5 Tips to Make Your Holiday Move Less Stressful and More Cheerful
*This post is sponsored by Two Men and a Truck*
When we got the closing date for our new house I had a teeny tiny panic attack inside. We were set to close just four days before Christmas Eve. On the last business day before the holidays. And I wouldn’t be too stressed about it all expect that we didn’t do any Holiday decorating the two years previously and our soon-to-be-two year old is kinda obsessed with light up Christmas trees.
So I knew going into our move and the unpacking process that we could use some help and that I had to be strategic about it. Looking back on it all it really came down to these 5 things that seriously made the process go off without a hitch (and kept my sanity).
Keep Holiday Decorations Minimal and Accessible
I knew I wanted to have some festive spirit this year. Having missed out on it the two years previously made me miss the warmth of twinkle lights and cheer. But I also knew that doing everything would make it more stressful to me rather than having it feel good. So decided beforehand that putting up the lit tree and some garland would suffice (no ornaments, no tables-capes, etc). With that I made sure to have our movers put the Christmas tree bag and garland boxes somewhere super accessible instead of buried in our basement storage.
Literally, less than 48 hours after we got the keys to the new house we had the tree and garland set up and it felt so good.
I think if I had put the pressure on to do all the ornaments and unwrap all the tote boxes it would’ve felt like a “have to” instead of a “feel good” decision. Decide what your limits are before the move so you can make quick decisions during the unpacking process.
Separate Any Holiday Baking Supplies
It’s really important to me to bake some goodies around the Holidays. It’s a tradition my Nana started (she goes all out) and one that I like to keep up in my own way. Weeks leading up to the move I had been craving Spritz cookies and knew I would want to make the homemade marshmallows I make every year.
So prior to packing up our old kitchen I separated out all the kitchen gadgets and tools (including ingredients I already had) and put them in their own box together. So the box labeled “Christmas Baking Supplies” got left out on the new kitchen counter when the movers came so I knew where everything was.
It might seem insane to even think about baking right after a move, but it’s something that was more of a stress reliever for me. You thing might be something totally different, but if you’re able to keep it small and separate it you can get to your happy place a lot faster.
Trust Your Movers
Having never worked with professional movers before I had no idea what to expect the day of. Should I move everything to a central location or keep boxes where they are? Do I cover our hardwoods? Do I find the best possible route to carry heavy things for them? The anxious control freak that I am was kind of trying to do everyone’s job for them.
But as soon as that big white truck pulled up I kinda just let it all go. The guys (of course) knew exactly the best plan for all of the things I was secretly stressing about. They created a game plan in less than 5 minutes on how to get our stuff our properly (and they got it all out in about 4 hours).
When we needed to leave to go close on our new house we left them to it and I felt 100% confident that all of our things would be in good hands while we were away. I didn’t even make a trip back to the old house until the next evening. Letting that task go was the most freeing thing in the world. To outsource the giant headache of all the moving logistics to Two Men and a Truck freed up so much mental space for me so I could actually enjoy getting settled into the new space.
Focus on Zones
Once we got everything to the new house I knew I’d need a system to get unpacked in a way that didn’t drive me crazy. I asked on Instagram what rooms other people would unpack first and the common themes were the Kitchen, Master Bathroom, Master Bedroom and Master Closet. Those are truly the spaces that, once semi in order, I felt like I could breathe a little better.
But just like at your job, when you switch from task to task your brain takes a while to catch up. It will take longer to unpack both the kitchen and the bathroom if you focus on them at the same time. Deciding where to put the extra bath towels vs. the pots and pans is going to drive you crazy.
So I decided on my order of priority (Kitchen, Master Bedroom, Master Bathroom, Master Closet) and tackled them one at a time. These are the zones that (for me) felt like the most routine spots for me (cooking, getting coffee, putting on makeup, sleeping, etc). So if they were organized I could get back into my routine faster which always makes me feel more normal.
Decide Your “Good Enough” Stopping Point
This is the giant caveat to point #4. While I absolutely focused on zones and stuck to one area at a time, each room at its own “good enough” stopping point. For instance, the Master Bedroom, was “good enough” for me once the bed was set up and the nightstands in place with our charger and white noise machine. That’s it. Less than 10 minutes and the space was “done” for me.
The Kitchen on the other hand took multiple hours and even into the next morning to finally feel done. The Master Bathroom initially felt “good enough” for me when my mom simply unpacked all my boxes and found quick homes for things (getting the boxes out is major for me). The next morning I did a quick shuffle of things and it hit next level “good enough”. There are still plenty of storage solutions we need, but I’ll wait to see how we use the space before committing to anything.
But even outside of the priority zones I decided what was “good enough” for me for each room. You could sit and organize or arrange until your eyes explode each and every room, but I’d rather get to enjoy the space and take some time. There are still (plenty) of rooms that don’t have anything hanging, closets a bit a mess, or things that need moved, but the house feels settled.
Overall the thing I learned with our third house move is that people have a lot of opinions about moving (the strongest being that you should most definitely hire movers). I was so honored to get to work with Two Men and a Truck to make our move easier. Without them, none of these tips would exist because I’d still be laying under a pile of unopened boxes.