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Where to live in the North East

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Howdy all,

I know this topic comes up often, and sorry to bring it around again, but could any in the top right corner offer some recommendations? I currently live in Jacksonville, Florida and I absolutely hate this place. I'm a Colorado girl originally, I wound up down here by way of an alcoholic ex husband who chewed us up and spit us out financially (himself included). There's nothing left for me back west so I'm figuring on heading north from here.

Pertinent details:
I'm a single mom; I have a twelve-year-old and a Chihuahua, so I need a relatively safe place with decent schools (most are HORRIBLE down here).
I'm in insurance; P&C, Life, sell, service, claims- I can always get jobs, but don't always make big money.
I like all four seasons but autumn is my favorite; Florida's complete lack of seasons is depressing.
I'm not a big city girl- I find small towns much less terrifying.

Anybody who cares to weigh in, you would be much appreciated.

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