Packing a House Without Fighting – A Few Tips

Today movers will arrive to fill this with all of our stuff:

moving 2

We have been amazed by the amount of stuff we’ve acquired over the past several years. Even with carloads of donations being dropped off at Goodwill, selling baby clothes and equipment, furniture and such, our house still looks like this:

moving 1

Needless to say, the packing process has been painful, especially for Josh who has been doing the brunt of the work since I’m not done working until Friday. Here are a few tips (in no specific order) on how to not kill fight with your significant other while prepping for a move.

1. Hire someone to do it for you.  I know what you’re saying, duh! We got quotes for full service moving companies that would box, load, transport and store our stuff until we find a new house. Estimates were coming in at $12,000-18,000, plus additional fees for each month of storage. Ouch! Even with the relocation money, we figured it couldn’t be that hard to pack up ourselves and save some of the money for getting a new house up and running. We were wrong.

2. Find funny things to reminisce about. Our office was probably the best room to pack up. I found a whole box of old pictures with gem like these in it:

halloween 2008 senior luncheon

Nothing lightens the mood like laughing about how awkward we were, how crazy we were or how stupid we were (hello 21st birthday shot notebook. Yikes!).

3. Add a cocktail. We’re not huge drinkers, though after the last few posts you may think otherwise. Sometimes you just need something to take the edge off. After all packing up all your possessions and your life as you know it is stressful.

4. If that doesn’t work, work in different rooms. Together time isn’t necessarily the best thing while packing. It’s definitely not advisable when packing styles or speeds are not aligned. If you’re starting to snap at each other about bubble wrap vs. brown paper padding, you need to move to a different room.

5. Take breaks. It just took me five tries to type breaks instead of breasts. Wow, must still be thinking about organizing my breastmilk for donation the other night. Back to my point, everyone needs a break. The other night Josh went for a ride with John, the night before I fed Anderson and went for a run. Physical activities and time spent away from packing tape, boxes, bubble wrap and Sharpies do wonders for stress levels.

6. Set daily goals. Before we go to bed at night we’ve been talking about tasks to accomplish the next day. Josh has a set and I have a set. When I get home from work we talk about where we stand and how I can best help once the kids are in bed. This keeps us from getting to the point of standing with a box in our hands just staring at the chaos around us.

7. Breathe. Passing out is not advisable. Seriously it will really cut into productivity levels. But then again, it may temporarily relieve you of your job. You may want to go that route if you’re desperate.

It’s been a stressful few weeks for us, but we will get it done. The last boxes will make it into the truck even if we have to put it on there ourselves. Whether or not we can fit the stuff we’re taking to the apartment in our cars and still accommodate the kids and dog, that is another story. Maybe I should think of my non-argument strategy for that too.

One thought on “Packing a House Without Fighting – A Few Tips

  1. wow good luck! we’ve moved a few times in the past few years and it is never easy (esp with kids!)! it’s definitely stressful, but you will get it done. and then you’ll get to the point where you’re settled and excited about your new home and you can relax a bit.

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