parks, get to and from schools, along with other errands- all in the same day!  I have had so many wonderful adventures in the past few months, and they are what remind me to smile through the hard days. I think people forget that I am one person, writing this rather large blog. I write because I love it, because I can express my feelings, and because I can help people who want to fulfill the same dream that my family did.  I love my friends, and I believe they love me in return.  I try my hardest to see everyone I can, and make all the Meets.  I have been working on the balance of the blog and family- my family will always come first. I am, by default, a people pleaser.  I want to understand and help those who need my attention, but when someone crosses my path to only cause stress- I have to dismiss it, pray for them, and move on.  I’m learning, and as I learn, it helps me grow to be a better Christian, Mom, Wife, Friend, and Writer. I am very blessed to have met so many wonderful people.

I am excited for what the future holds, for myself and my family.  Our dreams have only BEGUN to come true, and I hope you all stick around to enjoy the ride.

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11 thoughts on “Update on Life Here in Florida

  • Amy, I really enjoy reading your blog and it helped me a lot when we relocated down to FL this summer. We live in the Winter Garden/Windermere area, so if you ever get any questions for this area I would be happy to help! We have only been here 3 months but have gotten into the swing of things very quickly (mostly by necessity!).

  • I want to thank you for taking the time to write your blog. It helped a lot in the decision making process for us. We just completed our move to Celebration this weekend and are in the settling in stage. I will continue to look to your blog as we try to learn to navigate our new home! Thanks!

  • Deciding where to live, for us, will be 100% based on schools, so I am not surprised to hear that is the question that most ask about. What I didn’t realize was that schools would not even talk to you if you didn’t live in the district, that is crazy and it’s going to make choosing a suburb that much harder when we relocate from Oregon to the Orlando area. Glad to hear that you are all settling in there, and thank you for writing the blog!

  • So very glad you guys are “settling,” as you so aptly put. I’d never thought about it that way, but this was exactly the experience we had in California and Montana (and look forward to having again in Florida!).

    Congrats to you all on making it through all the bumps and hurdles of that first year!

  • Thanks for posting this “update”. As wonderful as the posts about WDW are it is so very helpful to hear about living the normal parts of life in Florida. As we continue to plan our relocation ALL your posts are so helpful. I’m so proud of everything you guys have accomplished so far. I look forward to hearing about all your adventures and day-to-day life in the future.