Moving to a new home can be stressful for a number of reasons. From learning just how much stuff you have (20 boxes for the kitchen alone?!) to getting used to a new neighborhood to helping your kids adjust, relocating can be a challenging time for everyone in the family.
In order to help make the process as easy on your kiddos as you can, it’s wise to focus on their rooms first. Sure, you’ll need to unpack the cereal bowls and spoons pretty quickly, but getting your kids’ rooms set up as soon as possible can help them to settle in and feel at home. Here are a few tips.
For babies and toddlers, consistency is best
Young children are not typically fans of change, so keeping their new room as close to the old one as possible will help them stay calm and sleep well at night. For example, if you have an infant who is used to sleeping in a bassinet right next to your bed, consider doing the same in your new home, at least for a while. If you were borrowing a bassinet from a relative and had to return it prior to moving, consider buying a similar one for your new home. Sleeping in a bed that feels familiar and comfortable may do the trick to help your infant sleep through the night and feel right at home in your new place.
For older kids and tweens, some change can be good
If you can visit your new home as a family prior to moving there, you can show your older kids their rooms ahead of time. If your kiddos are feeling understandably stressed or anxious about the move, Bright Horizons suggests having them draw pictures of how they want to arrange their new room. As you are packing up the many boxes in your home, be sure to label your children’s’ boxes really well with key terms like “bedding” and “toys” and help them unpack their favorite items immediately upon arriving at your new place. Even if your kids loved their rooms in your old home and might not want to have an all-new look in their new bedroom, they may welcome the chance for some new colors, furniture, and accessories. Go on a mother-daughter or mother-son shopping trip and let them pick out new colors for the walls, colorful sheets and comforters and maybe a bean bag chair and posters.
Got teens? Get their input and upgrade the furniture
Whether your teen can’t wait to move and make new friends or is in serious angst/drama mode about how you have ruined her life, you can encourage your teens to feel more at home by letting them take the room décor reins. Look at a website like Etsy together and treat him or her to some new wall decorations and if he wants to paint the walls black and add glow in the dark stars all over the room, grit your teeth and try to say “okay.” Also, if your teen has outgrown her twin bed, upgrade to a queen or king that will last her until she heads off to college and/or have them select a larger and more “grown-up” dresser or desk.
Good luck and happy trails!
Whether you have one child or six, each age group can be encouraged to adjust to the move and your new home in different ways. By recognizing that your baby will like things the same, your second grader will need her favorite books unpacked the first day and your teen will be happy with a new and bigger bed, you will help smooth over any moving bumps in the road and quickly settle into your new place.