Updated: Oct 8
We're moving from Washington, DC to Northwest Arkansas!
We've been pondering a move for a while and have explored options in Hawaii, Portland, and then Arkansas. We expected to search for much longer before we found a place that was just the right fit with access to nature, a growing food scene, and all of the other things we were looking for. Ultimately, after visiting Northwest Arkansas we realized we didn't need to keep searching. At least for now, it feels like the right place for us.
Many little things lined up to make this happen much sooner than expected so we're planning to move soon, in the next couple of months soon.
Professionally, much will stay the same though I'm excited for the changes I've mapped out for Feed The Malik. My husband will telework and his company is fully on board with the transition. Meanwhile, I will spend the next few months trying to sit in the quiet and finish my book manuscript on time. Feed The Malik will continue, with some changes. The vast majority of my food content is moving to Magic at the Margins, my Patreon community. There, we're exploring food and beverage as political, nuanced, and historically-rooted through weekly deep dives, original writing, exclusive videos, and more. Because of the nature of that platform as a closed space that I can control (aka I can boot trolls) as well as the fact that it's a paid subscription, I'm able to create content there that's much more thoughtful and of a higher quality than ever before.
I will also be taking a very different approach on social media. This is the start of a scary but necessary change I've been planning for a long time. On Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, Facebook and any platform I land on, I'll be sharing less food content in general and much more Anela sass, talking about shit that matters to me, and amplifying diverse voices as I can convince them to chat with me.
As for DC, I'll still be around. My husband has to return periodically for work and I plan to come with him to reconnect with this place we love so much. When I do I'll continue hosting local meetups for DC area Patreon members, updating the Black-owned and Black-led guide, and connecting as much as I can with local businesses.
I'm also planning some upcoming travel to create intentional content that I'm really excited for. I'm headed to a Black food conference in North Carolina and hopefully taking a trip back to the Middle East to share how much beauty there is there that we often aren't shown as Americans.
Some of these professional changes -- focusing on issues that matter to me, sharing more diverse voices from a variety of places, being able to travel to get broader perspectives -- are made possible by the fact that we will reduce our cost of living in NW Arkansas and gain some financial privilege/stability by doing so. That's not our primary reason for moving there but it is a fact. However, I won't say that NW Arkansas is "cheap" as I've seen in some commentary. Affordability is relative and we're trying to be cognizant of the fact that rising prices there, as they are in many places, are making it unaffordable for some.
Check out this recent post if you're interested in learning more about our recent trip to Northwest Arkansas and what we found there.
And for anyone else looking to move, I highly recommend checking out Make My Move, a website that showcases incentives offered by various locations for remote workers willing to move there. After realizing NW Arkansas offered almost everything we were looking for we applied for the Life Works Here Talent Incentive we found on that site and were selected! The funds will help us offset any moving costs and get setup in our new home.
And if you have any questions about our big move, drop them below!