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A Moving Day: The Stuff You Always Forget

Cardboard, bubble wrap, and newspaper. That’s what I’ve been up to my eyeballs in this past week as we’ve slowly been moving in to our new home.

My husband and I have moved seven times in seven years of marriage. (Update since this post was first written: ten moves in thirteen years of marriage!) Two of those moves have been major transatlantic moves, hauling our earthly possessions 6,000 miles each way. Two others have been cross-country moves, trekking a moving truck 1,000 miles each way.

We’ve been through most everything when it comes to moving.

Each time, I forget about those basic things you want to have on hand that first week, when nobody knows where anything is. It feels chaotic and I feel helpless, not able to do the most basic of things (drink water, for example) without certain items within arm’s reach.

Here’s my list of those absolutely essential things you want to have on hand from Moving Day 1. Bring these things in your first load, and put them somewhere easily locate-able.

Photo by Linus Bohman

• Water—If you can drink water straight out of the faucet, awesome. If you need some sort of filtering system to make it palatable, bring a Brita pitcher or plenty of bottled water.

• Cups or bottles for drinking water

• Sippy cups, if you have little ones

• Dried snacks that don’t require utensils

• Basic food stuffs for your first few meals—keep this super simple

• Nonbreakable or disposable plates, bowls, and utensils—If you have little ones, chances are high something will get knocked over with boxes everywhere. Don’t get out the real stuff until there’s a place for it.

• Napkins and/or paper towels

• Flashlights

• Keys

• Phones

• Charging cords

Important: A designated spot for flashlights, keys, phones, cords, and wallets (in the chaos, these things are easily lost). Bring a basket and make it the catch-all place for all of these things.

• Light bulbs

• Toilet paper

Cloth rags

• All-purpose cleaner

• Glass cleaner

• Floor cleaner

• Bucket

• Sponges

• Broom

• Dustpan

• Basic towels for the kitchen

• Vacuum cleaner

In order to spend the night in your new place

You’ll want to pack like you’re going out of town for the weekend—plus a few more things.

weekend bag
Photo source

• Bedding—pillows, blankets, and some sort of pallet (a mattress on the floor, a sleeping bag, whatever)

• Extra sleeping stuff for the kids—Their “thing” they have to sleep with (blankie or stuffed animal)

• Blackout curtains for little kids—If your kids wake at sunrise, get those curtains up stat.

• Jammies

• Several changes of clothes

• A few favorite toys and books for the kids

• Nightlights, if your kids need them

• Hand towels for the bathroom

• Bath towels—one per person

• Basic toiletries

• Laundry bag or hamper

• Laundry soap

Also—if you don’t want to think about household supplies and cleaners, start a subscription at Grove Collaborative. It’s what I use.

p.s. Ask these 3 questions when you declutter toys.

A Moving Day Checklist: the things you always forget (but you always need)

Reading Time:

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  1. Danielle

    After 3 years of marriage, my husband and I have been blessed to only have to move once and that was not a long distance. But one thing that I would recommend if you are having friends or family help you move would be to make sure that you know where they are placing all of the boxes! Even though I was trying to organize everything as it came in the door, we still lost half of our bath towels and dishes! How does that happen, I don’t know. Label EVERY box clearly and don’t let any one except you put the contents away. Even if you trust them with other aspects of your life.

  2. Sarah

    We just finished up our ninth move in seven years with one back and forth across the ocean. I hate moving. Good list – I actually have nothing to add besides trash bags. I always forget and have to run to the store to get them. Good luck settling in and getting unpacked.
    .-= Sarah´s last blog ..Happy Saint Patties Day =-.

  3. lynn @ Maven of Savin

    GREAT list!! I have not moved in a while, but we are putting out house on the market in a few weeks. I am going to print this one – that is for sure. I am so disorganized right now just getting the house ready! THANKS for the help!
    .-= lynn @ Maven of Savin´s last blog ..FREE Martha Stewart Magazine – HURRY! =-.

  4. Katherine

    We just moved last month, and all of my children were sick within 3 days! I would add basic medicines to the list–children’s Tylenol and Motrin, children’s cough/cold medicine, dispensers and tissues. 😉

  5. Catherine S.

    Thank you for this, Tsh. We are putting our house on the market next week and hope to move sometime this summer. The last time we moved was 9 years ago – from tiny apartment to this house and with no kids. Now we will be moving (and therefore packing and unpacking) our entire two story house with four kids in tow! I admit I am terrified and I am in awe of you for having done it so many times!

