Our family recently moved to what we are calling our “forever home.” We dragged our toddler to at least 80 showings and open houses before picking the perfect place for us. Of course, our settlement was scheduled for the week before Christmas. Needless to say that took the stress of packing and moving to a completely different level.
As you may already know, moving with a child is tough and can be especially hard on little ones with special needs. This is what we did to try and maintain a smooth transition and it seemed to work. Our son, Connor, didn’t miss a beat during the move and he loves his new digs!
Make sure your child is still getting enough attention (even if it means falling behind in packing and planning for the move). I encouraged my 2 ½ year old to help me pack his room. He got a kick out of putting his things in boxes. It took longer, but it made it more fun and easier on him.
Maintain the schedule/routine as much as possible. For us, that meant making sure Connor was still getting to daycare, therapy sessions, etc. and yes — it meant making sure the house was decorated for Christmas complete with a tree.
Set up the kid’s rooms first. We painted Connor’s room before we even moved in and we used a similar color to what he already had to minimize the changes. We also set up his room right away and made sure he slept in his crib from the very first night. We didn’t want him adopting any bad habits.
Seek help from family and friends. My mother was able to take some time off of work to help entertain Connor the week of the move. It was a lifesaver.
Organize play dates. You may be exhausted from all of that unpacking and organizing, but don’t let it limit your child’s social life. Invite friends over and let your child show off his new play areas.
Good luck and happy moving!