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Topic: Questions about where you live....

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Subject: Questions about where you live....
Date Posted: 12/10/2007 6:44 PM ET
Member Since: 9/10/2005
Posts: 4,696
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I just found out that we will not be able to build on our family Property. This Piece of land has been in our family for Almost 50 years.  We are in California but are looking to Move in the next couple of years. So I thought I would ask what do you like/ dislike about where you live? We are looking in more rural areas. We wish to move our horse ranch and are looking at acreage.

We are so far looking at California, Oregon, Washington, Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Colorado, and Utah.  I would however like to hear about everywhere. The more info we have the better we can make an informed decision. We will have between $300000 and $600000 to buy with and make the move.

So climate, weather, Social, political, Roads, community involvement and crime. I would love to hear the good and bad of where you live.

We are an alternative friendly family so an accepting community is important.

How easy is it to homeschool where you are?

thanks

LAdystyx

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 6:57 PM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
Posts: 10,401
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So climate, weather, Social, political, Roads, community involvement and crime. I would love to hear the good and bad of where you live.

 

Southern Colorado:

winter lasts from October through May

summers: once in a while we hit 100, but mostly in the 80s and the 60s at night

snows quite a bit. doesn't rain much.

social? elaborate please.

roads are well maintained year-round. improvement is common.

crime: lower than US average.

Good:

*lots to do and see. Many free activities. Great parks system. Very modern, all the conveniences are local.

Bad:

*Very established. What I mean is, everyone's been here for a long time. Go a little further north (the springs) and the opposite holds true, though.

We are an alternative friendly family so an accepting community is important.

Does that mean gay/lesbian/etc? If so, yes. If not, I have no idea what you're talking about. lol

How easy is it to homeschool where you are?

You file a notice of intent to homeschool; you submit to yearly reviews OR biannual testing. that's it.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 8:32 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 422
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Austin Texas sounds like it would be a good match for you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Austin,_Texas

Homeschooling in Texas is very hassle-free. No reporting, etc.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 4:27 PM ET
Member Since: 12/5/2005
Posts: 270
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I've lived in Colorado, Missouri and now MIchigan and I have to say homeschool wise Missouri and Michigan are by far the easiest to homeschool in.  But I'm orginally from Colorado (more up by Denver) and if we could move back I most definitely would.  Lots to do all over the Colorado area, alot of outdoorsy stuff, and there are quite a few places that are what in my thinking are good size ranches. Iff being close to a major city (Denver for example) is not an issue the further west you go (example an hour or more drive) you might find better priced property.  What MIchelle said about the winter and summer pretty much applies up near Denver also.  Good Luck!  Hope you can find something you like. 

Ooh another place you might to check out also is a book, I think it's called The Top 100 Cities and Towns Ranked.  We looked it up both times we have moved with my husband's job.  It tells you about cultural diversity, shopping, crime etc.  That may also help you.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 5:13 PM ET
Member Since: 2/17/2006
Posts: 349
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Well you don't want to move to Georgia.

Winter here is warm no longer cold. Its 79 degrees outside now !

The crime here is bad !

The only reason I am still here is I don't have the money to move !

 

Date Posted: 12/12/2007 12:38 PM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 120
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Texas would be great for you I agree!  we're in Houston which of course is very hot in the summer but beautiful in the winter.  In greater Houston you can get a LOT for $300,000 - $600,000.  The further out you go the more land you could buy, but I'm not talking about really far from the city - you could buy acreage and be about 45 mins from the city which has a great deal to offer.  Very multicultural with anything you could want in a city ... entertainment, sports, shopping.

Like someone else said homeschooling here is easy - nothing much to do with the State at all.  We also annually have two large homeschool conventions if you like that kind of thin.

San Antonio is also great (smaller town atmosphere than Houston) and I agree about Austin (the hill country).

God bless you in your decision - what a great opportunity.

Date Posted: 12/12/2007 7:38 PM ET
Member Since: 11/29/2006
Posts: 1,676
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Well you don't want to move to Georgia.

Winter here is warm no longer cold. Its 79 degrees outside now !

The crime here is bad !

The only reason I am still here is I don't have the money to move !

 

Oh honey, you completely echoed my thoughts!  I hate Georgia.  There are no seasons.  Meaning we have Summer and Summer.  Most of the trees never change colors (which sucks in itself), the fire ants are horrendous, the crime rate is horrendous, and the racism is even more horrendous.  Do yourself a favor and stay far away.

Date Posted: 12/12/2007 8:28 PM ET
Member Since: 8/6/2005
Posts: 66
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I am in Maine. Also another place that is to expensive to live.  You have to drive a bit to get anywhere since we can't afford to live where the jobs are.  Nice trees and wildlife though.  Maybe a vacation home?

