This site is for mothers of kids in the U.S. Navy and for Moms who have questions about Navy life for their kids.



Choose your Username.  For the privacy and safety of you and/or your sailor, NO LAST NAMES ARE ALLOWED, even if your last name differs from that of your sailor (please make sure your URL address does not include your last name either).  Also, please do not include your email address in your user name. Go to "Settings" above to set your Username.  While there, complete your Profile so you can post and share photos and videos of your Sailor and share stories with other moms!

Make sure to read our Community Guidelines and this Navy Operations Security (OPSEC) checklist - loose lips sink ships!

Join groups!  Browse for groups for your PIR date, your sailor's occupational specialty, "A" school, assigned ship, homeport city, your own city or state, and a myriad of other interests. Jump in and introduce yourself!  Start making friends that can last a lifetime.

All Hands Magazine's mini-documentary series "Making a Sailor": These six videos follow four recruits through Boot Camp in the spring of 2018 who were assigned to DIV 229, an integrated division, which had PIR on 05/25/2018. 

Making a Sailor: Episode 1 - "Get on the Bus"

Making a Sailor: Episode 2 - "What did I get myself into?"

Making a Sailor: Episode 3 - "Processing Days"

Making a Sailor: Episode 4 - "Forming"

Boot Camp: Making a Sailor - Episode 5

Making a Sailor: Episode 6 - "I'm a U.S. Navy Sailor"

...and visit - America's Navy and to learn more.

OPSEC - Navy Operations Security

Always keep Navy Operations Security in mind.  In the Navy, it's essential to remember that "loose lips sink ships."  OPSEC is everyone's responsibility. 

DON'T post critical information including future destinations or ports of call; future operations, exercises or missions; deployment or homecoming dates.  

DO be smart, use your head, always think OPSEC when using texts, email, phone, and social media, and watch this video: "Importance of Navy OPSEC."

Please note! Changes to this guide happened in October 2017. There are now tickets issued, and there are no longer parking passes for PIR.

Please see changes to attending PIR in the PAGES column. The PAGES are located under the member icons on the right side.

Format Downloads:

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Navy Speak

Click here to learn common Navy terms and acronyms!  (Hint:  When you can speak an entire sentence using only acronyms and one verb, you're truly a Navy mom.)

N4M Merchandise

Shirts, caps, mugs and more can be found at CafePress.

Please note: Profits generated in the production of this merchandise are not being awarded to the Navy or any of its suppliers. Any profit made is retained by CafePress. Para Familias

Visite esta página para explorar en su idioma las oportunidades de educación y carreras para sus hijos en el Navy.






APO stands for Army Post Office and is used by Army and Air Force (generally but not always).

FPO stands for Fleet Post Office and is used by Navy and Marines (generally but not always).

DPO stands for Diplomatic Post Office.

Replace the city name with APO or FPO.


The above will be followed by AA, AE, AP and a special zip code.  Replace the state with AA, AE, or AP and the number you are given. AA stands for Armed Forces (the Americas), AE stands for Air Forces Europe, AP Stands for Armed Forces Pacific.


Here are the prices for mailing flat rate boxes.

You can also order them from the United States Post Office online, and they will be delivered to your door

Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope $4.90 12-1/2" x 9-1/2"

Priority Mail Small Flat Rate Box $4.95 8-5/8" x 5-3/8" x 1-5/8"

Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate Box (FRB1) $10.70 11" x 8-1/2" x 5-1/2"

Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate Box (FRB2) $10.70 13-5/8" x 11-7/8" x 3-3/8"

Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box (Domestic Addresses) $14.50 12" x 12" x 5-1/2"

Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box (APO/FPO Destinations) $12.50 12" x 12" x 5-1/2"


There is an additional form that needs to be filled out if it is overseas. If you are sending many packages at one time, it may be a good idea to the form first: otherwise, you will have to step aside to fill them out when you turn comes up (while you are waiting in line).



How to fill out the overseas form at the post office.


Examples, if the address is the following:

MM3 Bunker, Queen B.

