Posts in Military Life
What We Learned from Our DITY Move to Georgia

This post has been highly requested and pretty much has been something I've been trying to write since we moved from New York to Georgia in June. It's crazy that we've already been here for three months and are working into our fourth right now. For all my non military people who might be reading this, a DITY move is basically a do-it-yourself move. I think the name has actually changed to Personally Procured Move but DITY move definitely rolls off the tongue better. Anyways, that's neither here nor there. There are a lot of reasons to chose a DITY move for military families over having the military move you, one of which being that you actually get reimbursed for the money you spend on the move. You can typically make a decent amount of money off of a DITY move which is why it's so popular among military families. Oh, and you don't have to worry about movers breaking your stuff or getting it mixed up with someone else's belongings. Yeah, real things that happen. 

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Places We Love at Fort Benning

I know there are new people coming to Fort Benning every day so I figured a round-up of the places Justin and I are loving so far would be super helpful for anyone who is new to the area. I blinked and we've been here a month already and man, there's a lot you can do here in a month. Granted, most of the places we love involve food and/or beer but that's just us. We have been loving exploring our new area on the weekends so maybe I'll update this post regularly throughout our time here.

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PCS Diary: West Point, New York to Fort Benning, Georgia

Guys, it has been one heck of a week and it's only Wednesday! Justin and I are settling into married life pretty well and ICYMI: we made our first move! Last weekend we moved from New York to Georgia of all places and Y'all... it is HOT. Man, people weren't kidding when they said it was hot and humid down here. Anyways, my girl Tomi over at GOODTOMICHA just recently moved to San Francisco and has these adorable blog posts all about her time there and I thought it would be cute to do something similar to document all over our moves. Because when you're a military family, there sure are a lot of them! 

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2018 West Point Graduation Week Recap

Y'all I am officially back from my not-so-planned hiatus! I really had planned on having blog posts going live over the course of our wedding week but with all of the graduation excitement and dealing with loss, I just was never able to sit down for long enough to write anything! I promise I'll be making up for it in the next few weeks though with some pretty exciting posts about the rebrand as well as moving vlogs! 

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A Letter to my Fiancé on his Graduation from West Point

This week has been a whirlwind. We've been so busy bouncing from event to event that I don't even know if it's hit you yet that you're graduating. But today is the long-awaited day. Today, the day you go from Cadet to "Old Grad" and join the Long Gray Line is finally here. Your path to this point hasn't always been easy. Heck, your first day here they didn't even know if you were going to parade because of the rain. But the clouds broke at the last minute and the sun shone brightly on you and your class. (I had to mention it, obviously, since no one else has yet). This moment on R-Day has defined your class. It's in your crest and everyone mentions it in their speeches, usually.  But it also defines who you have become. 

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Memories from West Point

When Justin and I first met, he was in his second semester at West Point. Honestly, graduation didn't even cross my mind at the time, other than to remind me that it was nearly four years away at that point. As we were driving past West Point on Sunday, Justin said, "I honestly didn't ever think I would get to this point." 

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7 Ways I'm Preparing for a Military Marriage

Something I get asked a lot as our engagement has progressed is "how are you preparing yourself for marriage?" To be honest, the thought never really crossed my mind in my single years, like it probably should have, but as our wedding date has drawn closer and closer, I've noticed that I've been focusing a lot more on not only preparing myself for marriage but for a military marriage as well.

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How My Long Distance Friendships Have Prepared Me for Military Life

If there's one thing you can mentally prepare for ahead of time when you're becoming a military spouse or reaching a big transitional moment in your life is the potential of moving. Moving away from your friends and family, from your college town or the street you've lived on your entire life can be scary, especially when you don't know whether or not your friendships and relationships will last. 

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The Perfect LBD for an Important Night - USMA Class of 2018 100th Night Recap

I don't know about Y'all but I'm definitely the type of girl that loves any excuse to get dressed up. But I get particularly excited to dress up for one of Justin's West Point class events.  Saturday night, we got dressed up to celebrate the USMA Class of 2018's 100th Night banquet! 100th Night celebrates 100 (or less) days until graduation and is a pretty huge moment. 

