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Making a Long-Distance Move with Children? 3 Steps You Can Perform in Advance to Ease Moving Day Woes

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If you have decided to move your family out of state or across the country due to a job offer or just the desire for a big life change, then you are likely already feeling a lot of stress. Making a big move is stressful enough for a single person or couple, but when you add children into the mix, the moving stress can multiply exponentially. First, take a deep breathe. Then, remember that once the move is completed, your family will be in a great new state ready to explore and experience new adventures.

To ease your long-distance move stress, read on to learn three steps your family can complete before moving day arrives that will make the day easier on everyone. 

1. Have Each Family Member Make a List of Items They Will Need While Flying or Driving to the New Location & Pack them Early

While the long distance movers are transporting your family's belongings to your new home, your family will, of course, be traveling to the location by automobile or airplane. The last thing you want to have happen is realize that, after the movers have left with your belongings, you or a child accidentally packed an important item they will need during travel, such as a medication or even a child's favorite stuffed animal that they planned to snuggle with on the airplane. 

Have your children start making a list of what they want to keep with them in their airplane luggage or in the car, and then be sure to add any items they forgot about to their lists after they show them to you. Then, have them pack their suitcases/travel bags and check them over before the movers start packing your belongings. Be sure to look into the local weather forecast of the city you are moving to and ensure your children have weather-appropriate clothes to change into during or after traveling, if necessary. 

This step can be performed a few days ahead of the move, so it is one fewer activity you all have to perform on moving day. Items they use daily can even be packed early, and they can just pull them out and put them back into the travel bags each time they use them. 

2. Consider Allowing Your Children to Create Social Media Accounts to Keep in Touch with Old Friends

If you are like many concerned parents today, you may have made a "no social media" rule in your home to protect your children from cyber-bullying and the other hazards of social media in a child's life. However, for children, one of the most distressful factors of making a long-distance move is leaving old friends behind. To ease your children's distress during this difficult time, it is worth considering allowing any that are old enough to understand how to stay safe online create an account where they can keep in contact with old friends. Before allowing any of your children to create social media accounts, be sure to look into the age restrictions of the websites themselves, which some of them have. 

If you do allow one or more of your children to create social media accounts to help make leaving old friends easier for them, supervise their creation of the accounts and make sure their profiles are set to "private," so only their friends can see their posts. 

Not ready to introduce them to the sites or have children under the sites' age limits? Help your younger children obtain the contact information of local friends, such as phone numbers and email addresses, keep the list in a safe place, and let your child call and/or email them a little more frequently than you usually let them (if they desire) to help them remember that while old friends may be far away in distance, they are still just a phone call or email away. 

3. Have Everyone Start Deciding What Items They No Longer Need to Ease Your Moving Load

The larger your family is, the more unneeded "junk" you likely have around your house. Your children may each have clothing in their dressers and closets they have outgrown, old toys may be sitting in bins in the garage, and even the adults likely have a lot of items that seemed worthy of keeping before moving day was eminent, but now just don't seem worth the effort of moving them. 

Place two large boxes in each child's room, one labeled "donate" and one labeled "trash," and encourage them to add anything they don't use or wear anymore into the boxes as they have time until the day before the move. Do the same yourself, and you may be surprised just how much "stuff" your family can get rid of before the move to ease your moving day load and make packing and unpacking at the new home much quicker for everyone. 

If you are making a long-distance move with children, then it is likely a stressful time in your life. Preparing as much as you can in advance of moving day can make the day much physically and emotionally easier for everyone. Learn more by visiting resources like