I've made some travel plans back to the States to continue the moving process and see family. The only problem is, I haven't received my Permanent Residence Card yet from CIC. Once you've landed as a Permanent Resident, this card is required to re-enter the country if you leave. It's like a passport for permanent residents. The CIC makes it a little clearer:
"The Permanent Resident Card is the official proof of your status as a permanent resident in Canada. This wallet-sized plastic card is required for all permanent residents of Canada seeking to re-enter Canada on a commercial carrier (airplane, boat, train or bus)."
Since in order to maintain status in the country, you need to be able to show you've been in the country for at least two years out of each five year period, this card is one of the devices used to track your comings and goings in and out of the country.
They've been a little slow in processing the cards lately - 48 business days is the current standard. That means sometime in mid-October for me. Just in time to see the States!