Goodbye to beautiful Ft. Leonard Wood:
Since we don't have to cross the Pacific Ocean this time, we are going to be driving the truck while pulling the X-terra on a trailer when we head west. This means we get to use the X-terra as a "trailer." When you move so many times, you get to be a pro at packing just what you'll need to get by if you arrive at your new home before the bulk of your household goods. Which shouldn't happen this time since our stuff doesn't have to travel by boat, but with the Army you just never know. Its better to be prepared than to trust what they tell you. (Kinda disheartening, but its reality)
For any new military spouses out there who are trying to organize and pack a home up for your first PCS (permanent change of station), here's my list of must haves:
1) Important Documents - medical records for all members of the family (pets too), power of attorney, all paperwork the moving company gave you, copy of your soldier's orders, all receipts to anything remotely related to the move (you'll get reimbursed by the Army for lots of it), any bills you don't pay online but will be due before you have a new address, and I always bring my address book.
2) Jewelry - don't let the movers pack it, just carry anything expensive or sentimental with you.
3) Air mattress - invest in a thick one that comes with its own air pump. I don't know how many times we have used ours since our first move. Really just make sure you can at least make a pallet of some sort for everyone traveling with you.
4) Bedding - make sure to pack a set of sheets and a few blankets for the car ride and to use with the air mattress.
5) Shower Curtain - when you finally get to your new home, the last thing you want to have to do is run back out to buy a shower curtain or dig through all the moving boxes so that everyone can go to bed clean. You'll be tired, and you'll be thankful for a hot shower. *don't forget to pack the hanging hooks too and a couple of towels*
6) All your household cleaning products - the Army will NOT move open containers of liquid, candles, oil based stains or paint, etc. But, all those things are really expensive if you have to start all over; get a box and throw everything in the car.
7) Electronics - lap tops, cell phones, cameras, video cameras, iPods, Kindle, etc along with all the power cords.
8) Personal Items for everyone - one suite case per family member, baby must have items, a pillow for everyone, toiletries, any special medications.
9) Plants - we have potted plants on our front porch, and since we're driving this time, we're going to attempt to take our plants along. I'll let y'all know how we secure them and how well they travel. Any seasoned military wives done this before? Any advice?
10) Pet items - kennel/crate, food & water bowls, the actual food, leash, heart worm pills, flea & tick medication, etc.
11) Any other expensive or cherished family items in your home that you just don't want to take a chance on. Because no matter what, you'll probably have at least a few items that end up looking like this after the PCS:
12) Cooler - for any food in the frig and freezer that you don't want to give away. You can also throw sandwich stuff in there, so you don't have to eat fast food every day for lunch while on the road. Want a few more ideas for eating well and saving money while on the road? Head over to Passionate Homemaking. We'll be packing baby food as well when we head out.
Hmmmm that might be our list - hope it all fits! And, at the end of the day if there is still room in your car, go ahead and load yourself up. :)
Any other military wives want to weigh in on what/what not to pack in the car for a PCS move? Any helpful hints on relocating in general?