This is a guest post by Susie Brown of www.fastupfront.com
Moving Day doesn’t have to be mayhem if you begin organizing early on, master the art of ‘to-do’ lists, prepare your kids for moving, and study tips & tricks on how to be busy without going bonkers.
Whether you are moving around the block or halfway around the world, the fact of the matter is that moving IS madness. There is no end to the details you need to remember and the tasks you need to complete before the Big Day arrives. So how do you stay sane in the midst of all the insanity, keep your cool, and prevent calamity? Simply follow these expert guidelines on how to prepare for moving and pave your way to relocation success.
Once you know you are moving, it’s never too soon to:
• Tell your kids the big news (giving them plenty of time to adjust)
• Start collecting boxes (you can never have too many boxes!)
• Begin sorting, weeding, and packing
• Make ‘to-do’ lists of everything that needs to be done
• Allocate age-appropriate tasks to family members (taking some of the burden off of you)
Early-Bird Packing Tips
- Pack infrequently used items first, i.e., pictures/wall hangings, knick-knacks, out-of-season clothing, extra shoes/boots, holiday decorations, old toys/games, and extra linens
- Spring-clean as you go along: Decide what to keep, what to throw out, and what to donate
- If you have time, cash in on your clutter by hosting a garage sale for items which won’t be making the move with you
- Make sure boxes are properly secured and not over-packed or too heavy to be lifted and carried
- Label each box clearly, indicating what’s inside and where it goes in your new home; on Moving Day, your movers or friends will know exactly what goes where
- To save big bucks on expensive bubble wrap, wrap fragile items in clothing, blankets, sheets, or coats which need to be packed anyway
- Cushion glassware with towels; place rolled-up socks inside of glassware to protect them in transit
- Double up on storage by packing jewelry and other small items inside shoes, dresser drawers, suitcases, large cookware, and dryers
- To stay cool, calm, and collected on Moving Day, arrange to have younger children cared for by a babysitter or older family member/friend
- Give older children specific tasks to do so that they feel useful and don’t get in the way
Moving with Pets
If your pet is relocating with you, be sure to:
- Visit the veterinarian for a complete checkup, making sure all vaccinations are up to date
- Obtain the correct tags and licenses required by your new state/country
- Purchase an appropriate cage or traveling unit
- Provide sufficient air, food, and water en route
How to Prepare Children for Moving
No matter how old they are, being uprooted from their familiar surroundings and routine is disruptive to children’s lives. While some kids are excited by the prospect of moving, other children may cry, sulk, become angry or depressed, or feel overwhelmed. The good news is that children’s emotions tend to evolve over time; when parents maintain a positive, upbeat attitude children often pick up and adopt this same energy.
To help your kids with the transition, encourage them to ask questions and freely express any concerns they have about moving. Kids love being included in decisions about moving, as well the opportunity to design or decorate their new room. You can also help kids warm up to the prospect of moving by signing them up for their favorite extra-curricular activity and by planning a ‘fun day’ in their new city, taking in special attractions and eating out. It’s also a good idea to study a local map with your kids, pointing out their new school, important bus routes, stores, churches/synagogues, and more.
Keep in mind that the best time of the year to relocate with children is summertime since the school year is not disrupted and kids are free to help pack. Summertime also gives kids an opportunity to acclimatize to their new surroundings and meet friends and neighbors (perhaps even their new principal/teachers) before the academic year begins.
Moving Day Bonus Tips
In the mayhem of Moving Day, don’t forget to:
- Pack a simple breakfast on-the-go
- Prepare snacks or sandwiches for the road
- Carry separate handbags containing toothbrushes, pajamas, and other essentials for the first night – and make sure these don’t go on the moving van!
- Freeze meals ahead of time for the first nights in your new home (or plan to order takeout)
- Cap Moving Day off with a pizza party for everyone who helped make the day a smashing success!
Susie Brown is a FastUpFront Blog contributor and business author. Fastupfront offers a business loan financing alternative based on business cash flow.