We’re Moving!!!

I have some exciting news to share with you guys today!

Ryan, Sadie and I are packing up our things and leaving Florida. Yep, we’re moving!

We're Moving

Where are we going?

If you can think back to a place we visited a couple of weeks ago, you might have an idea.

We’re moving to…

Charlotte North Carolina Charlotte, North Carolina!

I am absolutely thrilled!!!

A few weeks ago, I briefly blogged about a last-minute weekend trip Ryan and I took to Charlotte. I blamed the trip on a “surprise party” for one of Ryan’s friends which was basically a big fat lie. (I feel really bad about that so please forgive me! I just needed everything to be a secret for a little while.)

We actually drove to Charlotte because Ryan had an interview on Monday morning with a new company. We spent Saturday evening and all day Sunday exploring Charlotte, hoping to get a feel for the city just in case Ryan’s interview turned into a job offer.

Freedom Park Charlotte

We already knew we loved North Carolina. If you’ve been a PBF reader for a while now, you may remember me saying North Carolina is a place Ryan and I have always wanted to live. When Ryan’s interview turned into a job offer that very same day, we spent nearly all of the drive back to Florida weighing the pros and cons of a move.

The major con in our eyes was living far away from family. Ryan and I have both never lived more than 2.5 hours from our families, and though it will be a bit of a hike, we’ll still be within driving distance of family (6 hours from mine, 9.5 hours from Ryan’s).

The pros of moving were plentiful and Ryan accepted the offer from his new company the day after his final interview. From the research we’ve done and what we saw during our visit, I think we’re going to love calling Charlotte our new home.

Ocala to Charlotte

What I’m looking forward to most:

  • Seasons: Though I know I’ll probably miss Florida winters soon enough, I’m beyond ready to experience seasons again. I miss actually having a fall and a spring! And Sadie has never seen snow!
  • Access to lots of different fitness classes: I’ve really missed living in an active community with a bunch of different fitness options. I can’t wait explore local barre, yoga, Jazzercise and boot camp classes! And they have BODYPUMP in Charlotte. Hallelujah!
  • Living in a walkable community: I know that the walkability of Charlotte will depend a lot on where we decide to live, but the areas of Charlotte that really appeal to us at the moment seem very walkable. And oh my gosh, I’ve never seen so many trees along the streets! I know this is a goofy thing to get excited about, but it was so green and gorgeous in the neighborhoods we explored.
  • Dining at local restaurants: Ocala has a few local restaurants we adore, but chain restaurants are definitely in the majority. I see lots of fun date nights in our future as Ryan and I check out the local dining scene. (I’ve heard great things about Luna’s Living Kitchen.)
  • Living (somewhat) close to the mountains: Yes, we’ll still need to drive a few hours to get to the mountains, but a 2.5 hour car ride to gorgeous Maggie Valley is nothing! I see a handful of fall weekend hiking trips in our future!
  • Outdoor activities: I can’t wait to explore parks, local hiking trails, Lake Norman and more!
  • Living close to an airport: Living two hours from an airport for nearly three years will make you appreciate having an airport close by, that’s for sure!
  • Shopping: 99.9 percent of the shopping I do in Ocala is online. Everyone here seems to make the 90+ minute drive to the malls and outlets in Orlando to do their shopping because the stores in Ocala are rather limited. It will be so nice to have access to stores other than TJMaxx (which I love, don’t get me wrong) to shop and look for gifts for loved ones.
  • Museums, Concerts and Theatre: I’ve been peeking around CharlotteCultureGuide.com and getting awfully excited.
  • Festivals: Okay, this is a ridiculous one, I know, but I LOVE outdoor festivals and have missed them like crazy ever since we moved away from Orlando. From what I’ve heard from friends who live in Charlotte, there is no shortage of fun little festivals around town. While we were there we actually stumbled upon a little food truck festival and I was in heaven!

So when will we be moving?

Ryan’s start date at his new company is June 16. We’re planning to use these next two weeks to get organized and pack and then we’ll have temporary housing set up for 30 days as we look for a place to live. (Our lease in Ocala runs through the end of August.)

I actually have quite a few blog-related trips planned during the month of June that fly in and out of the Jacksonville airport, so it will be a hectic month as we try to figure everything out! I plan on making some back-and-forth trips to Charlotte in June but will likely permanently be joining Ryan there in early July.

