City Sea of Love:

I was texting with my older sister yesterday. I had sent her a job posting that's right up her alley, except she lives in London and the job is in Toronto. I said something like 'too bad you don't want to live in Toronto!'. She said it's not that she doesn't want to live in Toronto, it's that she can't afford it. I agreed and told her that I feel like I can't get ahead.

I'm been thinking about this exchange this morning. I'm basically making as much as I'm ever going to make without getting more school. The cost of school seems to be inflating at a similar rate to what I'm able to put away, so when I get another $1000 in my TFSA, tuition seems to go up $1000. I'm burning out from my job, but have no wiggle room since my rent and cost of living is through the roof. I've managed to avoid paying back my student loans, but I can't get away with it forever. In general, my cost of living is going up while my income is staying the same. I'll never be able to put away money for a down payment. We'd never be able to afford having a child.

Despite my sustained schoolgirl infatuation with the city of Toronto, I've been contemplating picking up the LJams/Biggie T family and moving us to Hamilton for 1-3 years (yes, I could actually here all of you Torontonians gasping just now). Rent would almost half of what we pay now. My job options would be basically the same (which is to say, garbage). I'd have to find a new job, but I'm willing to go with something part-time until the right thing comes along. My boyfriend works in Hamilton, so he'd two hours of his daily life back by killing off the commute.

Lots of points in the pro column, but there are a few in the con column as well. Biggie Tall's mom has a lot of physical and mental/emotional needs. Right now we live 10 minutes from her so we can stop in if she's having a bad day. We also have friends in the city and it wouldn't help our social life to have to be really picky about what we stay in the city for. I love being able to meet a girlfriend for dinner after work on the fly (as are my plans tonight). I have my places, you know? Where I get my fresh cut flowers, where I get my waxing done, where I get my Thai takeout from.

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I don't know what my bottom line/end game is. I mean, Hamilton can't be that bad, right? And I could always move back into the city. My sister was like eww Hamilton and I was like, really? More like eww London (fighting words!). But truthfully, I'd also be an hour closer to my family and with my younger sister expecting a baby later this year, anything helps. (I'll be live-blogging this situation as it develops – I have many, many feels on it.)

What do you guys think? Any of you made this kind of decision before? Anyone with experience living in Hamilton vs. the city?