If you’ve been anywhere near my blog or social media pages, you know that my family recently relocated to a tiny city that’s about six hours away from where we previously lived. My husband and I have both moved quite a bit in our lives, and twice together. Still, this move was a whole new experience because we have 15-month-old twins.
Here are our biggest takeaways from moving with two under two:
It makes a huge difference to have professional movers.
Wouldn’t you know it, extra help is helpful! We received a HUGE blessing when a relative offered to pay for a moving service for us, and we were so relieved not to have to do everything ourselves.
We didn’t want to take advantage of his kindness, so we tried to prevent the expense from climbing too high. This meant that we packed the majority of our items ourselves, because the movers would’ve charged for each box and packing material used. Spencer’s boss was extremely generous to let us take as many boxes and as much packing material as we wanted from his work, so we didn’t have to foot the bill for that, either. We also knew that if the movers didn’t have to pack much, everything would go faster.
Because we didn’t have to load or unload a moving truck ourselves, we saved time and labor, and got to focus more on our precious little girls.
There is no such thing as “too organized.”
When we were packing, we were very careful about keeping items from the same room in boxes together. Throughout the process, we were intentional about putting items together that could wait to be unpacked, compared to those that we would need quick access to. That helped us know the priority of a box, and we felt less overwhelmed when we began to unpack.
We also used neon notecards to label which room the box should go in, as well as wrote a brief description of the contents. Not only did this make it easy for our movers to know where to go, it also helped tremendously when we were looking for specific items or planning how to organize our new house.
The house we moved into has an unfinished basement, so we labeled many boxes to go down there for storage or to be out of the way until we were ready to unpack them (which didn’t take long). Doing that meant we had fewer boxes sitting around upstairs while we were getting settled, and less chaos was helpful for our girls and our dog to feel comfortable.
Having our boxes organized helped us get 75 percent unpacked in only two days! Our new house started feeling like home very quickly.
Lean on others for help with everything.
In our last city, relatives and friends who were quick to lend a helping hand surrounded us, which was a great blessing.
Not only did people come over to help us pack, but we also had friends organizing packing materials, watching our girls so we could focus on what needed to be done, playing with our dog to help distract him from the commotion, bringing us meals so that we could pack up our kitchen sooner, and more. It was amazing!
The week before our move, we hosted small group amongst all our chaos and everyone spent multiple hours helping us clean the house. People were like worker bees all over the place, cleaning windows, blinds, and baseboards, touching up paint, cleaning scuffs off walls, and even texturing the ceiling in a spot where there had been water damage. We were in awe of the determination and willingness that everyone had when it came to helping us, and we felt extremely loved when we were prayed over, as well.
The days leading up to the move, we had several small group members offer to bring us dinner. This meant that we saved money by not eating out, we got to spend more quality time with our friends, and we had leftovers in disposable containers to eat for breakfast and lunch the next day. We even had a couple women from our group bring us the most delicious cinnamon rolls and our favorite coffee the morning before we moved, which was an extra-special treat.
I’m so glad we reached out for assistance, accepted help, and didn’t try to do everything ourselves. Children feed off of your emotions, so keeping our stress level down helped our girls feel more at ease with all the changes happening around them.
Let the littles make some decisions.
When you move, your world can feel like it’s turning inside out and upside down. For young minds, this can be especially hard to understand and accept.
Our girls don’t talk with words yet, so they couldn’t tell us how they felt about all the commotion. The move came at a time when they were both cutting multiple teeth and they had just transitioned out of a crib and onto a mattress on the floor. That’s a lot of change for little people to handle, so it’s smart to offer them choices when you are able to.
During our long drive to our new house, we didn’t stop very often. When we did, we were intentional about giving the girls some freedom and encouraging them to make decisions for themselves.
At such a young age, this can look like offering two different foods and letting them pick which one they want. It can also mean getting them out of their carseats and finding some shade to run around in, where they can also sit and take a break in the grass if they want to. We knew we were asking a lot from them by making them endure such a long car ride, so we wanted to make sure they felt like they had some control, too.
Get the kids’ space set up before anything else.
Big changes can be difficult for young minds to process, especially when they have minimal ability to communicate with you. Our girls’ bedroom is a comforting space for them, and having a routine helps avoid confusion.
Knowing this, we set their new room up right away when we got to our new house. We didn’t have everything that was in the old room, but we made sure we had a comfortable bed for them, darkening shades on the windows, their white noise machine, and a small nightlight. We cleaned as best we could, considering how tired we all were, because we didn’t want the room to smell foreign to them—even just vacuuming the carpet can make a huge difference!
We stuck to their usual nighttime routine with warm milk, pajamas, brushing teeth, and a Bible story. We kissed them goodnight and prayed for the best. Our girls have had difficulties falling asleep in unfamiliar places in the past, so we were hoping for a smooth night, and that’s what it was!
I’m sure it helped that we were determined to make everything as familiar as we could for them.
I wouldn’t want to move with young kids all the time, but it really wasn’t so bad.
Overall, I think everyone in the family handled the move with grace. Now, we are beginning to paint walls, hang artwork, and make our house into a cozy home. We love it here so far—and so do the girls!
Hello! I am a work-at-home mom to twin girls and a canine. I’m learning what life looks like when you surrender to God. Passionate about parenthood, marriage, and all things coffee!