Moving is messy.

Anyone who spends more than 15 minutes with me has probably discovered I’m a teensy bit OCD.  Basically, that translates into Crazy-Bananas-Can’t-Sleep-Or-Think-Or-Eat-Anything-But-Cupcakes Mode until everything gets unpacked and put away.  This puts a bit more strain on my marriage than is to be expected but we’ll ignore that for now.

You saw what my apartment looked like before the chaos.  My, my, how things have unraveled…

As terrible as this is, there is a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel.  Craigslist is saving us from the absolute horror of living with inappropriately-scaled furniture (we’ve had to sell 75% of our furniture since moving in because our new apartment is so much smaller than our old place) AND, because we’re paring down just a few small pieces, I have the immeasurable joy of SHOPPING FOR NEW FURNITURE!  More on my quest for the perfect couch in future posts.

Since I’ve moved 4 times in the past 2 years (one of those moves was from Seattle to DC) and I’m OCD organizationally inclined, I’ve learned a few things that make moving a lot easier.

  • Label your boxes.  This may seem obvious but you’d be surprised what gets overlooked when you’re in a packing frenzy.  Before you start your move, buy a pack of the fattest black Sharpies you can find (the bolder tips make it easier to see your labels) and label the box with the room it will go in.  For extra credit — and a little extra sanity — add a quick rundown of the contents.  Put a star or special mark on boxes that should be opened right away.  For example, the box containing your Fur-Babies’ toys and dishes should be a priority.
  • Start packing early.  I’m a professional procrastinator so this one was hard for me, but forcing myself to pack a few boxes a day over the course of several weeks made things so much better in the end.  No staying up for 48 hours straight, throwing things haphazardly into random boxes.
  • Get free boxes off Craiglist.  This time I had a genius idea that many others have clearly had before me: troll Craigslist for free moving supplies!  We got ALL our boxes, packing paper, and bubble wrap for free and only had to buy packaging tape.  This saved us hundreds of dollars and made it easier to justify my next tip.  Extra credit: Re-list your boxes and supplies after you move!
  • Hire movers.  Having moved many times and hired movers only twice, I can confidently say that movers will change your life.  Professional movers will get it done in less than half the time that you can and they have all the tools needed to get the job done quickly without damaging your stuff.  Bonus: After you let them in you can go get a pedicure.

Do you have any moving or packing tips to share?  Or would you simply care to comment on the insanity that is my living room?

13 thoughts on “Moving is messy.

  1. Joanna Kelley says:

    I hate to say it, but three months later, my little studio apartment still looks like this. I’m eager to learn your tips/trips to make it more liveable and enjoyable. :)

    1. Apartment Envy says:

      I’m sure most people share your pain! There are tons of people who have lived in their places for years and STILL haven’t finished unpacking. It’s hard! Especially when you don’t know where to start. It can be so overwhelming, and when I get overwhelmed I fall asleep. Just try to unpack one box a day. That way you can get things organized and put away little by little and it’s not so scary!

  2. erikandmelinda says:

    I was also going to comment on the art over your fireplace! So awesome! It’s from your wedding right? Tell me more about the art…I want some of my own (not of you two…of me and my family…of you two would be kinda awkward in my living room I think). :)

  3. Olita says:

    I’m couch (and maybe chair) shopping too! I can’t wait to get your tips and ideas (or just replicate exactly what you do)! And I just love your new place. Can’t wait to see it come together.

    1. Apartment Envy says:

      Oh no — good luck! Like I said above, just focus on doing a little bit every day. If you get overwhelmed, take a break! Then it won’t seem like such a chore. I hope you share photos after your move!

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