I have to tell you guys that I knew I didn't like moving, but it had been long enough that I had forgotten exactly how much I HATE moving! Moving is a horrendous experience and should be used as a form of torture! It's a good thing that I'm not a member of a nomadic tribe because there would be one less nomadic tribe in existence and I would be locked up in the loony bin for the criminally insane. In hopes of saving you a little insanity, and perhaps me next time around, I thought I'd share some lessons learned with you.
10. It doesn't matter how far in advance you start packing, if you are human, inevitably you will end up awake, throwing random things in any box you can find at 3 a.m. the day that the movers are set to come. The sooner you begrudgingly accept and plan for that fact, the better. As an addendum to this lesson: hire movers. I know it is extra money during a time when you are already spending a great deal of money, but believe me, unless you only have a few boxes and a futon, movers are very worthwhile, plus you just pay them at the end of the day rather than hesitating to answer the phone when your friends call, wondering if this is the day that they are going to cash in the HUGE favor that you owe them and you're going to have to help them move their 1,000 piece glass menagerie and ten ton cannon ball collection.
9. You are probably going to end up with a stack of items that you have the wonderfully a
altruistic plan to donate. Even if you have recently had a garage sale to get rid of such items, there are more, trust me. They are like bunnies and they multiply when you're not looking. I hate to break it to you, but you're not going to get those items over to the charity, it's just not going to happen before your move. You can either, move these items and then donate them, schedule a time for the charity to pick up the items from you (keep in mind that a charity is not interested in sending a truck by your house for one box of old Christmas ornaments, a single plate, 15 candles that you thought were such a great deal but have never used, and all of the old CDs that Half Price Books couldn't even be paid to take), or, and this is the most likely scenario, you will be putting these items out on the sidewalk in front of your house hoping that someone comes by and thinks they look like treasures worth taking.
8. If you are trying to make this an organized move and write up a list of what items are in what box, DO NOT let someone pack your list! You will end up having to look through every single box to find the list which completely defeats the purpose of writing the list in the first place. Oh yeah, I thought I was being so clever this time around...fail!
7. You have WAY more stuff than you think you do. I swear, every time I would pack a box and move it out of the room I would come back to more things! Where did it all come from!
5. Most of your furniture will need to be rearranged at least one time after you have gotten it over to your new place. Even if you plan it out and do a scale drawing with movable pieces, you need to get the feel of your new environment to get the furniture in exactly the right spot. And hopefully you can get the feel of your new environment while the movers are still there and they can move the heavy stuff to the exact right spot.
4. Cleaning your old place and unpacking your new place while the movers are moving all of your boxes and furniture sounds like a great plan, but the reality is that you need to be supervising the move. Otherwise you end up moving things, like great grandma's china, in the truck when it was supposed to go in the car which is slightly less detrimental to the extremely delicate. And I am with you, I feel guilty standing around telling people where to put this and that without actually moving anything myself, but your breakables will thank you.
3. If you live in a warm climate and can avoid it, DO NOT move during any month that can be considered summertime. Summer takes a miserable experience, i.e. moving, and makes it a million times worse because you are now miserable, plus your hot, sweaty, and you stink.
2. Moving does give you an opportunity to see every item that you own again and question your taste and/or sanity. You will find all sorts of things that you have absolutely no recollection of buying, but you must have because you're pretty sure that your friends and family don't hate you enough to buy that for you...What were you thinking, obviously you weren't, were you drunk, maybe you were drunk and ordered it online, yeah, let's go with that, just tell people you were drunk and it was a gag gift for some friend of yours that they have never heard of or met because she...she lives in Madagascar, yeah, that's it, Madagascar, and you met her when you and the giraffe and the zebra escaped from the zoo...wait, that can't be right...
And my number 1 moving tip is...