If you live around the Seattle area, say 30 minutes to an hour outside Seattle either way -- talk to me about it.
Anything you'd like to share is welcome! Thanks!
Edited by Tumble Bumbles - 4/10/11 at 5:44pm
I moved here from southeast GA (after 5 years in Charleston SC) a little over 5 years ago and it was a hard adjustment for me. After we moved here I had to deal with SAD, something that had never affected me while I was living in the sunny south. This is my 6th winter here and winters are still hard on me. Summers are gorgeous, I just wish I could bottle up some of that sunshine and save it for the winter months when I need it.
Oh, the other thing that was an adjustment for me was that most houses here don't have central air. You don't need it for most of the summer, but when the temperatures get in the 90s or above (not often, but it does happen) then it can get miserable upstairs. We have a window unit in the master bedroom and that keeps all the bedrooms bearable at night. I do miss walking into a nice cool house on a hot summer day though!
Thanks for the reply -- that's probably my #1 worry, SAD or something similar. I am so used to tons and tons of sunshine and even though I complain about it sometimes ...mostly I enjoy it and believe it's a big factor in fending off the blues for me. I was wondering if a UV lamp or even the occasional tanning bed (with lots of sunscreen, primarily for the light aspect of it) would help at all.
Thanks again for your input! I welcome any other thoughts :)
I travel to Seattle frequently and it's always nice when we go. The public transportation is good. The buses are crowded but the Lite Rail is not and it's fast and cheap. You can get to just about anywhere you want to go. We do not rent a car when we go because parking is horrendous in the Downtown Seattle area. There are lots of walkers and bus riders.
Downtown is friendly. Nice people and amazing food! (sorry, I'm a foodie)
One thing I have noticed though, is that a lot of Shops in Seattle close early. Coming from Alaska where our stores are open late and even later in summer (due to the extra long daylight hours) I was unprepared for things to be closed by 5-7pm. Very odd.
Over all I love Seattle and it's one of my Big Cities of choice if we were to move.
I would recommend supplementing with a high level of vitamin d. I grew up here, but even I get depressed feeling when my D levels are low. I can just tell. I take about 4000IUs a day (per my NDs instructions) and I feel a whole lot better on those cloudy days with it.
Other than that, I really do love this area. I've lived here and Pittsburgh and traveled all around the country and no where really compares to here. The summers are just beautiful!
Thanks for the info! I have no interest in living downtown although it's a nice area. We've been out there a few times, as I mentioned a very close family member lives there and I think could provide part of the 'community' we are seeking for our children. She lives about 45 minutes outside of Seattle. I just read it rains 6 out of 7 days from October through May and that 201 days out of the year are cloudy. Ugh, that is probably the single most thing holding us back. I don't mind the cold but the overcast clouds... I really fear depression. Maybe that's why coffee is so huge out there lol ...
Yes, SAD is very real. Light boxes help a ton; make sure yours is 10,000 lux or higher -- this measurement isn't listed on all of them, but it is the only guideline I've read in multiple sources, and the one my doctor mentioned. Also, it doesn't actually *rain* 6 days/week November through March, but it is *gray* that much. You can still play outside and get fresh air and exercise and not necessarily always be soaked.
Rent is supposedly super high around here in comparison to other cities (aside from San Francisco) as are home prices. The further you are outside the city (or outside Bellevue or Issaquah), the lower your rental rate is, but at the same time your public transportation options become lesser the further out you live.
Seattle really does not get that much rain. Places like North Carolina get more rain then Seattle does. What people confuse for rain, is actually overcast misty days with not much actual rainfall.
Like the other poster said, I too actually prefer overcast days for hiking and going to the beach. I also am a firm believer that people from here actually appreciate the sun more then other places. When it is sunny here people take full advantage of it (you might not know when you will see it again).
I moved to Seattle (actually just north of the city) last September from the Midwest.
There are a lot of evergreen trees in this area - moreso then Seattle proper, I think. And I don't like them. They block out what little sun we get here for most of the day. We're renting our house, and when I look for another place (assuming we stay here), I will look for something with fewer tall trees. I know people who talk about all the green here (and the green grass rather than brown or WHITE in the winter is nice) but really, it just all looks dark in the winter, IMO. I want to see some sky!
I've always liked rain, but somehow this place hasn't impressed me, weather-wise. First of all, you don't get much of a break. There are SO many cloudy, wet days, and in the winter, they're very short too, what with being so far north. Also, it hardly ever dries out. Even when the sun is shining, it doesn't seem to dry out the ground - so forget having your little kids crawl around on the ground, because they'll get wet/dirty. If you like to sit outside, as I do, look for someplace with a covered patio or deck.
Our rental costs are a bit high but not nearly as bad as when we lived in southern CA. My husband takes a bus that travels down Bothell/Lake City Way to downtown. Other than that, we don't use the public transportation much.
I'm not a big city girl, and I'm often frustrated with being here. The traffic is a major nuisance. People are hard to get to know. There are various mom groups and meetup groups but they seem to lack the closeness that I had with my previous playgroup. I think it's harder with everyone being spread out over a larger area. I'm trying to get a group started in a smaller area. I have a daughter too young for many activities (though she's getting close now) and a son in elementary school, so my outings are somewhat limited. For me, the biggest attraction here is the FOOD, though even that has its negatives, because Seattle is missing a few of the chain places and specific foods I used to like in other parts of the country. But I'm exploring new foods too. Food is definitely more expensive here (particularly in restaurants).
Visiting the Puget Sound is nice. The crunchiness factor (much higher than where I came from) is good. Lots of people interested in environmental issues, breastfeeding, and so on. OTOH, I'm not cloth diapering my little one (yet?), and I haven't caught any grief from that either. There are a lot of cloth diapering and EC folks in the groups I frequent, but there are plenty of disposable diapering moms too. I guess people are more polite. ;)
That's why you have to live near/in a small town in WA. I live near both Carnation and Fall City and have found people in both towns to be very very friendly. :)