  6. Becky

    I asked a friend to come and help out with the unpacking. She took charge and unpacked the kitchen glassware, dishes, and silverware and then put all the bedding on our beds. This was perfect – so helpful. Anytime I know of someone moving, I recommend that they find someone to help with these things. That way the helper(s) only focus on those things, whereas I was running after children and directing movers.

  7. Nicole

    What a great and comprehensive list. In our 9 years of marriage, we have lived in six different houses and three different countries. Moving is not fun! The only thing I would add would be a camera and a stroller! Good luck in your move!!

  8. Kristen

    We’re military and we move a lot… So, I can say with confidence that this is a great list!

    Something I’d add (though it might be a stretch to call it essential, though we always want it): a corkscrew! After the first day of slogging through boxes, making up beds, and everything else, we really enjoy a glass of wine when we get the little people tucked in bed!

  9. Laura

    This reminds me of when my husband and I were moving into our first real apartment together. We lived in one he was subletting for the first couple of weeks were married and then moved off to his first job. We forgot to have the water turned on! So we had a night with no water. Water is definitely high on our list of priorities now. I recently wrote a piece on how important water is as a beverage.
    .-= Laura´s last blog ..Save Up To $50 Per Month on Drinks =-.

  10. katherine

    what a great list! we’re moving cross-country this weekend (packing up the kitchen as we speak) and i wouldn’t have thought to leave the brita pitcher accessible. granted, our tap water will be potable, but still…it’s nice to have cold water in the fridge.

    did you *really* have arsenic in your tap water?! that sounds so outrageous to me, and i’ve lived overseas in an underdeveloped country…wow.
    .-= katherine´s last blog me in…atlanta? =-.

  11. Maureen

    We learned the hard way that you want to have a shower curtain that first night, as well as a curtain for the bathroom if the window looks right into your new neighbor’s, as ours did.

    Also learned the hard way to not delay on securing large cabinets and bookcases to the wall as they are much easier for kids to tip over when empty.

    Best thing we ever did in our cross-country move was come out without the kids and unpack the whole house. We left the kids with my parents, then went back to get them. Not always possible, but you can get the unpacking done so much faster without little feet around!

  12. Rachel- The Kooky Queen

    Ohhhhhhhhhh man! I feel ya! Hubby and I have moved 9 times in 8 years and it STINKS!!!!!!!!!!! Looks like you know the drill well! Next time I move I’ll come back to your list so I don’t forget anything–cuz I always do!
    .-= Rachel- The Kooky Queen´s last blog ..The Pyro Pygmy =-.

  13. Rose

    As far as cleaners go, if you have nothing else go to the store and get a gallon of white vinegar. I use it for absolutely everything, even a rinse aide when I wash clothes, and to rinse vegetables with. I’ve even used it to get stains out of clothes. Its cheap too
    And as for food I totally agree with you, bread, peanut butter, and honey. For PB honey sandwiches. Its easy its quick and none of those ingredients need to be refrigerated.
    .-= Rose´s last blog ..Toll booth =-.

  14. Rose

    PS-Great post, it sure would have come in handy the first few times I moved. I’ve moved 6 times in as many years. Though never more than 60 miles ;D
    .-= Rose´s last blog ..Toll booth =-.

  15. Krystal

    We’re in the midst of a move as well (moving in a week from Monday), so I’m so glad you posted this! A few of those things hadn’t (and I don’t think would have) occurred to me, even though we’ve done this 3 times in the last 13 months alone. I’ll be glad to stay put for a while! 🙂
    .-= Krystal´s last blog ..Thanks a Lot, Punxsutawney Phil! =-.

