17 May 2013

The dreaded move begins....

So, we are moving! We knew when we moved here that it would only be for a couple of years, but even still I have been dreading it and pretending it's not going to happen.  We have made so many wonderful Army and civvie friends here, had Pippy here, become a real little family here.  I love the town we're in (shhhhh, can't say where exactly.....high-security Husband at work!) and have  just been really happy here.

Nevertheless, off we go. The process of moving Army quarters involves a string of appointments with the housing people, deciding on whether we wish to fork out a silly sum of money to have the house cleaned for us (which then makes the cleaners responsible for getting it to the 'proper standard', rather than us), and deciding whether we are able to rehang the HIDEOUS Army curtains (which've been carefully stored away in a deep, deep cupboard where they can't offend anyone) ourselves or whether we need someone else to do it for us, at the cost of £35 per pair!!

When you leave a quarter you have a 'March Out', which is a meeting with your Housing Officer and other representatives from the myriad of housing related sub-contractors.  They inspect your house to check its' cleanliness, check that there's no damage, that you have returned all keys you were given initially (at a charge of £26 EACH if you're missing any) and to generally interrogate you. Last time we moved we decided to clean the house ourselves, as we were quite taken with the prospect of being able to spend the cleaning allowance on something more frivolous and far less practical.  Never. Again. The March Out was nerve wracking and we ended up spending nearly a week scrubbing our fingers raw.  So this time we will be able to just hand over the receipt from the cleaners and be on our way (as long as they don't discover the remnants of a massive red wine stain under the rug in the sitting room or a chewed skirting board - Rufus, not Husband by the way - then we'll be fine!).

The next step is the 'March In' (imaginatively named, no?) in the new house, where another Housing Officer shows you in, hands over keys, paper work etc etc. You're given 14 days to identify any problems with the house or pre-existing damage. We are particularly anal with this as we certainly don't plan on being charged for anything that is already broken.  I reckon they hate us back in the office, I literally note down every dent in the woodwork and every fingerprint on windows! Actually, in most cases you are Marched Into the new house a week or two before you're Marched Out of the old one, so to give you time to actually move and then be able to clean / sort out the old house once empty. 

So, Husband Marched Into the new house on Tuesday, our removals guys are coming on Wednesday to pack this place up and then we meet them at the new house to unpack on Thursday.  We then have a few days until next Tuesday before our March Out.  We have decided to clean the carpets ourselves (a saving of £80!) so will be staying with one of our lovely neighbours so we can attack the house with a super-dooper carpet shampooer the day before.

Now that it is imminent I am actually looking forward to getting to the new house.  I love re-nesting and finding new homes for all our treasures and trinkets (and heaving furniture around to work out which of the 6 possible arrangements looks best). As much as I don't want to go, I can no longer be in denial about the whole thing, so I had better embrace it! 

This is SO how moving house is going to be...in my head...

I have already signed up with the local Military Wives Choir in the area, found another Baby Sensory class Pippy can keep attending (she does really love all the songs now!), registered with doctors, dentists and vets.  I think we're all set.

Ah yes.....that's more like it!

So, here goes the next chapter of our little family tale. Bye, bye beloved home and friends. For you Army folk, let's hope we bump into each other again on another patch on the Army postings treadmill, you never know!


  1. Good luck with your move. We've recently moved house so have an idea of what you're going through, but without the military involvement. My old town had army barracks and I made some 'Mummy' friends there, one of them recently move to another part of the country with her husband's role so I have an appreciation of the upheaval it must represent. It sounds like you are already getting yourself sorted and there must be lots of opportunities ahead.

  2. Thankyou Kate. Yes, I guess it's something we'll get used to and hopefully very good at, as we're unlikely to be in any one place for more than 2 years. I'm sure it'll become a seamless and well executed military operation...like every other aspect of our lives. (Hmm!!).

  3. Lulu I love the way that you have described this!
    Moving makes me sooo anxious, it's not a strong point of mine!

    All the best with everything and lots of love to you guys and Pip x x x


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