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Thursday, May 10, 2012

{we're moving!: a binder to keep you organized}

 Our family is about to embark on a very big adventure...we are moving cross country in about six weeks!

We moved a lot when we were first married, and all through school, but we've lived in our current town for nine years. We made a big move when we went to graduate school, but we had one baby, and knew it would be temporary.  Now, with five kids, a house to sell, a house to buy, a relocation company, and all the ins and outs of changing pretty much every aspect in our life, there is a lot of information to keep track of.

To help me navigate through the process, I created a moving binder--one that is equipped to hold every bit of information I gather through this moving experience.  Keeping organized is the best way for me manage my stress level--when I know things are in place, and I'm not forgetting anything important, I function much better.  :) There is so much vital information to keep track of, and having it all in one place ensures easy access and that you won't lose a thing! It also doesn't take up much space, and eliminates piles of papers that might stack up otherwise. 

 I started with a regular white 1.5 inch binder, and 10 plastic dividers with pockets.  I bought the dividers that had the tabs you can put through the printer--I love the look of neatly typed and labeled tabs the best!

 I printed out the following tabs:

*Relocation Information
*Home for Sale
*Home to Buy
*Estimates & Bids
*Movers & Packing
*Mortgage & Lenders
*Moving Checklist: (current town)
*Moving Checklist:  (new town)
*New Area Information

I  also included plastic business card pages in several of the sections, notepaper in each section, and a plastic pouch to hold receipts in the receipt section.

This binder has already become my saving grace, and I love that I can take it with me wherever I go. I'm so, so glad I have it!

My life is going to be pretty crazy over the next few weeks, and I hope you'll forgive me if I'm here just a little less until we get moved.  I am excited to decorate a new house, and all the projects that will come of it!

If you have any advice or tips on moving, selling or buying a home, helping kids adjust, or anything else you can think of, I'd love to hear it! 


Blogger Cindy said...

Fabulous binder! I have been married 15 years and have moved 6 times. We moved from Va to FL (where we are from) 6wks ago to finally be near family. I have used a binder each time we moved and it is a total lifesaver!! I must say yours is so much cuter than mine LOL :)

I have 3 boys (one born in each state we've lived in). Something we always do is go online and research the area for: parks & recreational areas, movie theaters, attractions, etc. so they see what is available to do. Google earth can also give them a chance to see it close-up too. We look for restaurants that might sound cool to try and always look at the schools so they can read about them. I also make them clean out their rooms so they can find items to donate if they want. My middle very artsy so this last move all the boys got paper out and "sketched" out how they wanted to layout their new room and how they wanted to decorate it.

That binder will be a lifesaver in your move! Great job and best wishes! Cindy

May 10, 2012 at 5:59 AM  
Blogger Vanessa said...

I do the same, it's the only way to stay on top of everything without losing it. Pray you have a safe and easy move.


May 10, 2012 at 7:13 AM  
Blogger Chelsea said...

Typed to-do lists were my best friend when we moved to South Korea. I had lists by month, week, and day, and being able to cut & paste from one list to another was a lifesaver for me, my sanity, and my guilty conscience! :) The Evernote app was also huge, allowing me to have my to do lists with me all the time!
Good luck! It was also really important for our kids to do some of their favorite things one last time before they left...don't forget the fun!

May 10, 2012 at 7:40 AM  
Blogger Val said...

I grew up in the military and married a career Marine so we have moved LOTS!! One trick my mom used and I continued was. . to have an OPEN FIRST BOX. Put a few things you will need right away like toilet paper, sharp knife, paper towels, quick-make treat and something special for each kiddo to do while you are unpacking. Make sure you label it with bright markers (good job for kids) and have your movers put it on the truck last so it comes on first. Good Luck--sounds crazy but I MISS MOVING :}

May 10, 2012 at 8:21 AM  
Blogger Cindy said...

Good luck with the move! Can't wait to hear where you are going and watching you decorate the new house. You inspire us all.

May 10, 2012 at 9:15 AM  
Blogger Gallegos Newsletter said...

Congratulations on the move...Can you share with us where you are going? I have moved several times and one thing that really helped me last time was using labels to mark my boxes instead of markers...for me it was just easier...Moving is also a great way to go through and organize things you don't need! Trust me if you have not looked at since the last time you moved you do not need it! Good luck!

May 10, 2012 at 10:01 AM  
Blogger The Four Voigts said...

Great idea! Thanks for sharing. We're about to embark on a cross-country move as well! Best of luck to you. We are a Navy family and move often and whenever we get to a new house, the kids get something new to "welcome" them like a new personalized chair or a new bedding set. My dad was also career Navy and when we got a little older our tradition became to eat at a super fun restaurant for our first meal in our new home. When we moved to Washington State, our first meal was at the top of the Space Needle. Best of luck to you on your adventure!

May 10, 2012 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger Carla Jo said...

This is awesome, my family of 3 is a military family and we are getting ready to move to Japan from Jacksonville, NC & although we do not have to deal with buying or selling a home, we still have A TON on our plates. Plus we will essentiallybe "homeless" for 6-10 while we travel around to visit family & when we first arrive in Japan. So this is an awesome idea & easy to personalize to suit your situation.

May 10, 2012 at 3:11 PM  
Blogger Tracy - {CraftJunkieToo} said...

Best of luck to you and your family! I'm fortunate that I haven't had to move but I know this organizing strategy is going to save you much frustration. We'll be here for you -- so thanks for taking us along on your life's journey!

May 10, 2012 at 3:25 PM  
Blogger SoCalKal said...

We are a USMC family also moving and my moving binder from our last move was still in place. One thing that I do to help if I am trying to handle the move-in day on my own is put stickers on each box for each room in a theme or color and have a piece of paper with that same theme/color on the door so that if I can't be there to direct the movers who may or may not be english speaking have a clue where to put boxes thereby saving me LOTS of extra work moving them later.

