Sep 12 2017

When preparing to move, I always envision our perfectly organized boxes fitting in a small U-haul that will arrive at the new house and be unloaded in a few short hours, just in time for a quick shower and a fun BBQ at a friend's house. What actually ensues, at least in my experience, is procrastination, followed by panic, finished with chaos. 

Where's the packing tape? Who's brilliant idea was it to fill a jumbo box with all of our text books that we mustkeep from college? Why is this box leaking? Where's Bernie, the beloved goldfish?! Finished off with the not-so-occasional audible sigh and a pointed glare at my husband.
So, with the invention of Pinterest and a pending move on the horizon, I did what every millennial does in this situation. I 'pinned' all the checklists I could about a stress-free move. And do you know what happened? A relatively low-stress moving experience! Here's a list of my favorite things that made the move a little less painful.
Photos - not just for nostalgic purposes
It seems like you finally get your house decorated just right when it's time to move again. Before you start removing wall hangings, shelf décor, and rearranging furniture to go into the moving truck, take several pictures of each room from each angle. Grab close-ups of bookcases and shelves. When you start settling into your new home, you'll have a great guide for where you last had things placed.
Fuel - moving makes you hungry... lack of fuel makes you hangry

Make sure to keep healthy and protein-packed food within arms reach when moving. Stock the pantry with granola bars, nuts, and fresh fruit, while loading the refrigerator with yogurt, cheese, and veggies. Create an easy meal plan prior to the move and prepare everything that you can before you start boxing things up. Leave out any pots and pans you'll need to use and don't forget the salt and pepper! This will help keep you from running to a greasy fast-food joint because it's easy, and ensures your spouse makes it to the new house alive.
Prepare - the essentials are ... well ... essential
Gather your favorite cleaning products, furniture pads, hooks, and rags - anything you'll need for cleaning and organizing both your old house and your new home. Find a spot that is out of the way and leave it all in a laundry basket so the items don't accidentally get packed into a box. Nothing is more frustrating than losing the all-purpose cleaner and having to run to the store to buy more!
Boxes - pack it up room-by-room
We know not to pack all the books you own into a huge box, but think about packing one room at a time and resisting the urge to pack like items from one room in with items from another. Pack one room entirely and clearly label the box as such. This will help eliminate confusion when unpacking your boxes at your new home, and when your spouse asks, "Where does this go?" you can tell him to read the box ... probably 12 times until he finally gets it.
Purge - lightening your load one keychain flashlight at a time.
You don't need that purple shimmery eye shadow you've been carrying around since the early 2000's, because I hate to break it to you - you're not going to wear it! Get rid of all the bath bombs and shower gels you get each year for Christmas from Aunt Jan, promotional mugs from your insurance agent, and your copy of 'Hope Floats' on DVD that is still in it's original plastic packaging. You don't need it and Aunt Jan will never know!
Use your luggage - pack like you're going on vacation

Resist the urge to use your luggage to pack up your bedroom. Use it to make sure you have all the items you'll need to function for at least two weeks. Clothes, hair dryer, toiletries, towels, and anything else you'll need to feel human. Include any important documents you may need as well as cash for tipping any movers you may hire. Put any rings you wear on a daily basis in your luggage too, your fingers will likely swell from carrying boxes to and fro, this will help ease any discomfort caused by the swelling.
While this list is not all-encompassing, it's a good place to start when preparing to move.
I'd love to hear what has worked for you in the past! Email me at to submit your moving tips and tricks!