Made as easy as A, B, C.
Moving can be a stressful time for the whole family, especially kids. The A B C to moving with kids are: timing and transition, getting them involved and keeping them entertained. Let’s keep your children happy and comfortable throughout the whole process with these easy tips:
Timing and Transition
It’s hard to say when the best time to move is, but consider the following things in order to make a happy, smooth transition for the whole family.
- Consider what grades that your children are in. If your child is a senior in high school, it might be best let them live with a relative to finish up their school year with friends. If your child is about to enter middle school, this is an ideal time to move as they are entering a new school regardless.
- Make the new home their own. Let your kids walk through the new house before you move in. Maybe let them pick out their own room to make them a part of the decision.
- Stay connected to friends, family and neighbors back home. Arrange webcam time with your children’s friends when you move, so they can keep in touch with their own friends.
- Adjust to the new home. Take your kids for a drive around the neighborhood. Drive by their school and other important stops so they can become familiar with the new location. If you move during summer, sign your kids up for local activities like summer camp so they can meet new friends.
Get them Involved
Keep your kids involved in order to make them feel like they are a part of the process and not just being forced along.
- Let them arrange and design their own room. Draw out a floor plan of the rooms in the new house. Let your children make paper furniture and arrange what they want in their room.
- Encourage your kids to pack themselves. So they can have their own boxes and suitcases that they are responsible for. Give them color codes or fun stickers to stick on the boxes that belong in their room.
- Have each child fill a backpack with overnight items so that you don’t have to dig through boxes. Include a toothbrush, PJs, a favorite stuffed animal, favorite bedtime story, etc.
- Give them a camera to take pictures of the move and send the pics to their old friends or post them on Facebook.
Here are some helpful tips to make moving a positive memory.
- If your move involves a long road trip or plane ride, gift wrap things you were going to give your children anyway. Wrap up books, games, decks of cards, sticker books, puzzle books, joke books, reading books, crayons, etc. and when you make stops along your route, place the presents on the kid’s seats. When they come back to the car they will have an exciting gift to unwrap and play with! On a plane, give them a new “gift” each time a milestone is reached such as “We’re a quarter of the way there!” or “Halfway there!” This makes the process more exciting. Be sure to save some presents to give to them when you arrive at the new home.
- Make their new empty room fun by hiding gifts in the closet. For example, wrap up that new bedspread that you were going to give them and hide it in their new empty closet. For anything they were going to need new, just adding a little bow can turn it into a surprise present.
- Happy kids are hunger-free kids. Be sure to have lots of healthy snacks for your moving day. Avoid juice boxes as they tend to explode. Instead pack bottles of water and juice bottles that you can recycle. Put aside favorite snacks like a jar of peanut butter and graham crackers.
- Before the move, sit down with your child and map out your move. Show them where the new house is and let them follow along on the map as you make your way to your new home.
- Babysitter not available moving day? Consider hiring a nanny during the move. This service keeps the little darlings safe, happy and entertained under the watchful eye of a modern day Mary Poppins, while you focus on the moving process.
- Don’t throw items away. If you’re planning on getting rid of items the children no longer use, do not do it during moving time. The children will experience loss, and this is not the right time to throw out their things. Do the weeding out a couple of months in advance, so they don’t associate the two events together.
Don't Leave Home Without
Keep these items handy during your move to keep everyone safe and happy:
- Hand Sanitizer
- Baby wipes
- Extra zip lock bags
- Personal Pillows
- Phone numbers (the kennel, the new apartment complex, etc.)
- Cell Phone Charger
- Walking shoes
- Sweater and Rain Jacket
- Snacks and water