If you have not already told them about the move prior to reading this, then now is as good of a time as any to break the news. If you are staying in the same city and school district then it probably won’t be a big deal. They will get to stay with their friends and go to the same dance academy and play on the same softball team. If you are moving out of the area then it might take a little work on your part to convince them of how spectacular the new city is. There are even books at the library that you can check out for them to read about moving.
The goal is to make packing into a fun event, not a dreaded chore that is taking away from their playtime. Go the craft store together and gather a few essentials that will help with the process. A lot of things you may already have around the house, but you can pick up markers, stickers and labels, scrapbook, a journal, and even a special box that they can decorate to keep their very “important” items in. You will also need boxes and packing tape.
There is no way there isn’t at least one box worth of items that your child has grown out of, forgotten about, doesn’t like, or just doesn’t need. Sure, as soon as they find that lost action figure they haven’t seen in a year, it may become their favorite again. You don’t want to just start tossing things in donate or trash boxes because then they will resent the move. Talk to them about donating and the children who don’t have anything. They will likely be a little more generous with what they toss in a box themselves. Besides, if they don’t get rid of some stuff, there won’t be any room in their future bedroom for anything new, right?
Create an Essentials Box
Everyone in the house should have an essentials box, this includes children. In the box should be clothing and shoes they need for a few days, just in case unpacking does not go according to planned. If it is during the school year, then they will need school and play clothes, and pajamas. Their box should also contain their favorite toys, books, and puzzles, etc., that they would like to have until everything can get unpacked.
Pack the Room
A lot of stuff can actually be packed far in advance. If it is summer, by all means, pack all those winter clothes, snowsuits, books, etc., as soon as you can. Let your child pack some stuff. Items that are already folded they can easily place into boxes, and they are probably capable of filling a box with all their coloring books or video games. When a box is full, tape it closed and let them label and decorate it with stickers.