The dreaded closet clean out

So over the holiday weekend I decided to FINALLY delve into my horrible closets and start cleaning them out. I am a hider-of-things-in-the-closet. The house may be picked up but that is because I just toss it all behind closed doors.

Also pulled out all the kiddos summer clothes and packed up the winter stuff. We have way too many winter coats, hoodies and sweaters, especially since the kids may not ever wear this stuff again.

Now I have a giant pile of crap in the middle of the living room that I am trying to get rid of. It’s getting smaller but pretty soon the rest of it is going to go right to the thrift store.  Hopefully. I kind of have a hard time finishing projects that I start. I wouldn’t be surprised if a week or two from now my husband is tripping over stacks of old DVDs, outgrown clothing and baby toys wondering when the hell I am going to get rid of the rest of it…

So feeling a bit more ready house-wise. Of course there are still hurdles to jump through. I am the last one to get all my medical screening stuff signed off. Dental is tomorrow and then I should be done. Of course I’ll probably have a cavity, my teeth are the worst!

Also, took my dog back to the vet today. He has been acting funky for a couple of weeks. Vomiting, not himself. The first visit didn’t take care of the problem, so back he went for a blood draw and I have to drop him off tomorrow so he can do a contrast x-ray in case he decided to eat another pair of my underwear and they are stuck somewhere.

I feel like with every box I check off I have another and the stress level is never ending! I am just ready to be LIVING in Hawaii! The packing/moving/hotel part I could skip over! Done complaining. For now.

Posted in PCS

Tween drama


Oh my. I don’t even remember what argument this was even about. I spied this on her door the next day and couldn’t help laughing.  I know it’s just going to get worse from here and not as amusing. The joys of having a ten year old daughter…

In Memorium

It seems like everybody and their mama is reminding you that today isn’t just about barbecuing with friends, that there is a purpose to this holiday. I feel when you are a part of the military community that this thought is never really that far from your mind.

I feel blessed that my sailor is home safe with us today, that we aren’t worrying about his well being or safety. That he is able to be here with his family. That I don’t have to raise my children without a father.

I am so very, very thankful for all of the military members far from home who are doing their part in keeping us safe.  I am so very grateful for all those who have made the ultimate sacrifice and laid down their lives for our country.

You are in our thoughts and prayers.

Opening Day!


Oh Summer… I have been waiting for you…

Driving in Spain

If you are moving here you may have a few questions about bringing/buying a car and getting a license.

I was very stressed out before we came to Rota, trying to figure out if we needed to get an international license or if we could get a Spanish license or WHAT we needed to do! I had zero luck finding any information on blogs, or anywhere on the internet.

Thankfully you get walked through the steps when you get here.

Upon arrival, all newcomers are advised to attend the Fleet and Family Support Center’s ICR class. It is basically a week long introduction to Spain, the culture, the food, everything you need to know about living on base (or off). It also is where you will take the test for your Spanish driver’s license. Your American license is good for 30 days (I think!) so you can drive on  that while waiting for your Spanish one.

The test is fairly easy, you are given study materials, and the majority of the questions concern traffic signs which are a little different over here. I believe that our licenses were ready a week or so later.

As far as cars go, I would recommend shipping a vehicle as soon as possible. Cars can take 45-60 days to get here and rental cars are expensive over here! Ideally if you have two cars you can ship one early and rely on one car for awhile before you move. You are authorized one car per family but once you get here you can also purchase a Spanish spec vehicle aka Rota Beater.  They tend to be crazy overpriced for what you are getting (usually 10-15 years old, still costing a few thousand dollars) but you can also find some for a   few hundred euro that will get you from point A to point B.

Another issue that concerns everyone is whether or not they should bring their SUV/truck/minivan over. Will it even be driveable in Spain? Everyone pictures those narrow one lane streets in European cities! Luckily driving on base isn’t an issue, plenty of parking and wide roads. Driving from town to town, going to the stores, malls, etc., there is usually ample parking. The only times you may have an issue is driving in older sections of towns. We have had moments where we’ve been in a tight fit with our Altima! Having to make a 3 point turn just to turn onto another street is very stressful! We try to avoid those sections of towns! Park and walk!

We were a one car family for the first two years we were here. I was a SAHM and didn’t NEED a car most days. If I did I would just drive my husband to work. Once I started working we picked up a 1996 BMW for 3K. It ran great for us and we were very happy with it. We then decided to purchase a Volvo from one of the dealers that sells to military personnel overseas.  We got a GREAT deal and are shipping it to Hawaii through Volvo so we can ship our other car through the military.

There a a couple of new car dealers you can purchase a car through; Volvo, BMW/Mini and Exchange New Car Sales. Exchange New Car Sales sells Chrysler, Ford and Harley brands.  Volvo and BMW generally have some floor models if you are looking for something immediately or you can custom order and get it in a few months.  Do some research because if we had owned our Volvo for less than a year and then moved back to Virginia, they would have made us pay taxes on it!  Some states waive this, some you need to own your car for six months before registering it, some require at least a year.

Got any car or driving related questions? Let me know!


Photo sesh!

Okay, so these are some photos one of my friends took of me in my fancy feria outfit! Carolyn is an insanely talented photographer and I had SO much fun with her!

If you are in Rota, look her up! Andros Photography.



And then pulled my family in for a quick shot!