Relocating is on the list of major life changes that are among the most stressful. But even before you move into a new home, a big part of the stress is packing up to go. For families with young children, the tasks and emotions involved can be overwhelming, no matter if you’re moving to another state, a different city, or even just across town. We have some suggestions to help the transition go more smoothly.
Don’t underestimate the feelings. Some children might be very excited about moving to a new place, others will be sad to leave the only home they’ve ever known. Explain the moving process, answer your kids’ questions and concerns, and reassure them that many routines won’t change.
Plan before you execute. If you’ve been in your current home for many years, chances are you’ve accumulated a lot of ‘stuff’, and just the idea of packing is enough to make you want to avoid it. Take the pressure off by giving yourself plenty of time to work in stages, including the effort to sort out the things that won’t follow you to the new house. If your children are old enough to help with their own belongings, let them. Take advantage of the opportunity to give them a sense of control, and talk about donating items to charity or giving away the things they have outgrown.
Don’t let the kids see what you toss. On the other hand, sometimes it’s better if you make the sorting decisions yourself to avoid arguments and meltdowns! If there are things you absolutely know you don’t want packed for the move, wait until your little ones are asleep or out of the house before you put those items in the trash. Then be sure to take the trash out of the house, where it can’t be discovered and reclaimed.
Label boxes clearly. When it comes to the kids’ toys and games, seal all boxes as soon as they are full. That will prevent little hands from undoing your packing efforts when they spot something they want to pull out to play with. Next, mark each box as specifically as possible. This will help ease the arrival at the new house when you’re surrounded by boxes and your child won’t stop nagging for that ONE THING you can’t find. Less generic labels will ensure you zero in on exactly what you’re looking for when you need it.
Use coolers. Leading up to the final move, you will have to unplug appliances and empty the cupboards in the old house. Of course, that in-between time can make feeding the kids tricky. Keeping hunger to a minimum by keeping small containers of milk, drinks, fruit, yogurt, and other snacks handy in a cooler.
Pack overnight bags. Just before you move, keep extra clothes, tooth brushes, and special toys or other belongings handy for the kids, for both comfort and entertainment.
Make the new house feel like home. Don’t be in a rush to unpack everything at once. That will create more stressful clutter than necessary. But consider focusing first on the kids’ bedrooms, where hanging a favorite picture and making up the beds with familiar sheets and blankets will help them settle into their new surroundings on day one.
Are you ready to move? Take a tour of any of our new communities to see the beautiful features of quality construction ready to welcome your family home!
P.S. Don’t get rid of your moving boxes. They’re great for the kids to play in!