Parenting 101: How to Prepare for Your Big Family Move with Small Children This Summer

Moving to a new city or town with small children in tow can be a very difficult and challenging undertaking. It requires large amounts of multi-tasking skills, strength, and stamina. The following tips and suggestions will help you with this stressful but very exciting event this summer.

Prepare the Family

Even if your children are very small, it is wise to prepare them for the move. Explain where and why you are moving. Show them photos and get them involved and excited about their new rooms, new schools, nearby attractions, potential friends, and the great backyard. Have a farewell party with all of their friends before the big day and pass out email and snail-mail addresses to parents for future correspondence to everyone. Read stories and go through picture books that illustrate moving to a different town or city to your little ones so they will know what to expect.

Get Organized Early

Don’t wait until the last minute to get organized. Write out a basic checklist of all the tasks that need to be done in the order that they need to be accomplished. Arrange for boxes, tape, labels, and bubble wrap far in advance. Make a list of what items to keep and what to donate or sell. Label everything even if you think you will remember exactly what is in each box.

A moving sale may be in order if there is a large amount of quality items that you just don’t need or use; just allow yourself plenty of time to sort and arrange the articles that you wish to display and sell.

Learn how to pack a moving truck so items fit inside efficiently. Large, heavy items should be on the bottom with lighter ones on top. Place the items you will need the most in the most accessible location in the back of the vehicle.

Pace Yourself

Don’t even attempt to do these tasks all at once. Start weeks ahead of time by sorting and boxing items while the children are napping or at school. Keep a slow but steady amount of moving activity going to you don’t over-exert yourself in the final process. Take frequent breaks and reward yourself after every packing session with a glass of wine, pizza, or a hot bubble bath or shower.

Delegate

Be sure to have plenty of help on hand when moving day actually arrives. It would be a good idea to arrange for childcare for your youngsters in another location so you can focus on the tasks at hand. Enlist the aid of co-workers, relatives and close family members, neighbors, and friends.

Don’t try to do everything yourself. Call in professional movers for those heavy items that you just can’t move yourself. Treat yourself by hiring a cleaning company to come in and do all of the heavy cleaning that still needs to be done.

Make it Fun!

Make packing a game and have races with your youngsters to see who can gather up the most toys and games. Have a special ceremony of saying goodbye to the old house when you leave. On the way to the new property, play the license plate game, put silly songs and stories in the CD player, and even view the most current movies on a portable DVD screen.

Moving and caring for small children at the same time is not an easy task. Utilizing the preceding tips and suggestions will help you with this temporary but necessary challenge. Continue on with these steps even after you have moved into your new home. Unpacking and re-arranging can also be difficult to do with youngsters around you, so go back through these great stress-busters and pick the suggestions that will work for you again.

 

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.

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