How to Pack and Move with Children

Do you need to move, but you don't have anyone who can watch your children? Well, it doesn't have to be the end of the world if you plan your move right! Much can be accomplished in little time, if you know how to organize.

One. Create a list of things you must do related to the move.

Include things on your list like: pick up boxes, buy tape, purchase a few pair of scissors, black markers, packing foam or bubble wrap. (Buying extra is helpful in case you or your children misplace any of your items which can be a headache trying to find.) Sometimes it is easier to get a co-worker or friend to help you get these items then to get them to watch your children, so ask someone to do a few errands for you like pick up boxes.

Two. Take several large empty boxes, label each, and set up in each room you will be packing.

Be sure you label boxes with words like: "children's room (toys), bedroom, living-room, hall closet, bathroom" in large letters on each box so that items will be easy to find later. Important items should be written small or abbreviated to help you find them. When you have boxes already started in each room, it gives you a good idea how many more you will need and also helps keep you organized.

Three. Explain to children what you will be doing with the boxes.

When parents take time to explain to children what is going on in their environment it makes things easier for them to understand. You may want to let them play with a box or two. When you are ready to pack some of their items, give younger children a few small tasks to do to make them feel good about helping.

Four. When packing up the children's room, leave the most entertaining items out up until the night before.

If you pack up the children's favorite items to soon before the move out date, you will find the children will frequently nag you about those items putting you in a position to have to unpack boxes you just packed. So try to leave out their treasured items and those that aren't favored so much. Explain to them they will see their toys again at your new residence.

Five. Block off areas that may be hazardous to children.

Places where you are packing, cutting tape and using scissors, should not be frequented by children. You can use safety gates, packed boxes, and furniture to block off these spaces or simply put a safety gate in front of an open bedroom door or living-room space.

Six. Utilize outdoor space to keep children occupied such as a patio or backyard.

These places are very helpful when a parent is busy cleaning and organizing in the home and doesn't want the children running around from room to room. However, be forewarned that siblings will fight with one another if they are forced to stay in any area together for a long time. So you may want to rotate each child around such as having one child seated in front of a computer playing children's games, the other in the kid's room alone with the toys and the other out on the patio riding his/her bike and throwing a ball around.

Seven. Feed children and diaper babies BEFORE you begin any task.

A child won't bother you as much if his or her belly is well-fed with food and drink, so be sure you have their basic needs handled. Leave snacks out after an hour or two has passed. Try to pick food items that you will not have to worry over the children making a big mess. Avoid giving them open cups. This too will prevent unnecessary accidents.

Eight. Take advantage of nap time and offers to take the children out.

While the children are away, pack up the majority of the items in their room. Leave out enough clothes, toys and movies that will keep them occupied until your move out date. Pack toiletries and remaining items in a suitcase and/or leftover boxes the night before the move. This way it is easy to find diapers, wipes, toothpaste, lotion, etc.

Nine. Keep children out of the movers way at all times.

To ensure that you have a smooth move on moving day, be sure the children are out of the movers’ way. They don't want to accidentally bump your children and you don't want to become irritated with them because of it, so keep them out of the way by either putting them on the patio or some other play area, keeping them in their room until the movers need to come and get their things, or sit in the car or truck with them while they watch a DVD, work on an activity and/or play a game.

Ten. Instruct movers to put children's items in their room rather than in another place of your new residence.

If movers are not given specific instructions for boxes, they will pile them all in the living-room. You will want all your items placed in the right rooms. If you labeled each box prior to the move, there shouldn't be any problem for the movers placing your boxes in the appropriate rooms and no problem for you finding most items. Once most of the children's items are removed from the truck, be sure you begin unpacking a box or two of your child's first so that they can occupy themselves in their new room. This way they are not playing in the way of the movers.

Planning a move with children doesn't have to be complicated, if you remember the following: tend to their needs before you begin any project, block them off from areas you will be working, use toys, and TV to babysit when you have no one else who can help, and while the children are napping or away, get the most important tasks completed such as packing their room without interruption.

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media