So it’s that time again. My housing community is filled with extra bulk “trash” at the curb each Monday and tons of moving trucks in driveways.
It’s kind of a normal scene for our family. At the end of this month, we will have moved 6 times in the last 7 years. You may think, “How on EARTH do you move THAT often?” Many things come into play with our lifestyle including change of homeports and different schools my spouse had to attend. I know many of you may be in the same boat (no pun intended), so I wanted to share a few resources that I live by when PCSing.
Military One Source
During our first PCS, I found militaryonesource.mil. This site has everything you could ever need on finding checklists for moving, all about your next installation, and so much more. My go-to from their site is The Essentials for Planning Your Move. They have everything you need to help prepare yourself mentally and physically for those movers to come (or DITY). The best part about this site is there is more than just moving information. They literally have information on almost everything related to military life- for FREE.
Most of you probably already know about move.mil as this is pretty much the only way your spouse (or you) starts the whole move process today. But did you know that they have all kinds of free resources to help you with your move? There is information on every aspect of a CONUS and OCONUS move, and have direct contacts with representatives from each branch if you need help. You don’t know how many Facebook move groups I am in where spouses ask questions about moves and each person responds, “This is the way the Navy does it,” or “This is the way the Army does it.” With this, you don’t have to guess who’s information is correct because you have someone who is directly a part of your community.
Patience and A Beverage of Choice
PCSing is stressful. That is truly an understatement, but must be recognized. You have a ton on your plate and, most often than not, the spouse is left to deal with the physical move, take care of the kids, and make sure everything else still runs smoothly. Make sure you take time to just take it all in and relax.
The night before the movers come, order a pizza and have a movie night with your family so you can unwind and talk about this new adventure you all are about to embark on. Once the young ones are asleep, take time to enjoy a beverage of choice and think about the journey ahead.
My Tips For Moving Day(s)
The first day the movers come, set up a “command center” where all the paperwork and pens stay.
Make sure you have a file folder to hold all receipts for the move (i.e. gas, tolls, hotels, etc). Anything that is not reimbursed from your military installation and is necessary to move most likely can be written off on your taxes (please consult a tax professional for further guidance).
Show the movers your “Do Not Pack” room, corner, etc., and relay what you expect from them as far as checking in and packing. Some people may think this is bossy, but this is YOUR home- it’s your right to be concerned about how they pack YOUR items.
Lastly, moving always seems terrible in the beginning. You think about missing your prior installation, all the friends you have, and the home you made. But when you really think about it, you probably felt the same way when you moved there. The whole cycle will start again and as long as you embrace it, you will make new friends and create a new home as amazing as the last.
So tell me, what are your tips for all those PCSing spouses? Leave a comment below and share your PCS Wisdom.
And Happy PCS Season to All!