Jen Charron: Control Freak


Organizing For A Move

Procure Your Packing With These Four Steps

The countdown has begun.

Two more sleeps till Santa comes? Nope. That’s not what I’m talking about.

21 days until we move into our new home! So between the last minute stocking stuffer shopping and the wrapping, we have begun to pack up our home and prepare for our big move.

Here are some things that we’re doing to tackle the daunting task in our typical organized fashion:

Assessing the Situation
We are moving to a similarly sized home that even has an almost identical layout. But we’re trading one small downtown home for another. That means all of our furniture isn’t going to translate to the available spaces in the new place. I’ve been mulling over how we’ll distribute things in the new home and thinking about what pieces will need to find a new home and what will need to be purchased. I took copious measurements at the new house. And I made a Home Furniture spreadsheet:

- I listed out all of the furniture we own, under one tab.
- Then I created a separate tab and slotted each piece into the rooms of the new house.
- Knowing some of the new pieces I want to purchase (Ikea here we come!), I added these to each room, using red to indicate that these need to be purchased.
- Some things I’m not totally sure of. So these get a question mark next to them.
- This ends up with a list of extra things that need to find a home, either at our place or someone else’s or the Goodwill.
- I’ve also got a spot or two where I know I need something but I’m not sure what. These are highlighted.

Using this list, we know what big pieces of furniture we can part with now, so that we don’t end up moving them.

Getting Rid of the Excess

In the spirit of the New Year and with our desire to not move extra stuff, we are going through and purging what we can now. Even though we’re an organized family and don’t have major issues with clutter, we still have more stuff than we need as new stuff always seems to be coming in. (Hello? All the new toys coming from Santa in a couple days?!?)

Living in a small home, we only have so much storage space. A couple times a year, I go through the things we are storing and swap out some of the things we don’t need anymore for some of the newer things we’d like to keep. Since we’re going through our stuff now to pack it all for moving, we’re doing one of these purges at the same time. Why move it when you can lose it?

Keeping it Together
We’re being systematic in our packing. We’ve started with our home office and the basement and are moving onto the dining room next. We are packing all of the stuff from each room together in a set of boxes and bins. Instead of mixing different kinds of things from different rooms, we’re keeping like things together and creating a set of boxes for each room in our home.

Right now, we’re at the stage where we’re packing up the things we aren’t going to need over the next 3 weeks. And we’re starting with the rooms that hold the most items that are not used daily. Once they are packed, the boxes stay in that room while we live around them and keep out what we need and use day-to-day.

Closer to the day, we’ll pack the last boxes of commonly used items for each room in separate boxes. These will be important to clearly label and keep track of as they will also be the first things we’ll need when we get to the new house.

Organizing with Colour
As we pack our boxes, we are putting detailed labels on each one. This includes the name of the room in which the box belongs and info on what’s in the box.

Plus we’re taking it a step further. As a former art student, I love to use colour to code things. This move is no exception. My husband has gone to the hardware store and purchased several different kinds and colours of tape. We have regular masking tape, green painters tape, blue painters tape, and a rainbow of red, yellow, white and silver duct tapes. We have assigned each kind/colour of tape to a particular room. The detailed labels for each box are written on the proper tape and put onto each box.

Then on moving day, I’ll put up the corresponding tape on the doorway or the wall of each room in the new house so that the movers know exactly where to put each of the boxes. And I’m going to find some brightly coloured stickers for the boxes of commonly used items so that we can easily find them in the piles of boxes when we get to the new place.

And this is just the beginning… Stay tuned for more tales about how we’re getting ready for our move – and then what happens once we get to organizing our new home!