As for my job at the gym, my last day was last week! The timing of all of this was actually pretty great because a new group exercise schedule debuted at our gym on Monday, so I could say goodbye to my previous classes before a new routine was established. I’m definitely sad to leave, but know there’s lots of fun things waiting for us in North Carolina. I can’t wait to bring you guys along for the ride!

If you live or have ever lived in the Charlotte area, I would LOVE to hear any and all recommendations you may have for us as we make this big transition. I know you’ll know best!


  1. says

    How exciting! NC is near and dear to my heart. I lived in Winston Salem for a few years and I miss the state terribly. I’ve actually never been to Charlotte, but you have to make sure you visit Asheville and Raleigh at some point. Both very cute, very fun cities!


  2. Steph says

    Welcome to North Carolina!! I’ve lived in the state since I was five years old and love it here! Charlotte is hot in the Summer, but it’s a great city full of fun things to do. I’ve gotten to visit there many times and enjoy the shopping and music scene. I haven’t gotten to check out downtown Charlotte too much, but the night life seems really upbeat & lively. I hope your move goes well.


  3. says

    Hey there! That’s SO exciting that you’re moving to Charlotte! I moved here almost a year ago from Cleveland and absolutely LOVE it! Everything you’re looking forward to is absolutely true! If you want some tips on places to check out, cool fitness studios, etc, feel free to check out my blog! (http://for-the-love-of-life.com/) There’s also a Charlotte Blogging Community you should definitely check out once you’re settled in. Good luck on the move! :)


  4. Dukebdc says

    Congrats on the move! I grew up in Charlotte and thought it was a great place to live. I lived in south Charlotte, sort of near Southpark. It’s a gorgeous area with new development since I left. Not super walkable, so keep that in mind. Downtown has changed a LOT since I was there – so many cool places to live and go out now. You mentioned that Sadie had never seen snow? Don’t hold your breath on seeing much in Charlotte – it’s further north than Ocala but still very southern in terms of winter precipitation. A hint of the possibility of snow will shut everything down. :)


  5. says

    congrats to Ryan on the new job, and hope you loooove Charlotte! one of my close friends is from there and has only wonderful things to say about that city. best of luck on the move.


  6. Amanda says

    My favorite Yoga instructor Kathryn Budig lives in Charlotte. Track down one of her classes. Everything about her is amazing & inspirational. Enjoy!!!


  7. Lindsay says

    Hi Julie!

    My husband and I (both in our mid-twenties) live in Charlotte, and love it! It’s a great place for young married couples and young families. There is always so much to do! We’re in the middle of trying to make some other couples friends, so we joined a church “newlyweds” Bible study and I’ve also joined some groups on Meetup.com (check it out!).

    I just wanted to say Welcome! E-mail me if you need any Charlotte-related advice. :)



  8. says

    Congratulations!! This is amazing news! I just moved to Charlotte in September and I’ve loved getting to explore this great city even more. If you need any neighborhood or restaurant advice, feel free to email me. I’m happy to help you in any way I can! Hope to run into you during a workout class. You should definitely check out the Dowd YMCA. They have some of my favorite workout classes!



  9. Peyton says

    Hi Julie! My names Peyton and I’m 21 and have followed your blog for years I live in Winston-Salem which is 2 hours north of Charlotte and went to school in Asheville… I remember reading you loved the mountains here! I have a few recommendations… Amelie’s Bakery is absolutely fantastic and it’s in uptown. Also, Vida (a fresh mexican-type place) is great and Aria which is a bit more fancy is a tuscan style grill that is super delicious. I hope you all love it here! North Carolina has a lot to offer


  10. Jenny says

    I have been reading your blog for four years now, and i was so excited to see you are moving to my city! My husband and i moved to to Charlotte last summer, and we love it. Based on all of your interests, you will too- so much to do in the city and within just a few hours drive (Asheville, Raleigh, Wilmington)- You should have a meet up when you move so we can welcome you to the city!


  11. Mandi C. says

    Congratulations!!!! Sounds like such a fun new adventure! My husband and I just moved from NY to TX…and we are really happy! Wishing you all the best!


  12. says

    Great choice in a new city! My husband, dog and I just moved here last June. We currently live in the Lake Norman area and we love it! It is a great place to start a family and be active year round. There are so many things to do and we can bring our 6 month old everywhere! Feel free to email me if you want an recommendations.


