How we moved house and survived



Hi friends!

I’ve been thinking about all the times in my life that I have moved house. I have mentioned before that I have moved a few times over the years. I have lived in Kenya, Singapore, Pennsylvania, New York City, Houston, and Boston. For the past 4 years Joel and I have lived in Connecticut.

I moved from Kenya to Pennsylvania when I was 18 to start college, and then afterwards moved to New York City to start my first job. When I got accepted to graduate school, I moved to Houston to start my graduate program. Joel and I lived there for 8 years, during which time I earned 2 masters and a phd. When I was offered a postdoctoral position in Boston, we moved back to the northeast. And we relocated again when for “real jobs” (haha) in Connecticut.

Relocating definitely has its advantages. For one, being available to relocate for jobs can open up the possibility of amazing career opportunities. And of course, it’s exciting to start a new chapter and get to know new places. We have had so many interesting experiences from all our adventures.

However, anyone who has ever moved knows that it is never easy to pick up and start a new life.

Our most recent move was into our house here in Connecticut. We went to a lot of effort to make the process as smooth as possible.

In the months before our move date, I shopped around local moving companies to find the best deal. We have moved on our own without the help of moving companies in the past… it’s totally do-able, but it’s really tough! We have acquired some heavy furniture, and rather than have to figure out how to manhandle it between the 2 of us, we decided to go with a moving company.

After acquiring quote estimates from a few places, I finally settled on a local company called Up & Down Movers. They offered the best rate for a 3 man crew and a 26 foot truck.


I started packing 7 days before our move date. We still had all our boxes and moving blankets from our previous move –> this is one of the plus sides to having relocated previously, haha! We didn’t have to buy new ones. We did buy some new packing tape so that we could secure the boxes and ensure that they don’t fall apart.

The first room I packed up was the kitchen. I knew it would be the room that took the longest. Carefully packing up each glass, bowl, pot, and plate took a while! We bought some cushiony thingies (for lack of better term) to put between stacked plates and between glasses so that they didn’t rattle against each other and break.

Throughout the packing process, Joel and I were surprised by how much STUFF we have. We have always tried to avoid accumulating useless things, and like to make regular trips to donation centers. However, despite all of our Goodwill donations, we still could not believe how much stuff we have.

It is a pretty weird feeling to look at all your material possessions when they are piled up in boxes. We kept joking about how we had the “Mary Poppins” apartment because things kept piling up from nowhere!


One of the things that we liked about Up & Down Movers was that the guys helped us dissemble our furniture and wrap it nicely in blankets. This is a really important step because it prevents the furniture from getting chipped or dented during the move. Dissembling furniture, especially the heavy stuff, can be tricky. It helped to have extra helping hands for that. You can tell that the movers are total professionals and do this every day! They expertly handled all of our heavy furniture. Nothing was damaged in the move! And side note, we kept all our moving blankets from our previous move, so it was nice that we could re-use them and not buy new ones.




The guys also helped us reassemble everything when we got to our house. This was super helpful too. Joel could have done the reassembly on his own, but having extra hands helped the process go much quicker.


Something that really helped me to stay organized was to put labels on boxes that were very descriptive. I used sticky notes and tape to quickly label boxes so that I would know what was inside them. Instead of simply writing “kitchen” on the label, I tried to be more descriptive, for example “plates, bowls” or “wine glasses”.

This helped to speed up the process of unloading boxes when we arrived at our house. All I had to do was look at the label and know which room the box should go to. When you’ve got 4 guys (counting Joel) unloading a truck, grunting under the weight of heavy boxes, and asking you where to put them, you don’t have time to open up each box to see what’s inside.


The extra descriptive labels were also extremely helpful when it came to unpacking the boxes. Instead of having to rifle through 15 boxes all labeled “kitchen,” I knew exactly where to find the plates. It was much easier to figure out what to unpack first, like plates and utensils. And I could leave the less urgent things to be dealt with later, like the blender and slow cooker.




Just like after our previous move, we decided to hang onto all the boxes and blankets. you never know when they might come in handy. We flattened the boxes and folded up the blankets, and tucked them all away in our basement. –> We have already put a couple of the blankets to good use when we bought some antique furniture (read more on that here!).

Have you seen my other posts about life and our home? Here’s one about hosting a party, another about hosting airbnb guests, and another about furnishing and decorating our house!

When was the last time you moved? Do you save things like boxes and moving blankets?


142 thoughts on “How we moved house and survived

  1. Wow! You have moved so much (and to different climates and cultures too)! We used a moving company for our last move and it was such a great decision.


