Moving to Traverse City--any other moms? - Mothering Forums
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Indiana, Ohio, Michigan > Moving to Traverse City--any other moms?
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 10:16 PM 02-11-2009
Hi,
We'll be moving to TVC in a couple of weeks, and I'm hoping there are other MDC moms around. We've been living up in Harbor Springs/Petoskey area, but we're ready for a change.

We have a 5 year old boy who I hope will go to The Pathfinder school for preschool when we get there and kindergarten next year.

Any suggestions for areas to live? We're hoping to rent for awhile and then buy maybe next year. We're thinking it would be fun to be downtown somewhere, maybe close enough to walk to Oryana. Is it too crazy in the downtown area during the summer? Are there nice kid-friendly areas that anyone can recommend? We want to be in a neighborhood where kids play together and are outside a lot. My little guy is very social.

Thanks! Kelly

kbam's Avatar kbam 11:10 AM 02-12-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ex Libris View Post
Hi,
We'll be moving to TVC in a couple of weeks, and I'm hoping there are other MDC moms around. We've been living up in Harbor Springs/Petoskey area, but we're ready for a change.

We have a 5 year old boy who I hope will go to The Pathfinder school for preschool when we get there and kindergarten next year.

Any suggestions for areas to live? We're hoping to rent for awhile and then buy maybe next year. We're thinking it would be fun to be downtown somewhere, maybe close enough to walk to Oryana. Is it too crazy in the downtown area during the summer? Are there nice kid-friendly areas that anyone can recommend? We want to be in a neighborhood where kids play together and are outside a lot. My little guy is very social.

Thanks! Kelly
Hi Kelly...
I am in TC and there are quite a few other moms/families here who would qualify as "MDC moms" even if they aren't posting here! There are TONS of houses for sale downtown right now, I have several friends that live on Washington St. near F & M park and really love it there.
We live out of town a bit to be closer to my husband's office.
Feel free to send me a message or email with any specific questions. A friend of mine's step mom is a teacher at Pathfinder and there is also another charter school - Woodland - that a lot of people on the crunchy side of things are looking at. I have a little boy who will be 5 in August that is going to go there for K in the fall.
We've lived here for almost 3 years and really love it here. I've found it very easy to make friends and there are just TONS of families here so it seems like there is always something going on for kids.
Anyway - contact me with any other questions and if I don't know I can hook you up with the right person.
Krista
laylasmommy's Avatar laylasmommy 12:41 PM 02-12-2009
Hi There- We don't Live in TC but we do have a cottage in Elk Rapids. We are there quite a bit in the summer and would always like to get together. I would suggest looking in Elk Rapids as your home. It is right on the bay and one of the quaintest,most friendly places. Well worth at least a visit!
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 09:37 PM 02-12-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbam View Post
Hi Kelly...
I am in TC and there are quite a few other moms/families here who would qualify as "MDC moms" even if they aren't posting here! There are TONS of houses for sale downtown right now, I have several friends that live on Washington St. near F & M park and really love it there.
We live out of town a bit to be closer to my husband's office.
Feel free to send me a message or email with any specific questions. A friend of mine's step mom is a teacher at Pathfinder and there is also another charter school - Woodland - that a lot of people on the crunchy side of things are looking at. I have a little boy who will be 5 in August that is going to go there for K in the fall.
We've lived here for almost 3 years and really love it here. I've found it very easy to make friends and there are just TONS of families here so it seems like there is always something going on for kids.
Anyway - contact me with any other questions and if I don't know I can hook you up with the right person.
Krista
Thanks, Krista. I'm really happy to hear about all of the families and kid activities--I can't wait to get there. I didn't know about Woodland. I called them today and plan to apply. I wish we could be there for their open house this month, but unfortunately we won't be there until the first part of March. We'll check on that area of downtown. I'd really like to be near other families with kids. I'll get in touch with you as we get closer to being there.

Kelly
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 09:39 PM 02-12-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by laylasmommy View Post
Hi There- We don't Live in TC but we do have a cottage in Elk Rapids. We are there quite a bit in the summer and would always like to get together. I would suggest looking in Elk Rapids as your home. It is right on the bay and one of the quaintest,most friendly places. Well worth at least a visit!
It does look very cute. We'll definitely visit there. My husband will be working over near Gaylord, so it'll probably be too far for us to live. But I'd love to get together when you're in town this summer. Email me any time.

Kelly
kbam's Avatar kbam 12:07 AM 02-16-2009
Good!
Let me know when you get to the area and we can hook you up with playgroups and get you guys introduced to some people!
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 10:55 AM 02-17-2009
That would be great, Krista. It's always hard moving to an area where you don't know anyone.

I did have a couple of questions that occurred to me--I'm trying to decide whether to send my son to Pathfinder or Woodland. Do you have some general info about either of them that would help me? I like that Woodland mixes grades and has no tuition, but the drive worries me. How do you find that drive? I can't wait to get into town so I can see them for myself.

Thanks, Kelly
kbam's Avatar kbam 11:12 AM 02-17-2009
We live just outside of town on the southeast side so the drive to Woodland for us is 15 min or less door to door. Pathfinder is on the far west side of town and that coupled with the tuition made it not even an option for us (mainly the tuition!). As for general information...other than combing their websites and then visiting when you get here - really I think visiting will be your best bet.
I don't know about Pathfinder but Woodland emphasizes carpooling and has sign up sheets in the office to allow families in different areas to find eachother and get organized. There are also 2 buses - one leaves from the Civic Center and one leaves from the YMCA.
My friend's step mom teaches at Pathfinder and her young sisters go there. She always comments on how amazing the kids there are after she goes to any of their programs there. I've met her sisters and they are really great, smart kids.
One thing I have heard though is that because of the tuition and location you do tend to get a pretty homogeneous population in the school.
We loved Woodland's campus and what struck us most at their open house last year was the genuine enthusiasm of their teachers. My son will just be starting their next year so I don't have any true experience there yet but several of our neighbors and quite a few of my friends have kids there right now and are loving it.
I hope that helps.
I don't know if Montessori interests you at all but the public school system also has a Montessori program that is at it's own separate school now. It's tuition free and kind of in the middle of town - it's held at Glen Loomis elementary if you want to google the location.
And there is also a private Montessori (The Children's House)
that I've heard great things about. Depending on where you live that can be a bit out of the way as well but I have a friend who has kids there now and lives downtown and says it's not too bad. As with most private Montessori schools it is pricey but less than Pathfinder I think.
We also have a group of parents that have been meeting who are interested in Waldorf education. It's kind of a mixed bag of homeschoolers and people who are just interested in incorporating some of the Waldorf philosophies into their home life. There is hope and interest of starting a early childhood program and possible a Kindergarten but it would definitely not be soon enough for your little guy.
CawMama's Avatar CawMama 03:57 PM 02-17-2009
FYI....a friend of mine moved up there and opened a family practice. She's an awesome person: http://www.tcfamilydoctor.com/TCFD/T...2573DB005A8DD7
kbam's Avatar kbam 04:20 PM 02-17-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrin View Post
FYI....a friend of mine moved up there and opened a family practice. She's an awesome person: http://www.tcfamilydoctor.com/TCFD/T...2573DB005A8DD7

This is great to know. Is she open to non-vax and selective/delayed vax patients and supportive of alternative medicine and homeopathy options do you know?
I have a lot of people ask me at our babywearing group so I like to keep on top of things!
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 01:20 PM 02-18-2009
Thanks for the great information! We're thinking of eventually buying a house somewhere on the east side of TVC because my dh will be working in Gaylord, and it's a long commute. Are there neighborhoods over where you are? I'm glad to hear about the shorter drive to Woodland from there, if we end up choosing that school (if we even get in, that is!). I like the fact that Woodland is tuition-free and more diverse, and my ds loved that there were pictures of kids playing in the woods--he's such an outdoor boy.

I don't think we're interested in Montessori, but I definitely would like to talk with others about Waldorf. I like a lot of their philosophies.

We're planning on being in town the first week in March. Once we're settled, I'll email you and maybe we can talk on the phone. Thanks again for your help!

Kelly
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 01:21 PM 02-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrin View Post
FYI....a friend of mine moved up there and opened a family practice. She's an awesome person: http://www.tcfamilydoctor.com/TCFD/T...2573DB005A8DD7
I would also like to know her opinion on vaxing and whether she incorporates natural medicine into her practice. We'll be looking for a dr. as soon as we get into town.

