PCS – Permanent Change of Station.
Living in Tampa, FL was such a wonderful experience. I moved from Texas to marry by prince charming and best friend back in 2012. Josh (prince charming) was already stationed in beautiful Tampa when I made the big move. By this time Josh had already been in the Marine Corps almost 7 years and had experienced multiple PCS’s as a bachelor. Now that we are a family and have been in Tampa since we’ve been married, it came time for us to move onto our next adventure (my first PCS) – Home is where the Marine Corps sends us.
Since we knew we were going to be in Tampa for a while after we got married, Josh put in a package to go from enlisted to officer in the Marine Corps and we decided to buy a house! We bought a small cozy little house as first time homeowners that was convenient in every way to everything we needed/wanted. Since being married, we have already created so many memories in our small cute little house and now it was time to leave it. 😦
In the military, when you make a PCS move, the military sends packers and movers to come and move all of your stuff. That was nice to hear as I just had a baby and the idea of packing up and moving a whole house did not sound like a fun time to me. On the day the packers came, it was a bit hectic as there were four guys that came and packed up all of our stuff. One guy completely packed the kitchen, two guys took over the garage (which was a disaster), and the last guy took over the rooms. It took them approximately 8 hours to pack up my entire house leaving us with only our bare essentials to make the drive to our new house. The next day (it was a two-day process), the movers came and packed up all of the boxes from the day before onto this huge 18 wheeler looking truck and that took about 5 to 6 hours. All of the guys from the moving company did a great job packing up our stuff and putting it on the truck. They made sure to take extra care in what they were packing and moving and I was pleased to see that.
After all of the boxes were out the house, we were really left with an empty house. We kept our 50 inch TV behind with us to take on our trip with us in a trailer so that we could entertain ourselves for a few days and also for when we reached our destination because it takes a while to get the furniture and boxes to the new house.
Moving day – When it came time to actually pick up and leave, I didn’t really feel any emotion. I was so tired from getting things ready for the move and taking care of a newborn baby that it didn’t even phase me. But I knew that it wasn’t a goodbye, it was just a see ya later. Josh and I plan to move back to Florida once he retires so we will be with all of our wonderful friends again soon. With the trailer packed up and the car ready to go, we were ready to start our new adventure. This 13 hour car drive included Josh, my newborn baby, my mother-in-law, two chocolate labs, my cat and I all in my Q7. I know…. it already sounds interesting LOL
My girl chocolate lab, Dez, does well on car rides so we had no worries about her but my boy chocolate, Dallas (yes, my dogs are named after the Dallas Cowboys), and my cat, Kia needed to be medicated for the trip because Dallas gets anxiety and Kia gets motion sickness. We had to give both animals their medication one hour prior to hitting the road. the medication hit Kia immediately and she was a funny cat walking around like she was drunk. Dallas’ meds, however, did not do the job they were supposed to so we still had an anxious pup in the back of my SUV.
The first few hours were okay. Dallas finally calmed down and so did Kia. Olivia did great and slept most of the way. About 4 hours into our trip we made our first stop at a gas station. Olivia is crying because she wants her diaper changed and is hungry, Dallas is going crazy because we came to a stop (which gets Dez all excited as well), and Kia is crying because poor thing has to ride in a carrier the whole time. Lucy, my mother-in-law, changes baby while I run into the gas station to warm her bottle and Josh attempts to take the dogs out to potty. As soon as Josh opens the back door, Dallas storms out without his leash into the area where all of the 18 wheeler trucks are refueling! It turns out Dallas chewed through his leash while he was back there and as soon as that door opened he was going to make a run for it. Dallas was so scared of all of the big trucks that he came running back to the car (THANK GOD). So now we only have one leash to take two crazy dogs out. So Josh takes both one at a time. I let Kia out to potty as well but she still looked like she was feeling a little under the weather and wasn’t really doing much. Now everyone is back in the car and we are ready to finish off this long day.
Its 10:00 p.m. and we are all beat. We finally pull into our hotel, a La Quinta Inn in Florence, South Carolina, and because we have a trailer and 3 animals with only one leash, we had to take up everything pretty much one by one. Baby went first, then Kia, then Dallas, and finally Dez. I stayed back in the hotel room with the animals while Josh and Lucy brought up our stuff we needed for the night. Thank God we can finally get some rest.
Next Morning – We wake up with plans to leave hotel and be on the road by 8:00 a.m. As Josh starts taking our things to the car/trailer, he notices that someone broke off our lock to the trailer and left it half way open. After initially scanning everything, Josh didn’t think that anything looked stolen. Then, after thinking about it, he realized that his rifle was towards the trailer door and he ran back downstairs to check to see if it was there. IT WAS NOT. Josh storms back into the hotel room and he is PISSED. I knew right away this was going to delay our trip. Josh called the police and had them come to the scene to file a police report. After watching the video surveillance, we got a good description of the vehicle as well as the suspect so the officer was confident they could locate the gun. This took about an hour and half and when we packed up the car with animals and baby, we were ready to go, however, when putting the baby in the car, I noticed a huge dent on the rear wheel well on the passenger side of my car. This was the side the vehicle pulled up to steal the gun and HE HIT ME! Now I was PISSED! We called the officer back to have him also put that my vehicle was hit by the suspect on the police report.
It’s almost 10:00 a.m. and we finally leave the hotel. At this point we only had about 5 1/2 hours to go till we reached our new house. I could see the light! The rest of the trip ran smoothly. As we were leaving the state of South Carolina, we passed up this place called “South of the Border.” It appeared to be some weird Mexican theme park with fireworks, LOL. I had to take a picture of it.
By 2:00 p.m. we were finally in Virginia and on our way to our new home!
We made it to our new home and fell in love! We did a good job on finding this home all the way from Florida. It has everything we wanted and more! 4 bedrooms, 3 full baths, 2 living rooms, a two car garage, and a HUGE backyard. We couldn’t have asked for a better home for our family here in Virginia.
Overall, the move was not THAT bad but it definitely had its interesting moments. We are all just glad we made it to our new house safely and that its all over now. Now, we are in the unpacking phase – You never realize how much stuff (and by stuff I mean crap) you have until you make a move! Looks like I’ll probably be having a garage sale here real soon! Ha
Since Josh is pretty much from Stafford/Fredericksburg area, we already have a lot of friends here which will be awesome while we live down here for shortly under a year. I am excited for whats to come on this new adventure. If you have a chance, come on down for a visit! There is plenty of room! 🙂