April 9, 2010

Moving and Packing Tips

With moves around the corner for many, it might be helpful to share moving and packing tips. It might also be helpful if you have specific recommendations about movers, both to use and not to use.

I can't say, I've ever had a flawless move, but I have learned that you have to watch the movers. Nobody will care for your stuff like you. I used to feel bad about standing over the movers, but after they left my dining room table out in the rain, I don't any more.

One tip I'd suggest is this: each year, even when we're not moving, I clean out my closets. And I've found that using modular containers, boxes, or bins in the closets make packing much easier when we do move.

Another tip is that, over the years, we've kept our family doctors and dentists in Nashville, which is geographically the center of our conference. We do this for consistency and continuity.

I realize different conferences have different rules, but in our conference, the church does not pay for packing only moving. Even so, I have the movers pack my fine china and other valuables, because they only insure what they pack. And I'd rather pay more, because I can't afford to replace these things.

I'm sure there's a lot of wisdom and experience out there. Please feel free to share.

Grace, Kathy


  1. I use color-coordinated peel-n-stick dots on the boxes. For instance, red dots go on the boxes that contain crystal, china, and other breakables, and those boxes are placed in the dining room. Orange dots for my husband (he's a UT fan!), pink for our daughter's room, blue for our son's room, and green for me! White = kitchen; red & green = Christmas decorations. I have a good time determining colors, and everyone who visits during the move is intrigued by the system!! :) Then I create a poster with a list of the dots and their respective delivery rooms. The poster is placed at the entrance and then signs are placed outside each room with its corresponding dot. With the boxes organized for placement in the right places in the parsonage, the movers can unload without my constant attention, and I am free to chat with drop-in guests.

  2. Sister3,
    WOW! How simple and how smart! I love it!
    This is inspiring me to be more organized, period!
    I really need it!
    Here's some helpful hints I found from an AT&T moving booklet!

    A packing list to verify that everything has arrived!

    A few things to have handy:
    hammer, screwdriver, nails, masking tape, tape measure, flashlight, light bulbs, pocket knife, trash bags, etc.

    Bathroom needs:
    towels, soap, and toilet paper
    (hopefully shower curtain liners were also left)

    Kitchen needs:
    paper towels, sponges, cleansers, bottled water, snacks, special foods, paper plates, cups, and plastic utensils

    Other items:
    eyeglasses, prescription drugs, address books, checkbooks, telephone, clock, a change of clothes, pet food and dishes.

    To add FUN to the move:
    healthy snacks for the energy you will need!
    bring a music player with your favorite songs
    you'll need to take a break!

    Hopefully, you will find waiting a list for you at your new place:
    The Phone Company phone numbers & website address
    The Cable TV Company phone numbers and website address
    The Gas Company phone numbers and website address
    The Electric Company phone numbers and website address
    The Water/Garbage Company phone numbers and website address
    Local newspaper phone number and website address
    Local Schools and Community Information

    And to top it all off:
    A whole bunch of smiling, happy, energetic new "friends" excited about meeting you and helping anyway they can... to support and stand behind you and your family as you transition to your new appointment! GLORY HALLELUJAH!

    Faith Mayton

  3. Keep your bubble wrap?

    I'm about to move for the 2nd year in a row and never dreamed I'd have to do that, so I got rid of all that precious packing material.

    Also, ask for help.

    Before my husband became a UM pastor, our best friends were starting their UM ministry and moved almost every year for about 6 years. We made it a point to be there on move day so he could help load boxes while I helped scrub baseboards and bathtubs.

    That cleaning list is exhaustive and it's too much for one family!

    Last year was my first move leaving a parsonage for another pastor and I could have never finished cleaning on time without the help of my mother and a precious friend.

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