Kelly
blessedmum's Avatar blessedmum 02:42 PM 02-18-2009
This is so exciting! My husband and I have just decided to buy property up in that area, hopefully within a few months. It looks like there is a really great community forming. We are waldorfy/Enki homeschoolers, but the Woodland school looks wonderful.
Can anyone tell me how far the drive is between TC and Kalkaska? We can't afford the TC prices, but there seems to be some good deals towards kalkaska.
Blessings on your move Kelly!
Morgan
kbam's Avatar kbam 05:30 PM 02-18-2009
Depending on what type of house/neighborhood/price range you are looking at I could point you in the direction of some neighborhoods or subdivisions. There is a lot for sale right now (as is true everywhere I think!) and while the prices haven't crashed nearly as much as some areas they have gone down since we bought in 2006.

Kalkaska is probably 45 min to an hour depending on where exactly you are coming from and going to.
kbam's Avatar kbam 05:31 PM 02-18-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by blessedmum View Post
This is so exciting! My husband and I have just decided to buy property up in that area, hopefully within a few months. It looks like there is a really great community forming. We are waldorfy/Enki homeschoolers, but the Woodland school looks wonderful.
Can anyone tell me how far the drive is between TC and Kalkaska? We can't afford the TC prices, but there seems to be some good deals towards kalkaska.
Blessings on your move Kelly!
Morgan
From what I hear there are quite a few kids from Kalkaska that come to Woodland, I believe they have a bus and also some carpooling.
CawMama's Avatar CawMama 05:49 PM 02-18-2009
I don't know Marissa's philosophies. I'm sure she would be really open to talking with you if you give her a call though.
Jennifer3141's Avatar Jennifer3141 08:14 PM 02-18-2009
Ex, Pathfinder usually has summer classes for kids of all ages so you can get a good feel for the school that way, if you want. Maybe Woodland will do the same?
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 12:39 AM 02-19-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jennifer3141 View Post
Ex, Pathfinder usually has summer classes for kids of all ages so you can get a good feel for the school that way, if you want. Maybe Woodland will do the same?
Oh, good point. I remember seeing something about that in the packet they sent me. I'm also thinking about putting him in their preschool program (what's left of it, anyway) when we get into town. That would guarantee us a spot in their Kindergarten program if we choose to send him there and also give us a feel for the school.

Thanks for the suggestion! Kelly
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 12:43 AM 02-19-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbam View Post
Depending on what type of house/neighborhood/price range you are looking at I could point you in the direction of some neighborhoods or subdivisions. There is a lot for sale right now (as is true everywhere I think!) and while the prices haven't crashed nearly as much as some areas they have gone down since we bought in 2006.

Kalkaska is probably 45 min to an hour depending on where exactly you are coming from and going to.
I wonder if there are rentals in that area, too. We aren't going to buy until we've lived there for a little while and get to know the town and surrounding areas. I can't wait to get into town and start looking. We can't take too long finding a place since we have to have an address by March 9th in order to apply to Woodland.

Kelly
Jennifer3141's Avatar Jennifer3141 09:35 PM 02-19-2009
Kelly, we're renting. We rent through Schmidt Management. They are rather dim-witted but the owner of our home is pretty good. There are tons of homes up here for rent because nothing's really selling right now. Our home's owner is dying for us to make an offer on the house. But until we're sure the market is at the very bottom and DH's job is secure, we rent. And we have a house right on west bay so it's a blast most of the time. I live about 1/2 mile away from Pathfinder in one of the older family homes built in the late 60s that are so plentiful up here.

When we first moved up here, we were positive we were going to live on Old Mission someday. But now we've fallen in love with Leelanau peninsula and we feel so establed here. Our CSA is with Black Star. We love Sutton's Bay and Northport's park. And Sleeping Bear is a 25 minute drive way. Had we just bought instead of renting, I'd be bored out of my mind in a cute little old schoolhouse on OMP, 30 miles from EVERYTHING.

I have encouraged everyone who's ever looked up here since I've known them to rent first because everyone I know thought they wanted to be someplace other than they orginally thought. The friends who bought in Lake Ann are desperately trying to sell their house to get into downtown TC and vice versa for another friend. My friend that would only look on OMP is always in Sutton's Bay, dreaming about life there. There's something about this area that people never expect to fall in love with.
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 10:59 PM 02-19-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jennifer3141 View Post
Kelly, we're renting. We rent through Schmidt Management. They are rather dim-witted but the owner of our home is pretty good. There are tons of homes up here for rent because nothing's really selling right now. Our home's owner is dying for us to make an offer on the house. But until we're sure the market is at the very bottom and DH's job is secure, we rent. And we have a house right on west bay so it's a blast most of the time. I live about 1/2 mile away from Pathfinder in one of the older family homes built in the late 60s that are so plentiful up here.

