A little over a year ago my now husband and I packed up our bags and moved our little family to Central Florida. There were a lot of things that went into our decision to get the heck outta Dodge. Dodge in this case being Cape Cod Massachusetts, but I think I'll save that for another blog post. As some of you may have by now guessed I'm a little bit of a Google guru. So as soon as I got my hubby to say "yes" to Florida I went to work researching. I immediately decided that Seminole county was going to be the place for us. It had the best schools, was close to Orlando (and subsequently universal studios and tons of other fun stuff to do), less than an hour to the nearest ocean beach, had relatively low crime, and had both job openings for me, and colleges for the hubs. In the end we signed a lease on a great apartment in Oviedo, after a long tedious house hunt and time constraints with my job.
So here's the plus side:
- The schools ARE great in Oviedo. Carillon, where my oldest son attended is one of the best elementaries in Florida.
- PUBLIX is by far the most amazing grocery store on the planet. They give my kids samples of food, and make sure my toddler leaves with a balloon. The employees are not only friendly but also helpful.
- It's warm pretty much year round. I think the lowest it got all winter was 3 days of high 40s/low 50s.
- I get to go to the theme park and go on roller coasters year round for less than what tourists pay for a few days.
- The cost of living is relatively low.
- Despite everything I've heard about the job market not being as good as Massachusetts I have gotten 4 better paying jobs than I ever even had interviews for back in Mass.
- Froyo is a thousand times better than ice cream, in my opinion and it's every where down south.
- There are farmers markets a plenty.
- There is so much stuff to do for kids I don't even know where to start. Both indoor and outdoor activities are available year round by the hundreds. Plus, lots of it is free.
- The Mexican food and Spanish cuisine are way better than you will ever find in Massachusetts or any northern state.
- There is fried chicken everywhere, and it is delicious.
- The racial difference between "African Americans" and "European Americans" is barely noticeable. You can pretty much only tell we're different because our skin tone is.
- The real estate market WAS absolutely amazing for buyers when we moved, but costs are rising steadily, as are mortgage rates.
- While it's been easy for me to find a job in the market here, it is not easy for everyone AND I've jumped around a lot. Working 3 jobs in 1 year.
- Car Insurance is more expensive here than in MA
- Your electric bill will probably be crazy because you'll run your AC all the time.
- Florida makes enrolling your kids in school a nightmare.
- It's obviously hard being so far away from family.
- If you register to vote through the RMV it probably won't go through, and FL requires you be registered as Dem or Rep to vote in primaries.
- The majority of Florida has awful schools.
- When you move away from your friends you'll lose connection and ties will be severed.
- The pizza, asian cuisine and seafood stink here.
- There are a lot of cultural difference.