Sunday, June 17, 2012

The PCS Files: Unaccompanied Baggage

Our Unaccompanied Baggage/Express shipment gets picked up tomorrow morning between 0800 and 1000. I've poured over the internet, trying to figure out what the heck to put in that shipment. We've got to be able to go 10 days without whatever we send Express. However, these are also items that we would like to have asap once we arrive in Japan.

I've been thinking about this list for about a month now and I wanted to share it with anyone else who might find themselves PCS'ing in the future.

(1) Queen sheet set, 2 pillows, 2 pillow cases
(2) Twin sheet set, 2 pillows, 2 pillow cases
(2) Twin comforters/blankets
(1) Down comforter
(2) Quilts
(3) Sleeping bags
(2) Formal dresses (just in case)

(2) Adult towels
(2) Child towels
(2) Washcloths
Shower rod
Shower rings
Girls’ shower curtain
Hair Clippers

Aircraft carrier
Toy Story Imaginext
Mr. & Mrs. Potato Head
Toy computer
Disney Princesses/Barbies
Large floor puzzles
Dress-up Dolls
Workbooks and crayons
Board games
Variety of children’s books
Musical instrument set

Living Room:
Rotating fan
Small black fan
(2) Throw pillows

(1) Large skillet
(1) Small cookie sheet
(1) Spatula
(1) Wooden spoon
(1) Large mixing bowl
(1) Small mixing bowl
(1) Muffin tin
(1) Toaster oven
(1) Medium pot
(1) Oven mitt

(1) Colander(1) Large glass measuring cup
(1) Small glass measuring cup
(1) Set of measuring spoons
(5) Towels
(5) Washrags
(4) Plastic plates
(4) Plastic cups
(2) Coffee mugs
(4) Forks
(4) Spoons
(4) Knives
(4) Blue plastic bowls
(4) Green plastic bowls
(1) Medium cutting board
(2) Cutting knives

(1) Small cooler tote
(1) Pair of scissors

Small tool box
(2) Extension cords
Extra household cords (chargers, A/V, etc.)
Bank deposit slips/envelopes

(2) Adult camping chairs

(2) Child camping chairs
Small Bissell vacuum
Shark Steam Cleaner
(4) Beach towels

Professional Gear:

Medical books/folders
Some professional clothing

I decided to clear out the guest room and put all of our Express shipment in there. Then, when the movers come in the morning to pack up, they won't be all over the house and everything will be in one convenient place for them. This is what I started out with:

I spent most of yesterday and this morning cleaning and laundering things that would be shipping out. At the middle of the day, I paused for a snack (notice my popcorn) and didn't really feel like I'd done much. 

Finally, by the afternoon, I started getting things together. I tried to sort things by type and pack some things myself. I bought a couple of space bags to put comforters and pillows in so that they might stay fresh after being washed. I also used a Rubbermaid tub for all the sheets and towels. 

I tried to put things in baggies when I could (toy parts, pens, sharpies, extra parts, etc.) and I also took batteries out of things in case they decided to corrode on the way to Japan. 

And, let's keep it real. This is what my bedroom looked like for most of the day:

Seeing as how this is my first move by the Navy, I will definitely try to keep an eye on the movers tomorrow so that I can see exactly how they pack and if I can do anything better next time. I might even take some pictures of the poor, unsuspecting movers. Stay tuned!


  1. HI,
    Such a Nice blog, thanks for the sharing this information with us. it could be help everyone, who have to move their baggage

    Smith jonson

  2. This would have been so helpful a year ago when we moved to Turkey! I'm not sure what we were thinking when we did our Express Shipment. We definitely learned a lot. We're going to be doing another international move (unexpectedly) soon, so I'll definitely keep this list saved for when it comes time to plan our express shipment!