We are Greg and Kelly Turner, Seattle residents from 1987 until 2019. I had lived in the Pacific Northwest all of my life and am known to say “I didn’t mind the weather for the first 50 years but now the long grey winters are getting to me” it’s time to look for someplace new, at least for winters. I am a retired attorney having decided at age 58 that I have worked long enough.
I am a recent convert to the FIRE mentality. (Financial Independence Retire Early). I don’t know if the money will last forever but we had saved and sold almost everything we had in Seattle and were willing to take the risk and see what happens. I tell people that if having to return to work is your definition of failure at retirement then you have already accepted failure by continuing to work. As I update this page it is August 2021 and retirement is still working for us. After a year and a half of travel, a pandemic that stopped our travel, and the purchase of a new home in Arizona our finances are holding up and our net worth is higher than when we started. So far so good.
Kelly retired from nursing having split her working time over the past 30 years between the neonatal intensive care unit at the University of Washington medical center and as a flight nurse with Airlift Northwest. Two intense, rewarding and stressful jobs. She is hoping our choices in retirement come with a little less stress and a little more relaxation.
Her airlift job provided great cocktail conversation. Maybe her new life as traveling nomad will generate equally compelling cocktail conversation, with fewer stories of stupid human tricks while intoxicated. No promises.
We have two great children who are now adults. Caprial, just graduated college from Western Washington University and is currently working and living in Bellingham Washington. Yes, we retired while we still had a daughter in College, thank you Washington GET savings account. And thank you Cap for returning to in state tuition.
Our son Jacob may be the smartest of us all, or at least the most envied. At age 23 he embraced the minimalist lifestyle of the FIRE movement and moved to Crested Butte Colorado where he could ski over 100 days a year. He is still working on the financial side of the equation but we envy his choice of “life” to the question “your money or your life?” He recently decided to trade in the snow and join us in in sunny Arizona.
Well, this is us. Retiring earlier than some and later than others. We are middle of the road travelers usually choosing a comfortable apartment over a tent or a four star hotel and eating in more often than not.
When Covid hit and the world shut down we started looking for a place to land. We decided on Arizona for a number of reasons. Great weather in the winter, much lower cost of living than Seattle, and easy access to the Pacific Northwest where most of our family and friends reside. For a few more details on our decision see our blog post. Owning a home certainly reduces our travel budget but we still plan on traveling several months a year after the world opens up.