It's a new day and a new place. There is a smell of paint and boxes surrounding you. It's time to get settled. If you handle unpacking systematically, you won't have any problems.
- Get the movers to place boxes in the rooms where they belong, for example all boxes that contain kitchen stuff should be placed in the kitchen.
- Create a priority list and unpack accordingly. Many people prefer getting the kitchen and bedrooms done first followed by the living areas.
- Check that all appliances and electronics work. Keep a master list and check as "OK."
- Next have the utilities turned on and all the appliances connected to the right outlets.
- Create a mover's file and file all receipts, insurance papers, as well as contracts in it. Pin a sheet with the mover's numbers and contact details. Ensure that you have the bill of lading and payment receipt.
- Keep ready the papers pertaining to the transfer of school registrations. Plan to meet the school authorities and complete the formalities.
- Make time to meet the new doctor, dentist, and vet.
- Visit the local citizens club or Y. If you are religious make contact with your temple or church.
- Go to the local library and get a membership for the family.
- Introduce yourself to your new neighbors and call your office to let them know you have arrived.
- A visit to the mall, drugstore, and grocers is a must. It will help you make new friends and stock up on essentials.
- Make the move an adventure for the kids and plan special treats to help them settle in quickly.
- Go to the local bank and set up your accounts.
Help the kids and pets settle in by bringing them small gifts and set up a routine for them. Many families hold a "new life" party or ritual, and plant a tree or bush to symbolize new life and order pizza or have a barbecue in the yard. Music and laughter always eases any tensions or discomfort. Hugs and kisses help create bonds and erase fears. Spend more time with the young ones and pets to reassure them of your love and support.
Packing a "love em" box helps. This could contain favorite CDs, a family movie, a few pictures, a story book or cuddly toy. Having things that a family is comfortable with eases the first night in a new home.
Transitions are always hard and every bit of effort made to facilitate settling in goes a long way. Plan on what to do after the move and things will go smoothly.