Moving is Stressful. Moving with kids – Don’t even get me started!
Here are a few things you could do to help with the stress:
1. Involve your kids - but not too much. The hardest thing for me was to find the right balance between involving my kids or leaving them out of it. Some things like house hunting were fun to do as a family, while others like packing and moving were less than child-friendly. For example, having kids while sorting through our belongings to choose what to keep and what to part with was out-of-the-question for me. I guess every family is different, but for my sanity, I couldn’t have it any other way.
2. Sort the junk and give away! Throw away broken toys and donate all toys that they haven’t touched in 6 months. Make sure they are not around when you give them away, to avoid hearing all the reasons why you should keep any cars with missing wheels, dismembered dolls, etc. THEY WILL BREAK YOU. Do not feel guilty about this one, because if they haven’t played with the toys for that long, I bet you they will not remember that they ever owned them in the first place. If you don’t have time to drive to your nearby thrift store, the American Kidney Fund will actually come to your house and pick the donations up. You just need to schedule it.
3. Be creative to find childcare. To sort belongings efficiently, I always find a babysitter while packing or strategically schedule sleepovers with family and friends. Believe me, you will get so much more accomplished and save yourself and your little ones from the pain of departing with good ol’ raggedy Ann.
4. Plan ahead for post move tasks. If you are moving during the summer and know which school your children will attend, order school supplies before the move. Matter of fact, try to do this before you start packing.
5. Strategically unpack your belongings. Once you get to your new house, get the kids’ room(s) and the playroom unpacked first. This is a huge change for our little ones and as stressful as it is for us, it may be even more stressful for them. So, help them be comfortable and place their favorite Teddy bear on the bed, hang the artwork that was in their old room, show them where their clothes are kept. This will also save you time, because if you don’t, you will be asked every minute about where everything is, when all you want to do is finish unpacking that kitchen of yours and get a good night of sleep.