  16. Nicole

    You have uncanny timing! We’re moving next week! This is very helpful. Thanks! 🙂

  17. Mrs. Money

    This is such a great list! I have moved so many times and forgotten things. I am itching to move again. 😉

      • Chris Denbow

        Thank you for pointing it out to me, Aimee. I feel embarrassed. Now if we can just delete that comment…=)

        • Paula

          I don’t think there is a need to be embarrassed. I like the strength of your comment and it has caused me to think about the value of what we create and what is missed or lost when it is not recognized properly. I am going to be more aware of how people handle this in the blogs I read. If proper credit is not given, I think it is best to delete them from my favorites/bookmark list. I don’t want to become a supporter of plagerism or the theft of the creative work of others.

          Although credit was given at the end of the post, I have noted the following considerations:
          – The credit at the end of the blog is virtually invisible to me because by the time I got to the end of the post I was not thinking about the pictures even though they added interest to the information presented .
          – The font size of the credit is so small that it is virutally invisible to me and easily overlooked. How does a blogger to give credit that is visible, at the right place, and not impact the flow of the blog?
          – Why is just the first picture without a credit when all of the others are credited? Now that I am thinking about this, I would have assumed that the first picture was the work of the author of the blog.
          – Does the attribution “photo source” at the end of the post apply to all of the pictures or just the one without a credit? If I access the link, how am I to know the purpose of the link given the inconsistency of the credits?

          This is giving me a headache considering the overwhelming responsibilities bloggers face each time they publish.

          • Tsh

            I don’t want to rabbit trail on this post’s topic, but just so you know, it’s only been recently that I’ve been attributing the top photos this way. It has to do with the theme’s layout — when it becomes a teaser with a thumbnail after a new post is published, it becomes the first sentence of every blog post. Not awesome for SEO or reader interest reasons. That said, I totally and completely acknowledge the need to properly credit someone’s work, and am willing to do that if needed. I’m not the best at coding, but I do my own work, so I can look into a good option that will allow the photo’s credit to be next to the photo, while not translating into plain text into the post.

            Thanks for the interest. Moving on… 🙂

          • Chicago Riot

            Hi, my name is Paula and I’m a complete buzzkill. I sit around overanalyzing blogs and being a pathetic moron who overdramatizes useless details and acts self-righteous in the process. I’m never happy, but I’m even more unhappy when I’m not making others unhappy.

            You’re an idiot.

  18. Keilah

    Married almost seven years and we have moved eight times. A couple times in with family and 3/4 stuff went into storage, that was really hard with kids. I consider myself a pro at moving and I think you hit the nail on the head. I think it goes without saying but I will say it, don’t forget toilet paper 🙂

    I also really like the plastic wrap rolls to help pack. It is an easy way to protect and keep small items together, like a jewelry box wrap with plastic wrap instead of sticky tape.

    Good luck with the move
    .-= Keilah´s last blog ..A Much Needed Prayer =-.

  19. Aimee

    Tsh, COFFEE. It’s absolutely a basic to survival around here, especially the morning after the move. =)
    A mother who is properly caffeinated is a better mother, in my books. The last two times we’ve moved I’ve carried our Bodum in my purse along with ground coffee.

    Excellent check-list, otherwise. It could have come in handy a few months ago for us!! Best of luck with your move.

    Oh, we still don’t have a blind or curtains up in the baby’s room; good thing he’s a sleeper, because that morning sun comes in awfully early!
    .-= Aimee´s last blog ..Balanced Meals for Kids: Not Until You Eat Your Vegetables =-.

  20. Fabiola

    Tsh, huge thanks for the list. We’ll be moving in exactly 30 day to our first house… Needless to say I’m really exited.

    As a former marine wife I did my fair share of moves. And for the first five years of our marriage we had to move seven times from small apartment to smaller apartment so we were really minimalist. Two years in our current apartment and now I have more stuff that I know what to do with (it doesn’t help that my younger sister left all her stuff at our home for us to watch over while she traveled). This list is a great idea. I add a couple things our family might need.
    .-= Fabiola´s last blog ..Amelia’s sleeping routine =-.

  21. becca l.

    I feel like I’ve become a pretty seasoned mover, although we’ve only moved 3 times in the last seven years, they were big cross-country moves. And we’re doing another one this summer. blah.

    I try to keep a really comprehensive list of what I’ve packed in each box (with some very basic room color-coding) on my computer. I write the box number and basic contents on the box. We sort the boxes by room and then when I’m looking for my bathrobe, I just hit the control-f on my computer and voila! I know exactly where my bathrobe is! It has been a nice system to have in previous moves.

