I give you this to take with you:
Nothing remains as it was. If you know this, you can
begin again, with pure joy in the uprooting.Judith Minty
Got any great moving house, downsizing or packing tips for me?
It’s been a LONG TIME since I moved house. And not only are we moving, we are DOWNSIZING. Considerably. As well as amalgamating two full houses and two massive sheds full of stuff into one house, and one very small shed.
I admit, it’s a little overwhelming. (Okay, a lot!) Still, we’re actually excited about going through everything, and whittling it down to what matters (maybe because we haven’t done it yet, so it still seems like it could be fun?). Hey, it’s not like we need all this stuff. When Ben was flying up in Palau we lived in a large hotel room, with two suitcases, a dive bag, a backpack and my laptop bag. We had everything we needed except our dog, and we were happy. In fact, when we finally got home to Australia, we looked around at all the stuff we’d left behind and wondered why we had so much of it!
This afternoon we start in earnest. So, your top tips would be appreciated.
Wish us luck! Lots of love, Nicole xx
17 thoughts on “That Moment Where I Suddenly Understood That Moving Means Packing ALL THE THINGS”
This is the method that works for me. I start by packing up all the precious things I know with certainty I am taking. Then I go through and remove all the things I know with certainty I am leaving. You will find that once you have pared down the items in the room it is much easier to sort the “question mark” items that are left. The process gets easier you go because once your special and utilitarian things are out of the equation and the junk and unneeded items are no longer cluttering the space it feels more manageable. Also, it’s easier to get into full purge mode when you have already started the letting go process-even if you are getting rid of broken teacups and old paperbacks. You can do this! I am very excited for your next chapter and applaud your sense of adventure!
Hi Nicole…Congratulations to you and Ben….I can attest to fabulous ‘new beginnings’. We moved two households from Sydney to the Sunshine Coast nearly four years ago now. We also had less than thirty days to organise what to keep and not keep. So we bought a shipping container for the overflow. It has given us time to sort and sell. Not sure a container is what you need in your magical new place however, moving is stressful enough without having to let go of precious items in a hurry. We ran out of time with my sorting and ended up packing and moving everything. Once moved we shoved non-essentials into the container for sorting later. It has worked really well for us. My stress levels were definitely less once we realised I couldn’t sort in such a short time (it was the busiest time of the year, work wise) and we came up with an alternative. All the best. So excited for you both.xx
We did a huge downsizing move in 2020. The process helped me realise that I didn’t need things to represent (long gone) stages of my life – who I am now is the best representation of all that has happened in my past. But I also needed to allow time to grieve – so much can be stirred up when consciously letting go of the past. But it feels amazing afterwards and 7 months later, still no regrets about what I let go. Just a feeling of lightness and relief. All the best with your move.
I have read The Swedish Death Cleaning (method) & it makes a LOT of sense.
one of my friends told me to pack a box of not sure if you want to get rid of it stuff and mark it 20 years. If you don’t open it in that long, which goes FAST, get rid of it unopened!!! Or maybe it was 10? Read about a lady who had an estate sale and her vast collection of wine glasses was a part of it. Each stem went to every adult visitor full of wine as they listened to stories shared in the items she collected! Good luck, love the dots on the boxes mentioned above. Also am a firm believer in boxes with handles. Cut in handles or plastic totes. (totes get too heavy when books are added!) Liquor boxes make the best ones for books.
Hi Nicole and Ben, what about…everything that one has not used for the past year (make it sometimes 2 years for some rare stuff), you can get rid of. Have fun with it anyway 🙂
I’ve packed my life up into a hundred cubic feet at the moment. I’m surrounded by boxes. They will be shipped back to Oz in the next few weeks. When I give away things items I try to find a great match. I want to know that the things I’ve given away people truly appreciate.
Take a look at flylady.net She has loads of ideas. A cousin who is in the military once said she pretends there has been a fire in that room/shed. Then she thinks what are the items she would be on her knees thanking that it was intact and not burned. That you keep. The rest, give away, sell if you want to bother with it, recycle, then throw out the rest. She would have “garage sales” and the cost of everything was free. It is amazing how much stuff we accumulate. I am going through a de-cluttering section of my life and while I do not have the timeframe you have, I understand.
Looking forward to a lighter you and me,
Hi Nicole. Wishing you good luck. My feeling about it is this….some things are easier to let go of than others. Don’t set the bar too high. There will be some things you pack and take and you will wonder why when you get to the other end. Some things you won’t know until you get there and have the feel of your new place. Allow yourself the space of taking “too much”, it will take a little bit of pressure off as you go through this bit. You can always find new homes, donate, throw when you have arrived. It is big and exciting and daunting and emotional all at once. Sending love🦋
We have moved three times in the last three years after having lived in one house for 14 years. (We continue to downsize – photos, ephemera, etc have recently been shredded.) It is a process. Sometimes agonizing, but not mandatorily so. Be ruthless. If you haven’t used it, seen it, thought about it in at least one year, let it go. Donate, sell or give it away. We had an estate sale company come in and handle the contents of our house. What didn’t sell, they hauled away. Minimized a lot if emotional fallout. In the end it is SO liberating and wonderful.
Hi Nic, I’m possibly the last person in the world to ask for suggestions on this, but i do have one tip. Start with the assumption that you’re getting rid of everything. Then use an ‘opt in’ approach for the things that you are taking, don’t focus on what you’re not taking. Energetically, focus on what you are drawing to yourself that will travel with you rather than what you are pushing away. Not sure how helpful or possible that is. Wishing you the very best, sarah
I have moved 31 times. All across the world. I learned the dot system. Assign each room when you want a box to go (example yellow dot for Kitchen items). But adhesive color dots. When you pack a kitchen box put the color sticker on the box. Same for bed bath office. When we downsized from 4300 sq ft I sorted every thing first. One pile for donations, one pile for dump, one pile for storage. What was left I packed each room and made sure there was a color dot in each box so when it arrived we knew where the box went. It’s worked every time for me.
Spreadsheet definitely, then decide on how many allocated boxes per room. You have to be ruthless! I did 3 garage sales + donated a shit load to 5 different op shops. Saying that I still have a lot of what I did keep in my new home untouched in the past 2.5yrs. Your a Virgo, you’ll fly through this with flying colours! XO
When my husband and I moved to Costa Rica from the US twenty-two years ago, we arrived with one large suitcase each and two bicycles in their cases. HA! Now we have our own house filled with stuff. I hope your move goes smoothly and you are happy in your new home.
It’s so easy to accumulate stuff, isn’t it? Thanks for the positive thoughts xx
HI Nicole…in my case I am doing the Swedish Death Cleaning method. So I don’t leave my kids with alot of stuff one of these days. It has been helpful. I too have alot of stuff I don’t need.
Thanks Jen – I’ll go check that out xx