You know that moment when you’re scrolling through social media and a video feels like it was tailor made for you? Well, meet Mallory. She’ll provide you with that experience every time! As a seasoned military wife with a marriage and family therapy background, Mallory excels at making military spouses feel seen, encouraged, and equipped.
Mallory and her family have practically perfected moving after 13 DITY (Do-It-Yourself) moves in 13 years. Her blog, DITY Mama, generously shares DITY moving tips, resources, and free downloads. I especially love Mallory’s Kids’ PCS Packet, Open First Box Checklist, and weekly packing plans. Aside from her blog, Mallory has a must-follow Instagram account where she posts the most spot-on videos for military spouses. I can’t wait for you to get to know her!
Did you have any idea what you signed up for when you became a military spouse, specifically what it would entail when it comes to moving? I knew we would be moving, but I had no idea it would be almost every year and during crazy seasons of life. You can prepare all you want, but you don’t know until you experience it.
Do you remember your first DITY experience with the military? The first one was a train wreck! We had no idea what we were doing. We ordered the wrong truck size, unloaded everything onto the front of the apartment, and gave a random person $20 to help move our mattress.
What do you think is one of the biggest challenges for military spouses when it comes to moving, and what tips do you have to alleviate this challenge? It depends on the person and season of life: finding a job, saying goodbye, finding community, helping kids navigate a new place. Community is a game-changer. Some of my favorite duty stations were the “worst” but were my favorite because of the people there. You don’t have to do it alone!
Is there a piece of advice you think could revolutionize moving for military spouses? It comes down to mindset. Shift your perspective from I’m stressed, I don’t want to go there, this is terrible, everything is going wrong, to what can I focus on right now, how can I grow from this, where can I find purpose, etc.
How can we prepare and equip our kids before a move? I have checklists for my kids on what to do before we move, who to say goodbye to, and what they can help pack. We use maps and calendars to talk about the move. Being available to answer questions and sit with them in their big emotions is huge. We need to make time to be intentional with our kids.
What tips do you have to help keep peace in our marriages during the upheaval and chaos of moving? We communicate expectations so there aren’t any unspoken or unrealistic ones that will cause conflict. Assigning roles and tasks is helpful. Create a budget together. Communicate feelings, needs, and love. Sometimes it can feel like it’s “me against you,” but when you reframe it to “we are in this together,” then it becomes “us against this challenge.”
Since we met in church, I’d love to ask you if you have seen God’s hand in all the moving your family has endured. Absolutely, it’s one of my favorite things about moving. I can see His hand in all the details. The reflection on God’s provision is my favorite part. Any time I’m going through a hard season, I can look back and see how He carried us, and it gives me peace and confidence knowing He will do it again. It doesn’t look perfect, and it’s still hard and messy, but my faith is strengthened each time.
How can people connect with you and get your free material? Visit ditymama.com and @mamas_onthe_move on Instagram.