    Thanks for your list! Ah, I wish I were you right now–we’re still looking for housing, still need to pack up and clean, still need to drive the truck a bajillion miles…moving is crazy.

  22. Emily

    …while I think the list is great, what *I* really want to know is who makes that wooden shape sorter! 🙂

  23. aneelee

    shower curtain and rings stashed with your bathroom toiletries. there have been sooooo many times that we’ve finally been done with the day’s moving and hauling and we are ready for our showers and… what? wait! “does anyone remember what box the shower curtains are packed in?” its that or someone ends up making a run out to buy a liner somewhere.
    .-= aneelee´s last blog ..CSA – march 12 =-.

  24. Heatherj

    We are getting ready for a cross country move ~ again. We have professional movers coming to pack and load us, and if you’ve ever had a team of packers come, you know it is like a tornado whipping through each room. My advice is to clean out the bathrooms, put animals in one bathroom, complete with food/water/litterbox, etc. In the other bathroom, put all the things you listed above, including personal items you don’t want them to touch/move. Then, tell them to NOT go into the bathrooms and put a sign on each door to make sure they don’t!
    What we like to have on hand, in addition to your wonderful list, is Tylenol for the headache you know is coming. Wet wipes (wasteful, but necessary!). A vacuum cleaner. One giant zippered notebook (The Brain) that has all necessary phone numbers and such for your move. Zippering keeps anything from falling out. One fold-up, mesh laundry basket.
    Another tip ~ get just one room completely put together early in the unpacking stage so you can have that room as a haven of normalcy to visit when you think you’re gonna lose your mind!
    Thanks for your list. Perfect timing :o)

  25. ~M

    Great post, Tsh. Wish I’d had it last December, when I moved, but will refer to it next time (though I’m hoping that won’t be for a LONG time!)

  26. Tina @ Ride On Toys

    How about a little something to celebrate the first night in your new home? Maybe a couple of cupcakes with candles or a little wine for mom and dad. Anything simple to celebrate having made it this far.
    .-= Tina @ Ride On Toys´s last blog ..The Little Tykes Wagon For Your Little Folks =-.

  27. Rona

    We’ve moved quite a bit in the last 2 years. You certainly do learn from each move.

  28. Roseanna Leaton

    That list is very comprehensive, thank you. Moving can be really stressful unless you are REALLY organized!

  29. Alyssa

    I wish I had read something like this a couple of years ago!
    Great article.

  30. Kara

    Great list. I would add medicine/first aid supplies and trash bags.

  31. genevieve

    this will come in super handy for our next pcs, especially since hub wants to do a DITY move! i think coffee and a coffee maker would also be an essential for us. no marine i know can make it a day without coffee! thanks for putting this up! 🙂
    .-= genevieve´s last blog ..yay, ruarc! =-.

  32. Jen

    Some great advice Tsh! I’ve moved 10 times in 10 year of marriage and my motto is label, label, label!!! I’ve also found that the sooner I can get the kids rooms organised the quicker they tend to settle in which lets me get more done. I also put clean sheets on the beds a day or so before we move so that all that linen can all go straight into a box marked BED LINEN FOR TONIGHT! Makes for a quick easy find and a good night’s sleep. Hope I don’t have to use any of this advice in the near future but happy moving to all of you about to take the next step in life’s adventure!!!

  33. Reut

    Great list! I’m about to move in 2 month, so I’ll keep it.
    Good luck in your move!

  34. Shannon

    I have moved too many times to count, but fortunately have stayed in one general area of the US – the East Coast.

    Don’t forget chargers.

    Also, if you have the option of storing less needed items at someones house, do it! For example, in our past move, we took our valuable/breakable items (that we would be sad to see destroyed) to my inlaws. Their shed housed our artwork and wall hangings for a few weeks while we settled. These large items would have just been in the way if they joined us on day one of the move.

  35. Danielle

    A lamp for that one room (or more!) that may lack any form of overhead lighting…and you didn’t notice! And a shower curtain for the post-move cool down shower.

  36. Amy

    Due to a military career and a move overseas for my husband’s PhD, we have moved 13 times in 16 years of marriage. Whew! There are great suggestions on this list, to which I would add your phone/address book (if you’re still using a paper version!), the chargers for cell phones, and your TV/DVD/Stereo remotes. We inevitably forget where we’ve put these and although TV isn’t crucial to our lives, music is!