Date Posted: 12/12/2007 10:35 PM ET
Member Since: 4/9/2006
Posts: 102
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I don't want to hijack this thread, but that is very interesting about Georgia. 

My husband and I have thought about moving there in the future.  We really don't know anything about GA, other than that one son and I have visited there once.  We just get very sick of the Minnesota winters and it looks like GA has a moderate temperature year round.

Can you elaborate on the racism bit?  I'm MN born and bred, so I'm afraid I'm ignorant of the south in that respect.  We are a mixed race family so this type of thing would be of concern to us.

And crime...where do you guys live, and is it the same throughout the state?

Thanks!

Tonja

Date Posted: 12/13/2007 1:06 AM ET
Member Since: 9/14/2005
Posts: 5,499
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We lived in Valdosta, Georgia (southern GA) for 3 1/2 years and LOVED the people there.  It was a great town and if it wasn't for the weather and bugs there, we'd consider retiring to Georgia when we're done with the Air Force in a few years.

The people in Valdosta were very welcoming and it had a small-town feel with a little better shopping.  :)  As far as diversity, we had a culturally diverse church that was extremely welcoming to alternative families.  Personally, we didn't see any more racism than we've seen in other cities, including Las Vegas. 

Now the bugs and other creepy things...ICK!  Fire ants, "Palmetto Bugs" (whatever...they're cockroaches!), 5' timber rattlesnake in our garage one night, mole crickets (triple ick!), etc.   These were soooooooo enough to send me scurrying out of the state when the time came to move. 

The crime in Valdosta was relatively non-existent.  Violent crime was very rare and non-violent crime was still pretty rare.  LOVED it! 

The weather....so long as you like hot and muggy, you're all set!  I liked it for about the first year, but we were coming from Alaska and had to thaw out.  After that it got old.  We're midwest people at heart and need 4 seasons, so don't judge by us.  :)

Oh, and as to the original question, we currently live in Las Vegas and since the kind of acreage you need is IMPOSSIBLE to buy, I won't even bore you with our details.  :)

Date Posted: 12/13/2007 3:04 PM ET
Member Since: 2/17/2006
Posts: 349
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I live in Flovilla Ga. Here the crime rate isn't bad, but its getting here. They are building more and more here so it won't be long.

Where we moved from, was Jonesboro Ga. Now its bad there.

Killings, home invasions, drive bys. Five years ago it was a nice place to live.

 

 

Date Posted: 12/13/2007 7:44 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2006
Posts: 21
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I'm in Hood River, Oregon, which is the heart of the Columbia River Gorge. I'd have to say this is just about the most beautiful place there is. We're an hour from Portland, so have reasonable access to the metro area's shopping, entertainment and educational opportunities without being close enough to have to deal with crowds, traffic, crime, or smog. And it's a scenic drive on the interstate to get there. We have four true seasons here... summers are usually warm enough... some cooler days, some nice and hot. Usually have a breeze, so it's not too bad, and no crazy high humidity. Tons of water and summer sports... this is an active, outdoor -loving area. Fall is usually cooler and rainy, with random days of warmth and sunshine. Winters are cold but not ridiculously so... most of the time, temps hover around freezing down here in town, and we get some snow, but one can get through winters without snow tires or chains if necessary. (Though I'd recommend them... especially if you don't have a lot of experience driving in snow.) Easy access to Mt. Hood, with all sorts of winter sports, including one resort that apparently has the longest ski season in the country. Spring is refreshing, with a good balance of wind and rain and sun... i always seem to have some bulb flowers that sneak in and bloom early. It likes to get all nice and warm, and then have one last cold snap. Crime is actually pretty low here, imo. Much less then the metro area. Mostly piddly stuff, little enough that there is usually a weekly log in the local Newspaper, which is printed twice a week. (www.hoodrivernews.com) Not sure what amount of land you'd be looking for, but if you needed a larger area, it'd almost have to be in the upper valley, across the river in Washington, or anywhere east of here or near The Dalles. Hood River is pretty much the central location in the gorge, and The Dalles, 17 miles to the east, is the other main city. Political? I'm not into politics much, I sort of disagree with the whole current political system... I'm sure you can easily find that info on the net, if you're interested in that sort of thing. I tend to pay a bit more attention to local politics... it's still a pretty small community, despite crazy growth over the last 20 years. There are several strong homeschool groups in the area... I know of both christian ones and more open ones... and both groups I'm somewhat attached to seem to have a pretty high tolerance for whatever level of involvement you're interested in. They have active email loops to share info on happenings that other homeschoolers might be interested in, or who is coordinating what, and often things get reposted to the other list, for those that might miss it. There are active music groups, dance groups, tons and tons of sports... i think you can find pretty much anything you want here. A (nice) aquatic center. Multiple gyms. A couple of bookstores. The library here is hooked in with a regional set, and the one across the river is part of a larger regional library, and they offer reciprocal cards. Also, living in this area, we have access to both the Portland and the Seattle metro area library systems, through reciprocal cards, and the best part of that, imo, is the database access. Tons and tons of restaurants. A cineplex in each town. Summers that are busy with tourists, winters that are pretty quiet compared. There seems to be a high number of people that spend part of the year here, part elsewhere. The hispanic population has been in this particular area long enough that it's fairly intergrated with the non-hispanic... even more so then the rest of the state. Definitely don't see the bias that one does in other areas. Some, but not as much, of other racial/cultural/ethnic people designations... but enough for variety. (Said with amusement, not in a degrading way, on my part... because it's been pretty useful in raising some fairly color-blind kids. If they can figure out a way to communicate somehow, they don't care what they look like or what language they speak, so long as they can play! lol.) That reminds to comment on alternative lifestyles... I'm in Oregon. Oregon as a whole is pretty relaxed. Washington, too. Sexual orientation, religion/faith/lack thereof, race issues. For the most part, people don't care as long as no one tries to force their choices on anyone else. That tends to irritate people. (Hence the "no religious solicitors" and "no political solicitors" sign on my front door.) Homeschooling rules... pretty easy. Notify the ESD when first starting homeschooling, then test at grades 3, 5, 8, and 10. Submit scores to ESD if requested. That's it. During the first 18 months of homeschooling, no testing required. Skip it. So you're free to homeschool in whatever manner you desire, without a bunch of hoops to jump through. Roads? Not sure what you're looking for there. This area, no public transportation. That's pretty much limited to the metro areas, which doesn't sound like your cup of tea. More traffic (thanks to all the Californians that have moved here, lol) then there used to be, but not crazy. There's a whole... um, counting... four stoplights in town. Six if you count the ones on the freeway overpass. Plenty of doctors, plenty of specialists, and like I said previously, easy access to Portland if need be. The hospital is actually in the process of doubling in size again. Friendly people, strong community support for activities... yikes, I've written a book. Think I'll stop. If you have questions, pm me, lol. I never remember to come back and check threads again.