When we first moved up here, we were positive we were going to live on Old Mission someday. But now we've fallen in love with Leelanau peninsula and we feel so establed here. Our CSA is with Black Star. We love Sutton's Bay and Northport's park. And Sleeping Bear is a 25 minute drive way. Had we just bought instead of renting, I'd be bored out of my mind in a cute little old schoolhouse on OMP, 30 miles from EVERYTHING.

I have encouraged everyone who's ever looked up here since I've known them to rent first because everyone I know thought they wanted to be someplace other than they orginally thought. The friends who bought in Lake Ann are desperately trying to sell their house to get into downtown TC and vice versa for another friend. My friend that would only look on OMP is always in Sutton's Bay, dreaming about life there. There's something about this area that people never expect to fall in love with.
Jennifer3141, I totally agree with you--that's exactly why we want to rent first! We haven't spent much time in TVC at all (other than airport runs and quick stops at Oryana) and want to get to know it first. In the past few years, we've gone through many of the changes you've mentioned. Once upon a time I thought I wanted to settle in some secluded, picturesque place in the woods. But I've since learned that I wouldn't be happy there: the last place we lived (in a wooded area) was WAY too dank and dark (it was never summertime at our house); and the place before that was isolated from other families and town activities. Like you, I need to be near some action and have other kids for ds to play with. Picturesque is great, but I'd rather have other people around and not have to commute to everything.

You've made me even more excited about coming there. Thanks!

Kelly
blessedmum's Avatar blessedmum 11:02 PM 02-19-2009
Thanks guys, We would like to buy property to start a small homestead and our own farm business someday. Ideally we would like to find 10-20 acres and build slowly. We have a house in southern-mid mi that we have been trying to sell for about 3 years so we can't afford property with a house right now until we sell our house-which will be a while at this point. It would be great to find something with a small cabin even if we had to gut it. I have seen a few things in between South bordman and TC that look like possibilities. We will take a few weekends once the weather is better and come an check it all out.
Jennifer3141's Avatar Jennifer3141 01:15 AM 02-20-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ex Libris View Post
Jennifer3141, I totally agree with you--that's exactly why we want to rent first! We haven't spent much time in TVC at all (other than airport runs and quick stops at Oryana) and want to get to know it first. In the past few years, we've gone through many of the changes you've mentioned. Once upon a time I thought I wanted to settle in some secluded, picturesque place in the woods. But I've since learned that I wouldn't be happy there: the last place we lived (in a wooded area) was WAY too dank and dark (it was never summertime at our house); and the place before that was isolated from other families and town activities. Like you, I need to be near some action and have other kids for ds to play with. Picturesque is great, but I'd rather have other people around and not have to commute to everything.

You've made me even more excited about coming there. Thanks!

Kelly
I'm excited for you to come, Kelly!

The first house DH wanted to rent/buy 3 years ago here was 40 minutes up OMP. It was a gorgeous location but there was only 1 other house in this teeny subdivision that was occupied beyond August. And he looked like the unabomber.

I like where we live, but the property is too small. No room for goats, let alone the cow I want to rescue someday! I'd love to live in Northport but that would be a 40 minute drive for DH to work in good weather, not practical.
menomena's Avatar menomena 12:23 PM 02-20-2009
Yes, yes, look around everywhere!!

We're in Williamsburg (btwn TC & Kalkaska). We thought we'd love it and I haaaaaaate it. (just ask krista - i think i complain about it every time i see her ).

There is an awesome network of crunchified mamas up here. We all seem to cross paths eventually (many of us continually). Definitely let us all know when you're in town. A babywearer's mtg or LLL mtg would be a nice low-key way for you to ease into "the scene" as it were.
Jennifer3141's Avatar Jennifer3141 02:03 PM 02-20-2009
Nessa, I've wondered about Williamsburg. DH and I laugh about Yuba. I want to like in Yuba someday so I can be Yuban. But we can't actually find Yuba beyond the one sign there.