  37. tfryer

    When my husband and I moved into our first apartment we didn’t have anything to open the heavy duty packing tape we used to secure all the boxes for our move, so we went to the store for scissors. Except we ended up buying a multi scissor set that came in a super sturdy package that we couldn’t open without.. well scissors! good thing my dad was on his way and has a pocket knife!!

  38. Stephanie @ Keeper of the Home

    Thorough list, Tsh! I don’t have any intention of moving anytime soon (please, don’t make me move again!), but when I do, I’ll come back to this.

    In all of our moves, I found that the most helpful thing I ever did was to create a binder with a tracking system for each and every box we packed. Every room had it’s own page, and I numbered each box. So I had Kitchen 1, Kitchen 2, etc. I wrote these down on the Kitchen page, and jotted down a few notes about what was in each box. It was incredibly helpful to be able to see at a glance which box had what. No more guessing.

    I didn’t realize that your move had happened so fast, but I hope that it’s been going well and it isn’t too stressful. Take care of yourself, ok? Blessings!
    .-= Stephanie @ Keeper of the Home´s last blog ..Winner of the Eco Nuts Organic Laundry Soap Giveaway =-.

    • Rachel P.

      I love this idea! We are moving from Virginia to Colorado in June/July and I think this is a great way to pack up super essential areas of the home (ie, Family Room, Kitchen, Master Bedroom/bath and craft area). Our upcoming move is a “no-touch” move, but I think I need to control things a bit more, so I will pre-pack the essential areas of our home.

  39. Alicia Rockmore

    What a great article. We have moved 13 times in 18 years of marriage so I can totally relate! I would add a few things to your list:
    -Pen & Paper – so you can write things down that you need to repair, buy ,etc…
    -Box cutters – to open up the moving boxes
    -Packing tape – to be able to tape up boxes you want to restore, etc…

  40. esther

    having just found out we are moving cross country again (this is the 2nd time this in the last 6 months!) i am gearing up for the craziness of moving a family of six (four kids under 6 years)!! thank you for this guide. i love the celebratory glass of wine at the end of the first night. a great plan we implemented this past move in october was to have someone keep the kids and the other someone direct the movers. that way mama didn’t pull her hair out. thanks to my dad who came up to help me and kept the mover’s busy while i ran around with the kids! cheers to those who strive to keep it simple. each move i endeavor to purge and give away anything we havn’t used in a year – i guess this time its whatever we havn’t used in 6 months! you could say that being a military wife can lead to a simple life?:)

  41. Charlie Amara

    Amazing blog Tsh… Especially this one as have just moved into new home in London and the info about water was most helpful. Thankyou

  42. debbi

    I am living in my first apartment in over 25 years (lived in homes). I love it. It has taken some adjustments, but nothing earth shattering………I live in a wonderful community. The apartment in up to par and the special thing about our complex is the grounds. They are gorgeous and they are well kept. Check everything out before you move in and you should have a pleasant time………….

  43. Debbi

    Great ideas. I am living in my first apartment in over 25 years. I have always lived in single family homes. I love my apartment and they are especially well taken care of. The best value for the money in my area.

  44. Martine

    I am so glad I found your site! It’s so wonderful, and I love this entry. We’re in the middle of moving house, and it’s my first time to undertake such a task. Thankfully, it was a pretty OK move considering it was the first time we were moving into a new place. I wish I had discovered this entry sooner, but it turns out that I did a good number of these tasks during the move (Pat on the back.).

    I’ll be sure to stay tuned to your blog!

  45. James

    I have just moved house and I’m still finding random things packed together in boxes. I didn’t have the foresight many moves seem to have given you either.

    My first night in the new house I had no food & all the shops were shut. My first morning in the new house no shower get or toilet paper. Suffice to say I’m bookmarking you article.

    p.s. I now have food, shower get and toilet paper.

  46. Ben

    That is a great list. My wife stresses out just having to pack for a weekend so this would really help her when we move.

    Moving can be so terribly stressful, but if you are organized it is much better.

