Starting Over

A New Town, a New Life.

A quick recap if you haven't been following along on Facebook or Instagram:

  • Matt got a great job in Powell River with Tempco, an HVAC (heating and cooling) company here in town, where his past experience is value added, but he also learns an entirely new trade!
  • We decided to move, and packed up our things, bought and moved into a 5th wheel trailer and took off to the Sunshine coast!
  • We arrived on Valentine's Day, dropped the 5th wheel in the beach campground and began our new life in Powell River!

Looking back, I realize that the last time I really moved away (like away away), was when I was 18, and was leaving home to work as a nanny in Florida. For Matt, besides our travelling year, he has never properly moved away (#surreyboyforever). Moving is a big deal for us. I know lots of people move every couple of years and have become really good at it, but it's not our favourite thing to do. Not to say we haven't moved at all: we've moved plenty in our time together, and then finally, packing up our entire life to travel for a year was our biggest move yet. 

But moving away feels different. 


Now that we are here, in Powell River, some people have asked "so, do you have family in town? Do you know anyone?" and we reply with somewhat glazed expressions, "umm, no. Not at all". It's a strange place to be. 

Honestly, it is easier since we've been travelling. We're used to not knowing anyone, or anything about a place, and just exploring at our own pace. This certainly would have been more difficult had we just left Surrey and plopped right into a new town. Travelling the world really has helped us be an adaptable family.

So here we are! All the way moved to a new city, Powell River, up on the sunshine coast of BC. It's a small little place, with about 20,000 people in the district (including Lund, Texada etc), but only 13,000 in Powell River city itself. It's just the right size. They have enough of everything to meet all your needs, but not really anything in excess. 

Basically, you don't come to Powell River for the shopping ;) You come for the views, the outdoor activities and the pace of life.  Those are all reasons we chose to come here. 

When friends from home ask how we are doing, I can honestly reply that we are doing well! Life is really simple here, and it's amazing. The biggest thing we noticed right away was the little amount of time we spend in the car. Everything is so close, we are rarely in the car for longer than 10 minutes. The poor car barely has a chance to warm up! We've filled up once since being here, and still, we are only down 2 bars of fuel on the gauge. It'll probably last another 3 weeks. Crazy.

We've signed the kids up for gymnastics, and they love it. We love it because it's 5 minutes away and it's half the price of the same thing back home. There is a group for everything and the community is out there helping each other every day. We put out an "add" on a local Facebook group, saying we are looking for housing, and not only did lots of friendly faces send us welcoming greetings, but a few recognized us on the street and helped us out. 

I know there will at some point be a drawback of living in a small town, but right now, it's all positive for us! This feels like how living in community should be. Life doesn't need to be so serious and complicated and dictated by copious amounts of commuting and scheduling. Right now, our life is pretty uncomplicated, and we like it that way.


So, to answer your top questions:

  • how are you settling in?: Very well, thank you. We are finding the grocery stores, the library, the recycle depot and the biking trails. None of it is very far, and everyone always has a recommendation for us :)
  • how does Matt like his new job?: So far, so good! He has a great team to work with, all with great attitudes and a good work ethic. His work load changes every day, so there is lots of variety, which he enjoys. He sees lots of good things to come in the future.
  • what about the kids?: They are doing pretty good. Sometimes, they are a little sad to have left their friends and family, but there are kids out here all the time and they make friends fast. They have found a few buddies and have had some play dates. It'll take time, but they are starting to see all the resources for kids in this town (bike park, music groups, kids play areas in restaurants). People like kids in Powell River. It's refreshing.
  • how is house hunting going?: really well actually! The real estate market is pretty bleak right now, but we've been asking around if anyone would sell privately and that got us into 5 different homes that we would have never seen otherwise. One, at the moment, is showing a lot pf promise. I don't want to share too much, just in case it doesn't pan out. The market here has changed rather quickly and is mirroring the lower mainland market, with the speed at which homes sell (luckily not the prices, but they are creeping up fast!), so we have to be aggressive - not really our  nature, but this mama doesn't want to live in a 5th wheel forever!
  • when can we visit?: soon, friends! It is warming up here and it is apparently gorgeous in the summer! We are at the campground right now, and I can imagine this being an awesome little retreat in the summer. It is unlikely that we will have a home ready for guests in the near future, so if you're coming this way, bring your tent/trailer! It'll be worth it.

So for now, we are just jumping into everything this community has to offer. That means looking for social occasions and actually going, even if I don't really want to. It's fun to meet all the quirky and fun people who live here - because we're gonna be  them soon enough. 

We haven't regretted this change, if anything, we wish we'd done it sooner. Every time that sun sets into the ocean and paints to sky with the most beautiful colours, we feel like we've made the best decision for our family. This feels a little like a perfect compilation of everything this last year has been to us: an adventure near the water, while exploring new places filled with amazing people. 

Shouldn't life always be like this?


(also, we've lived here for exactly 1 month today!)