  13. Lindsey says

    Hi Julie,

    I’ve been following your blog since day 1… always been a big fan! My (brand new) husband and I have lived in Charlotte for about a year and a half. We just went through the home-buying process and now live north of Charlotte near the lake. We both work downtown, so we knew we needed something commuter-friendly. Feel free to e-mail me if you’d like any advice on where to live! We absolutely LOVE the area (ESPECIALLY north Charlotte.. Huntersville/Cornelius/etc), and it’s a great place to live for the fitness lovers like us. We are always driving over to the mountains. Random thought – if you like trail running, you need to check out the Whitewater Center. In the summer, they have River Jam on Thursday nights. It starts with organized 3 and 6 mile runs and then continues with live music, beer, and food. It’s always a good time. Welcome to the area! It’s our little Eutopia!


  14. Laura says

    Hey Julie!

    That is such exciting news! I moved to Charlotte almost three years ago and I love it. I am actually in the process of buying a house here! If you have any questions about the area, things to do, walkable neighborhoods to live in (we absolutely love our neighborhood!), fitness classes, food and restaurants, etc. please feel free to email me, I am happy to help. Best of luck during your move!



  15. Leslie says

    Welcome to Charlotte! My husband, son and I have lived here for 4 years and love it. We live south of the city near the Harris YMCA, which has amazing classes by the way. You’ll love it here!


  16. Kim says

    YAY! Charlotte is wonderful :) I highly recommend getting annual passes to Carowinds, it’s an awesome amusement park & water park on the border of NC/SC, my family has been going there for 30 years and it’s super cheap compared to Orlando theme parks, with EPIC roller coasters and fun for all ages.


  17. says

    I swear, all the bloggers I read are moving to Charlotte! I’m so jealous since it’s my home town. I might be a little biased, but I LOVE Charlotte. It’s perfect. Uptown has a lot going on, especially in the summer (Symphony in the Park, Alive after 5) and it’s 2 hours away from the mountains of Asheville (what I affectionately call “AsheVegas”) and about 3 hours away from the beautiful beaches and history of South Carolina (Kiawah, Hilton Head,Charleston). There’s SO much to do – you’re going to become a Panthers fan, right?! 😉 Ping me if you need any advice on where to live in the area-my mom is really up on the real estate market!


  18. Bre Hager says

    I have been a fan of your blog for three years now and am ecstatic you guys are moving to Charlotte! I was born and raised in North Carolina and personally believe it is in fact the greatest state in the country. There are many great restaurants in Charlotte and neat places like the National White Water Center which is about fifteen minutes away. They have concerts there as well as fun activities such as trails, rafting (of course), and a zip line. But one of my favorite things about Charlotte is how active the city is! My favorite race of all time is downtown and in November, it’s the Thunder Road Half and Full, I highly recommend it! Best of luck on your move and welcome to our great state y’all!


  19. Allison says

    As most other people have said, you will LOVE the Queen City! My husband and I came to Charlotte for college here and won’t be leaving any time soon… It’s been our favorite place. I’ve been doing lots of the workouts you post and would love to know if you start teaching anywhere around town – it would be so fun to actually take a class by you.

    All the best on the move and I look forward to hearing how you like it around here.


  20. says

    I was so excited when I read this! I could not be more than thrilled for you both, what an awesome adventure you’ll be partaking in. I wish you all the luck and can’t wait to read about all your Charlotte related posts:)


  21. Christina says

    I don’t know why I stopped getting your blog posts emailed to me for a while and just now started getting them again. So I missed seeing that you were moving until today. I live in Huntersville, near Lake Norman. I’m so excited that you are moving here. You’re going to love it! If I can give you any advice on what to do on the north side of town, just let me know. :-)


  22. says

    I moved to Charlotte a little over a year ago. Like you I’m in the fitness industry, blog, and moved because my husband took a new job (not that I minded)! I hope you love living here! Feel free to reach out if you need a fitness and dog loving friend.


  23. Nelcy says

    Hi, I am so happy I found this blog. My husband and I are moving to Charlotte at the end of June. I have been living in Miami, FL for 15 years, he is originally from Milwaukee, WI. We are moving just because LOL. He works from home so it doesn’t matter where we live as long as it is on the USA and we have internet. I wanted to talk to somebody that moved from Florida to NC so bad!!!! I am a little anxious and don;t know what to expect. We loooove the outdoors, and pretty much what you put on your loved lists of things in Charlotte. If you don.t mind please email me. We are trying to decide where to live. We will be there April 24 to May 1st to look for places to live. Thanks for the info. Hope to hear from you, and congratulations!!!



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