Date Posted: 12/15/2007 1:04 AM ET
Member Since: 12/14/2007
Posts: 5
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300,000 to 600,000!  Wow!  For 300,000 you could buy acreage outside of the major metro areas.

I live in Hardeman County TN 1 hour south of Jackson TN 1 hour east of Memphis TN & 1 hour west of Corinth MS.

Its 80 bucks per family annually to hs but the board can choose to waive/lower that fee. I dunno if that is just Hardeman Co or statewide.

Climate: We had a solid week of 98+ w/5 of those days being in the 100's. When it's humid, well I say it feels like the hand of God trying to mush you into the earth.  Contrary to popular belief we do have 4 seasons 1 month of foot deep leaves, 1 month of rain, 2 months of  below 50 and 8 months of sweat.

Culture: the more rural, the more traditional obviously. This part of the country, the Mid South, is called the Buckle on the Bible Belt for a reason.

9.25 state sales tax and yes we do have a food tax in TN.

As for the racism post: yeppers its as much a part of the Soth as "yall" is unfortunately.

Bugs, well I ran from something once that was big enough for my kids to ride. And if it doesn't freeze long enough to kill the mosquitos . . its awful.

The plus side to TN - close to the Derby. Steeplechase in Nashville.  Smokey Mntns one way, MS River the other way & the Cumberland Plateau in the middle. Beautiful country. Walking Horse Championships. Nat'l  Bird Dog Field Trials. Very active "horsey" community in west Tn- even have like 5 Hunt Clubs. @ Mphs area  Dunno much @ east TN, but between Mphs & Nashville you get some of the best health care in the country, particularly Vanderbilt in Nashville & UT Medical/Le Bonheur & The Med in Mphs. Med is Level 4 Trauma/Burn center.

Mphs & surrounding area crime is off the charts. I believe Mphs is 4th in the nation in violent crime? For 1M people thats pretty high. Even in my little town of 1,000 gangs are a major issue. Mphs is a major US distribution center & hq for FedEx, Int'l Paper. AutoZone & Brother (the biggest corps). Mphs Int'l Airport is a major hub.

All in all,  I'd give us a thumbs up. In many ways you won't meet better folks anywhere.