The 100th Night banquet is a little different because it's typically semiformal and the cadets get to wear suits! Justin looked so handsome in his suit and tie. When I was choosing my dress for the evening I struggled to find something I felt would flatter me, not be too cold, and would be something I could ultimately wear again. 

Enter, the perfect LBD from Eliza J. 

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The Complete Guide to Attending Any West Point Class Event

Whew, Y'all. This post is going to be a real doozy. If you’re a West Point gal, I hope you’ve come prepared with your favorite beverage in hand because I decided to cover West Point military balls in today’s post. I personally hate calling them a West Point military ball but I’m trying to make this guide easy to find so there ya have it. We’re gonna jump right into how to prepare for a West Point Military Ball but first, I’m going to explain why I decided to write this ultimate guide to attending a West Point Military Ball before we get started with the good stuff. Hold on to your hats (or coffee?) this is gonna be a long ride!

When Justin and I first started dating, I had no idea that West Point class events were a thing. In fact, my first class event wasn’t even a ball, it was Camp Illumination, which marks the end of a Cadet’s first year at West Point, after a few weeks of summer training. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who struggled with not knowing what to wear or figuring out what happens at these things. Camp Illumination came and went and I made my way through it but I absolutely hated the feeling of not knowing ANYTHING at all about the event.

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4 Resources for Researching Duty Stations without Spouse Groups

Wow, wow, wow. That's all I can say right now. I realize that I completely forgot to touch on this on the blog a few weeks ago but Justin recently found out which branch of the Army he will be in along with the rest of the Class of 2018. In just 51days we- I say we but Justin will be the one there and actually picking the envelope- get to choose our first duty station! This past Friday, all of the branch allocations were released meaning we have an idea of the types of units are at which posts and how many slots are available at each of those posts. If you're overwhelmed, join the club because that makes two of us!

Justin and I spent almost all of Saturday evening researching our options. You would not believe the amount of digging it takes to find out basic information about posts! After posting on Instagram and chatting with a fellow gal about finding information, I decided that I need to write this post and get it up ASAP for those of you in similar positions. 

Let me just preface this by saying that I had to REALLY dig for this information. I'm also fumbling through all of this as I go so I'm by no means an expert. I just wanted to share some of the resources I did find in case you're researching duty stations as well! 

Anyways, choosing your first duty station is a HUGE deal. I'm low key freaking out about where we're going to be. This is where our life is truly going to get started and where we'll most likely buy our first home. Big deal, right? I wanted to make sure we are making as informed a decision as possible so looking up each possible post and discussing it was a no-brainer for me. I hope you find some of these resources as helpful as we did!

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Army vs. Navy Football Game Recap 2017

There are few moments in my life where I really am just in awe of the fact that this is my life. This past weekend in Philadelphia, surrounded by some of my closest friends, watching Army beat Navy for the second year in a row and win the Commander in Chief's trophy for the first time since 1996 was one of those moments. Was everything perfect this weekend, absolutely not. The cheap hotel we had stayed in previously was practically in shambles and we got stuck in a smoking room, to kick things off. But it is moments like this, where you make the best of any situation, that you realize how truly blessed you are.

FRIDAY

Justin and I drove down to Philly about mid-day on Friday and checked into the hotel. Like I said, it left more to be desired but we made the most of it (yes, car vent clips in an A/C unit in a room really DO help with the smoking smell). Anyways, we relaxed and got snacks while we waited for the rest of our friends to arrive. I had previously made a list of all of the places I wanted to check out (mostly restaurants) in Philadelphia while we were there but nothing on the list really stood out. The last time Army/Navy had been in Philadelphia we went to the German Christmas market in Love Park that they have every year and I knew I had to go back there.

