A New Journey

Copyright by Holly Hedman

Copyright by Holly Hedman

Oh, the life of a Soldier and his family! 

We started off our journey together back in 1995 (um, yeah, I just dated myself) when Dan and I were married.  Our first move was to Oklahoma for 6 months of training.  We actually enjoyed Oklahoma, but we were there in the winter so we didn’t have to deal with the heat.  Once training was done, off to North Carolina for 5 1/2 years. We had many adventures during our time there but I will save those for another time.

Our next duty station was in Tennessee and that is where our first daughter (the brunette in the photo above) was born.  Beautiful Tennessee was home for 3 1/2 years then, while pregnant with our second child (the blonde in the photo above), we moved back to North Carolina.  This time we only lived North Carolina for 2 years and then the Army sent us out to Monterey, CA!  Oh, how fun it was to there!  We really enjoyed Monterey, so much to see and many adventures were had.  While there our oldest daughter started Kindergarten.  She was only able to do one semester there and then off again.  Eighteen months was not long enough… so many more things I wanted to do while there, oh well!  We left California in December while I was 8 months pregnant with our third (the boy in the photo). This time we moved home to Illinois for 6 months and then landed in Tennessee again.

Point Lobos Copyright by Holly Hedman

Point Lobos California State Park                                     Copyright by Holly Hedman

Yes, being a military family… it is never a dull moment.  I have to say, as much as we loved living in Monterey,  Tennessee truly felt like home to all of us.  It is truly beautiful in Tennessee with the rolling hills and big oak trees.  Have you ever experienced Tennessee in the fall? Oh, my!  The colors are just amazing, the crisp fall air, leaves falling everywhere and the aroma from the smoke houses (that is how the dry tobacco) makes for the best autumn!  We thought we were only going to get to stay in Tennessee for 2 years, but we ended up staying for 3 years.  It was so nice not having to move for awhile but it made it soooooooooo much harder to move for many reasons. One reason was because we knew it was the last time we would live there.

Copyright by Holly Hedman

Moving Day

Copyright by Holly Hedman

Boxes in every room

Every move we have made has been an adventure and we really enjoy living in different areas of our great nation! But, each move has been a little bit harder because you leave great friends.  Once we added kids in the mix, moving became even more difficult because we are disrupting their sense of “normalcy” and taking them away from the friends they made.  But moving day came and it was time for our next journey, this time to Tampa, Florida.  This move was particularly hard because we all made such good friends and had a GREAT school that the kids went to. We loved our neighborhood we lived in and love having the pond behind our house where we would go fishing all the time!  We were happy there.  But, here we go again… All packed up and ready to go and see what our next adventure brings!

Copyright by Holly Hedman

Pond behind our house.

 

 

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Thanks for taking time to read about our journey into homeschooling.  Please feel free to share my blog with your friends and family!  Also, Please leave a comment below.  Have a Blessed Day!

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71 thoughts on “A New Journey

  1. Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I was raised as a military brat, so to speak. My dad retired when I was 18. I know how moving goes. I made friends fast and wondered what it would have been like to have been raised with the same group of friends. One will never know, but my kids have that opportunity now

  2. My parents moved nearly every two years when I was younger, and while my dad was in the military before him and my mom married, that was never the reason. It was difficult growing up in a different place every two years. =/

  3. My uncle is in the Navy and have been for over twenty years. Each time he and my aunt moves, they get farther and farther away and visit less. I can’t imagine what it feels like, but my aunt always sounds so depressed when they have to move. My fiance and I are planning to move to Chattanooga, TN soon and we love it there!!

    Whitney

    • The hard part is moving from a place you love. THat does take some time to recover from! I didn’t want to leave TN and really don’t like FL so I am already looking forward to our last move! We have only been here a year and I am done with FL. WE don’t even vacation to FL… didn’t ever want to live here but God has a plan and we have to follow! 🙂

    • You are only as far away from family as you think you are! With technology now a days, it is pretty easy to keep in contact! Plus you have vacations to visit family! I enjoy living on our own and you learn how to depend on friends to help you out instead of family! Thanks for your comment!

