We’re moving where?

I just might be crazy. During what must have been a weak moment, I agreed to move, house and home to North Dakota so my husband could realize his dream of finally making what he was worth. To find a job where the paycheck you get at the end of the week could possibly justify the hours you have to spend away from your family. It seemed logical enough, he was working crazy hours anyway and I like adventure, right?

The first thing I realized was that there was little useful information for families in my situation. Sure, men by the droves leave for a season to come up here but a whole family moving up is not a common event. There are certainly other families here but almost everyone that I have met is native to this area. I can’t be the only crazy woman in this place. So, a blog was in order. A place where other families thinking about moving could find real, honest information about what is here. I will answer every question you have. Where will we live? What will we eat? Do people really make big money? How cold does it really get? (today it’s negative 20), What is the crime rate? Schools? What will we eat? Wait, I’m starting to repeat myself. One thing I should mention, I am food obsessed and not always in a good way. This has proven to be a huge challenge, but I don’t want to spoil any surprises yet…

So welcome, join me on my journey. Email me questions and I’ll make posts. What do you want to know? What do you want to see (I will be taking many pictures along the way).


  1. Michele says

    I LOVE YOU! I wanted to do this blog idea but we couldnt find ANYTHING affordable there… we were still trying to keep home here in Boise, Idaho 😉 SO, I am envious and excited to see that someone is doing it… showing the REAL day to day. I hear horror stories from my hubby, Paul. I laughed so hard at your Walmart posts! He said one day he went to get some things and they were just closed. No reason really, freight slow I guess? Just closed. We have an almost 5 year old little one or I would be knocking on your door for a friend because I would BE there too.

    • My Life in Williston says

      I get a bit tired of all the negative stories. I have not lived anywhere that didn’t have negative aspects but there is more. Let me know if you ever make it up this way and I’ll be doing more posts on Walmart. There is a lot of good material there.

  2. Michele says

    …uh, dont hit enter unless you are DONE! hahahaha…. Can you tell me if you have any kids or what you hear of the school structure there? I still contemplate every day coming. Our son is struggling so badly without his daddy. It breaks my heart every damn day :( But I hate to drag him away from ‘familiar’ and family unless its good somewhere else. Ya know? Ok, I will go like you on FB and keep track. later, Mama Haas

    • My Life in Williston says

      Send me a private message from my facebook page and I’ll give you more details on what you are asking about.

    • Amanda says

      I taught in Williston for 4 years before moving to Bismarck. I have to say that North Dakota has some of the best schools. A good friend and her family lived in Williston until her husband got a job in another state. Her son is now a freshman and he is two years ahead of his classmates. Not all of the teachers are great teachers but a majority are great educators.

    • My Life in Williston says

      That’s because I am! At least when I lived in Savannah it was a quick 4 hour drive home. There is nothing quick about going anywhere from here.

  3. kathy says

    I just read that there are two golf courses in Williston. Two golf courses? when is it ever warm enough to play golf?

  4. Rinda says

    Cute blog! Gotta love North Dakota! Love everything you say about Williston. I lived there years ago. I live near Bismarck now but I hated leaving Williston but a butthole (now ex)hubby I left there. LOL I miss my friends that live there. I LOL at your story about Walmart. That was great. I can’t wait to hear more.

    Keep up the good work. Its wonderful. :-)

  5. Kim says

    I moved to North Dakota in 2005 from the great state of Texas. I wasnt prepared for the winters thats for sure or the fact that its atleast an hr between cities. I hated it for the first few years why would anyone want to live here I often wondered. And now 7 years later I wouldnt want to raise my children elsewhere. We have no smog, no crime (but then again we dont live in Williston or the oil boom area for that matter)we have amazing schools with lots of one on one with the student/teachers. We have lots of wild life and the beauty of the untouched land. My dad lives in oil country and it went from 700 to over 5000 in just 2 years. Bless all of you that live in Willison and have to deal with the crowds and over priced rent/housing. And welcome to North Dakota.

    • My Life in Williston says

      You are so right about the smog. I’m actually just outside Williston and the school is small and wonderful. My daugher already is sad about the time she wasted in the big schools (her last one was over 5,000 kids!). Even in Williston the crime rate is shockingly low, particularly if you compare to other parts of the country. I mostly enjoy my time here, it’s just so different that I felt there was alot of good material here.

      • Annabelle says

        I love that you note the low crime rate. As a native North Dakotan, what I hear from so many others who have lived here their whole lives is “OMG the crime here has gotten horrible!” Yes, with increased population so has our crime increased. Relatively speaking though, it is still a pretty safe place to be.

        • My Life in Williston says

          Yes, it would be silly to suggest that crime has not increased because it certainly has but relative to other places, it’s much less than what you would expect. I think the bigger problem is how quickly the population has grown and that perhaps the local police departments do not have the proper infrastructure to deal with it. It’s like other areas of this town. The rate of expansion needed accommodate the population is moving much slower than the rate of people coming in. That will always cause issues.

      • chuck says

        As a child I always wanted to live in the west(the area west of WI,)but the trek became elusive. I’m planning on moving to Watford area in September. I’ve lived in Florida for 25 years and this place sucks. The murder rate Is double what it was last year at this time. The schools are just babysitting for kids. There is 100% growth since I got here, and the overcrowding is everywhere you go. I could never find the opportunity to get out west till now and hope to take advantage of the opportunity now.