Date Posted: 12/18/2007 12:00 AM ET
Member Since: 12/17/2007
Posts: 10
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Gosh! Where is Washington on this list!?! I was born in California- Loved those Redwood Forests- Bur Crime made us move. Traveled clean to South Carolina and eventually settled in Arkansas-Fishing was fun! Decided to head to Washigton where the Apples are the best. Here I stay! Washington is has mountains, deserts, coastline, and lots of farming or ranching ground. The coast is rainy and heavily populated, but it offers a quick vacation to big city entertainment if the urge should hit. Deserts can get a bit cool in the winter and has a bit of snow in south eastern Washington, but the summers are very nice. Grapes, fruit, grains generally populate this area. Northern Washington, where I live now is incredible. Seasons: Snow starts in mid to late November temps drop to about 28 or so most of the winter with an occasional week or two of near 0 weather (which sounds worse than it is). Most years are mellow and mild. The kids like the wild winters about once in every 10 or 20 years when the snow gets 4+ foot deep and skiing is fabulous! Mud season starts in late february to late march and lasts about 2 weeks temps about 40-50. Spring is gorgeous, temps from 50-65! Summer is the best and most fun! Temp reaching about 90 at the hottest. There is lots of hiking, river play, Spokane for a night out, and good down home friendly folk in the smaller towns. Washington has a very cool homeschool program. Sure, there are rules, but the state offers a home school family the option to opt into a public school program that gives you about 1000-1600$$ a year per kid to help with home school costs. If you are organized, and keep records anyway, there will be very little paperwork compared to the benifits of financial aid. You can maintain contact via internet. It is perfect for us. I get to pick out all my own programing and curriculum and I plan everything they will learn. I do all the teaching unless I want to hire someone else to tutor, like for our spanish and latin classes, as well as ballet and kung fu. I feel I got it good! We have great growing here. Fruit to can, berries grow so well! Farmers markets! Wow! It is by and far the best state I have lived in. Cons: Hummm. There are a bunch of rules for building (my husband is a contractor) I don't know . . . It is pretty reasonable to deal with the bulk of the states issues. Nothing has really upset me thus far. Did I mention the actvities? Windsurfing on the columbia between oregon and Wa. Skiing, Water sports, concerts, big city events, apple fests, farmers markets, a zoo, water parks, leavenworth town,Boat races . . . gosh the list is endless! Washington is not dull! Land . . It is possible to find large ranches. Some say there isn't much because lots of folk are moving up here from Calif. But if you drive around and look, the old time farmer/ranchers, may just be willing to sell to an individual rather than a real estate officce. There are lots of escentric folk up here like that. If you have any specific questions let me know!
Date Posted: 12/18/2007 12:03 AM ET
Member Since: 12/17/2007
Posts: 10
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Gosh! Where is Washington on this list!?! I was born in California- Loved those Redwood Forests- Bur Crime made us move. Traveled clean to South Carolina and eventually settled in Arkansas-Fishing was fun! Decided to head to Washigton where the Apples are the best. Here I stay! Washington is has mountains, deserts, coastline, and lots of farming or ranching ground. The coast is rainy and heavily populated, but it offers a quick vacation to big city entertainment if the urge should hit. Deserts can get a bit cool in the winter and has a bit of snow in south eastern Washington, but the summers are very nice. Grapes, fruit, grains generally populate this area. Northern Washington, where I live now is incredible. Seasons: Snow starts in mid to late November temps drop to about 28 or so most of the winter with an occasional week or two of near 0 weather (which sounds worse than it is). Most years are mellow and mild. The kids like the wild winters about once in every 10 or 20 years when the snow gets 4+ foot deep and skiing is fabulous! Mud season starts in late february to late march and lasts about 2 weeks temps about 40-50. Spring is gorgeous, temps from 50-65! Summer is the best and most fun! Temp reaching about 90 at the hottest. There is lots of hiking, river play, Spokane for a night out, and good down home friendly folk in the smaller towns. Washington has a very cool homeschool program. Sure, there are rules, but the state offers a home school family the option to opt into a public school program that gives you about 1000-1600$$ a year per kid to help with home school costs. If you are organized, and keep records anyway, there will be very little paperwork compared to the benifits of financial aid. You can maintain contact via internet. It is perfect for us. I get to pick out all my own programing and curriculum and I plan everything they will learn. I do all the teaching unless I want to hire someone else to tutor, like for our spanish and latin classes, as well as ballet and kung fu. I feel I got it good! We have great growing here. Fruit to can, berries grow so well! Farmers markets! Wow! It is by and far the best state I have lived in. Cons: Hummm. There are a bunch of rules for building (my husband is a contractor) I don't know . . . It is pretty reasonable to deal with the bulk of the states issues. Nothing has really upset me thus far. Did I mention the actvities? Windsurfing on the columbia between oregon and Wa. Skiing, Water sports, concerts, big city events, apple fests, farmers markets, a zoo, water parks, leavenworth town,Boat races . . . gosh the list is endless! Washington is not dull! Land . . It is possible to find large ranches. Some say there isn't much because lots of folk are moving up here from Calif. But if you drive around and look, the old time farmer/ranchers, may just be willing to sell to an individual rather than a real estate officce. There are lots of escentric folk up here like that. If you have any specific questions let me know!