A few weeks ago I wrote a post about how to relocate your pets to Hawaii either with or without the need for quarantine. Though our children don’t have to go through a quarantine process to move to the islands, moving with children is still hard. Most children are enslaved by routine and any disrupt in that routine can create havoc, even for those children that adapt easily. So how exactly do all these families help their children, and themselves, with a move knowing that their lives may be in shambles for quite sometime?
Here’s what a few families have shared that worked for them during their move – I hope these can work for you too:
1.) Have a Family Meeting
Now that the decision to move has already been made, gathering the family together for dinner is a great way to ensure that everyone is both present and able to focus on the topic – the move. Once dinner has started, start by explaining the reasons and benefits of the move. Try to avoid talking about the hassle that is involved but instead talk about how exciting it will be. Encourage them that moving can be a good thing by having them share their feelings about the move. Also, let them know ahead of time that you are counting on their help throughout the process. Many children like the feeling of being needed and having a responsibility so they aim to please.
2.) Start a Count Down
Another great way to get the kids used to the idea of the move is to get the kids involved in the process and preparation of the move. A count down is a great way for the children to be involved and it’s a great visual representation of when the move is happening.
3.) Ask the Children’s Opinions on the New Place
Once you’ve narrowed down your options for new potential homes, take the children to showings and see what they have to say about the various contenders. Visiting the new home isn’t always an option because you may be moving to a different city or state even, but the children can still share their opinions on the new place by looking at pictures, explaining what the neighborhood is like, or even searching the internet to find some fun things to do once you get there.
4.) Purge Before Packing
Can you say, “yard sale!?” Going through the house together and eliminating clutter is another great activity for the kids to be involved in. There is undoubtedly a plethora of things that don’t need to make their way to the new house. Whether it be toys, clothes, electronics, or appliances, these items that are no longer used can be separated in toss, donate, and sale bins. If you’re going to have a moving sale, save the money together to get a new item for the house, like that large, flat-screen TV, that new video game console, or that chocolate lab puppy that the kids are always talking about.
5.) Host a Going Away Party
If you’re leaving the neighborhood, saying goodbye can be hard. Instead of the traditional going away party, try to theme that party along the lines of “see you soon.” During the party, make sure that everyone exchange contact info so that it is easy for the children and the parents to stay in contact. If you’re leaving more than just the neighborhood, discuss with fellow parents about weekend trips, camps, and other times for the children to visit one another. It will be just as important to your children to maintain relationships with their current friends as it will be that they make new friends.
6.) Map the Move and Become a Tourist
Finally, if you’re moving to a town or state that you’ve not visited before, be sure to map the route to your new destination. If it’s possible, be a tourist along the way by visiting places that you’ll be passing. Once settled into your new home, grab a guide book of the city and hit the museums, hiking trails, parks, high-rated food venues and experiences, and embrace the new community.