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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Moving...What A Chore!

Moving. If you haven't done it, and don't have to...don't!
Since Friday morning, we have spent a total of 4 days moving stuff, 2 days loading the truck, countless trips up and down stairs, and 2 additional trips back home for a total of 3 extra car loads of, well, junk!! Additionally, there were countless hands that helped out from the very beginning when we decided to move to the unloading of the moving truck!
Overall, we were on our own this move. Very few peoples were available to help us load or unload the truck. That made for a very long two days of loading the truck. We are so happy to have the majority of it over with. Still a few things to pick up at my parents house, but that's for another trip!
When you start packing to move, you realize just how much stuff you really have and you find yourself asking questions like, where did this come from? Why do I have this?? Why do I have multiples of the same thing? I think the majority of people start off trying to be super organized at the beginning of a moving process, but quickly that leads to everything being thrown into a box marked "miscellaneous". Um, yeah, that leads to not being able to find a single thing when you start unpacking!!
So all that to say, here are a few tips that might help you on your next move!
*Don't buy boxes! Ask friends & family to hold boxes for you from home, work, and school! Paper boxes are amazing!
*Packing material: newspaper works if that's what you have on hand, but if you can get plain butcher paper that would be better. It won't smear onto your dishes & other fragile items!
*Use small boxes for books. Yes, it makes for more boxes, but they will be easier to handle!
*Depending on how much time you have to pack for a move, go through magazines, catalogs, etc. and tear out out the pages with articles, pictures, products, etc. that you want to save. File them into an accordion file (or bigger if you need it) by catagory (i.e. Gardening, Cleaning, Vacations, Recipes) and donate/trash/pass on the magazines. Saves room!
*You can never have too much packing material around or in fragile items. It is worth buying the bubble wrap to use! Make sure the box isn't too heavy and nothing jingles/moves around when GENTLY shook!!
*Use towels to line your fragile boxes with...makes for a cushion on the bottom and protection on the top.
*Before a move, make a pile/designate a shelf for anything that is open--cleaners, food, soon-to-expire products. Use as much as up as you can before you move. Bless your neighbor with the rest of it or trash it appropiately.
*Make a donate pile and get a receipt to write it off your taxes, espeically if it is a big ticket item! It adds up!
*Take used books to a book store that allows you to trade them in for store credit! Also, google websites that do the same. Any books you cannot get rid of, donate to your local library's "Friends of the Library" program or a donation program for soldiers/veterans.
*Another tip that I was given AFTER I had most of the house packed is to pack the boxes by room. Start in a room that is less used than others (a guest room perhaps) and move into the rooms that are most used (the kitchen, maybe).
*Label boxes on the top and on one side, and stack them all facing the same way (works awesome if all your boxes are like-sized). Reinforce the bottoms of boxes with extra packing tape, especially for heavy items.
*Clothes can be packed into suitcases and tubs. Especially seasonal clothing that could potentially be stored in the tubs in the off-season!

Above all, try to make the best of it and leave yourself enough time to pack efficiently !!! Moving is stressful! If there are other people in your household, make a promise not to take your stress out on each other! Take frequent breaks and get out of the house (even just to the front yard, sweet tea on the porch, walk down the street). Give each person a particular room or group of items to pack/be responsible for (the kids could pack all the toys and the husband could pack the garage!).
I am not looking forward to moving again in 5 months to our permanent address, but I hope to be more organized with less stuff by then!!