The Art of Moving

If you have adequate resources, moving really is a snap. Hire someone to come in and pack up all your stuff. Hire someone to clean the house you’re leaving. Hire someone to clean the house you’re moving into. Hire someone to move, unload, unpack and assemble everything. Hire someone to watch your kids while you oversee everything – or take a nap. Hire a chef to deliver meals and snacks to your house for at least the first three days while you get settled. Easy.

But, absent the cash or expense account necessary for that kind of move, the process is a drag. Not even a drag….loathsome, horrible, life-diminishing, something to avoid at all costs. Around 6pm on Sunday I looked at Jason and said: ‘I’ve lost the will to live,’ having cleaned, packed, carried and cleaned more in 3 days than I had in eight months. ‘That’s interesting,’ he replied, ‘because I lost mine several hours ago.’ So we quit for the day, got pizza for dinner (again!) and eventually watched the season finale of Grey’s Anatomy on our laptop. With the Hen firmly ensconced between us, intruding on our lame excuse for a date.

There’s something wrong with this picture: the five year old is fast asleep in his bed by 7pm. While the baby is up until well past 9.30pm. And up by 6.30am. Can someone send him a memo and order him to sleep more?

Given my opinion on moving, it’s somewhat amusing to note that in our not quite 13 year marriage….we’ve had 13 different addresses, and we’ve moved our entire household (aka every possession we own) 9 times. That’s a lot of moving, frankly. Or, conversely…that’s not a lot of fun.

The moving process is a lot like camping. I think…since I haven’t actually ever camped. But it’s reliant upon a can-do/make-do mentality that I associate with camping. Like, when you can’t find any of your oldest kid’s underwear – despite having strategically stashed pairs in several boxes to avoid just this scenario – you retrieve a 2T pair from his brother’s bucket. Voila.

(If only Jason could squeeze into a pair of 2T underwear…)

If you need to make pancakes for your family, but don’t have much besides a frying pan and a spatula – just scoop out a cup of mix with a sippy cup. Fill said sippy cup with milk and add that to the mix. Along with an egg and a small fist full of sugar. Works just fine. And if you don’t have maple syrup – just warm up some honey and cut up some fruit.

Want to make peanut butter chocolate chip cookies but can’t find your mixer, or your chocolate chips? Use a potato masher to incorporate the butter and the sugar. Use dark brown sugar instead of the called-for ‘light’ and natural peanut butter instead of regular. And add cranberries instead of chocolate chips. Kids will eat almost any kind of cookie. And so will I, frankly. Even if it’s crumbly and ‘weird’ tasting.

But after a while, say 24 hours, the novelty of ‘roughing it’ in your own home, will wear off. You’ll grow weary of not being able to find any bowls for cereal, or towels so you can take a shower. You’ll kiss your baby’s head only to wonder if the strange smell is your breath or his hair. Only to realize it’s probably both – since you can’t find your toothbrush, and the kid hasn’t had a bath in a while. And neither have you. You’ll tire of unpacking and trying to squeeze your stuff into a differently configured space. You’ll vow to get rid of all your belongings save the most essential items. You’ll swear you’ll never move again.

Well, at least not for a year or so.

Do peanut butter cookies and milk constitute dinner? Because I can’t eat pizza again.

6 thoughts on “The Art of Moving

  1. “…we’ve had 13 different addresses, and we’ve moved our entire household 9 times.”

    WOW. That makes my stomach hurt just reading it.

  2. I agree, I read it aloud to Paul I was SO amazed, especially when you consider the moves with children! Girl, you have stamina!

  3. Not easy to come up with something positive but I’ll try: We, who have moved often, don’t have unused stuff in our houses. But there’s the compulsion to save boxes – I see an empty computer box at work and I just have to have it.
    Hang in there.

  4. When we moved from our apartment, one of Jeff’s work friends said they’d like to come help. Great, right?? Well, it gets better! The wife and two daughters come in with arms full of cleaning supplies saying, “we know what a pain it is to move and have to clean your place. So we like to serve families by cleaning the place they’re moving out of.” Huh?? Wha??? Um, awesome!! They did such a good job, we didn’t have to do anything. And our bathrooms we NOT clean to begin with! Then, the husband was awesome and helped move our piano!!! He tore some ligaments in his knee doing so and had to have surgery!!! oops, sorry.


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