  4. I would love to travel and see new places and meet new people but I dislike moving! I have SO much stuff that it would make it SO difficult. I moved a lot when I was a kid and I didn’t like it, which is probably why I know I wouldn’t like moving now. Although visiting new places for awhile would be ok.. living there is another story. I would TRULY miss and get homesick for my mom who I see on a daily basis.

    • I have to admit, when we were first married I was homesick a lot. But, after a few year I got over being homesick. If I needed to go home (back up to IL) we would take leave and head home! When we were in TN it was much easier to go home… it was only 9 hours away. So we would go home quite often. When I liked the place I lived I didn’t get homesick as much as when I didn’t like where we lived! Thanks for stopping by!

    • We love love love TN and CA… We lived in Monterey for 18 months and it was not long enough! WE have lived in OK, NC (twice), TN (twice), IL, CA, and FL. I am ready to build our last house on our 3 acres on a hill in N. IL.! That will be the first time that we have lived by family except for 6 months when we moved home for 6 months to have my son!

  5. I love your good outlook and optimism. I have never really moved from my home city except to go to college so it is hard for me to relate. We have made small moves to change homes so I understand about leaving friends and neighbors and starting a new life with new people. It is always amazing to find that there are great people everywhere and it is a great chance to expand your world!

  6. Wow! Such a transient lifestyle. My eldest has autism and needs routine to function. I’m not sure we’d have made it as a military family. Your success story is inspirational.

    • There are quite a few families with autistic kids in the Military! One thing about the Military is that they are typically really good with families who have handicapped kids! There are special programs that are free for EFM (exceptional family member) families!

  7. This is so interesting! My SIL and her family just moved to AZ from Missouri because he is a vet for the army and I’m always interested in how it is to constantly move. Sometimes I wish I would move more just so I can get rid of junk. I hope that things keep going well on your journey and adventures and know that you will do well! 🙂

    • I have to say that getting rid of stuff is the best thing about moving! We have cluttered our house and only have things that we use… with the exception of a few totes with baby keepable stuff! The next best thing about moving is seeing different parts of the country! I would love to say world but we have never been outside the USA! My husband, of course, has been all over but we have never done an overseas tour as a family!

  8. I grew up in a military family and moved every 2 years. It made me a more confident and outgoing person. Your family will be strong from all these moves 🙂

  9. Moving is hard enough on adults but when there are children involved it becomes much harder both physically and emotionally. It’s hard for children to understand why they have to detach themselves from a home and friends they love so often. You have to work twice as hard to give them the security they need. I wish you all the luck in the world in your travels. ❤

    • When you are a military family, moving is just a part of our normal life! We talk about different places we have lived and where we are going to live! Because of being a military family, our kids turn to us or their brother or sister instead of friends. WE are a tight knit family. Every night when my husband is home we sit at the dinner table together and eat dinner! We talk about our day and listen to Dan’s stories from the day! Homes and friends come and go, you have to rely on your family! Actually, military kids probably feel more secure then non-military kids because of the bond we have!

  10. It would be hard moving all of the time like that, but it would also be exciting to see all of the different places that you would get to move to.

    • It is good to be away from what you have always known. It makes you get out there and meet people and see things you don’t normally get to see! Before we were married, I hated change but now I look forward to moving and seeing what it is like to live in different areas!

  11. moving around must be so hard, a life i could not live that is for sure! Tennessee sounds as lovely in the fall as Vancouver does here in BC. Love it here and could never call anywhere else my home… though i have never travelled beyond AZ and toronto lol!!

    • Moving is only has hard as you think it will be! If you think it will be hard it will, but if you look at the adventure and new people you will meet… it will be quite fun! Take an adventure and try… but I would love to live in Vancouver! Love it!

