If you follow me I'm sure the content around moving is something you've been seeing a lot of! Moving can be one of the most stressful life events a person can go through and while I'm sure the moving content overload and be cumbersome, that's just what's happening right now in my life! I also want to be a resource and help remind people that you don't have to have every part of your move or new space figured out before you get there and you don't need to break the bank decorating and settling all at once. It's so easy to get wrapped up in the idea of having a 'perfect' space right away because that's what we see on the aesthetic girlies are posting on their pages. We're human, it's okay to not have it all figured out. 

I've moved a few times in and out of college apartments and post-grad apartments but moving across the country into a completely different climate with about 3x the space is quite the undertaking. There was a lot of change, stress, and tears, but ultimately it was all worth it. 

I always want to be a resource and want to make sure I'm giving people in my life the tools to succeed so it's easier for you than it was for me. I've rounded up what helped me through this huge transition period and what I chose that worked best for me.

My biggest piece of advice is to research! I spent a lot of time mapping out the best routes, schedules, and timelines. Once I found where I was going to live after months of researching and Google Mapping the city of New Orleans, I moved on to the logistics of the move. I looked into mailing my possessions, hiring movers, driving a U-Haul, or renting a car. It takes a lot of time, research, and communication to come up with the best plan. My mom was a rock star and offered to ride with me so when I got my U-Haul quote and my rental car quote and they cost about the same, it ultimately came down to what we were comfortable driving across the country. We went the minivan route because we were most familiar with it and that made us feel the most secure. 

Once I had that piece in place, I had to go about getting rid of my stuff. I lived in my studio for two years and although it was a small space, the amount of stuff I accumulated may surprise you. As human beings, we tend to do that! A big piece of it was finally sitting down and feeling strong enough to go through things I pulled from my dad's house that I saved when we cleaned out his condo. There was a lot of emotional baggage that came along with this and I wanted to be sure I was making the right decisions for this permanent decision since I'll never have more stuff of his. Ultimately, my dad's personality, jokes, and love for me and our family are what is more important. Stuff is just stuff. But having the lead time to go through it over time without getting overwhelmed really helped. 

I would recommend listing your items on Facebook Marketplace or a similar Facebook group well ahead of time. While it was inconvenient at times without furniture leading up to my move, it was less of a worry and less stress when it came time to actually leave my old apartment. Make sure you communicate with a loved one as the process is happening or have them present. Try to move the items to a neutral space like a hallway, lobby, or outside your apartment so there's never a time where you feel vulnerable. I would recommend also being realistic about your pricing. Post pictures of any blemishes on the pieces, and look up what you bought the items for originally if you can then assess from there.

There were a lot of times when it didn't feel real. But some items that came in handy for packing included: vacuum seal bags, sharpies, reusable totes, old T-shirts, a folding table, a small tool set, and cleaning supplies. I packed big bulk items in the reusable totes. Since they're fabric and not plastic, they were easier to pack and fit in the car when I was loading them. I labeled them on the outside as well in case I needed to access anything after it was packed. Vacuum-sealed bags helped with packing bulky clothes. Sweaters, jackets, and any items I could fit in those I packed and sealed so they were easy to pile in the car and saved a ton of space. They're also reusable and compact so I could repack items I knew I wouldn't need while it was 100 degrees in New Orleans and save for the chillier months or for when I go back to Chicago. I have a folding table to help me organize everyday items I was still using and helped me better utilize the space within my tiny apartment. I will say, pack your tools and cleaning supplies last and then unpack them first when you arrive at your new living space. It helps to clean before you unpack and settle in. I would also recommend keeping toilet paper with it so that you have it right away!

I first packed anything I wasn't actively using. So winter clothes, kitchen items that I was never fully able to use in a small space, and shoes for other seasons. This also helped me declutter as I went through.

I also took inventory of what I had food-wise and made sure to focus on using up what I had to reduce waste and what needed to be packed. 

I made lists of first priorities when I moved in, what I had already, and what needed to be bought. Furniture-wise, I completely had to start over! So that was a long list. I broke it down by room.

Living Room:



I also had to factor in buying a car, and I was lucky to have friends here who are knowledgeable. 

While these lists may seem long and pricy, my biggest advice is to remember it can happen over time. My biggest focuses when I moved in were:
I ordered a lot of this from Amazon and had it timed to arrive the day we arrived or the days shortly following us moving me in. From there, I went to Facebook Marketplace to look for items available. A lot of college students were moving away from New Orleans so I got a lot of good deals on items I will honestly keep for a few years if not longer! 

The biggest things you need for a move though:
  • To-do Lists
  • Supportive loved ones
  • Sleep and mental breaks
  • Giving yourself grace

I was honestly a terror to be around because I was so stressed out and burned out. I put a lot of pressure on myself in regular scenarios and this is one of the most stressful life events that adults can have. I planned to tackle small projects each day and tried to balance it with walks to get my steps and learn about the neighborhood, trips to Target, Costco, and Trader Joe's, and trying to also enjoy my new city at night with my mom who was a rockstar through this and my friends who were excited to have me in their city. 

My anxiety was raging as I didn't have routines yet. I urge you to factor in downtime, journaling, reading, and getting out of your new home to reset and be able to look at challenges from a new perspective. You got this! 

Whether you're moving down the street or across the country - it's a lot. It's time-consuming, life-altering, and overwhelming at times. I feel like after two months I'm finally getting into the swing of things and looking forward to the last projects on my to-do list before being completely "unpacked". Remember that living your life and exploring your new street, neighborhood, city, and state are also important! Make sure you continue living your life because the to-dos will always be there. 

I hope this post helped anyone planning to move - it can be easy to forget things and I want to make sure to eliminate that as much as possible. 

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