Moving during Christmas?
How to not be a Grinch and keep the holiday spirit!
Moving between Christmas and New Years has become a popular choice. School is out and families find this an easier time to transition schools and work. Although the holiday season may be a popular time to move due to flexibility in work and school schedules, the hustle and bustle of the holidays creates even more stress for anyone dealing with a move. Not only do you have to plan out your move further in advance, you also have to deal with holiday parties, gifts, and family traditions around the same time – this is the making for the perfect moving disaster!
As moving and storage professionals over the last 15 years, we have heard some great tips on how to keep your sanity during a holiday move. Here are our top tips to make moving during the holidays easier:
You always want to plan in advance, but with Christmas and New Years in the mix, you’ll really want to plan ahead. Movers, truck rental and self storage companies tend to book up fast during this time of year. Also keep in mind that some of these companies may be closed on key dates that you might be moving, so make sure to reserve or rent well in advance of your moving date. Check online and reserve or rent as soon as you know your moving date, you may even have to rent ahead of time so that the services will be available.
We all love to decorate during the holidays but if you are moving during this time, it is wise to pack most everything up. Packing your home before Christmas will put less stress on the family. Don’t worry about missing out on decorating; try using nature in place of traditional decorations. Use a live Christmas tree and decorated it traditionally with popcorn and cranberries strings. Have the kids make paper ornaments for the tree. This will keep them busy while you pack and the whole tree (ornaments and all!) can be recycled after Christmas. Use leaves, fruit, berries and fresh flowers as a center piece on your table use and candles instead of lights. You might like this so much it becomes a new family tradition!
When it comes to purchasing boxes and moving supplies, again, plan ahead. Get what you need early, many stores are closed before and after the holidays. Also, try and pack up EVERYTHING that you know you won’t need, summer clothing, household decorations, toys and attic items. To keep your home organized for the holidays, it’s a good idea to put boxed up items into self storage between the moves. This will keep your house clutter free. You should also use a bedroom or garage as a staging area.
By keeping the main gathering areas of the house free of boxes, it will lessen the stress of moving during the holidays. You can also purchase color code tape to separate out different rooms that each box belongs to (e.g. red for the master bedroom, green for Taylor’s bathroom, etc.)
If your house is the “go to” home for your family, don’t worry, you can still celebrate in a fully packed house. You have several options to host for the holidays. You can order a meal with all the trimmings and just heat it up, go out for brunch – a real treat (most major hotels offer this option), or pre-cook most of the meal. I have found that I enjoy cooking most of the side dishes days ahead, this way I can enjoy my family and friends. Most items can be heated up on the day of the event! Whatever your plan, make it easy for you. Use festive paper plates and disposable cook wear so that you can pack most of your kitchen beforehand. This is not the year to pull out your china and crystal; this should be packed well in advance because it takes so much time. You don’t want to be packing these items at the last minute because they are so priceless.
When you plan and pack up before hand, you might find that there’s not a lot to around the house to keep your family entertained. Kids especially will tell you they are bored and that one toy they haven’t wanted for 6 months is packed away. One of the best thing around the holidays is all the free or inexpensive events offered in your community. Check your local area for free concerts, events and parents’ day out (time when you can drop off the kids during the day, for more packing). Many churches, towns and malls host events for the whole family. Plan again in advance, for some fun time during the move, it will help release the stress and give you a much needed break from packing or planning.
Over the years, the one thing clients wish they did differently, no matter what time of the year the move may take place, they wish they could have relaxed a little bit more. The move will get done and there will probably be some bumps along the way. Put in perspective, you have done what you can and the move will move on, but this time of year – the holidays – only happen a few times in your lifetime! So enjoy them with family and friends, no matter what the stress of life may bring.
From all of us at Amazing Spaces we wish you peace, love and relaxation over the holiday season!