May 10, 2012 at 3:41 PM  
Blogger Danny & Jenn said...

We are in the process of moving too. ADVICE - if you use a moving company (ours was a relocation also so we did!) know that if they store your things, it isn't the same rates as normal storage. We accepted an offer on our home that meant it our things would be in storage for a month that we would need to pay. Turns out it's about SIX HUNDRED dollars a month! Ouch! Way more than we expected! Good luck!!

May 10, 2012 at 3:45 PM  
Blogger Andrews Family said...

We are also moving in less than 2 weeks, although I didn't break down and do a binder I did do some file folders in my filing cabinet next to my computer for easy access. My husbands relocation company pays for spousal job hunting assistance and even though I'm a stay at home mom they helped me located pre-schools, pediatricians, dentists, swimming lessons, piano lesson pretty much anything I needed since my "job" is raising my kids. If your husband's relocation company offers something like that DEFINITELY take advantage, it's just that much less time spent on the computer searching for everything! Also when you go house hunting, grab a local phone book from the realtors office (they usually have a bunch for their clients) so that when you are getting ready to close on your new home you can contact local carpet cleaners, house cleaners (before you move in) and other companies to change over your Electric, water etc! I thought about it and WISH I WOULD HAVE and now I'm lost as to who will supply us with internet!! Sometimes looking things up on the internet has they have too many companies listed that aren't really available in the area. Hope your move goes smooth and good luck to you.

May 10, 2012 at 5:22 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

When we moved my son was 3. It was suggested that we try to set up his new room as close to possible as his old room to make it an easier adjustment.
The best advice, was from my Mom. She suggested numbering each box. Then in a notebook write down the box number and what was inside. I took it a step further, and also put a sticky note (taped on) next to the number with a letter on it. Each room represented a letter. That way the movers knew where to put each box. Saving me time and energy.
Also, there are some great children's books about moving. :)

May 10, 2012 at 9:39 PM  
Blogger benbidder said...

OH my goodness, this is going to be us in about the same amount of time, we are moving from AZ to NC! I don't have anything near as nice as what you have, lol. Although we just found out this week that we were moving, I feel like I should still get on that! :)

May 11, 2012 at 12:57 AM  
Blogger Chasity said...

We are moving soon and we already have a 3 year old with another one due in 9 week!! YIKES
Could yall please share some of the things yall had on your to do list? I have only moved once and that was into our current home so I am not experienced and now we have 2 children's stuff to move. I am in serious need of some help to keep this transition very stress free for EVERYONE!!

May 11, 2012 at 9:19 AM  
Blogger Chasity said...

We are moving soon and we already have a 3 year old with another one due in 9 week!! YIKES
Could yall please share some of the things yall had on your to do list? I have only moved once and that was into our current home so I am not experienced and now we have 2 children's stuff to move. I am in serious need of some help to keep this transition very stress free for EVERYONE!!

May 11, 2012 at 9:20 AM  
Blogger Sky said...

What a great idea- wish I would've been anywhere near this together when we moved last summer. We'd been in our town for a fair handful of years also, and I found that moving day was the most emotional day ever for me! I know when we moved, for the sake of my boys, the very first space I put together and finished was their room, with all of their things in it. That way, they had as much familiarity as possible. No doubt you will do amazing at making this a great move for your family, Kierste! Best of luck to you through it all!

May 11, 2012 at 6:27 PM  
Blogger Susan said...

good luck with the move, my moving binder also saved my sanity. I love all of the extras that you thought of including in your binder. The pockets will be especially helpful.

May 15, 2012 at 9:28 AM  
Blogger Betsey said...

I have moved 17 that wasn't a typo. I have 5 kids, and as they got old enough I decided to have them help pack and unpack their own things. (We didn't have a relo company for any move.) They were a lot better at remembering what was in a box than I was with boxes I had written on. If you can get their furniture in and let them do most of the rest it really gives them a sense of ownership for their things, and it also helps occupy their time while you unbox the remainder of the house. I really liked what one reader said about having an open first box, I would also include a shower curtain, even if it is just a cheap liner from the dollar store to "cover" you until you find the box with the real one. I can't tell you how many times I have had to make a midnight or later run to get a shower curtain so I could wash off my moving dirt. Best of luck to you in your new home!

May 16, 2012 at 4:00 PM  
Blogger kierste said...

You guys are AWESOME!! Thank you so much for all the fantastic ideas--I so appreciate it!

May 17, 2012 at 10:14 PM  
Blogger Janice said...

lots of good suggestions here. I moved 21 times in 30 years. Be sure to pack a basics kitchen box that you open first so you can cook eggs, open cans, eat cereal etc. Pack it like you are going to camp out - which you basically do on your last day in the current home, and on the day of arrival.
I also packed a separate small box with papers I would need to set up new utilities, proof of insurance and more. Call it important papers.

May 18, 2012 at 1:04 AM  
Blogger MrsJoJo said...

Well, just confirmed an international move (Thailand to UK) so this is a timely topic... Now looking to see if I have a file I can re-purpose!!

So far we've sorted out our son's new school, temporary accommodation (thanks mum!), confirmed the relocation company... But my to-do list is vast - less than 80 days to go!

May 22, 2012 at 1:15 AM  
Blogger Heather Tanner said...

My family has just found out that we are moving as well. We are moving the end of August. I have a three yr old and a two year old, I am also having a baby the end of June .... My life is crazy. I was hoping you could share some of your do lists with me. I am tring so hard not to be overwhelmed with all of this and great do to lists might be my saving grace
Best wishes

May 29, 2012 at 2:42 PM  

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