I Live Here

September 9, 2014 — Leave a comment

Although it has only been a number of days, in some ways it feels like a lifetime since my Six Months on the Run and Six Month Recipe Recap posts. Just after I spent time recapping, it was time to pack the van and I was off and away to St. Augustine. Needless to say, it’s been a whirlwind for the past 11 or so days (not to mention all the days leading up to the move) but as I kick off my second full week in St. Augustine, I figure what better time to take a breather and offer a brief rundown of recent events.

Note: I realize I’ve broken my own Two Day Rule during this moving period. I decided allowing my brain, body, heart and spirit time to adjust to the move and calling a timeout felt much needed.

Moving Day + Labor Day Weekend

If you ever decide to move across the state, or country even, don’t have many belongings and feel a truck or trailer might be a waste of resources, consider renting a van. All of my material possessions (bed, keyboard and bike included) fit nicely in this commercial van rented from Enterprise, with room to spare. I was even able to fit a dining room table to deliver to Andrew. Win!


My mom’s best friend Jean offered to drive the van which was a huge burden lifted, considering I had virtually given up on figuring out how I could drive two vehicles at the same time. She and my mom took off in the van Friday, Aug. 29.  I followed behind them in my Jetta, which was packed full with hanging clothes and my iMac buckled in the front seat. We took our time and didn’t rush, arriving in town just in time to wait 30 minutes while the largest vessel I have ever seen made its way inch by inch through the Bridge of Lions drawbridge opening. Once the bridge was back down, we delivered my things to my new space, unpacked in lightning speed and were out and about downtown celebrating my move over a bottle of wine and delicious eats at The Floridian in no time. Here, I ran into almost everyone I know in St. Augustine, which immediately made me feel that much more at home.

The holiday weekend was spent sharing with my mom and Jean all the many reasons I’ve come to love St. Augustine. Big kudos to Andrew who should win an award for tour guide of the year. I didn’t take many photos this weekend, as I chose to simply share and enjoy the time for what it was with those I hold dear, and treat it as a total vacation. That said, here are a few snippets from our time together.


After beginning our Saturday with a visit to the Old City Farmers Market, we decided to head south to Matanzas, for some fort explorations. Upon arrival, we posed by this tree while waiting for a boat to cruise us over to Fort Matanzas.


This tour is free and allows you picturesque views of both the marshlands and the Atlantic.


Climbing a ladder all the way to the top of the fort means you get to see even more.



Sunday was spent meandering about downtown St. Augustine on foot amidst a sea of tourists. Since it was bright, sunny and blazing, we stopped for an ice cold frozen lemonade treat at Crucial Coffee. And yes, we are totally and quite intentionally matching.




Sunday evening was reserved for Vilano Beach, where we enjoyed a leisurely walk and stuck our toes in the Atlantic Ocean.


Food Mention: Granted not pictured this time, there was a plethora of vegan eats present throughout the weekend. In addition to Friday night’s celebratory meal at The Floridian, we enjoyed breakfast at Manatee Cafe, dinner at The Back Forty Urban Cafe, and a home-cooked meal by Andrew and yours truly.

Monday after my mom and Jean left and a few more boxes were unpacked, Andrew and I found ourselves back at the beach. This time we selected St. Augustine beach close to my new place of residence. We jumped in wave after wave before crashing on the beach.


Beyond Labor Day

Once the touristy welcome weekend was over and the reality of the move set in, I found myself scrambling all over the place to figure out what to do first. Through enduring this weeklong scramble I’ve arrived at the following lists that basically sum up my week at a glance. These lists are not only applicable to a move or transition time, but any point you encounter one of these scenarios or opportunities.


Don’t spend excessive time on Craigslist scouring opportunities to do what you like, when you should/could/need to be doing what you love.

Don’t accept a job if you wake up in the middle of the night and realize it may be a good thing, but it’s not the best thing for you.

Don’t settle for anything less than what you set out to do, even when you’re tired/out of your element/excitable/etc.

Don’t look for distractions from what you were called to do.

Don’t think you can get settled into a new groove overnight.


Do spend time making relationship-building connections.

Do accept job interviews if you feel like there’s a potential fit or a beneficial introduction to be made.

Do take things one at a time, and execute each thing to the fullest.

Do spend time getting to know the city on foot, in your running shoes to be exact. Bonus points if you run with a long-time resident/new friend, which is exactly what I had the privilege of doing on Saturday morning.

Do stock up on groceries at your trusted produce stand.


Do help your housemates plant a garden. (So excited about this one!)

As my second week in St. Augustine is well underway, I’m pleased to say I’m much more in “Do” mode, and have learned a lot from last week’s “Don’t” list. And so, here’s to doing what I came here to do—writing, running, pouring myself into a new community, walking through doors that open, experiencing life alongside the one I love, building relationships with the warm hearts that abound in this city, living simply and simply living.


“I live here.”

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