USS Mighty Mouse CVN 99

Box ##

FPO AE #####-####

then you would fill out the form in the following manner:

on name line:  lastname:  MM3 Bunker   firstname: Queen B. 

on address line: USS Mighty Mouse CVN 99

on city: FPO

on state: AE

on zip: #####-#### (five digits followed by four digits typically)

NOTE: IF YOUR SAILOR IS IN US (LIKE GREAT LAKES, iL  60088) it does not qualify for free postage. APO and FPO are deployed overseas addresses.


Views: 898

Comment by BunkerQB on October 10, 2011 at 2:04pm
Thanks Judy, will revise info above after we get more reviews and suggestions. When I get a chance, I'll get sample forms, scan them and post as an image. Everyone, suggestions are welcome.
Comment by lemonelephant on October 10, 2011 at 11:44pm

Kathy, I was going to point that out too.  Packages we send to APO and FPO addresses do cost, but if you use the APO/FPO boxes, there is a discount.  My Sailor put a regular stamp on a letter he sent us a while back from his FPO address--the only one I've goten other than those from BC in 3 years, he usually calls or emails; so I thought from that that he has to stamp them the same as we do.  I asked him when he was home on leave if he had to pay extra if he sends boxes to us and he said that it costs the same as if he was mailing it from (name of place in US where his mail is sent before being picked up to go overseas).  He doesn't send us boxes on his own, he orders things and then has them shipped directly to us.

Comment by lemonelephant on October 10, 2011 at 11:46pm
I just reread your comment Kathy and noticed the "deployed", so that would explain why my Sailor paid for mailing the letter.  He is stationed overseas on land, not deployed.
Comment by lemonelephant on October 10, 2011 at 11:53pm
BQB, perhaps your comment above should say "reduced" rather than "free" since you are indicating packages that we send rather than packages the Sailor sends and we do have to pay the postage.
Comment by BunkerQB on October 11, 2011 at 12:34am

lemon, I'll revise the blog when we have everything. Please feel free to re write all or any part of the above. The main is for us to have something we can always refer to. I was thinking of having one PAGE in NMSH title USEFUL TIPS ON NMSH - which will have links to all N4M Blogs or Forum Discussions. For example, Craigs ASVAB excel chart, there are a number of others. If you think of stuff you have seen, save the links.

OR we can create an additional Survival Manual Part II. But I really think a big survival manual is too cumbersome. What do you think?  Once you and I are done with rounding out a few things, we can pass the baton.

Comment by lemonelephant on October 11, 2011 at 12:42am

I will be busy for a bit with things here, but I'll keep watching what you have and may PM you at some point with a revision--no promises on that. 

I agree too much in one post gets overwhelming--especially for the newbies, so it's better to have several smaller ones.

Comment by lemonelephant on October 11, 2011 at 12:43am
Yep, it will be time to pass the baton before we know it.
Comment by BunkerQB on October 11, 2011 at 1:34am
Will talk to you by phone in a couple of weeks when you are back.
Comment by BunkerQB on October 11, 2011 at 1:36pm


thanks - when I get enough feedback, I'll post this under Forum/category ADVICE and as one of the reference PAGES in New Moms Stop Here group.  We are trying to get much critical important info in one central place. If you think of others things we should gather together, please jump in. Nice to see you. Happen spoken w you in awhile. How is your sailor?

Comment by lemonelephant on May 7, 2012 at 6:15pm

I just noticed you have "AE stands for Air Forces Europe".  It is actually "Armed Forces Europe".

Also, APO according to the USPS site stands for "Air/Army Post Office".

Here is some info I recently found.

AE (Armed Forces in Europe, Canada, Middle East, and Africa) are allocated ZIP codes 09XXX (AE 090-092 Germany,  AE 093 Contingency,  AE 094 United Kingdom, AE 095 Ships,  AE 096 Italy & Spain,  AE 097 Other Europe, AE 098 Middle East/Africa)

AP (Armed Forces in Asia Pacific) are allocated ZIP codes 96XXX (AP 962 Korea,  AP 963 Japan,  AP 964 Philippines,  AP 965 Other Pacific)

AA (Armed Forces in the Americas, except Canada) are allocated ZIP codes 34XXX (AA 340 All countries in Central and South America)


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