Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Moving DAY

I'm moving in less than 3 weeks. Kind of freaks me out a bit... Ladies, I don't even know where the devil to start.

I've been married for 8 years and all those years we've only moved once and it was after only 2 years of being married. We moved less than 2 blocks away and we had no kids at the time. I now have 3 kids and we've lived here much longer which means we've had a chance to REALLY fill it up. We are BURSTING at the seams. We are going to have to dig into the woodwork to find all our junk. Add to that the fact that we are moving to another state (just Idaho, but STILL) thus requiring a moving truck.

I need some advice. I honestly have NO experience with a move of this magnitude.

When should I start packing?
Where should I get boxes?
What boxes did you like?
How should I pack all my dang books?
How do I keep my kids (and myself) from going insane as the house is in total chaos?

Give me your wisdom!! I seriously need help.


Let's not even talk about unpacking... that's a WHOLE different post. :)


Erin said...

go to grocery stores and ask them for boxes. They do their stocking late at night, so go early in the morning. You could befriend someone in the produce department and ask them to hold on to more for you for the next day.

You could also try looking on KSL in the free section - lots of times people post moving boxes there for free when they are done moving so someone else can haul off their boxes. (also a good idea for when you get there and want to get rid of them.)

Use small boxes for your books. You'll probably need a ton! But it's just not fun trying to haul a huge box full of books, so split them up into smaller boxes. I hear liquor store boxes are great for books.

Start packing now! Clear off a wall somewhere in your house where you can stack the boxes. Start with the stuff you know you won't need for a long time, like the stuff hanging on the walls, decorations, books, and the winter clothes. It's always a scramble at the end, so you'll be glad to have a head start.

I always like to prepare a bunch of freezer meals or things that are really easy to prepare and take minimal dishes. That way when you get to those few days that you really are doing nothing but packing and loading up the truck, you don't have to worry about spending money on eating out or cleaning up a big mess. Just throw something frozen in the oven, and then use paper plates so you can throw everything away and not do dishes in the middle of packing.

Everyone says to use newspaper for fragile things. That works great, but I always felt like I had to wash all my dishes when we unpacked if we used newspaper. I use bubble wrap or tissue paper, or actual packing paper from a moving company.

At least with my kids, there really was no way to keep them in the house without getting into what I was packing or everyone going crazy and getting mad at each other. Set up some playdates at friends' houses! It's the last time they'll get to play with their friends anyway. We also set up the laptop with a movie and a treat when we got desperate and needed them to stay in one spot or take a nap. Sometimes I could find a little job they could do, but you have to be ok with it not being done perfectly.

ooh one more thing - when you're taking apart furniture, keep all the screws and stuff in a bag, and label it. Don't put it with the furniture. Keep a box on your counter just for all the hardware stuff like that, so it all stays together and you don't loose any of it in the move.

Our kids had a hard time adjusting to a new house because they were confused. Let them walk around the house when it's empty so they can see that it really is empty, and their things aren't there anymore. I think it helps them to realize that they aren't coming back there. Make sure you pack their comfort items for sleeping in the car, so you don't have to dig through boxes to find it in the first night in the new house.

good luck! I love moving because I always feel so clutter free afterwards. :)

Alyssa Harper said...

When we moved out, we went to the grocery store for boxes, like Erin suggested. Worked relatively well for us. But if I had thought ahead about it, I would have gone to Papa Murphy's and asked them to save boxes for us. About a week or two's worth. All their boxes are uniform sizes, so it's not like trying to mix and match puzzle pieces together when you're trying to stack boxes. I actually went to Papa Murphy's to ask, but they don't save their boxes unless asked to. You'll probably have to talk to the store manager.

I really like Erin's freezer meal idea. Genius!

Anonymous said...

Start packing now! When we moved, my husband brought home Dell computer boxes (he works in IT). They were a great size and strong. Know anyone in IT?

You can start packing things you won't need first: winter clothes, a lot of books, decorations, etc.

Do the kids' things lasts so they still have movies to watch and toys to play with while you work.

I would put a few books into lots of different boxes, so they don't all get too heavy.

I completely packed/emptied out one room in the apartment, and then stored all the boxes in that room until move day. This way I didn't have boxes ALL over my house! If you have a place to do this, it might help you feel more organized.

Good luck! I hate the process of moving, but I love unpacking and starting over in a new place! That's always exciting to me! :)

Megan said...

Like everyone has suggested, start packing now! The less you have to do those last couple of days the better off you will be. Also, after you get one room completely packed, if you can, clean it then and shut the door that way you are cleaning as you go and it doesn't feel as overwhelming as trying to clean all at once.

Laura said...

We always use fry boxes from Arby's. Again, they are a uniform size and they are sturdy. They are also small enough that you can fill them up without it being overwhelmingly heaving, but still get enough in that it feels useful.

Absolutely start packing now. You'd be surprised how much stuff you have around that you really don't ever use. And the less you have to do at the end, the better!

Whenever it's reasonable, find someone else to watch your kids for a couple of hours so you can really focus on packing. It's AMAZING how much more you can get done in just a few concentrated hours as opposed to what gets done while you're also taking care of your kids.

Clothes and towels are excellent packing materials around more fragile things--you have to pack both of them anyway. It saves you space and money from having to buy bubble wrap or something.

You can pack your kids' toys earlier than it seems like--just keep a few out that they really like so they still have something to do, but you can get the rest out of the way. This helps keep the messes down up to moving day, and it's also nice in the new house. Because they haven't seen their toys for a while (even just a week or two), they are much more exciting to play with again and they'll stay out of your hair a bit longer while you're unpacking.

If you can at all avoid it, DO NOT WAIT FOR MOVING DAY to pack anything. It's amazing how hectic that day can be, and if you're rushing around throwing last minute things into boxes, it can easily become 100 times worse. Get as much packed as humanly possible no later than the night before.

If I think of more things, I'll leave another comment...

Heather said...

Like Laura, we used towels to wrap fragile stuff. Worked like a charm. We put some books in each box so every box had books and other stuff. That way they aren't so heavy.

I loved the idea of putting all the hardware in individual baggies and putting it all in one box. Genius!!

Another option for boxes--ask people who just moved. Chances are they are looking for a way to get rid of boxes.

Britta said...

I recently did an overseas move where the movers actually came and did all the packing and loading. It sucked. I love that time where I get to look at everything and decide if it really deserves a place in the new house or not.

I'm a freak about unpacking and I love having Very specific lables on the boxes so I know Exactly what is in each box on the other end. No sticker lables needed, just permanat marker or pen on top.

Also, I find that the church is generally great with helping to load up a uhaul, although I'd ask specific people rather than announcing it in Priesthood or something. What they HATE is having to come in and pack everything before moving it. Every time we've moved we've had everything packed up and waiting to be hauled off and the men were so impressed and happy their job was a lot smaller.

Get things like plants, the patio toys, and storage rooms taken care of first. you'll make progress and keep chaos down to a minimum at first.

Tannie Datwyler said...

What about packing up your food storage?? We have A LOT of canned goods. What's the best way to pack those?

Megan said...

Pack you cans the same way as your books, a layer of cans in each box. That way they don't overload your boxes either.

Shantel said...

Tannie, ask Deseret Book if they will save some boxes for you, or if your really brave, go to the back of the store and retrieve them from the recycle dumpster. Their boxes are very strong, since they are made to hold heavy books and are the best I have used. They are also a great uniform size. Also, their employees are generally pretty willing to help you, by setting them aside. Good luck!

Tannie Datwyler said...

THANK YOU SOOOOO MUCH. I needed all this advice.