Why we left California and moved to Maine

We're Harry
& Lyss!

Maine-based freelance content creators, filmmakers, and drone pilots. When we're not out shooting, catch us riding Onewheels, camping, beekeeping, doing some kind of DIY project, or cooking a tasty meal!

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Gimme that

We made a YouTube video about this, which you can watch below:

It’s always been our dream to have land and a homestead. Harrison was born in California, and Alyssa was born in Florida. We have family all over, but Harrison’s mom’s side is from Boston. When we would visit grandparents in Boston, we would come up to Maine on the weekends. There was something special about this place. The air is different, the people are kinder, and there is more of a slower pace of life going on here. Another fun fact: there are no billboards in Maine! When you’re driving on the highway, it’s just trees for miles. The state of Maine is actually 90% trees!

When we were living in San Diego, we knew it was temporary. We were looking on Zillow for places all over America, but it was really overwhelming as we truly had no idea. We figured the best way to find land, was to go out there and physically find it. You can’t just see a Zillow listing that’s on the other side of the country and make a decision – you have to physically be there to scope out the area, the neighbors, and the energy of the property. So, we built out a campervan, put most of our belongings in a storage unit, and hit the road. We knew that leaving California was a permanent goodbye. We were curious about Oregon, Idaho, and Montana, so we visited all of those places. Unfortunately, they were all on fire summer of 2021, so those states were obviously crossed off the list. We never wanted a fear of a wildfire taking out our land. Not only does the West coast have wildfire risk, but there were also droughts where water was limited, it was expensive, and there were a lot of regulations in terms of building structures on the land.

We actually got really sick in Colorado at the time and decided we were over van life. We posted our campervan for sale, and it immediately got sold in New England. So we headed East! The couple who bought our van was from Connecticut, but we went to Boston to stay with family after the van sold as we had nowhere to live and no vehicle. We stayed in Boston for a few months to get back up on our feet. As previously mentioned, we would drive up to Maine on the weekends as it just seemed to really pique our interest the most.

Long story short, we found a house to rent for $1,200 in the middle of the Belgrade Lakes Region (which is a very beautiful part of Maine). We fell in love with this place very quickly and decided that it was the place to call home. During this time of renting, we’ve been able to explore and get acquainted with the areas. The coast of Maine feels a bit too touristy and crowded for our liking, so we’re settling for the inland vibes, surrounded by lakes. We’ve also joined our local Country Club to play golf, as it was much more affordable than California courses.

Our favorite things about Maine:

  • Abundant natural resources such as timber, water, and fertile soil that is great for homesteading
  • There’s nothing poisonous that can kill you in Maine! (besides ticks carrying Lyme Disease)
  • Strong local food movement and a supportive homesteading community
  • Out-of-this-world
  • seafood, especially lobster and oysters
  • Thousands of islands off the coast to explore
  • Lower property tax
  • The local artisans and craftsmanship and overall vibrant art scene
  • The sense of community – you know your neighbors
  • Commitment to sustainability
  • Historic lighthouses
  • Clean lakes and pristine forests
  • Cultural richness
  • Lots of outdoor activities
  • The wildlife

This place has captured our hearts and we’re so excited to finally be able to have a home base where we can eventually raise a family! Maine also holds a very special place in our hearts as we got engaged in Acadia National Park! It’s the chapter where we officially start the beginning of the rest of our lives.

Thanks for being here, and if you ever find yourself in Maine, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us! We’d love to show you around 🙂

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