PCSing: 5 First-Steps for Spouses

Waiting for orders, not knowing where you and your family will be headed next, can be a rather stressful time. Then you get that signed RFO and you’re off, searching for everything to make your next Permanent Change of Station (PCS) a smooth transition for you and your family.

Here’s what our basement is looking like this week:

PCS1We have unpacked all the card board boxes, sorted through everything a few times, making several trips to Goodwill, and giving away as many things as friends will take just to declutter and minimize the “stuff” we will bring to our next home. After all, I’m pretty sure I have a few items that have moved from state to state when I should have thrown them away many years ago (i.e., the Bread Machine). Can you relate? I made bread last night to justify that large box inhabitant, but I think it’s time to say our goodbyes.


Right now, we are going through a third-wave of sorting: Garbage, Donation, Keep, Possibly Keep, Give to Friends, Sell. The lower level of this house is a mess! We have goals this time around, especially after observing others live the simple life with a “less is more” mantra.

In the past we’ve always let the army move us, but the movers have broken furniture, lost items, and even broken closet doors and damaged wooden floors. Where are my DITY-movers? We are DONE. We are doing this one on our own, if it’s the last thing we do! It’s become motivation to clean house and purging is happening.

As I reflect on PCSing and what will help us transition smoothly, I want to share the top 5 things I’ve found to be most helpful in the early stages of acquainting myself with our next “home”. I’ve included Leavenworth specifics, for those of you headed in this direction. A short guide to thrive once you find out where you are moving:

  1. Connect to local social media pages and start connecting with others. There are several types of groups for military spouses. You can find them by typing your installation name AND the word “spouses” AND “Facebook” in a google search (i.e., Ft. Leavenworth spouses Facebook). Everything from military spouse groups, buy and sell groups, and parent groups, to interest and hobby groups typically exist near military installations.
  2. Obtain an installation guide on-line at websites like mybaseguide.com and www.military.com. You can also walk into a Morale, Welfare, and Recreation Center (MWR) on base and ask for one once you arrive.
  3. Review the installation’s MWR website for information about Child and Youth Services (CYS), child care resources, hospital information, post-wide tours, etc. Here is Fort Leavenworth’s MWR page: https://leavenworth.armymwr.com/
  4. Visit the local and nearby cities’ visitor websites for event information, job opportunities, garbage day instructions, etc. Here are a few for Leavenworth, KS and Kansas City, MO: City of Leavenworth, Kansas: http://www.lvks.org/Visit Leavenworth Kansas: http://www.visitleavenworthks.com/

    Visit Kansas City: https://www.visitkc.com/

    City of Kansas City: http://kcmo.gov/

  1. Visit military spouse blogs. For those who know this Xennial, I’m somewhat of a digital dinosaur, and am barely dipping my toe in this ocean of information. After immersing myself in social media these past few weeks, I’ve found blogs truly helpful. There are several spouses that have lived where you are moving and might offer tips and insights on their blogs based on their experiences. Here are a few I’ve recently found useful:The Military Wife and Mom: https://themilitarywifeandmom.com

    Military Spouse: https://Militaryspouse.com

    In-Dependent: https://in-dependent.org/blog/

    Spouse Buzz: https://SpouseBuzz.com

    NextGen MilSpouse: https://nextgenmilspouse.com

Are there other initial to-do’s that help you get excited about your next move once you have official orders? What helps? Please feel free to share in the comments section.

I hope someone find this information useful!

Have a great week!



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