We’re Susan and Paul Schuytema. Welcome to our blog – our URL really says it all. Susan and I grabbed that URL back in 2009 when we thought we might be an item and the future looked great. It looks even better now, almost nine years in!

This year, we took a huge step into the unknown. For the last six years, we worked hard and happily in Monmouth, Illinois. I worked as the Director of Community and Economic Development for the City of Monmouth. Just across Public Square (actually a roundabout), Susan started and ran the wine shop and lounge, Market Alley Wines. We loved our jobs and loved the community, but we also longed for a new challenge.

So in late May we took the leap. I stepped away from my job and Susan sold her business, we purged out belongings to the absolute minimum and headed up to the Northwoods in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

And here we are! I now work as the Executive Director for the Iron County Economic Chamber Alliance. Susan is working on her next career adventure. Stella is trying to remain calm with all the new smells (and so far, failing miserably!). We have found our dream home on six acres in the Ottawa National Forest, looking out over the Cooks Run River and just down the road the the beautiful deep and cold glacial Golden Lake.

So this blog is the log of our adventure – discovering the wonders of the U.P., learning to live amongst the trees and wildlife and getting ready for our first winter up here (Yes Jon Snow, Winter is coming!). Here we go!

If you want to email us, we can be found at either “susan” or “paul” (at) schuytema-dot-com.

You can also check out Paul’s site , complicatedstew.com, for helpful insights and advice for young folk early in the process of “adulting.”