  47. Cheryl

    This is a great list. Me & my husband have both owned a home (as single people). I moved to his house when we got married 6mths ago. Due to the size, half of my stuff is still at my old house. We’re closing on a new house and will essentially have to move two homes . So, I decided to google this topic. Thank you so much for putting it out there.

    The only thing I see missing from the list is prayer. For those who believe in God don’t get so tired on the first night that you forget to pray for removal of any negativity from the previous owners. And peace and happiness for you in your new home.

    • Ann

      After 8 years in one place, I do believe in praying: about the move, the house we are leaving and the new house and community we are moving to. I want a smooth transition and I need God’s help with it all.
      Thanks for the check list.

  48. Martha

    You did a great and comprehensive list.I would like to personally convey my gratitude and thanks to this particular website.
    Thank you to be sure for all I learned, have a rest guaranteed I will share them to whoever is willing to be allocates.
    God Bless and more power!

  49. Martha

    GREAT list!! This would really be a big help for me. Cheryl is right! Prayer is the best thing in all times of you doings.

  50. Nationwide Auto Transport

    GREAT list! I’m an Army Brat and we must have moved a hundred times (it seems so at least!). The worst move times were moving overseas and we had to wait a month or so for our household goods to arrive, but my mom always made sure we had something to entertain us (oh if only hand-held gaming devices were around back then!). I’m sure my mom had moving down to a science after the first few times, but there are a few items on your list that I wouldn’t have thought to include/bring on the trip. Nicely done!

  51. Karen

    I am a veteran mover, but I haven’t moved with small children before, so I love the tips. One thing I always do is pack the kitchen last and unpack it first. Just makes it easier when you are ready for breakfast the next morning..

  52. Tatum

    Your list is great, but it would be nice if you had a printable PDF checklist at the end so we can just check things off as we go.

  53. Mike H.

    Great list. I’ve moved over 15 times as a Naval Officer and then as a civilian in the past 12 years. One thing I always found to be essential was an alarm clock. I also always brought a coffee maker.

  54. Nebraskaland Moving

    You have shared very valuable and practical information about moving. It is easy to understand and apply which goes to show that you really know what you are talking about. Being one of the moving companies Lincoln NE, we understand the challenges that come with moving but with these tips here, the moving experience can be more memorable and less stressful.

  55. Kim

    My last move had a 3 week delay between houses, so was a little tricky. We had some things in a container, some in storage, and some at a friend’s house. The one thing I did to maintain sanity is to use blue painter’s tape on all the “urgent” boxes that we would need to survive in the first few weeks, so that we could unpack them and the rest could wait until we had time. Also, I had a broken wrist during the move, so keeping the essential unpacking to a minimum was crucial 🙂

  56. Sarah

    I have moved a lot in my life, but not as much with kids as our oldest is 5. We just bought a house and are moving in a couple weeks, so we’re off to move again! One thing I’ve learned is that you need a place for the kids to nap or have some quiet down time, so a pack & play with their favorite blanket is essential for our 2 year old. If you’re able to have a friend watch the kids the whole day, that is much better so that they’re (and you’re) not worn out with all the craziness of moving day.

  57. Britley

    Just to be safe, I would add foggers to this list, just in case there are any creepy crawlies that the landlord missed!

  58. Laura Lockley

    Thanks, this has helped a lot. My husband and I will be married for a year on July 6 and were still trying to find a house, but this will help with us having a newborn.

  59. Jennifer

    Great list! I would add a shower curtain, dish soap and dish towel (if not using disposable) and condiments (salt, pepper etc…) We always bring condiment packets.

    • Jennifer

      Oops, I missed the part where you noted kitchen towels! lol Sorry, I skim!

  60. zanesaria

    Wow, I love this! Soon this coming new year I am planning to my new apartment and I guess, i’m needing this. Thanks.

  61. Valerie Tower

    Excellent list! Thank you!

  62. Priscilla

    Best place to get boxes is your grocery store! Ask to speak to dairy and ask them to hold egg boxes for you. They’re perfect size and free!

  63. Gia

    What a great list and great feedback. I am moving to a new house so I really appreciate the heads up. A couple of things I would like to add are: phone charger, a change of clothing for any kiddo’s mess. Diappers and wipes!!, Soy milk (it does need to refrigerate until open), few paper blinds. They are cheap $5 a piece for moving to a new built home.
    Thank you for the great advise!

