Last summer while we were on our long road trip, Sean and I were paying special attention to a few stops along the way. We knew that we were ready to move out of Arizona, but we just weren’t sure where we wanted to be.
We knew that we wanted four seasons, cooler weather, occasional snow, a good bit of rain, and lots of green, but other than that we were pretty open to different parts of the country. We had a list of states that we thought might be it, but we really didn’t know. We both just knew it was time for a move.
We wanted the adventure of a somewhat more rural area, land for the kids to roam and explore, definitely somewhere smaller than Phoenix, AZ, ideally a small town closer to a large city with an international airport.
We had been on the road for about a month when we rolled into Ohio. We spent one brief night there with our friends, and let me tell you, Ohio was not even on the list of potential places when we arrived. We got out of the truck and the kids ran off to explore a bit.
We’d been there maybe half an hour when Sean looked over at me and said, “What about Ohio?” I looked at him to see if he was serious, thought about it for a moment, and it just clicked. I told him, “yeah, I think it’s Ohio.”
We spent the last week of our drive back to Arizona talking about it. By the time we were unloading the fifth wheel, we’d researched the towns that fit what we were looking for and narrowed it down to the Columbus area.
We reached out to an Ohio realtor and started the search for our dream property. (Hi Stratton! If anyone else is looking for a place in the Columbus area, I can’t recommend Stratton Alt highly enough. He went above and beyond to make sure that we found the perfect place for our family.)
In the meantime, we kept schooling, and working, and dreaming. Many of you have followed this dream along with us over on Instagram with us over the past year. It’s been so much fun to share the excitement with you.
I absolutely LOVE all of the suggestions you have sent for areas to explore, places to eat, and things to do. So, don’t stop sending those now. I have a long list and plans to see it all!
We flew back to Columbus for a week in November to really explore the area and to look at properties. Along the way, Sean and I both absolutely fell in love with Ohio.
We knew it was right when we were flying back to Phoenix and realized how sad we were. Ohio already felt like home. We returned to look at a few more houses in December when we saw what we thought might be the perfect place.
We had a long list of requirements and an even longer list of wishes and hopes for the property we wanted. I walked through the house and could hardly believe how all of the must-haves had come together in a place that also had so many of our dreams for the property.
So, we made the offer, signed the papers, and made it our own. If you’d told me a year ago that we’d be moving 2,000+ miles across the country and that we would make our home in Ohio, I might have thought you were crazy. It’s amazing what is possible when you fall in love with a place.
And in case you’re wondering just how crazy it might have been to move from Arizona to Ohio at the end of February?
The above photo was taken the day we arrived and the photo below was taken the next morning as we started unloading the truck.
Oh, and all the snow? It was gone by noon. I’ve never experienced anything like it. Despite the hassle of a little extra mud and some snow dust on our things, I wouldn’t trade it away.
My younger boys spent hours outside making the most of the dry powdery snow. They were determined to make snowballs and play in it. I can hardly wait for next winter and the promise of wetter snow and a full cold winter. But first, we’ll get to enjoy spring and summer and fall.
In just the two weeks we’ve been here, we’ve experienced temps from 6°F to 60°F with a beautiful mix of rain, sleet, snow, and sunshine.
The overcast days are my favorite and I’m looking forward to many more.
I’ve never taken so photos of sunrise or sunset in my life. This is my favorite place I’ve ever been and I still can hardly believe that I get to call Ohio home.
Brace yourself for an abundance of photos over the months to come. I’ve come to believe that Ohio really is a hidden gem of a state and I can hardly wait to share it with you.