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How to Make Moving Easier with Young Children

Hi there friends.

Even though moving to a new home is definitely not top of mind while we hunker down for the Covid 19 pandemic, we know that eventually things will become normal again and we will make important decisions about where we want to live.

We are often asked questions about how to make a move easier on your family, especially when you have young children.

Here is a list of ways to keep the stress levels down when you are moving with small children.

1) Prepare in advance

Depending on how old your children are, it is important to involve your children in the moving process. If your kids are younger than 5 then we would suggest not telling them about the pending move too far in advance. Little kids do not have the ability to understand 6 weeks ahead so unless you want to feel like you are living in the movie "Ground Hog Day" keep the details to a minimum and a week ahead is fine. If your children are between 5 and 10 then they can probably understand the concept of time with the assistance of a calendar. Cross off the days til moving day.

Teenagers are the ones to potentially have the most anxiety about a move. Be kind and considerate of their feelings and keep them in the loop as much as possible. Remember that friends are really important to them so be patient and acknowledge how difficult a move could be. Family dinners are a great time to discuss the move and field any questions the kids will have.

2) Get familiar with the new place

If you are moving within the town, go for a drive to the new place to get them familiar with the new neighbourhood. Drive to the new school, the community center, the library and any place that your kids visit in the old neighborhood. If you are not able to visit the new neighbourhood, try a virtual tour with Google.

3) Search for organizations and teams

Find out about the local sports teams for your kids to join. If they are involved in team sports see if there is a team in the new neighbourhood. Get the kids involved in the search.

4) School

The most important part of the move for the children will be the potential for a new school. If it is possible, make an appointment with the guidance counselor at the new school and ask for a tour with your child. This will help to ease the transition so that the first day of school won't be so daunting. If it is not possible, make sure that any new enrollment forms have been completed in advance. Do the research before the first day.

5) Arrange Childcare

For small children, it will be necessary to find child care if you are working outside of the home. Research child care candidates and check reviews in advance. It will be very important to make sure the childcare provider is a good fit for your child and the rest of your family.

6) Packing for the move

It will be important for the children to be involved in the packing process. Give the children if they are old enough to understand, how much of their processions will be coming to the new place. Obviously the children need to bring some items that give them comfort, but you will want to pare down what they bring. Give them 1 box for their mementos and help them make a pile for donations. This process requires lots of patience and understanding. Doing this in advance will ease the stress of moving day.

Moving with children doesn't have to be stressful. Plan ahead, talk to friends who have gone through the process and involve the kids in the conversation.

Happy moving.
Kay

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Nancy in Hamilton
I think the real trick to making a move go smoothly when there are children involved is: Send them to Grandma's house.

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