    • Thank you! Funny how people think it is so hard… the hard part is leaving the friends you have made. But the nice thing is that now we have friends all over the US and a good friend from Germany. We have places and people to see all over! Great for road trips!

  12. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to move around so much, but it seems like you have learned so much from it, and always making the best of it. Although it definitely must also be really amazing being able to tell stories and share so much about all the places you’ve seen!! Some people are stuck in the same town their whole lives and never get to see so many exciting parts of the country. Enjoy your travels!

  13. Oh goodness, your early life sounded like ours. But ours included 3 tours in Germany. My children now look back on the moving as adventures… not so much as a bad thing. Good luck in your moves and where you live in the future.

  14. I admire you in that you are homeschooling your children and being an amazing military family. I honestly don’t think I could do either–though I used to think I would homeschool my children. Best of wishes to you and yours!

    • Thank you! I never thought I would homeschool… ever! But, when you can’t afford private school (they range between $4000 and 16,000 a year here) and you can’t stand the public school… this was the best thing! Plus, I truly believe it is all part of God’s plan! Please stop by again and become a follower so you can see how we do!

  15. I moved many times as a kid, and it is hard, but I have such great memories of the places we lived!! My sister lives in FLA now, and it is great, she loves the weather and the wildlife, and there are so many cool things to see and do, your kids will enjoy it!! Best of luck int he moving, I always manage to lose a few things along the way??!

    • Thank you so much! Our kids look forward to moving but they do hate leaving their friends! The recover pretty easy! Seeing as we had kids 8 years after being married, our kids will not be in high school till after we retire! That is good because high school is usually where you make your life long friends… usually!

  16. Thank you for sharing your life story. Moving is always hard, but I am glad your family enjoys the adventure. With so much moving around, it does sound like Homeschooling would be a good option. I know I probably would consider it too!

    • We never thought about homeschooling till we moved here to FL… The school system is about 2 years behind what the girls were doing in TN. They also solely focus on the state tests called FCAT. They start preparing for it in the fall and the test isn’t till April… Never been to a state that taught to the test like this! So, we were disappointed in the system here and pulled our kids! I hope one day they get it figured out here… 17% of Hillsborough county homeschools and the number keep rising every year! Pretty interesting!

  17. I understand the whole moving process, being a former military child. I really only moved 5 times in my life (Ohio (where I was born), Southern California, New Jersey, Alabama, and finally back to Ohio where my father wanted to retired at). It is hardest on the children, because it is either you are moving or your friends are moving, but it was my father’s job, He is a retired Mastersargent in US Air Force.

    • It is hard on everyone. The girls did really well with the move at first and then after about 6 months our oldest was crying and wanted to move back… I couldn’t blame her… I wanted to move back! But we moved passed that part and we like our neighbors, the friends we have made and our house! That is always a good thing! 🙂

    • Thank you so much! I truly enjoyed living in Tennessee, especially in the fall. Just beautiful! Every once in a while I wonder if we should retire there or keep our game plan to retire by family. But the nice thing is that we have close friends there that we visit often… bonus for being the traveling family! 🙂

  18. We are not military but moved 4 times the past 18 months, so I know that feeling 😉
    It is not easy not being able to settle down and call it a home. Hope we will be able to call a place our home, think we are quiet ready for that 😉
    Praying your last 3 years will be full of great memories and then a smooth transition into civillian life!! Hugs

    • Thank you so much for you words! I am sure we will have a time of adjustment after he retires and I hope it is smooth! I am sure we will miss aspects of military life but it will be nice to be settled in one place before the kids hit high school! Thank you so much and stop by again!

  19. Something I think it would be neat to move often, but I am sure it would be difficult to pack up and start over again and again – especially when your kids get older and they have to leave friends. We live in North GA, so I know about the beauty of Tennessee! I hope you enjoy your journey in Florida!!

