A Fork In The Road

All my life, I’ve had these big dreams that were closely followed by these big excuses. The one that I used the most was the fact that I had kids. I’ve always wanted to live by the beach. When my kids were little and I considered it, the only places I could afford were the inner cities of beach towns and everyone told me that I didn’t want to raise my kids there. “Too much crime.” “Too many drugs.” “They’ll be in jail before they’re 18.” And I listened. I always listened when people warned me that I was about to do something that would put me on the “bad parent” list. I never wanted to be on that list. The funniest part about that list is that until I had fully raised my kids and they had moved out, I didn’t realize that the list was complete bullshit. Totally made up. If you are trying to better yourself, do something that makes you happy, and/or do what’s going to be best for your kids, there is no way you can actually be a bad parent. Now, I am not saying that there is no way to be a bad parent, if you are selfish and choose drugs or a lover over your children, you might be a bad parent, but that’s a whole different blog. What I’m talking about here is choices. And not just anybody’s choices, my choices.

My whole life I have wanted to live on a beach or at the very least near a beach. And even now, I keep making excuses. “We can’t afford to buy at the beach.” “We can’t possibly rent with all these animals.” “We don’t have enough money saved to move.” “What if we sell our house and can’t find a place to live?” I’ve toggled back and forth about this beach move for quite some time and I think I’m finally ready to take the plunge. It seems that the fork in the road is, in fact, pointing to the beach.

We’ve looked at a bunch of coastal towns, none of which we can afford right now, except for one: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. My son tried to tell me that I would love Oceanside, California with it’s beautiful beaches and high reaching mountains it would be the best of both worlds. The median home price in that area is around $1million. I guess the best of both worlds is pricey. Myrtle Beach, while it has its fair share of million dollar homes, we’ve also found some almost in our price range… almost. The ones we did find in our price range are mostly trailers or are an hour from the beach. I’m not opposed to a trailer, I just don’t know how the neighbors in the trailer park would feel about our herd of cats and I don’t really want to have an hour drive to watch the sun rise and set. I want to be able to walk to the beach. Or at the very least, have a ten minute drive. So far, I haven’t found anything online that fits the criteria and our budget.

So, we’ve decided that I should take a trip to Myrtle in the next couple of weeks and drive around, check out the neighborhoods, and see what’s happening there. I do love the idea of Myrtle Beach because it seems to have all four seasons. I’ve just started to enjoy gardening. Sure, I still accidentally kill lots of stuff and waste money on seeds that I can’t get to sprout, but I’m working on it. Myrtle Beach is in zone 8b in the gardening world. I am in zone 7 here in Knoxville, so I will have to figure out what all that means, but like I’ve said before, everything is better at the beach. A bad day with dead plants at the beach is still a day at the beach.

I think our minds are made up for the most part. I’m not sure when we will make the big move, but we have already started purging things that won’t be coming with us. I almost want to put my house on the market now to force us to get moving because I fear that we will keep putting it off and keep putting it off until 10 more years go by. And our original plan was to move to a new place every couple of years and start over. There are lots of places that FMG and I would like to live in. We do know that the beach will be the last place our dogs live. They are old and if the move itself doesn’t kill them, old age will probably get them before we make our next move. Every day we get closer and closer to that end, but I try not to think about it.

For now, we have accepted mission impossible: find a house to buy close to the beach with a yard big enough for the dogs and a small garden that isn’t on a main road and is within our budget or find a landlord who doesn’t care that we have a Rottweiler, a German shepherd, a parrot and eight cats and want to build a storage shed and a garden on their property that is close to a beach.

I have faith that something will come up and I’m hoping that we are all piled up in a moving truck before the spring planting begins.

I’m taking suggestions and welcome intros to anyone you may know in that area. And if you know someone who is looking to leave the beach for the mountains, I’m willing to trade houses….seriously.


  1. Get a place within walking distance of the beach! We had to live near my husband’s work, most of us don’t have a lot of choice, but when he had done his thirty years we moved a hundred miles down to the south coast. We saw lots of nice houses, but only one ten minutes walk from the beach, so we grabbed it. Best decision. I always wanted to live near the sea and it took me a long time. Sad that our children couldn’t grow up here, but they can bring their families to stay and my daughter and her family actually live on another part of the coast. Hope you find a good home.

    Liked by 1 person

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