Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Moving with Little Ones: My 5 Point List

Life is very full right now. It feels a little crazy. 

Have I said that before?

Our house is now officially in getting-all-packed-up mode. The bookshelf in the girls' room is empty and I just packed up one of our living room bookshelves this morning. An empty bookshelf always signifies change for me. We moved several times growing up and the bookshelves were always one of the first things to get packed up. I filled 3 books in about 20 minutes this morning, I think that's why I like packing books so much. You get that 'look how much I accomplished' feeling a lot faster then say, packing the kitchen. 
It's a little different getting ready to move with two little ones. One who can unpack the boxes almost as fast as I can pack them and another who can crawl around everything. I'm having to be a little more creative in how I pack and what I pack. 
Here's what I've found works for me. 
1. Let them help
As long as they don't unpack the box I'm currently packing, they can play with almost anything else even stuff that normally is off limits. Dumping the box of diapers on the floor?  Really, it's okay. Those can be cleaned up very fast and if it keeps them both happy for ten minutes, I'm happy. I have learned to pack boxes fast. 

2. Make it fun and memorable
Build towers out of empty boxes and let them knock them down. Kilmeny loves this. 
Stop in the middle of the craziness and have a tickle time. I am energized by the my girls' giggles and they love seeing me laugh with them.
Take time to do some of the normal, everyday stuff that you usually do. For me, that means walking to the library, getting new books, and saying hi to our favorite librarian. It also means that I don't get any boxes filled that morning. But my girls feel special and that life isn't totally crazy. 

3. Go easy on meals 
 We've been eating meals from the freezer and picnic style suppers. I'm trying to empty the freezers and pantry as well as not spending a ton of time creating the meals. Kilmeny's delighted to have 'rabbit' (her word for mac and cheese) a little more often. Pancakes and eggs will be showing up a little more often in our supper rotation. And granola is our steady go-to for breakfast. 
4. Know when to take a break  
It's nap time. The house is quiet. I could be filling boxes but I'm not. I'm writing here. I've learned enough about myself in the last couple months that to push too hard doesn't end in results, it ends in burn out and stress. I take time to read a few chapters of a book while savoring a cup of tea and a little something sweet. I breathe deeply. I strive to enjoy this crazy time without losing my sanity. 

5. Use the Time Well
We have a time deadline to get this place packed up and cleaned. I can't afford to take too many breaks. I have to have a game plan and stick to it. That means sorting and packing, packing and sorting whenever I have a spare moment. In the evening, when the girls are down, I pack fast and I sort hard. Really, how many Mason jars do I think I need? Yards of ribbon in colors I don't even like? Random paper scraps that I've been saving for goodness knows how long? They don't need to take up space in a box. 
There's my five, what would you add to help me during this time? 


  1. Let them draw on the boxes. It'll make you smile when you move them. I learned this from asking my 28-year-old brother to label a box when I moved to Tony's house and when I picked it up to move it later there was a drawing of a monster with a huge mouth and the words, "I'm the Box Monster - feed me things!" and silly drawings on the sides. I love it. (P.S. Have fun on the next leg of your journey through life!)

    1. Oh, Amanda! I love that idea, I've always wanted an excuse to buy the multi-colored sharpies. ;-)
      My sister did that when they moved,and it was a hoot seeing all the creative labels they came up with.

      Thanks, we're pretty excited (nervous and thrilled!) about this next adventure.

  2. You are absolutely amazing, my friend. :-) I LOVE these tips - even for regular to-do-list-lives. :-) Going to take a break shortly with tea, cookie and my stack of new books from the library. :-) XO

    1. Your break sounds lovely. I'm slowly learning when and how to take them, a lot sooner then I used too. =)

      I love new books from the library. =)

  3. Yup, that's why I'm going to take a hot bath, drink a lemonade, and read "When Children Love to Learn" instead of trying to get more done tonight... :-) Granted, it was my hubby that prompted me in that direction, but I realized he was right - taking a bit of R&R will accomplish more than trying to push myself right now!

    Love ya!

    1. Oh that sounds lovely, Rachelle! Our men are good at helping us see beyond the immediate chaos and bringing some peace into our lives.

      I'll have to check that book out, it sounds interesting!



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