  64. Mallory

    On a similar note as Kristen, I have to add a bottle opener! We desperately needed one our first night and were lucky to find one. Another essential is dish soap! I have been washing dishes in the bathtub because we’re renovating, but it is vital either way!

  65. Redman Van

    GREAT list! This is a fantastic checklist for anyone moving or even just traveling with kids. Also, when you’re moving, check local liquor stores for boxes. They’re super sturdy and their size is super manageable!

  66. Kevin

    Great tips! These are very essential items to have when you move. It’s also good to pack some of the bathroom items last and unpack them first.

  67. Chat

    Love this! Keeping things organized and planning ahead is essential to making your transition smooth.

  68. jamie

    this is great advice thanks me and my boyfriend are moving together from southern California to a little town in Kansas on a small budget so we have to have everything before hand because there is no coming back for it. its very nerve wrecking this isn’t my first move but it is my first one where my mom isn’t making sure everything is done right, im on my own for doing that so any advice helps

  69. Alex Galerkin


    What a list!
    Finally a detailed list of essencial survival items you must have when moving with your kids. as an ex mover, i have discovered while reading your post how much of these important things i didn’t know from a mover’s point of view!
    You brought to light what the moving guides made by movers are not explaining you – how to take care of your love ones while moving from a mum’s point of view.
    These days I’m not a mover anymore but still in the moving industry working as a blogger and content writer. i will share your article at my blog “” so my readers can get that fine list!

    Thank you,

  70. Kathleen

    In two months me, my hubby and the three little ones will be heading to California for the better, so I want to say a big thank you for this article! I think it will make easier for me in a month when I start planning!

  71. John Smith

    Pack rooms into packing boxes and keep them together; this will make things much easier when it comes to re-furbishing your new house.

  72. Deborah Barnes

    This is a great list! A friend of mine moved with her family recently and although they moved in other part of the city the all looked absolutely exhausted after they finished unpacking. My friend and her elder daughter looked more like they’ve gone through a battlefield, than like they’ve changed the district. Now I’m organizing my family moving to another town and the question that appears in my mind is ‘Will I handle all that mess?’. Your article seems to be very helpful for me and my husband and our kids, as they aren’t too young already (they’re 10 and 14), and we all are going to help each other to go through this adventure. Thank you for sharing!

  73. Ava

    Hey, is exactly 1year my lover came back to me, I’m letting you know how i got my ex back because this Christmas holiday everyone need there love ones around them not just your love ones but your lover, a year ago i was heartbroken and i knew i could not spend the holiday alone that is when i was looking for how i can make my lover come back to me so that we can make things right, to cut the long story short on a faithful day i came across the details i will be dropping on the internet, someone talking about how she got her ex back so i took this details I’m dropping via email: (((ekpentemple at and i contact him and i told him that i want my lover to come back to me, today I’m with my lover. Thanks you Dr. EKPEN TEMPLE for the help.

  74. Diane

    Tsh, this is a great list. I googled “how to pack up your house for a move” and you are the 4th entry. Congrats!!

    We have been in our house for 21+ years and I am getting us ready to move to an interim house while we build a new house.

    I agree with the above comment that a downloadable, printable PDF would be great to add to your post. I will paste your list into a doc to print.

    The pet supplies, leash, poop bags, bed, food, treats, toys, tie out, etc. need to be added to the OPEN ME FIRST list. They are just as critical and needy as the kids.

    Thanks for the list!! and to all the posters for the additional suggestions!!

  75. Alex Parker

    Well that’s hell of a lot of moving you did. I bet you had some extra free moving from moving companies for all that moving you have done each year. Anyway thank you for sharing your big experience with us.

  76. April

    Wonderful list! I will be moving it couple weeks, this will help. I would add batteries.

  77. Krithika

    An awesome list but could you please tell what all is needed to be carried from a newly married women to her husband’s house after marriage

  78. Bill

    Excellent List, well thought out. One other thing that should be added is that you switched your utilities over to your new location. Usually the call to the cable provider will take care of your TV, Internet and phone services. Your water and electricity will be just a phone call away also. It doesn’t do any good to have all your items with you and no utilities.

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