Taking the Stress Out of Moving with Kids
Moving house is an exciting time for families but according to the Holmes Rahe Stress Inventory, it also falls within the top 30 most stressful life events. In addition to the logistic aspects of moving (packing things up, having to leave treasured items behind, having to buy new furniture and take time to decorate your new home), the psychological aspects of changing schools, friends, and familiar jaunts, can affect adults and children alike. How can you make the process easier for the youngest members of your family?
Making Social Connections
If you are lucky enough to be moving to a relatively close area, try meeting new people (or strengthening existing bonds in your new neighborhood) in the months leading up to your move. You might do this by signing your child up for a weekend dance or sports class in your chosen neighborhood, or taking them to play in their new park on weekends. This will ensure that their new surroundings seem more familiar. By the time you move, it is ideal if your kids already have their favorite play areas, kiddie restaurants, and hangouts. If your child will be going to daycare, try to organize a morning or two a week in your child’s new care center, so he or she already knows staff and other babies and toddlers.
Giving Kids a Say
One of the most exciting ways to make kids excited about a new home, is letting them design their own rooms, with respect to a few key pieces furniture, as well as the color of their walls, curtain prints, etc. This can be hard to do if you have put all your savings into a new home, but the right mortgage selection will free up your finances for a bit of inspiring decoration. Even small things can make a difference, such as fairy lights, tents, beanbags, and other items your child may have always wanted.
Time Management for Success
Are you one of those people who enjoys leaving things to the last minute for the adrenaline rush involved in rushing to meet a deadline? Moving home isn’t one of those tasks you can leave until last minute, if you want to make the move stress-free for kids and adults in the family. Make a timeline of tasks to fulfill in the lead-up to the week you are moving, including chores for kids. One of the first things kids should do is set aside toys and clothes they no longer need or use, so these can be given to local charities or sold at a garage sale. Other tasks include cancelling gym and other local subscriptions before you leave, informing the school you will be leaving in due time, and pre-packaging and sending items or making small trips every week to bring items such as cooking utensils and other heavy equipment to your new home. If you are very busy, consider a concierge service, which will take care of tasks like broadband connection, council tax, insurance, etc.
Movement is life. It is a crucial part of progress, though big changes always provoke a little fear and worry. Keep things calm for kids by trying to make friends before you leave, and by being very strict with time management – so that your move is a ‘little by little’ rather than a last-minute affair.