    1. Yes! Using a moving company is a total game changer! Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate your taking the time to read! Have a lovely day!


    1. I agree, moving can be very bittersweet, and a lot of hard work. Thanks Angela, I appreciate your taking the time to stop by! I hope your day is amazing!


    1. Yes! so true! i felt like the kitchen was tough because of all the little breakable things that needed to be individually packed haha. thanks for taking the time to stop by jenny, I hope your day is amazing!


  2. Moving house or shifting to another city is the most difficult task. Settling and adjusting to a new place is itself quite a challenge. Great idea to pack. Thanks


  3. The last time I moved was 2 years ago when I bought my house. I didn’t save most of the boxes, for the sake of wanting to get rid of clutter.


    1. Hi Jill! I hope I’ll be able to say the same 20 years from now! That would be wonderful. Thanks for dropping by, i hope you have a lovely day!


    1. That’s such an awesome perspective, its so true, moving is a perfect opportunity to start a fresh new chapter! Thanks Chelsea, i hope you have a wonderful day!


    1. Thanks Debbie, i agree, feeling settled feels amazing! I appreciate your taking the time to stop by! I hope your day is amazing!


    1. Thank you Ana, i appreciate that! I know that feeling of just wanting to stay put! Thanks for taking the time to stop by. I hope you have an amazing day!


  4. Ugh, moving is such a hassle! I’ve also moved quite a lot when I was younger with my parents, and now I live with my husband in Cape Town and looking for a bigger place since our baby girl arrives in March. I am dreading the moment we have to actually to do it!


    1. Oh Cynthia, it can be a hassle, that’s true, but it’ll be such a wonderful new start for your growing family! How exciting to have a new family member come spring. I’m sure you’ll find the perfect spot for your next home!!


  5. We have friends that should be considered moving pros. I feel like they can get their stuff packed up in no time and I am sure that they do save their boxes and things. ME on the other hand, not so good at the moving thing.


    1. Haha it’s a difficult task, that’s for sure! Your friends sound like they are moving veterans! Thanks for stopping by, I hope you have an awesome day!


  6. I couldn’t imagine moving that many times. It’s such a hassle! Props to you and your hubby for keeping it together! We bought our house and moved when I was 7-8 months pregnant! Not fun at all! Lol


    1. phew! moving while pregnant is no small thing, kudos to you guys for surviving! thanks for taking the time to stop by! i hope you have a lovely day!


  7. We are getting ready to move soon, so I have been going through things in the house and I can’t believe how much stuff we have that we don’t even use so I have listed them on our local yardsale groups and at least making a couple extra dollars off the stuff we forgot about.


    1. We had a couple of boxes like that, where we had long forgotten what could possibly be inside. I can’t get over how easy it is to accumulate STUFF… Thanks for stopping by Meagan, i hope your day is awesome!


    1. Lol you got that right, the new house is awesome but the packing/ packing was no fun hah! Thanks for taking the time to stop by and read! I hope you have a lovely day!


  8. It’s really not that easy to move, I remember how stressful my experiences were during the first few times that I needed to move. Lol. I think it’s awesome how organized you are and it’s such an great idea to keep the boxes in case you need it again.


    1. Those boxes have come in handy during times when we needed to reuse them! Thanks for taking the time to stop by carol! I hope you have a great day!


  9. I have moved a few times. Although what I ended up holding onto was the tubs, which does end up taking room as well. They were very useful though I must say. Moving can be crazy. And I get things being found in all the cracks.


    1. Yes, the tubs are so useful! Boxes are great because you can break them down to flat for storage, but tubs are awesome because they are much sturdier! thanks for stopping by and reading David, i hope you have an amazing day!


    1. Aint that the truth! Seeing all our stuff in boxes was a shock because we realized how much we had! Thanks Janella, i hope you have an awesome day!


  10. Congratulations on your degrees. OMG, I don’t like moving. To think you moved several times over the years. So have I but in the same state. I did move from Miami, FL to Atlanta, GA in 2006 but it was an easy transition. I can only imagine moving to other states over the years. Seems like to much. Blessings to you, family and your new place.


    1. Moving is tough! I appreciate your stopping by and taking the time to read! I hope you’re having an amazing weekend so far! 😊


  11. I agree, moving to a new place is a struggle. When I moved to my apartment, it took me a month to finally settled down, but still I could get little pieces of clutter. How much more is I have a kid? I can imagine it will be chaos 🙂


    1. Haha I had the same thought! I feel like if we had a child the clutter would exponentially increase! Thanks for stopping by Blair, I hope you have an amazing day!


Don't be shy, chime in!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s