Austin, Texas, USA

Home in Austin, Texas

Austin Skyline from Zilker Park

In Summer 2011, we visited Austin for the first time and knew this was where we wanted to raise our family. We really liked what Austin had to offer. It has a family-friendly environment, a good public education, an affordable housing market, a good job market in the tech industry, and many events and activities. After that one visit, we decided to move our family from Southern California to Austin, Texas. At the end of that year, we closed our chapter on the West Coast and started a new one in Texas.

It took us a while to get acclimated to our new home. After a couple of months, we built friendships in our neighbors, my Mom’s group, and my husband’s soccer group. I had been lucky to find a great group of women who helped me with Motherhood in so many ways. One day, my husband came home and said, “I met this lady today, and I think you would like her.” Who would have thought she and I would be great friends. Our kids have grown up together. Moreover, my siblings and their family moved to the Austin area within a couple of years. We are happy to have a solid foundation.

One of the things I am impressed with Texas is the high level of public education. Our daughters went to regular public schools in our neighborhood. Later we discovered public Charter Schools. We found one we liked that is an International school. With our international background, we wished to raise our kids with an International mindset. We have been so impressed with the way the school has handled the pandemic. Best of all, my oldest daughter is in the same class as her childhood best friend from the Mom’s group.

When we moved to Austin, we had the opportunity to build a house. That same opportunity would probably not be available for us living in California. The cost of living is more affordable in Austin. We sold that house before the pandemic occurred. Now, I wish we still have that space. We are looking for a new neighborhood to call our next home. With the pandemic, it hasn’t been easy to find our next home.

During this pandemic, the job market overall hasn’t been great. Austin has gotten a boast of jobs from the tech giants moving here. Several of the small business has not been so lucky. I’m thankful my husband’s business is doing well. His company is in the e-commerce and point of sale. His services have helped many small businesses with growing their sales. I do hope that a lot to the small businesses will remain and flourish.

There are many aspects of Austin that remind me of Southern California. The downtown and the hills remind me of different areas of Southern California. Even though it’s smaller in size, there plenty of activities. There are parks and trails. There are shopping plazas like the Domain that has several bars and restaurants. The downtown is very active. The art and music scene is a big deal. There is a mural tour that is distinctive to Austin. Music can be heard in many restaurants and hangouts. There are also lots of local restaurants. Austin is known for is keeping things local. Their motto is “Keep Austin Weird.”

There are many sites and activities to do in Austin. I’ll go over our experiences in a separate post. Below is a list of places and activities we love to visit.

  1. Zilker Metropolitan Park
  2. Zilker Botanical Garden
  3. The Contemporary Austin – Laguna Gloria
  4. Mayfield Park and Preserve
  5. The Hamilton Pool
  6. Mount Bonnell
  7. Mueller Lake Park
  8. Austin Aquarium
  9. Thinkery
  10. Zach Theatre
  11. SoCo District
  12. Sixth Street
  13. The Domain
  14. The Arboretum
  15. Oasis Texas Brewing Company
  16. Austin Food Trucks
  17. I love You So Much Mural
  18. Austin Zoo
  19. Austin Kite Festival
  20. F1-United States Grand Prix
  21. Long Center
  22. The Frank Irwin Center
  23. Bass Concert Hall

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