Why I Love D.C. & Why I’m Leaving

Some of you might know this via social media, but I’m moving to Philly this summer! I’ve had a lot of people ask me why on earth I’m leaving D.C. I was raised in the D.C. ‘burbs, and its a familiar area that (somewhat) feels like home that my family still resides in. I moved back to the area after college in August 2013, and my blog really picked up once I moved here (I launched it in Richmond back in 2011). I really think this town has helped me grow my blog and my career, but I think it’s time for me to move on to the next chapter of my life.
 

Why I Love D.C.: It Helped My Blog Grow Tenfold

Don’t get me wrong, I loved Richmond a lot: but the blog community was small, and there weren’t a lot of brands on a national scale hosting activations in RVA. A couple days after I moved, I decided to go to this event called Blogger Scene — where I waltzed in a room with 75+ of D.C. finest and brightest bloggers. I was *SO* intimidated, but I made some friends that I still talk to 3.5 years later.

The opportunity to go to so many networking events, collaborate with amazing brands and meet such a diverse set of people in the blogging industry really helped my blog and it helped me grow as a person. These individuals inspired me to be a better blogger, and I had the opportunity to collaborate with some really amazing creatives in this town.

Why I’m Leaving D.C.: The Cost of Living

Unfortunately, I’ve had some pretty nightmare-ish roommate experiences here in the District. 4 roommates in 3.5 years, and my friends: I am over it! I honestly never want to live with anyone ever again (unless they’re my future husband!), and quite frankly it was impossible for me to get a place on my own in a neighborhood that I liked in my price range. I’m happy to move to Philadelphia where it’s a lot less expensive to have a place of your own — can’t wait for you guys to see my new place!

Why I Love D.C.: There’s Always Something to Do

If you follow me on Snapchat or IG Stories, it kind of seems like I’m always in need of a last minute ballgown or cocktail dress because something amazing is happening. From the Cherry Blossom Festivals to Embassy Galas to Wine and Food Festivals, it really is impossible to be bored in the city. Touring the (free!) Smithsonian exhibits is a super fun, budget-friendly option for a 20-something, even though I grew up touring the same museums and monuments. I doubt I’ll have as many last-minute gala invites in Philly, but it was fun while it lasted!

Why I’m Leaving D.C.: It’s a Transient Town

Do you know what the most depressing thing is about leaving here? Meeting amazing friends, having a solid squad, and seeing them leave one by one. D.C. isn’t a lot of people’s hometowns. Most people come here for a few years for a job, and then ship right on out. It’s not a place a lot of people move to and then and feel inclined to stay. This cut deep for me, considering I actually am one of the few people who’s genuinely from the area. From what it seems like with my Philly crew, I’ll definitely be seeing a lot less turnover with my friend groups in my new city.

Why I Love D.C.: Even the ‘Burbs Have Charm

I don’t just love D.C. Proper. The surrounding areas of D.C. are jam-packed with so much charm and things to do. I especially love heading out to D.C. Wine Country out in Loudoun County, which is only an hour outside of the city. It’s such a stark contrast to downtown; you head out to wine country and there are rolling hills and the Blue Ridge Mountains in the distance, and it’s incredibly picturesque. I also love going to the Old Town Alexandria District, the Mosaic District and National Harbor — the shopping and eating at all of these spots is incredible!

Why I’m Leaving D.C.: The Traffic

Oy. I will *not* miss how ridiculous the traffic here is. Unfortunately I do have to pop in and out of the ‘burbs and D.C. quite a bit, and while I love taking public transit while I can, sometimes driving is my only option. When I worked full-time, I only had a 10-mile commute to work, yet sometimes it would take me 1.5 hours to get home. That was a lot of time wasted just sitting in my car! D.C. traffic: I will not miss you one bit. Good riddance!

Ultimately, I’m Ready for a Change.

While I love this town and it will always be my hometown, I’m just ready for something different. I’m getting a little to complacent here and everything’s become somewhat of a routine lately. I’ve also had a pretty difficult time with dating here to be perfectly honest (hello — Washingtonian even has an article on why it’s pretty rough for single ladies here!), and I think a slightly smaller city with a more laid back attitude might help me out in that department. 

So with that, I’m ready for the next chapter. I’ll make a post explaining why Philadelphia was super appealing to me later, since a lot of you have questions about that as well!

16 Comments

  1. India H. wrote:

    Great post! I just moved to NYC, and as someone who is from the south, I did consider DC as a happy medium in the future. You’ve definitely brought up some great pros and cons!

    Posted 4.6.17
  2. Dana Mannarino wrote:

    Such a great read, Alicia! I was so happy to get out of Virginia/D.C. after college, so I could only imagine the excitement you’re feeling! Can’t wait to see your new place!

    Pink Champagne Problems

    Posted 4.6.17
  3. I knew you were planning on moving to Philly eventually but my reaction to this post was WHAT?!

    The DC area will miss you, Alicia, but we all wish you a smooth move and great fun once you’re settled!

    Posted 4.6.17
  4. Ms. Travelingboots wrote:

    Excited to see your new place and new adventures!

    Posted 4.6.17
  5. Katie wrote:

    Good luck with your new adventure!!

    Posted 4.6.17
  6. Lauren Oliver wrote:

    I totally feel you on the struggle of moving to somewhere new! It’s definitely scary at first, but it’s totally worth it in the end, and takes a ton of courage! So my hat is off to you, and good luck in Philly! Looking forward to home decor posts!

    Lauren
    http://oliverstwistblog.com

    Posted 4.6.17
  7. Kristen wrote:

    good for you girl! This is going to be such a fun adventure! I cannot wait to follow you to philly! And living alone will be the best thing ever!

    Posted 4.6.17
  8. Jen wrote:

    Congrats! I experienced the same thing moving from Tampa to Richmond. The blogger scene in Tampa is huge. I really missed that. Best wishes for your move!

    Posted 4.6.17
  9. Jenny wrote:

    Congrats on your new adventure! Can’t wait to see your new apartment.

    Posted 4.6.17
  10. Can’t wait to hear about your new journey! I’d love to hear how you meet people in a new city, too!

    https://bybreannamarie.com/

    Posted 4.7.17
  11. Sarah Camille Hipp wrote:

    Your new journey sounds exciting! As one of the few people that’s actually from the DC area, I loved hearing how you enjoyed DC. It definitely is a transient city though.
    xo, SC // SCsScoop.com

    Posted 4.7.17
  12. How exciting!! I’m actually moving to Philly at the end of the year as well – and being from Chicago I completely understand your excitement about a smaller city!! Can’t wait to hear about your adventures!
    – Katherine
    Engineering-in-style.com

    Posted 4.7.17
  13. Feyi A wrote:

    That’s a big change but I’m happy for you. Yay!

    Marveling-Mind☀ | Instagram | Bloglovin’

    Posted 4.8.17
  14. Ruthie Ridley wrote:

    I wish you all the best on your new adventure! I have a feeling it is going to be AMAZING!

    Posted 4.10.17
  15. I feel ya! I can’t wait to get out of DC and make some friends that will stick around for more than a few months… although I know I’m only adding to the problem by becoming one of those people who came & went quickly…. :[] Hope Philly is all you hope for and more!! 🙂

    Posted 4.11.17
  16. Faith wrote:

    I live not too far from Philadelphia … I have a feeling you’re going to love it! Good luck 🙂

    Posted 4.12.17

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