Packing can be stressful time for every member of the
family. To ensure that your move goes as smoothly as
possible, try the following tips!
Pack a "Red Box"
Since one in five American families moves every year,
that means 22 million families may be searching for
their TV remote controls!
One of the pitfalls of packing for a move is you can't
always anticipate what you'll need when you arrive at
your new home, and movers typically list only the
obvious such as dishes, glasses, bedding, etc. The
miscellaneous items you need in the first few hours
invariably wind up on the bottom of a random box.
To start, you may want to create your own "red box" as
some moving companies ("Removers") do in Great
Britain. This is the last box loaded and the first one
off the truck. The one universal item in the red box
is the tea kettle (perhaps this would be the coffee
maker in the U.S.). This is also the place for
miscellaneous but crucial items such as scissors,
pens, paper, hammer, nails, hooks, screwdriver and
Packing a suitcase for each family member as though
you were going on a short vacation is another good
idea. Include a few sets of clothing and sleepwear,
footgear, outerwear, personal toiletries, medications
and eyeglasses. Make sure to bring starter family
toiletries like soap, toilet tissues and paper towels
Children's Toys and Play Dates
New York child psychologist Dr. Cindy Linde placed the
school directories from both their old and new schools
in an important box when she moved with her own young
children. That way they could keep in touch with their
old friends and classmates, and she could make play
dates with her childrens' new classmates.
Carol O'Leary recently relocated from London to New
York with her family. She found she urgently needed
her children's immunization records, and had no idea
which box of papers they were in. While her husband's
relocation liaison had told her to carry school
records, no one had told her the children could not
begin school without proof of immunizations. She also
found that while she always remembered foreign
currency for a vacation, it hadn't occurred to her to
carry American dollars to tip the movers and buy
While your childrens' most cherished toys go at the
top of a box, you may want to bury outgrown toys they
just can't give up at the bottom. Hopefully, out of
sight will mean out of mind!
Comforts of Home
Framed photos may not seem like the first thing to
unpack, but familiar photos scattered around your new
home can reinforce a feeling of family. Parents of
young children may want to keep some samples of their
artwork handy to immediately hang up on the
One mom found that her teenage daughter was horrified
to sleep with uncovered windows the first night. If
there are no shades or curtains in your new home, an
easy trick is to bring spring rods (like those in many
showers), over which you hang sheets for temporary
Perhaps Dr. Carol Pluzinski, a college professor and
the mother of two small boys said it best in reference
to her own move "we never could have done it without
the help of my sister and teen niece who came from
Chicago to assist before, during and after the move. I
guess that's what parents need to pack first,a loving,
fun aunt and cousin to help!"
Hopefully, the whole family can to relax together the
first night in your new home, so remember to pack TV
cords, remotes, and manuals together in a box that is
clearly marked. Computer cords, attachments, etc.
should be packed together as well.
Use these tips to help transition after your move and
good luck on your new start!