Guess what everyone… We did it! We moved to Dallas, TX!
When I say “we,” I mean me and Lincoln.
For those of you who know me personally or have been following along my journey for a while, you know it had been a goal of mine to move out of my hometown of Portland, OR for a long time. The past few years (aka the height of the pandemic) really helped push me to take the leap, leave my corporate job at Nike and move out of Portland. It was a tough decision, especially since I decided to make the move without a full-time job, but I’m so happy that I did! Has it been a challenge? Yes, absolutely. And I’m running through my savings faster than expected. But it’s forcing me to explore new career paths, make new friends and get out of my comfort zone. Cheers to growth and new opportunity!
Lincoln and I officially left Portland on February 23, 2022. The hardest part about leaving was saying goodbye to my closest friends and my family. I held back tears driving out of my parent’s driveway on the morning of the 23rd. Because of Lincoln, I decided it made more sense to drive to Dallas (versus fly), so we took our time by going on a week-long road trip. We stopped in many cities along the way to stay with friends and family (huge thank you to anyone who helped us along our journey) and made the most of long days of driving by singing car karaoke and listing to podcasts.
Our path: PDX —> San Francisco, CA –> San Diego, CA —> Phoenix, AZ –> Odessa, TX —> Dallas, TX! We had a few mishaps along the way (my AC went out halfway through the trip and my phone broke in Phoenix, eeek!) but we made it to Dallas on March 3rd, both exhausted and excited for our new life. I must say, Lincoln was a trooper in the car. Mama was proud.
The very next day, March 4th, we moved into our new apartment in the Uptown / West Village neighborhood of Dallas. I chose to sell most of my furniture prior to moving, but my belongings and few pieces of furniture I kept arrived several days after move-in day. The first few weeks in the new place were spent deciding what I needed immediately (a bed, a couch, kitchen appliances) and what I could wait a bit to purchase. Now, having been here for 7 weeks, the apartment is much more filled and I’m gradually adding new pieces of furniture to the space each week. It’s a process starting new, but it’s also enjoyable buying all new furniture. I’m absolutely obsessed with my new emerald green couch!
and what’s one thing I couldn’t move without? My elegant selfie mirror!
Here’s what I noted after my first few weeks in Dallas:
- People in Dallas are so friendly and welcoming!
- There’s so much to do in Dallas and surrounding suburbs. You could go out any night of the week and there’s something fun to do.
- The freeways are extremely confusing, which probably contributes to the fact that Dallas drivers are absolutely terrible
- The shopping scene is excellent. Tons of thrift shops, boutiques, designer stores, consignment. A great place for a fashionista to thrive.
- Coming from Portland, I’m not used to sales tax (and I don’t love it).
- I miss hills, Dallas is very flat.
- Lots of great food, but restaurant seafood / sushi doesn’t compare to Portland.
The first month in Dallas went by incredibly fast. I spent my time exploring my new neighborhood, checking out suggested bars and restaurants, thrift shopping, and going to Mutts Canine Cantina (our popular neighborhood dog park that happens to be across the street). Lincoln has been thriving here, as we’ve also discovered White Rock Lake where he can roam free and go swimming! A few of my favorite places so far include Backyard, Katy Trail Ice House, Eatzi’s (Italian deli), Uptown Cheapskate (thrift stop) and Waterproof on the rooftop of the Statler Hotel, where I celebrated my 30th birthday just a few weeks after moving. I also tried Whattaburger for the first time, it’s bomb. Green tea shots are a common bar order. Safe to say I am thoroughly enjoying myself here in my new city!
What’s been the most difficult part about the move? I would say two things:
1) Not having my friends and family around. While I am a very outgoing individual, I knew that the hardest part about leaving Portland would be saying goodbye to the people I am closest to. My parents and I are extremely close, and my close circle of friends have become family, so not being able to see them on a regular basis has been challenging. When I want to go do something social, I either have to put myself out there and ask new acquaintances, or do it by myself. Going out alone can be fun, but it also can be daunting and a little nerve-wracking. But in time, I know I will make some great friends here and I’ve already met a few people I feel close to!
2) moving without a traditional job has presented financial set backs. I wanted to give myself time to feel settled before truly searching and securing a new full-time job, whether that be in a corporate setting, bartending, or anything else while also focusing my efforts on designing. Am I working? Yes, but I am not making a traditional income as I have been used to in the past. I am working various Brand Ambassador positions and also trying to upscale my reselling business while I decide what my future career looks like, while I manage the employees in my business using a free pay stub template just for this.
All-in-all, I can’t wait to experience all Dallas has to offer. I think this city will be a good place for me to grow and thrive!
Do you have a favorite restaurant / bar in Dallas? Suggestion of someplace I should explore? Send them my way and I’ll add them to my “Dallas Places To Go” list!
As always, thank you for reading!