  20. We are probably on our last assignment. WE look forward to being able to make the decision where we move to! We started having a family later in life as well. I agree it makes it much easier that they won’t be in high school when we move for the final time, but it is still hard on the kids. My oldest is having a hard time making new friends at his school (we are not on base, so not a lot of mil kids in his school). For me this is one of the hardest things to watch. We want him to be ale to make connections at school and good friends. I keep telling him its just for a couple of years. Probably seems like eons to him! Poor kid.

    BTW, your photo of CA is beautiful!

    • Sorry to hear he is having a hard time adjusting! The only time we lived on post was when we were in CA. It can be hard when you first move but I am sure your son will make friends and get involved soon! Keep finding him things to do, things he is interested in… it will get easier for him!

  21. My husband was in the Marines for 14 years, but 8 of them were before we were married, so I only experienced a few moves. We lived in Maryland and North Carolina, and have moved back to Maryland when he became a civilian. I’m glad to have a stable home for my kids now, although I did love moving every few years and experiencing different communities.

  22. Really appreciated your post. We are a homeschooling family with six children and we also “move” constantly. Actually we serve the homeless in the nation 11 months of every year…while living in our motorhome!!! It takes a strong family bond to do what you guys do. Please thank your husband for his service to our country. May you all be blessed!

  23. Moving is so tough as it is, but it’s really hard when you love a place. I actually fell in love with the place we were living in while my husband was in Basic. In 3 weeks he’ll be medically retiring, so we’ll be making our final move. Unfortunately, it won’t be up there because there aren’t jobs up there. But we’ll be near family here in Texas, and it’s such a homeschool friendly state, so I think it will be nice! I do hope your transition to the next duty station goes well and everybody adjusts quickly!

    • Moving is hard but I have always looked forward to the adventure that will come our way! I hope your move to retirement is a smooth one! We have 3 years till we hit 20 and retire! Hard to believe it has been that long! Best of luck on your retirement! Thanks for your support!

  24. Moving so much has its ups and downs. It is a great learning experience for the kids getting to see so much of the nation but like you said is hard on them leaving friends behind.

    • It is hard to leave friends but the experience that our kids have had is amazing! Granted we have only lived in America and haven’t been stationed outside of the States but we have been from the east coast to west from up north and now to Florida! Life is what you make of it so we do our best to make it fun! Thanks for your support!

  25. I can’t imagine moving that often especially with kids. I actually doubt I would do it so I give you a lot of credit for bouncing around as much as you have. I pray that your kids will one day appreciate the adventure of it all and that the constant moves won’t affect their relationships with people in the future. I just can’t imagine…

    • Military families are a different breed! We make friends fast and keep them (if they are worth keeping them). We find ways to keep in touch, so Facebook has become a great way to keep in touch. When we move we typically end up moving to the same post with someone we already know! So the kids have constant friends and then make new ones! Also, seeing as we have lived all over the United States, we have lots of places we can go and see and stay with friends! Kids are resilient and bounce back quickly… There are lots of families with older kids that move all the time, we are lucky we waited so long to have kids that they are still young and we will retire before they hit high school. This is good because you tend to keep the friends you make from high school. The nice thing, we plan on retiring to Northern Illinois where my husband and I are from. The kids have already made friends up there because we go home often. So, when we retire and move home, they will already have friends! Thanks for your support!

  26. It would be hard to move around so much, but it sounds like you’ve had wonderful experiences everywhere. Homeschooling will be easier if you have to move so much so that you aren’t disrupting their schooling each time. We homeschool too, and although we aren’t military we have moved about every 3 years since we’ve been married. It’s always hard to move, but it’s fun to be in new places and meet new people!
    hugs and good luck!
    -Tiff

    • My husband’s cousin has moved over 8 times in the last 18 yrs… they actually move more then we do and they are not in the military! Non-military moves are actually harder because typically you have to move to a place where you know no one and have to start all over without a support group! I do look forward to the adventure that comes with moving… just didn’t think that this move would bring on Homeschooling! That was a surprise but it was needed and we felt called to do it! So best of luck with your adventures Tiff, I hope you have many more good ones! Thanks for your support! Cheers, HOLLY

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