Candlesmoke Begins Move Across the Country

Florida Tree

Yes, you read that correctly. The cat has been slowly clawing it’s way out of the bag, little by little.

Candlesmoke Chapel is picking up and moving from lovely San Francisco, California to vibrant Gainesville, Florida. From “Baghdad By the Bay” to “Hogtown.” From naked guys in the Castro to Gator Nation. From hipsters everywhere you look to hipsters at the Top and the Lab. It’s cool. I have a beard and I’ll fit right in.

While it will be a royal bucket of sad-pain to leave our friends in the City, and around the Bay Area, it is a move that has to happen. We have family in Florida that we miss and wish to be closer to. We have become pretty numb to the giant city that surrounds us and long for a quieter and calmer place to settle down. We can actually afford to get some property in Northern Florida, not so much anywhere in California.

This will allow us to have more time to spend together. It will give us the chance to finally start looking at houses with property that we can make our own. We want to be able to start constructing large garden areas for herbs. Out-buildings for candle service. Trees we can actively take care of…and room to go outside.

We also want to start helping out the community. Even if it’s merely offering the space we have to various groups and people to put on teaching workshops, use as a meet-up place, or have a general club house for pagan hijinks.

San Francisco is “safe,” as “anything goes” here. “Wacky” ideas are much more easily embraced here than in other areas…but it tends to make one lazy and inactive. I would rather put blood and sweat into creating a needed new space, then stay here, work myself to death to pay rent, and occasionally meet cool people that share the same ideas that I hold dear. It is much more attractive to me to create an entirely new space out of “nothing” than to be content and just keep on in the City.

The real saving-grace here is that Gainesville is a big college town. I love those very much, having lived in and around Northampton & Amherst, Massachusetts, and Burlington, Vermont. I have enjoyed the hell out of my visits to Gainesville and found nothing lacking. Good touring music shows, coffee, damn fine pizza, and some of the best BBQ I have ever eaten. Weather was fantastic and the coast is beautiful. It is a good fit…at this point in my life even more-so.

We will be leaving around August, so there is still a good 6 months of planning, packing, shipping and reporting!

So, yeah. Getting rid of at least half of our belongings. Shipping everything we are keeping across the country. Getting the cats ready for a three day road trip of the Middle States. It will be trying, but totally worth it. We do plan on getting quite a few things up and listed in the new Etsy Shop we are slowly working on. We will be able to make and send things through the summer, but come the end of July will have to board up shop for a month or so.

More updates to come. Watch this space. Any comments regarding Florida, Southern Pagans, and moving tips are greatly appreciated!

Cow Saying Hello To Joe

8 thoughts on “Candlesmoke Begins Move Across the Country

  1. Sherrie Gervasio Miller says:

    Been waiting for this post to come, the hints have been KILLING ME!

    Seriously though, I’ve done cross country twice in two years – once with a full service mover, and once by selling 90% of what we owned and shipping the rest. The mover we used was actually based out of SF and I would recommend them 100% – they moved all of our stuff and not a single glass statue or piece of furniture was broken. If you need any tips on packing & moving, let me know! I also did those moves long distance with cats in a car – thats quite an adventure depending on the cat.

    I’m happy for you guys starting out the new page in your life and wish you both nothing but the best – I just wish you were moving closer to me!! LOL.

    • Joseph Magnuson says:

      Thank you Sherrie! We are very excited to see what happens. We plan on taking the cats, in their carriers, around the city a bunch of times in a Zipcar before we actually set off with them.

      We are trying to save as much cash as possible, so we will be shipping most of our stuff USPS or UPS. When I moved to San Francisco, 11 years ago, I got rid of everything I owned except for a few hundred records that I had shipped and a load of clothes. It was liberating, but quite sad.

      Truth be told we only have a few boxes of books, a few boxes of magic items, a few boxes of herbs, roots and curios, and a few boxes of clothes. The major killer will be the kitchen stuff! We can’t live without our dehydrator, crock pot, coffee maker, etc!

      Glad you liked the post. There will be more updates and posts soon…promise!

  2. Sherrie Gervasio Miller says:

    Thats what I did the second time – got rid of almost everything non important and shipped the rest USPS. It ended up costing us about $400 for 14 boxes. The kitchen stuff was killer for us too – I had to part with my beautiful (but heavy) Henckels knives, and 10+ years of foodie accumulation. šŸ˜¦ But in the end, they ARE only things, and things can be replaced. My best advice to you is to create a timetable with specific dates to achieve goals. If you don’t, you could find yourself overwhelmed with stuff that didn’t get done when life got in the way.

    • Joseph Magnuson says:

      I totally agree with you. I am one of those people that boxes everything up and does without the items for months at a time. We have been cleaning house and slowly edging up to that for a month or so. I want to have the house cleaned out and boxed up for May/June when we start shipping stuff to Florida.

  3. radiantvagabond says:

    Joe & Sara,
    It makes so much more sense now that I see the whole story: Family, land – both good things to make up your community. And I totally agree that the City can become too safe a place, so that one gets lazy. I spent 35 years there, and was never so alive as when challenging the prevailing opinions. Believe it or not, there used to be a time when it was dangerous and otherwise challenging to be queer. Barbara and I were in the thick of the change-making that resulted in the relatively more safe atmosphere that exists today.
    Just having to get things organized and packed to move from one trailer into another has reminded me of the nightmare of moving. The stuff with which you cannot bear to part, but which has no easy category, always seems to be more than that which comes under obvious headings. But you sound as if you are well-organized and planning far enough in advance to head off most catastrophes. It will still be a little bit of hell – can’t be avoided entirely – but it passes.
    Wishing you nothing but the best, and maybe one day in the not-so-distant future we will visit you and let you show us Gainesville.
    Linda & Dwight

  4. Dana says:

    Joe & Sara-
    my husband and I moved from NorCal to a rural area outside of Gainesville. FL in Dec. 2010. (With cat šŸ˜‰ Email me if you want feedback on the you-pack shipper we used, on Gainesville, or on what I’ve found out about the pagan community here. Our brand new area ‘pan-pagan’ website is (I am the webmaster). Have fun packing (and tossing)! Green spring blessings,

    • Joseph Magnuson says:

      Hello there, Dana! You’re website looks great. I am glad to see that someone is interested in getting things going, or at least helping things that are already going, in the Northern/Middle sections of Florida. We will definitely keep you in mind and hope to see the website grow and grow! Thank you for the kind words.

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