Moving is like running a marathon. There is a lot of prep work before the big day, then once it finally arrives, you are in constant motion until you’ve reached the end. When the day is done, you are exhausted, but relieved and proud of your accomplishment. Now throw a baby or young child in the mix.
The responsibility of caring for your kids can make moving an even longer and more taxing experience than we already know it to be. Here are four tips to make moving your young family a more organized and stress-free event.
Pack Slowly & Intentionally
Moving day is approaching and you are feeling the pressure to get a head start on packing. Pump the breaks there, friend. It’s actually a better idea to move slow and steady in this case. Packing should begin no more than two weeks prior to your scheduled move out day. This allows you a chance to still have access to things you use regularly without searching through boxes day to day. A child is not going to understand that mom or dad can’t find the sheet pan that’s essential for dinner that night, they just know that they want to eat as soon as possible.
Use nap times and bedtime to get things going. Start by packing up decorative objects in your home, you can live without the cutesy aesthetics for a few days. The baby’s things should be the last one to go in any box. More importantly, once you make your way to the kids’ room, pack a week’s worth of all of their daily or necessary items and do the same for you too. This is key to helping you and your child keep up routines and remain happy with busy days ahead. It is also a way to not feel rushed to unpack once you’re all moved in because you bought yourself some time by preparing a box of things to tide you over.
Here’s a list of some ideas of what to pack in the box meant for the week:
- Baby food and snacks
- Diapering products
- Clothes and shoes (Pack more clothes than needed for accidents)
- Extra bedding
- Lovies/stuffed animals and any other item your child absolutely needs
- A few toys or entertainment gadgets for you and baby
Ask for Help
If you have family or friends who can assist you with the move, ask for their help. People don’t openly volunteer to help with a move, but when you mention that you need assistance with the children, they won’t usually turn you down. Grandparents are always happy to have more time with their grandkids, go to them first to see if they can keep the little ones for a few hours while you get things transferred from one place to the next.
Friends are a great source of support where packing is concerned. An old pal coupled with a meal or a drink on your dime can be time spent catching up while filling boxes for the big move. The extra set of hands keeps the productivity going even when you have to stop to tend to the baby. If all else fails, hire a sitter for that short time or drop them off at their daycare.
Move in the Morning
Move as early in the day as possible. Trying to enforce your nighttime routine in unfamiliar territory might prove challenging. It’s going to take some time for the kids to get used to their new environment and may cost you a few sleepless nights. Be ready for shared sleeping arrangements to help the baby have a smooth transition.
Make sure to pack a travel sleep setup like a bassinet or pack ‘n’ play until your child gets settled in their room. Find a safe area to play, preferably the room that is their newly designated space. If the move happens before the first nap is to occur, you have time to show off the new pad to your child in hopes of making them comfortable.
We’ve Moved In… Now What?
Now that you’ve set up shop, you and your family deserve some fun! After all of the uprooting that’s taken place, it’s time to get out and go exploring your new neighborhood. Find a local shop and have some treats. Check out the parks nearby or relax in your outdoor space and take in the scenery. Just be sure to indulge in the new setting and make it really feel like home.
After a couple of days of being moved in, begin with unpacking the kids’ room first, then everything else will fall in place. Soon it’ll be time to invite those friends and family over that pitched in to see how they helped make it all come together.