  6. Patricia Dykes says

    This is great! Born and raised just 70 miles from Williston (Crosby), all three of my sons born in ND before leaving 38 years ago. Miss ND very much and I never thought I would say that. Not only no smog, but very wide open spaces and a much calmer way of life. The people who are native to there are very caring and generous. Yes, I expect that crime has to come along with the great number of people who have come there to work, but I can only imagine how hard it is on them to be away from their families. And family is very important to the people who live there. Winter can be very hard and summers can also get very hot. But there are many things that you can find to do seasonaly that will curb your energies. For those of you who have not been there long, take time to just breathe and when the weather suits you take it all in. Growing up there we probably did not enjoy it as much as we do now that we have grown older and for most of us, we miss it for many reasons.

  7. Heather Kasowski says

    I found your blog through Pinterest and of course had to look into it because I grew up in Williston. I have just read a bit but I will plan to read more soon about my hometown and all the changes. And your cultural perspective. My husband and I moved from ND over five years ago for SC but we are looking to move back. Anywho, I wrote a post the last time we were in Williston visiting the summer of 2011, I thought you may want to read it: http://gretherfamily.blogspot.com/2011/09/boomtown.html

    May you have a great experience in ND!

  8. Harmony says

    My family is tring to find work outside our home state which is New Mexico,,the only concern I have is we are bi_racial and we have mixed children,,silly question but not really,,Are there a lot of couples that may be of mixed race there? and if so are they treated well or does every one just keep to them selves or is having a mixed couple or are black people treated different upthere,, would really love to find out before moving there? thanks

  9. Heather collard says

    So I just found this sight. Me my 2daughtet 12 10 my husband my dad are throwing it all in and headed to Williston. We bought a R.V IM GETTING SCARED heard ALOT if good and ALOT of horror stories please HELP WITH ANY INFO.

    • My Life in Williston says

      No need to be scared. It’s a different life here but as long as you are willing to sacrafice a little (for example living in an RV for a time) you will do fine. Join our facebook page or contact us directly (the link is on the front page) and I will help when I can.

  10. Dena Franks says


    I’m Dena, and I live in Sacramento, CA. I am graduating from nursing school as an RN in a few weeks, and have been in contact with a recruiter at Mercy Hospital in Willitson. She was an incredibly nice woman, but said that even if I were offered a job in there, finding housing would be difficult. Do you have an suggestions about how to find housing in the area for me and my son? Thanks!!

    • My Life in Williston says

      Hi Dena. Check craigs list just dno’t send anyone money, wait until you are here. Google search all the apartments and just start calling. Be prepared to pay in the neighborhood of 2,000/month for a place.

  11. Tabetha Rhodes says

    My husband and I are considering moving to ND from MS. We have 6 children and I cant find any housing in ND for us where we can afford it. What is the prospect of being able to locate housing and earn enough to pay the rent till we can buy?? Is the move up there worth it like so many people tell me???

  12. Lisa says

    Looks like most of you have young families,we are in our late forty’s – we lived in Montana for years then when the economy dropped my husbands business literally stopped since then we have moved to California then Nashville all since 2010. I have an 18 yr old daughter who is still at home probably for at least 2 more years and a 21 yr old who just married here. My son and husband started a contracting business in Watford City 2 yrs. ago, we have been apart more than together and I’m tired, but the winters and housing costs in ND make us question wether or not we want to relocate yet again. Not sure what to do?

  13. Sheila Woolridge says

    Just curious if u r still in Williston, ND…I came across ur blog while trying to find out more about moving there. My bf has been working there since June and we r talking about moving there by march but I am trying to find out more information before I do…good or bad…lol.
    Please let me know how it is in Williston,ND before I go. I’m not sure what to do at this point.
    Thank you :)

  14. Margie says

    Hello. Still deciding whether to move to ND or not for work until we retire. I am an RN and my husband is a trucker. We are both in our 50’s and are always on the go. I’m sure there are job opportunities but my concern is the housing market especially with many people moving there as well. I told my husband that we may need an RV to live in and he laughed. I too love food, enjoy cooking and I can’t imagine the Walmart being closed. Thanks for your blog. I don’t do facebook so can you kindly email me Good luck on your new adventure.

  15. Kathy Sturm says

    While I enjoy reading all these posts I can’t find info regarding day to day life in Williston etc. Jobs, living, shopping, what is available to single men etc. Where do I go to read the walmart post as well. thanks

    • My Life in Williston says

      I do tend to be abstract in my writing but I’m working on specific posts regarding jobs, places to eat etc. If you are looking for my discussions on walmart, just search Walmart on our page.

  16. Heather says

    Hi there!
    We have an opportunity to move as well. He would be in Minot. Just wondering if you could give me some tips and the best place to look for housing not too far from his job.

    Thank you in advance

  17. Stephen says

    Is the oil boom really worth the money? I keep reading about how it’s six figures but are the companies really paying that well?

  18. Cara says

    Hi! Me, my husband and two year old are considering moving to Williston. I am a registered nurse. I plan on staying home with our son and furthering my education online. We currently live in Austin Texas. I am concerned about the crime rate with the growing population. Of course no place is 100% safe. I just want to know if it is reasonable for a young mother with a toddler. I also was wondering if the cost of living is worth the salary. Any advice about what is is like is appreciated. Also, anything we can do in advance to prepare. I am sure we need to find a place and have a few months rent paid in advance. Any other advice would be greatly appreciated. I am nervous but, we are looking for a big change.. Thanks in advance!! Please give me any advice both positive and negative. I am realistic and aware nothing is perfect. just wondering if its worth it

  19. Wife of the welder says

    My husband left us three years ago to work in North Dakota . It drives me crazy knowing that being with me is worth less than whatever he’s going to make up there. That he seems to find greater pleasure in working ridiculously long hours , drinking , and living in a shabby trailer than being with me. I have seen him only four times in over three years

  20. Karen says

    Omg, I’m moving next month to North Dacota! I am so stressed if I’ll like it there, the good thing is that the moving is because of my new job so I hope it will be a nice fresh start! :)

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