Moving Survival Kit

A wall of cardboard boxes at the end of a bed.

I’m hiding behind these to write. It looks like I’m packing!

This week we were consumed with wrapping up school and packing up the juggernaut that is our kitchen. Both of these tasks have made me cry. I’m feeling very sad to leave our lovely, warm Waldorf community, and I hate moving so much I want to click my heels and reappear some time in mid-July.

Last night I had a dream that I tripped going down our stairs and broke my ankle, and was therefore exempt from any further packing, sorting, or organizing. This was not a nightmare. Not at all.

There were a few choice items that we reserved while packing the kitchen. Items that I am certain will save us (me) from the stress of moving. Behold, my list of moving survival items that you really shouldn’t pack:

The coffee grinder, kettle, coffee press and moka pot. My children are nine years, seven years and eight months old and all three of them know not to ask Mama C any questions before she’s had her morning coffee. There is no possible way I could face the wall of boxes that is our new home décor feature without a serious java injection.

The Blendtec blender. Seriously the best blender ever made, and worth every penny. We use it every day for Kale shakes, baby food, and frosty beverages. I don’t think we would know what to do without it anymore. Our little universe would collapse upon itself and it would be coarse and chunky instead of smooth, so smooth.

The popsicle freezer mold. You know what keeps ramped up children occupied happily outside for several minutes? Something frozen on a stick. We like to make our own popsicles and creamsicles using pure fruit juices, blended frozen fruit, yogurt and/or cream. I would be lying if I said these were only for the kids.

The bottle opener. This is for beer or wine as needed. We require beer, in particular, on a daily basis these days, but I’m being a very responsible mama and drinking only gluten-free beer.

The wine vacuum pump and stoppers. Please see above. Hello? Sangria anyone?? Oooohh, Sangria POPSICLES! I’m a GENIUS!

The muddler. Because it’s mojito season. These would also make fan-freaking-tastic popsicles. I think we better get another freezer mold.

The entire contents of the candy basket. There seems to be an unspoken agreement between the grown ups to end each day by working through the contents of this basket while watching The Walking Dead.

The jug of popcorn. Daddy just knew not to send this along to the Niagara house. The Mamas may have a small popcorn addiction.

Paper plates and plastic cutlery. We’re going to be eating a lot of finger foods here on in, and soon we won’t even have room to open our dishwasher drawer. It’s not the most environmentally conscious choice, but the alternative is to really put the mental in environmental.

The Ibuprofen. Self-explanatory.

First aid kit. If I’m using any kind of sharp edge while taping up boxes, we will put the first aid kit to use, mark my words.

The take out menus for Thai, pizza, and sushi. I think that we’ll get through the rest of the contents of our fridge/freezer in a week, which leaves another week of eating before our moving date. Why should I cook when delicious take-out is just a phone call away?

Garbage bags. At this point, I’d like to put everything in them, leave them on the curb and be done with it all. Did I mention that I hate moving?

Friends, I need your super easy dinner solutions! Please comment here with recipes and ideas, particularly for kid-friendly gluten-free options.

Also, what are the few kitchen items you couldn’t live without leading up to the final days of getting ready to move?

Packing – The Saga Continues

Photo by Olivia Bee, courtesy of Flickr

Hello world!

The move went fairly well, though it took longer than any move I’ve experienced thus far. We’re nearly unpacked, and mostly settled in. Before I can completely relax, however, I must now pack up my entire apartment. As of June 1st, the Fortress is officially a memory.

I love the new house. After a week of fairly intense anxiety (on my part, I hate living in chaos) I’m now able to relax and enjoy the space. It looks like next week I can even return to my writing, if I come up with a smooth packing/work plan. I have to say though, I am least looking forward to packing up my stuff.

I intend to purge a lot. There is so much in that apartment that is now rendered useless, and so many things that I haven’t thought about in these many months of living somewhere else. It may be a bit epic, and time is running out. I’ve got furniture to clear out too, which is always a hassle. June will be welcome, when all of this upheaval is complete.

There is so much good right now – a bigger bed, a home that feels just as much mine as it is all of ours, a happier place with lots more space for our family. I’m really happy, and am trying hard to focus on the good rather than let my obsessive need for order get the best of me. My ability to go with the flow seems to diminish in the face of age. I remember not long ago living in construction dust, sleeping on an air mattress, and using my aunt’s toilet across the street. I suppose the difference now is that there are four other people who are subject to my anxiety, and who add to the overall cacophony of moving and unpacking.

Therapy is amazing. If you’ve ever thought for ten seconds that maybe you can benefit from it, I would encourage you to try it. Honestly, it’s the best thing I’ve ever done for myself. I so, so enjoy the process, and I can actually see the change taking effect in my own world.

I’m itchy to get back to writing. The move has really put a damper on my ability to write, and with the book sitting half done, I’m trying to pencil in time to get back to it.

Now, I’ll head off to the Fortress in search of the perfect costume for Charity Dawn to appear in at a bachelor party this weekend. Tonight is choir practice. We’re learning “Don’t Stop Believing” which we’ll perform at a variety show for Gay Pride, at an event at Buddies in Bad Times, hosted by Scott Thompson. Life is never boring, and for that I’m eternally grateful.

Schnoo’s Tips for a Successful Move:

* Choose boxes that are medium-sized, and only fill large boxes with light weight items

* Colour – code each room at the new place and label the boxes with the appropriate colours

* Create a floorplan of the new place with the colour code key for the movers, even though they will laugh at you.

* Categorize each box from 1 to 3 in order of unpacking priority

* Write a basic inventory on each box

* Purge, purge, purge

* Have cold drinks on hand for the movers

* Ship the children off to a loving grandparent for the moving weekend

* Unpack the kids’ room as soon as possible, prior to their return from weekend get-away

* Pack snacks and drinks for moving day. Have a take-out place on standby. Have cold drinks for the movers, particularly if one is a diabetic Newfie.

* Keep aside bedding and towels for the first night, as well as a week’s supply of clothes

* Keep your sense of humour, take breaks, keep smiling