What haven't you liked about Williamsburg?
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 06:01 PM 02-20-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jennifer3141 View Post
I'm excited for you to come, Kelly!

The first house DH wanted to rent/buy 3 years ago here was 40 minutes up OMP. It was a gorgeous location but there was only 1 other house in this teeny subdivision that was occupied beyond August. And he looked like the unabomber.

I like where we live, but the property is too small. No room for goats, let alone the cow I want to rescue someday! I'd love to live in Northport but that would be a 40 minute drive for DH to work in good weather, not practical.
Wow, I already feel like I have friends in TVC, and I haven't even gotten there yet! Thanks for making me feel so welcome.

I just looked up OMP and realize what you're talking about. We saw a house for rent up there and my dh and I thought the same thing about it being too far removed. I looked on the map for Northport, too. What's it like up there? I can't wait to explore the area.

We have a dream of building our own homestead and having some animals, too. But we've been so transient that we don't even have a pet. Nary a fish, even. But we read things like Mother Earth News and Back Home Magazine and keep the dream alive. The last issue of MEN had some great stories of people who're living sustainably on varying amounts of property. One guy has perfected his building practice so the last house he put together was done in 10 days for $10,000. It's cute, too! Most of it was constructed using odd pieces of wood cut from the property (he's an artist more than anything and even builds cool furniture from trees that no one would think of using for anything other than firewood). Another family is growing about 6,000 pounds of food in CA (Pasadena, I think) on 1/10 of an acre. They're using every inch of space, including vertical. It's so inspiring.

I hope you find your perfect spot.

Kelly
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 06:05 PM 02-20-2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by menomena View Post
Yes, yes, look around everywhere!!

We're in Williamsburg (btwn TC & Kalkaska). We thought we'd love it and I haaaaaaate it. (just ask krista - i think i complain about it every time i see her ).

There is an awesome network of crunchified mamas up here. We all seem to cross paths eventually (many of us continually). Definitely let us all know when you're in town. A babywearer's mtg or LLL mtg would be a nice low-key way for you to ease into "the scene" as it were.
I'll definitely let you know when we get settled somewhere. Can I bring a 5-year-old to LLL or a babywearer's mtg? He's on the small side, but he definitely can't fit in the sling anymore!

Kelly
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 07:41 PM 02-22-2009
Hi everyone,
I was wondering if anyone can recommend their pediatrician. The doctor that the previous poster (Carrin) recommended looks good, but I'd love to get some other names as well. My son is on the spectrum and has multiple medical issues; I'd like a doctor who will respect our decision not to vax and be open to natural and/or alternative healing. My son is being treated by several specialists, but we need someone to coordinate it all and to take care of the more acute problems.

Thanks, Kelly
Jennifer3141's Avatar Jennifer3141 09:46 PM 02-22-2009
Ex, I want to get together with you like crazy now. My DS is on the spectrum too. We're doing nothing right now, except for what I do at home. Suffice it to say that I have been deeply disappointed by the treatment options in TC. Wow. Bad.

So we go to GR for healthcare mostly. I do sort of have a pediatrician here in town for emergencies but for regular checkups, we go back to GR. We have a condo there as well.

And I'm partial to Northport because my dream house is there. It's pretty darn distant though. We'd have to have a whole farm to keep us busy enough.
And it would be a very long drive to one of our favorite farms then - Pon Hill Farms in Harbor Springs.
Ex Libris's Avatar Ex Libris 02:12 PM 02-23-2009
Hi Jen (is that what you go by?), I should have known by your "aut-some" signature that we had this in common, too! Ugh, I'm sorry to hear about the lack of good docs in TC. We see a DAN doc and GI doc for the big stuff, but I really want someone close by who at least knows something about kids on the spectrum. Maybe I'll call the family doctor that the previous poster recommended. How far is GR? You'll have to tell me about the docs you found down there.

My husband is from Harbor Springs, and we were living up there until last fall. We spent lots of time at Pond Hill! It was fun to spend an afternoon wandering around and looking at the animals. Did you see that they started a communal garden last year? We got a small plot, but our gardening skills are lacking, to say the least. I think we ended up with a couple heads of lettuce. The bugs ate everything else. If you're talking about having a whole farm, you must have some gardening talents. I definitely need to hang out with you--maybe it'll rub off on me!
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