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Chris + Melissa = A midlife couple on the move

We met and married in midlife. A few years later, our suburban home felt empty. What to do? Since we both love travel, food, and creating content, we decided to start Chris + Melissa — a YouTube Channel dedicated to leisure-testing in a variety of destinations. 

We started our travel channel a month before the pandemic hit, so we spent a few months doing at-home and close-to-home adventures in Minnesota. Then, we came up with the wild plan to move to Vancouver, British Columbia so Melissa could go to film school and so we would have a new area to explore for our channel. After school wrapped, we sold our Minnesota home and spent the next 12 months living in 12 different cities

After we finished that journey at the end of June 2022, we decided to cross the pond and explore Europe. Before 2022 came to a close, we spent three months living in Ireland, traveled to England, France, and Iceland, and moved to Portugal — where we now live. Our goal for 2023 is to visit 10 countries we’ve never been to before.  So far, we’ve made it to Spain to do some flamenco dancing and tapas tasting. Nine more to go! 

Why embark on such a journey? We have a few reasons:

  • To do in depth leisure testing in a variety of locations, so we can help you spend your leisure time well. After all, leisure time is limited. 
  • To see if we prefer having a home base, or not. 
  • To overcome that “grass is always greener on the other side” mentality. If we take time to live for a month in enough cities, we hope to know where and how we want to live with more certainty. 

The Chris Half of ChriMel


Chris runs his own IT / software racket by day and is a content creator the rest of the time. He’s created a comic strip, a satirical publication, and has written a few screenplays that he hopes to work on further someday. He’s also dreamed up umpteen different business ideas and has written a lot of business plans to go with them that now rest in his idea junkyard. He is the father to six children, a step-father to two more, and he’s a grandfather! Chris dreams of being exceptionally fit some day, but he enjoys tacos and donuts a bit too much for that. 

The Melissa half of chrimel

ChriMel About Us Melissa Profile Picture

Melissa is a screenwriter, content creator, and actor. She’s written for newspapers, magazines, literary journals, small businesses, and has won some modest awards for her work. She’s waited tables, led group fitness classes, and sold cars. Her life roles include wife, mom, stepmom, and grandma. In addition to acting in commercials, industrials, and a music video, she’s taken the stage as Fraulein Kost in Cabaret; Olivia in Twelfth Night; and Mona (Young) in Come Back to the Five & Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean. She is a graduate of InFocus Film School’s Writing for Film and Television Program in Vancouver, B.C. Melissa’s biggest nightmare is being forced to relax on some beach somewhere for an indeterminate amount of time.

Why does Melissa travel? Click here to find out! 

Have an adventure suggestion? Please feel free to connect with us and send it our way! You can contact us here, or connect with us on Social Media in one, or all of the following places: YouTubeInstagramFacebookTwitter, and Pinterest

We look forward to hearing from you!