I’ve wanted to be my own boss for as long as I can remember. My plan, when I finished up graduate school three plus years ago, was to open a private practice and continue blogging on the side. Before I had the chance to make that happen though, I was offered a once-in-a-lifetime chance and accepted the rather big job of being the nutrition expert for the world’s largest nutrition app.
Working at MyFitnessPal has been nothing short of a dream come true — and with blogging, freelance writing and recipe projects sprinkled in, I even managed to build a pretty good side hustle that’s satisfied the creative foodie in me.
Things change though — family priorities, job dynamics, professional aspirations — and since becoming a mama nine months ago, I’ve given a lot of thought to how I spend my time, what I want to devote my energy to, what matters and what doesn’t. Ultimately I decided I wanted two things: to be able to spend more time with our little guy and to do more of what I love — blogging, writing, recipe development, food photography, consulting. I guess I realized life is just too short and babies grow up way too fast.
Luckily, my husband was on board. Phew! I thought it was going to be hard to convince him but, as it turns out, all it took was a bottle of rosé and a big bowl of this butternut squash carbonara. So, a few months ago we started putting together a plan to make this crazy dream of mine a reality.
But that’s not all.
We also bought a home! A beautiful new home.
Because that’s the logical thing to do when you decide to quit your full-time job and start your own business, no?
No, I suppose not. But as weird as it sounds, for us it made sense — for a lot of reasons. As much as we love San Francisco, city living with a baby has been wearing on us. The increase in crime, the busy streets, the cost of housing (and childcare!), the lack of parking, the trash trucks outside our apartment at 4AM every Monday — it’s left us wanting more space for Noah to
run crawl around, more fresh air, more peace and quiet — easier living overall. Knowing I’d soon be able to work from anywhere and that the hubs could also work remotely, we threw some darts at the map and decided beautiful Bend, Oregon was where we wanted to be.
In addition to wrapping things up at work, starting my own freelance business and buying a home, we’re moving in two weeks. Actually, less than two weeks. Even I’m still trying to process that one but our lease is up at the end of the month so I suppose it’s happening one way or another.
Needless to say our apartment is a hot mess and our heads about to explode but we couldn’t be more excited about what’s to come!
And there will be lots more to come.
I’ve been following your blog for about six months, and have made many of your recipes. When I read you were moving to Bend from SFO, I said – YAY! I live in Bend, and it is an amazing place to raise kids and live your own life too! And my son’s name is Noah, but he’s 14 and a freshman at Summit High this year.
If you ever are interested in getting together with a fellow Bendite, and want to trade tips (I can do most of the trading at first) I’d be more than happy to do that. I also work in the high tech industry (MSFT).
Anyway, thought there were a lot of coincidences in there, and decided I had to write!
Best of luck with your move. Happy to help anyway I can!
Such an exciting move! We live in Eugene, but love Bend (so much so that we got married there). There are endless opportunities for outdoor adventure there. I have always loved the idea of working for myself as well, although I know it’s not all roses. Your house looks gorgeous. Congrats!
I admire your courage to make a huge change!!! Good luck! I can’t wait to hear how this goes.
First time commenter, but am SO excited for your sweet family. I’ve admired your RD advice//thoughts//recipes for so long! I can’t wait to see what you have in store for your blog! Thanks for sharing your journey with “us”!
Congrats!!! Isn’t it funny how life’s trajectories sometimes seem counter-intuitive yet you have to trust your instincts? As a new mom of a child with food allergies, I was drawn to researching food, nutrition labels, recipes, etc. Long story short, I left a corporate job I’d held 10 years to go back to school to become a RD!
How exciting for you guys, congrats on everything!
Thanks so much for at least talking about the fact that city-life is not perfect, or even ideal for every person and their circumstances. You’re one of the few bloggers I’ve read who’ve admitted this!
Good luck with the move. Oregon sounds wonderful and I’m sure your family is going to be very happy there.
Wow, so exciting! I can’t wait to hear more.
How exciting for you and your family. Congrats!
How exciting!!!! Congrats on your career change and your big move! Can’t wait to see whats in store
Hooray! Following your dreams (even when they don’t always make logical sense) is always the right decision. Congrats!
PS- I think a trip to Bend may be in order this winter!
I think so too!
Very exciting! Congrats!
Congratulations on all this exciting stuff Elle!
Oh my gosh, the Bay Are will miss you — but this is totally the right decision. SO excited for your journey!! :) Happy we were able to connect and know each other!!
Me too! <3
Congrats, Elle!! I’ve been following your blog and RD journey for several years now, and it’s inspiring and fun to watch everything unfold. I’m currently working on my masters to become an RD and my goal is to work for myself as well. Thanks for the reminder to keep reaching for my dreams!!
The first rule about living in Bend, is not telling people about it….
Hah! Considering it’s at the top of every “Best Places to Live” list, I’m pretty sure the secret is already out.