With less than 48 hours to go before my family and I embark on a 640-mile move from Twin Falls to California, I'm finding myself reflecting on my five years as an Idaho resident.

We drove into Twin Falls on a rainy afternoon in late September of 2016. We made the decision to relocate from Northern California to Idaho because the bulk of my wife's family had been longtime Twin Falls residents, and we were looking for a change of scenery and had a brief window of time before my daughter started her freshman year of high school. We did not move to Idaho because other people were doing so.

We had visited southern Idaho for more than 10-years for summer trips prior to officially becoming Magic Valley residents. The beauty of the Sawtooth Mountains and areas such as Stanley Lake and Ketchum made living in Idaho worthwhile. Just a few weeks ago, we decided that our stay in Twin Falls was going to end before the year was up. A professional opportunity for my wife, a child leaving the nest, and our reignited desire to live a life that includes seeing our beloved Pacific Ocean more than once every two years is why the floor in our home is currently covered with boxes and piles of clothing.

I never tried to hide the fact that I am a California native living in Idaho. I'm proud of my Golden State roots, and in my opinion, there's still no better state in the entire country. I drove my truck with California plates proudly around town and to work each day, and aside from a few cracks about having them changed, the people I interacted with on a daily basis were cordial for the most part. Intimidation is something I never felt over the past five years as an Idaho resident. I don't get involved in the whole California versus Idaho beef, instead, I see us all as who we truly are, and that's Americans.

On Monday, the home we bought in Twin Falls in 2019 will officially have a new owner, and he's a fellow California native at that. Thanks for the memories Idaho. This is also one hell of a beautiful state.

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