Moving with kids can be an ordeal. Even though my husband and I moved many times, we didn’t recognize how hard moving could be until we moved with our three children. Don’t despair. This website isn’t called The Art of Happy Moving for nothing. There are ways to help your kids make a happy move.
Moving With Kids: 5 Tips Before Your Move
Tell the Kids As Soon as Possible
Try to refrain from keeping secrets. The kids pick up on all of those hushed conversations. Use these three easy steps to tell your kids about the move. Tell your child why you’re moving, when you’re moving, and three reasons to be happy about the move.
Get the Kids Involved in the Move
Your child feels like life is out of control at the moment. Give him a sense of ownership in the move and a feeling of control. Your child can help declutter and pack up his things. Let your child pick out the color of his room or a new bedspread or let him have input into the timing of the move.
Stick to Routines to Help Minimize the Changes
With so many changes happening right now, try to keep the rest of life as normal as possible. Also, remind your child what routines will change and what will remain the same after the move. If you do story time with your child every night, let him know that isn’t going to change after the move. If your child plays on a soccer team, let him know he’ll still get to play soccer after the move but the kids will be from a different town. The more information your child has, the better prepared he will feel to handle the changes.
Host a Moving Par-Tay
Happy moving inevitably involves partying – both for you and for your child. If your child has always dreamed of inviting her closest friends to Chuck E Cheese or renting a game truck, this may be the time to indulge those fantasies. Maybe she’d prefer a sleepover with close friends or a pizza party at a local park with all of her classmates. Moving with kids can be stressful, so remember to plan something fun for you, too.
Talk Up Your New Destination
Focus on three main reasons your child’s life will be better after the move. If you’re moving closer to family, let her know that she’ll get to see her favorite cousin on weekends. If you’re blocks away from the best ice cream shop in Boston, mention it. Your enthusiasm is contagious and your child wants to feel happy about the move, even if she’s not showing it right now.
Moving with Kids: 5 Tips After Your Move
- Keep Up With Family Routines and Traditions
Maintaining a sense of normalcy is important. Stick to bedtime and mealtime routines. If you have family traditions like apple picking in the fall or making cookies for the holidays, continue them when you move to your new town. Your child will want to feel that things can still be predictable even if so many things have changed.
Focus On Setting Up an Oasis for Your Child
The rest of the house may be a disaster, but our kids feel like they have a safe place to get away from the chaos. By unpacking your child’s room first, you can give your kid a place to play while you are busy unpacking the rest of the house. It will also give him a sense of safety to easily find his personal belongings.
Be a Tourist In Your New Hometown
The unpacking will get done eventually, I promise. For now, take advantage of this time to explore your new city as a family. Visit the top local attractions. Get your library card and check out a stack of books. Go on a scavenger hunt where your kids look for landmarks. Moving with kids is the perfect excuse to play Pokemon Go. It’ll get you walking around the neighborhood and exploring locations that may not be on your radar.
Try New Things as a Family
The best thing about moving is that you get to start over and to create an even better life than you had before. First, figure out what things you would like to improve upon in your family life. Maybe you’d like to spend more time together or host family game nights or eat more meals together. You may want to add nightly walks around the neighborhood or involve the kids with home improvement projects. This is the time to do all of those things you kept meaning to do as a family, but never quite got around to doing in your old place.
Give Your Kid The Tools She Needs to Make New Friends
Making new friends requires a few easy body language tips. Practice these tips with your child: make eye contact, smile, and keep your arms by your side. If you want to go over some scenarios, check out these conversations. To help your child feel more confident, do role play at home before he begins at a new school.