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We’re Moving

We’re moving.

Jacksonville, Florida has been our home now for just about four years. This is officially the longest we’ve ever lived anywhere and it’s safe to say I’m attached. I remember when we first found out we were moving to Jax I was less than thrilled. I was a “west coast” girl and I wasn’t sure I could love anywhere as much as I loved San Diego. Yet, from the minute we arrived, Jacksonville stole our hearts. The lush greenery, the proximity to the most beautiful beaches, the food, and the people were all things that I have loved about living here. Not to mention the great location (Jacksonville is within driving distance to many great towns throughout the southeast). We found out recently that our time in Jacksonville will come to a close this summer and I don’t have mixed feelings about it. I’m downright sad. If you’re new here, Matt is in the Navy so every few years we pick up our entire lives and move where ever they tell us to (I’m not bitter). Usually, I go along rather cheerfully because I do love an adventure but this time… it feels different.

Where we are going

We are moving to Twentynine Palms, California. If you’ve never heard of it – don’t worry, you aren’t the only one. Twentynine is pretty legendary in the military world for being the orders everyone dreads. It’s a Marine Corps base in the high desert of California. It’s located about an hour away from Palm Springs, about three hours from San Diego, and three hours from Las Vegas. When we got the call, I was in disbelief because it really hadn’t even been on my radar as possible options (we generally have a few ideas of where we could possibly go). I took some time to digest it before sharing with others because I never want to seem ungrateful or negative. Matt has a good job and we’re thankful every day for it but that job is making us move across the country to a place that isn’t on my top list of “places I’ve always wanted to live.”

For this move, my initial reaction was not one of excitement (again, I was reallyyyy sad) but the more I hear about Twentynine the more excited I get. For every negative opinion I had about Twentynine, five people had something positive to say. I’ve heard the base is great, family-friendly, and that the people are nice. I’ve heard that while it’s in the middle of nowhere, it’s in the middle. We have lots of options for day and weekend trips. This makes me feel hopeful that it will be a good experience for us as well.

What about our house

What this means for our house is that we will be selling it. That is so hard to say because as a family we love this house. You may recall, we closed on this house just days after we brought Millie home from the hospital. She would lay in her pack and play while we had the flooring laid, changed out every baseboard, and painted every wall. In a dramatic sense, selling it seems like losing a family member. I’ve written in the past about making every house feel like home, but this place has been the homiest of home for my family. I’m pretty confident that the next family to live here will feel the same way. We considered keeping it and renting it out as an investment property for a while because we do have dreams of coming back to Jacksonville after Matt retires but in the grand scheme of things, we couldn’t definitively say that this would be our forever house and since we couldn’t, it seemed right to go ahead and let it go.

That being said, we’ll go back to base housing. If you’re a MHB OG then you know that this blog began because I was decorating our San Diego base house and I wanted to share my ideas. It feels a little full circle to be going back to that now. I am excited to share my temporary decorating ideas with you guys again!

The girls

This will by far be the biggest of moves in terms of loss for the girls. We moved here when Peighton was just two. She had her third birthday here, started preschool here, and Millie was born here. Both girls have some deep roots in Jax even at a young age. I appreciate how resilient kids are though. I know Peighton will have a hard time saying “see you later” to her dearest friends that she’s known since the tender age of three but I also know that she’s the kindest and friendliest kid that making friends won’t be hard. Both girls will dearly miss our neighbors, the surrogate grandparents that we’ve enjoyed seeing each day for the last three years.

Our neighbors, they’ve been the girls’ popsicle dealers, funny storytellers, and just all around best friends. We’ve passed hours sitting on their porch watching for alligators in the back pond, drinking cold cokes, and talking about everything.

There’s definitely no easy way to pick up your life and move it across the country, even if “it’s what you signed up for.” It’s taxing on everyone but we do try to focus on the adventure and not the sadness of leaving. We try to appreciate the opportunity instead of the loss. So here we go, onto our next adventure. Twentynine, we’re coming for ya!

I love engaging with you! If you have any questions about our move, PCSing in general or military life feel free to leave them below!

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15 Comments

  1. I think you will be surprised at how much you like twentynine palms. It really is a nice place and so close to so much. You can even do fabulous weekend trips to San Diego where I grew up and love, so just plan some trips and let the adventure begin.

  2. I’m sorry you’ll be leaving a place you love so much, but I can’t wait to follow along on your new adventure!

    1. Hi Beth, thank you! It is a nice thing to love where you live. We are going into this new place with a great attitude so hopefully we’ll love it just as much.

  3. Best wishes Chelsea.I too was a military wife with three kids, so I know what you are feeling.It was exciting but also scary.My “kids” are all in their 30’s now and I think they appreciate and enjoyed moving to different areas and seeing new things. It was definitely an adventure, a good one.Making memories is what it’s all about and mine still have those memories. So embrace the move and go with a positive attitude and you all will do great. Looking forward to you sharing your adventure. I’ve been following your blog since Millie was born so I feel like I know you and your family. Best wishes and may God bless you in your new journey. (I think you’re doing the right thing by selling the house.It’s very hard to manage from across the country, take it from me.) Hugs Karen

    1. Hi Karen, thank you so much for this sweet comment. It definitely is an adventure and sometimes feels overwhelming and difficult but the good outweighs the bad, by far. Thank you for being here!

  4. As an “OG MHB” reader, I am praying for a smooth and easy transition for you and the girls. Oh! And have lived 45 min from a Target for years now, and I have survived…thank goodness for online shopping! 😉

      1. I was a Navy wife for 25 years and we lived in Jax for 4 different tours. I thought that it would be our forever place especially since my folks retired in St Augustine. It is a great place to live but we’ve loved almost all the different places we’ve been. I also grew up as a Navy Brat and while we were never in Twentynine Palms we did live in China Lake. I was about 7 when we lived there and we had so many adventures in the desert, my brother and I would go lizard hunting for hours and we could ride our bikes all over the base. We now live in Huntsville, Alabama and we couldn’t be happier. I’m not sure this will be our forever place but for now it’s great! Good luck with the home sale and relocation!

        1. One more thing, we didn’t have a Homegoods until after we were here for 2 years! I was never so excited to see a store opening, now if we could just get a Trader Joe’s…

          1. Haha! We just got a Trade Joe’s nearby about a year ago. Game changer! We love Jax so much that it’s hard to imagine enjoying any place more but I’m sure I said that about everywhere we’ve lived so that goes to show you, it really is what you make it! Thanks for your well wishes!

  5. Thank you for your service! It is a family affair. My sister’s husband is coast guard, and I understand the struggle. I wish you all the best during your move and adjustment to your new home!

  6. I found this post through a Google search and can relate so much. My husband is in the military and his first duty station was Twentynine Palms. I really didn’t like it at first but I do miss it now. We are in San Diego and I like it here but miss Twentynine Palms at times. You will enjoy it and of course make the best of it. Good luck! Looking forward to seeing your decor posts at your new home! I am in base housing and definitely need some inspiration!

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