Moving with Kids 101 Tips and advice on packing, organizing, and staying sane ....
One of the
most stressful times in life is relocating.
Being a single parent
only intensifies the stress. Starting
over means leaving behind what is familiar. It might seem like
there will never be a time when things will go back to normal.
so many variables to work through, especially when moving with
kids or small children in tow. But with a plan in hand, help from
friends, and some 'been there' tips and advice, you can pull off
a move with minimal headaches:
Research your new neighborhood
It's important to find out as much as you can about the new digs,
area schools and the neighborhood in general. Your kids are going
to count on you to know where everything is. Keep
them in mind when doing your research.
Find the places
that they will be able to plug into and network with other children
that share their interests. This might seem tedious, but the benefit
is that you get to guide your children to new friends and to places
you know will be safe.
Put the word out that you need moving BOXES. Storage companies
sell boxes, but only go there as a last resort. Besides, why pay
for something that you can get from somewhere else for free?
call neighborhood stores and find out their schedule for truck
delivery days when boxes are plentiful. If you call ahead, most
stores will put them on the side for you to pick up later. Don't
forget to collect some smaller boxes for packing up stray books,
dvds, computer games, or the junk draw collection.
Moving day can seem far away but, like the objects in the side
view mirror, it is closer than it appears. Getting a head start
on packing will help ease the stress of having too much to do
in too little time.
a good place to start. Usually the closets are already stuffed
with things in boxes. This is the time to go through them so you
don't move things you don't necessarily need or want. Box up extra
clothes, toys, photos, games, dishes, or soaps and detergents,
with the exception of a bare minimum that can be packed later.
Decide what to move
Meanwhile, you may find that each packed job leads to even more
unpacked "stuff" lying around. Use this opportunity
to start fresh and don't bring anything unnecessary into your
new environment. This is also a valuable lesson for the kids.
rule of thumb? If you haven't used it or worn it in 6 months,
toss it or donate it.
Some things have sentimental value and should be kept. However,
remember that the memory is not in the object but in your heart.
If you can't attach a memory to an item, then let it go. Let someone
else make new memories with what you don't keep. Like they say,
"Someone's trash is someone else's treasure."
A simple moving job helps get kids
involved, and keeps them busy...
you are busy packing up and sorting through belongings that seem
to multiply by the minute, what are the kids doing? They are probably
feeling pretty lost, or bored because there is nothing to play
with and they don't know where anything is. Everything that is
their world is being put into either boxes or trash bags!
responsibility for some part of the moving job will help them
feel a little more centered and not so topsy-turvy. Older kids
can handle bigger jobs, like packing and labeling boxes, while
little hands are great for holding the box flaps down while you
tape them closed. Getting the kids involved and packing together
gives all of you a chance to reminisce about what you are leaving,
and to share dreams of where you are going.
To hire or not to hire a moving company
If you want to find out who your friends are, ask them to help
you move into your new place!
Throw a pizza party, or provide them with fast food and drinks
on moving day to help sweeten the deal.
If you have
a lot of heavy furniture or boxes to move, or are moving into
an apartment with a lot of stairs, hiring a moving company is
worth the expense.
If the move
is long distance, then by all means hire a moving company. Call
ahead and get price quotes before deciding which one is right
for you. You'll may find some companies charging outrageous fees
for the simplest services, while others give you much fairer price
quotes. Some may even offer to come and pack for you! Again, planning
ahead not only minimizes moving stress, but pays off big where
it counts the most - your budget.
Why do people advise that change is good? How can you hold close
to what is by definition not staying still? Stepping into the
unknown may be a bit scary, but remember that this is a chance
at a new life for you and your family. Uprooting them may take
a big of adjustment, but once everyone is happily settled into
their new home it will be easier to see things in a more positive light.
About the author : Katrina Cramer-Diaz is a mother of four with a background
in education and child development.