My oldest, who turns 7 at the end of the month, has been the most anxious about the upcoming move of all the kids. The two littles are just too small and my 5 year old son just isn't the sentimental type. We took a trip to West Point in April to look at housing and then I went back yesterday to pick our house. There is such a high personnel turnover at West Point every summer, that the housing office makes a list of all the houses on post that are coming available and a list of all the inbound personnel, sorted by date of rank. Then you get together in an auditorium and they call each person up based on their date of rank, they each pick a house, and the house is taken off the list of available houses. The process is called the housing draw. Based on my date of rank, I was number 23 out of 75 or so to choose a house from the field grade officer housing list (major, lieutenant colonel and colonel). So, before the draw, we toured the neighborhoods, looked at the houses, yards, location, access to the on post elementary, and many other factors and then made a list of our top 23 choices. My DW and daughter were both getting fairly anxious about where we would end up. My daughter really wanted to be in a particular area, an area that we were probably not high enough on the list to get.
I went to WP the day before to make a final trip around the houses and finalize our choices. The morning of the draw, my DW was driving the kids to school when my daughter had an epiphany. She said something along the lines of, "Mommy, it doesn't matter which house we get. We will get a house, which is more than some people have and we should be thankful." It made me proud of her that she is actually learning some of the things we are trying to teach her (and if we can be honest, some of the things that are easier to teach than to truly live by example!)
In the end, we were able to select a nice old brick unit. It is the end unit of a 5 family house (a "quint") with a sizable and flat back yard and a huge side yard (that is common area). It is only 3 bedrooms, but we we have 2 sets of bunkbeds and were planning on doubling up the kids anyway. It has reasonable storage in the attic and a dry basement that can be used for a play room. One draw back is that the unit is due for renovation in 2 years. That means that we will have to move half way through our tour at WP. But, they "guarantee" that we will move into a unit in the same housing area as nice as or nicer than the one we are in. (There are some doubles in the same area that would be nice to move into).
The movers come here to start packing us up in another week and our new house will be available to move in on about 15 July, so we will be in suitcases and a hotel for about 3 weeks. (some of the units we were looking at are not available until August or even September, which would have made for a long summer with 4 small kids. Plus it will be a lot easier to stay on track exercise and eating wise when we are settled again.)
Here are 2 photos from the outside, showing the front and back: