Between packing, being squished into a car, and staying the first week in a new home, there are a lot of opportunities for young children to become upset, anxious, and annoyingly whiney. But, as someone who has moved with young children before, I can assure you it’s possible to make it through the whole thing without tons of epic meltdowns and tantrums. Here’s how:
Ask Others for Help
Moving with children can be hard enough on its own so don’t make it harder than it has to be. Don’t be embarrassed to ask others for help. Chances are you know someone who would be willing to play with your children while you pack the china, or to disassemble the crib while you’re holding your baby.
You could even ask them to babysit your children elsewhere while you are packing, or while the truck is being loaded up. The last time I moved across town I was able to swing it so that my son was gone for the whole day which meant I was able to unpack the kitchen before I had to pick him up, which meant we could even have supper at the normal time.
Or if you really can’t think of someone, or you are too shy to ask them, you can always ask us for help packing up your belongings.
Let Your Children Help
As an alternative to having someone watch your children while you pack, you could let them help. If your children can put their toys away (regardless of whether or not that do put them away), they can pack them in a box. It’s also a good idea to label this box ‘toys’ and set it aside so you have it on hand quickly. That way, if someone does watch your children for a bit you know where the toys are, and when you get to your new home you can find them quickly.
My son helped us pack up his toys, some books, and a few other items. He also got immense enjoyment from bringing me empty boxes to fill and once they were full holding down the box flaps so I could tape them shut. At our new place, he pulled the tape off of the boxes, flattened the empty boxes, put things on shelves, and stuffed the packing paper into large boxes so we could get rid of it.
Take Your Time
Unless your child really hates getting into their car seat, driving to your new home across town shouldn’t be a big deal. However, if you have a longer drive, or even a flight, to your new home, it doesn’t hurt to be prepared:
Have some snacks on hand. It’s difficult to whine or annoy your sister if you are eating animal crackers.
Bring along some movies or activities for them to do in the car. These can be toys and games that they already have and love to play with or something that’s exciting because it’s brand new.
Take lots of breaks. Obviously, this isn’t possible if you are on an airplane, but if you are driving, stop frequently to get some fresh air and do some sight-seeing.
By making things into a game and reminding yourself that your child is actually trying to help you when they tape up an almost empty box, moving with young children can go fairly smoothly. Just remember, as with most things once you’ve had children, plans can change at a moment’s notice. So, be sure to give yourself lots of time to pack, get to your new home, and to set up your new place to accommodate all of those unexpected incidents that put you behind schedule. And as always, if you need help packing or moving your belongings, contact us to request an estimate today. We love helping you and your children get into your new home.