Moving 101: SOS boxes are oh so good!

Some Moving Tips for Families

If you can, and you are moving, take your time packing and don’t pack what you don’t want to unpack.

Pack yourself. It take a LOT longer, trust me. but as you pack you will throw out, donate and purge, as my husband loves to encourage, what you don’t need, want or use any longer.

For instance, in your closet, if you haven’t worn it in the past 8 months, give it away. Consign it, and make a little cash, but more importantly make space and clear out what isn’t of use or need to you. If the shoulders have dust on them, it is time to say so long.

We moved this summer, but, prior to the big move, I was packing our house up for 6 weeks. This meant living without what I am accustomed to. My juicer, my Kitchenaid stand mixer (I know!), my Cuisinart, my favorite china and my beloved crystal, all in a box …

So how have did I make this work? Out of a pure desire and need to save money and pack my move myself this time … no help, except family. No “professional” packing team. I have done that twice already, and I know from experience that I can handle it, and, with the added time it takes, I can live without this time and want to make it work on my own.

This insanity isn’t without a plan … so here it is:

SOS Boxes:
The items outlined here are what were lovingly packed into our SOS Boxes, or the LAST boxes to be packed, and the LAST boxes to go on the truck. These are filled with basic and essential items that we must have upon arrival at the new house.

My Kitchen “SOS” or must have list:

2 non-stick skillets, one small, one medium: For basic cooking and prep work for my family this has been just fine.

2 pots: one medium and one medium large: for boiling pasta, corn, making popcorn, etc. We were very happy with just these 2 tools.

1 jelly roll pan:
For just about baking anything in the oven

1 strainer:
For pasta or washing fruit or veggies.

6 nice dishes, 4 decent coffee cups, 4 salad bowls and 4 soup bowls:
I love, love love dishes, so I admittedly have a lot, probably too many. I like it that way, but when moving, that is not an option. So the select few outlined above will make due, along with a few dare I say “paper” plates just in case .. I found that my guests really don’t mind all that much, even though it makes me crazy to serve anything, even to a child, on a “paper” plate.

6-8 crystal/glass wine glasses:
Sorry everyone … those red plastic cups are so not on the list. Save a few of your favorite glasses for wine. Your moving for God’s sake. You need your beverages to taste great, not like plastic.

Forks, knives, spoons, straws, culinary knives, etc. Whatever utensils you need need need to make and eat dinner.
1 large metal spoon, 1 spatula, 1 vegetable peeler, wine opener, etc.
You know what you REALLY use every day. Keep it in the drawer and DO NOT PACK IT, Yet..

Kids SOS boxes and cant’s do withouts:
Each kid get’s one small size bin.
In it: crayons, washable markers, pencils, a hand held and non messy pencil sharpener, paper, plain notebooks, stickers, tattoos, silly putty, etc. You know your kids. Make sure they can get what they want to keep them busy and happy while you are either packing or driving to your new destination. DS, IPad, etc.

Favorite “lovie” or toy.
Keep important toys within hand reach throughout any big event. For my girls it’s their pillow pet and a few small blankies for bed time. Familiar items make the transition much easier for all.

SOS Bedding Box:
PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE pack your bedding LAST.

On THE DAY of the move: strip all your beds. Do a few last loads of laundry. Place all of those sheets, pillows and whatevers in ONE BIG SOS BEDDING box.

At least when you open the door to your new home, you (and your moving team, ha ha ha… ) will know what box to open in order to make those beds and get some much deserved shut eye.

Once the BIG day has finally arrived pack the your remaining SOS boxes and label the hell out out them:
SOS: Kitchen, or SOS Bathroom, or SOS Bedding, etc.

Hold these boxes back from the very busy and overly anxious moving folks. DO NOT ALLOW SOS BOXES ON THE TRUCK. UNTIL THE HOUSE IS EMPTY.. 

Why? Silly, have you ever been at the other end of a move? Everything you thought you have in order is all over your new house and you can’t find a freaking thing. So what do you do upon arrival? remember Last on means = first off on the other end, no matter how far you roam … Search diligently for those now first few few boxes that come off the truck and are so smartly labeled SOS and open only those once you arrive at your destination. Forget the rest for a while. You lived without it for a week or more at your old house, you can make due at your stunning new abode, for a day or so now.

Amazing  … all those weeks of suffering with only the bare minimum have left you with what? Suffering with the bare minimum again, but now it is comforting, soothing, even welcome. Those few basic essentials will allow you to feel a tab bit more comfortable in your new home and kitchen. It will also give you 10 minutes or so to enjoy a nice beverage while the frantic mayhem of your moving team swirls all around you.

SOS is oh so good! Happy Happy new home!

 – Beth

Elizabeth Montgomery James

After living in California for several years, Beth and her husband, Rod, relocated to Florida, to live, work, and play. They have two adorable daughters, and Beth is very involved with her children’s schools as a parent volunteer, Daisy troupe, and other community organizations such as the Junior League. Beth enjoys crafts, yoga and fitness, as well as a nice glass of Chardonnay. Beth is a graphic designer who has worked on national and international ad campaigns for top consumer brands, and now brings her talents to a variety of projects in and around Central Florida. In addition for bringing classic elegance to everything she touches, Beth has a natural talent for making everything pretty, from kids’ birthday parties to her garden.

  Pin It

One Response to “Moving 101: SOS boxes are oh so good!”

  1. Mere — August 18, 2012 @ 8:54 pm (#

    As someone who has done several cross-country moves in addition to the state and local ones, I must agree with every word. Great advice!


Leave a Comment