Hi, I’m Melissa

I help people move to the beach.

As I write this, my old neighborhood in Rochester NY is getting buried with snow.  The schools are closed and the wind chill is somewhere around -10°F.

What fun!

If you’ve never experienced sub zero temperatures with gusty winds, believe me, you don’t want to.  Your skin turns to leather the moment the air touches an exposed area and your body freezes from the inside out.  There is no warming yourself once you’ve been swallowed by the bitter winter.

There’s an age old debate on whether one would rather be overheating or frozen.  I think people who choose the latter have never been truly cold.  More than thirty years of my life was spent in the northeast and every winter the first true chill seemed more shocking than the last.  Those of us who lasted that long in such a morbid climate have short memories.  We have to forget about our hardship in order to survive another year in the tundra.  So to my friends “north of the wall” I offer you this guidance:

Never forget.  Winter is coming.

I can picture myself all bundled up.  The sound of my shovel against the pavement carries with the howling wind, as if it were some warning signal for the neighbors to stay inside and light a beacon.

Scrape… Scrape… Call for help!” It says.

The snow bank at the end of the drive is up to my shoulders and the icicles on my beanie grow longer with each powdered toss.  The wind picks up and sends crystalized projectiles at my face like a ninja throwing nature’s frozen stars.  It hurts.  With my back to the gusts and eyes closed, I can almost picture the ocean;  The mild breeze cooling my skin from the sun’s persistence, the sound of the waves gently crashing on the shore, the warm sand between my toes, and…

Then it hits me. That’s not sand.  It’s frostbite.  I can’t feel my toes.

As I turn and head back inside, defeated by the cold, I vow this will be my last winter in the gloom of the bitter north.

Five long years later my husband and I finally pulled the trigger and bought a beach house on Florida’s Space Coast.  The decision was not easy.  We spent the majority of our lives within 75 miles of where we were born.  Our family was close, as were our wonderfully supportive friends, our jobs, and of course our house.  We were well established.

I worked as a manufacturing engineer at General Motors for almost a decade.  It was the kind of job where you work 30 years, climb the corporate ladder, and retire very comfortably.  Our issue was we didn’t want to wait another 20 years to change our lives.  Thats a long time to wonder what it might have been like.

So I “retired”.

There are many things I miss about my career.  Most of all my colleagues.  Life is about building relationships and its hard to walk away from the people you love.

Relocating is not easy.  It’s emotionally and physically draining to uproot your life and squeeze it into a 16 foot shipping container.  And then depressing when you realize you can measure your past in volume and weight.  Our life was somewhere around 896 cubic feet and 3600 pounds after a good purge.  Moving is grueling, but my husband and I are certainly not afraid of hard work.  We planned, saved, and sacrificed to achieve our goal of living where people vacation.  And now it’s reality.

There’s a quote on the Internet from an anonymous source that says:

Find three hobbies you love: one to earn you a living, one to keep you in shape, and one to be creative.

If you made it this far, I’m sorry.  This article could have been summed up in the fourteen words below.

My name is Melissa.  I help people move to the beach, CrossFit, and garden.

Thanks for reading.  I hope to meet you soon.


P.S – You’re going to love the beach lifestyle.