Naturally, my favorite new sweater made an appearance (there was a moment of panic during the weekend where I thought I had ruined it). I love the way it paired so effortlessly with my boyfriend jeans and these new boots I got from Sam Edelman. Side note: I am definitely turning into my mother when it comes to fashion choices. 

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Army/Navy Football from the Point of View of a Cadet

Ah, the holiday season is officially upon us because today is the very first day of December! In most houses the holiday season probably isn’t marked with a college football game. However, in this house the annual Army/Navy football game (also affectionately known as America’s Game) is the real holiday. In just one short week Justin and I will be traveling to Philadelphia to attend his last Army/Navy game as a cadet.

Since it’s pretty much the end of an era for us (until we go back and he’s an Old Grad and/or we take our children) I figured it would be a really fun idea if I had Justin make his first official appearance on the blog and talk to you guys a little bit more about Army/Navy!

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Everything You Need to Know about Attending an Army West Point Football Game

I went to a big football school, so I thought I knew a thing or two about surviving a college football game day. I could not have been more wrong, however, when it comes to Army football games. Honestly if I hadn’t already worked at West Point by the time I attended my first Army West Point home game, I would have been completely lost because everything is SO different. To make matters worse, cadets are usually busy before the games so anyone you would have to show you around is MIA. Luckily for you, you’ve got me.

We are rounding out my third football season at West Point so I know a thing or two about getting around an Army football game. I recently got A TON of questions about the most recent home football game from other girlfriends so I figured I would use my platform to actually spread what I know and help some people out down the road! Let’s get right into everything you need to know about attending an Army West Point football game!

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USMA Class of 2018 Ring Weekend Recap

Happy September everyone! I cannot believe how fast August went by! The last weekend in August was a huge deal for us filled with so many events. If you follow my Instagram then you’ve already seen a little bit about the things that went on but I figured since it’s Happy Hour that it would be fun to do a little weekend recap for you guys! This past weekend was the Ring Weekend for the USMA Class of 2018 (Justin's Class) so it was a super exciting weekend!

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5 Most Instagrammable Places at West Point

Now I haven’t been everywhere, but West Point is easiestly one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been. Between the picturesque trees and flowers and the centuries old buildings, it’s pretty easy to get a good shot for the ‘gram at West Point. Whether you’re taking a tour with your family or visiting your cadet there’s a good chance you’re going to be taking a lot of pictures while you’re visiting.

When I first moved to West Point, I was obsessed with taking pictures of the place. I’ve since deactivated that Instagram account but if you were to scroll through my old Instagram feed you would see tons of pictures of different buildings, trees, statues… pretty much whatever I could point and shoot at using my iPhone camera. Let’s be honest, I’m still pretty much obsessed with taking pictures at West Point so I thought it would be fun to share what I think are the 5 most Instagrammable places at West Point! With the start of the academic year approaching and events such as the Acceptance Day Parade and Ring Weekend rounding out August, I figured now would be a great time to share these Instagram-worthy West Point locations.

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18 Things You Learn as a West Point Girlfriend

When Justin and I celebrated our one year dating anniversary I wrote a post called “12 Things I Learned in One Year as a West Point Girlfriend” and it has probably been one of my most favorite pieces I’ve ever written. Fast forward another year and we’ve now been together over two years, have gotten engaged, and are getting ready to head into his final year at West Point. Since the launch of my blog coincided with the newest girlfriends about to join the ranks I decided there was no better time to update the original list.

If you have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about, Justin, my fiance, is going into his final year that the United States Military Academy at West Point. Upon graduation he will be commissioned into the Army as a Second Lieutenant. It’s a prestigious university known for its rigorous academics and unique student life. It's also known to be a pain in the you know what.

You may have seen or heard of West Point Girlfriends because of this viral video from a few years ago but if you’re a new girlfriend then welcome. You’re about to embark on an incredible journey (that will be filled with highs and lows) but you will meet some of the most intelligent, supportive, and caring individuals through your journey. Here’s 24 things I’ve learned in 2 years as a West Point girlfriend (fiance).

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