Wednesday, October 08, 2014

we're on the move

I'll mis our house but I think I'll miss our flowery street even more

The original title of this post, Updating Our Rental, was made redundant after a surprising phone call yesterday morning. We won't be updating our rental because our rental is going on the market. And we're on the move.

We've lived in this house for seven-and-a-half years. We've done a lot of growing here; much of our family story is firmly embedded in the walls. And, regardless of it's faults (it's very cold and damp in winter) we like it, love it, even. It's beautiful, affordable and convenient and for all those reasons it will be hard to say goodbye.

I may have cried for a good hour after hearing the news; overwhelmed by the prospect of finding a new home (not an easy task around these parts), packing everything up and creating a nest before baby arrives. I think a big part of my emotional reaction was letting go of the plans I had already made; we had painters booked, I was replacing blinds with curtains, I had spent many days dreaming of bringing our third bundle home - to this house.

There is the option of purchasing a home but now that we're in a position to go ahead and buy, I'm not so sure it's something I want to do just yet. You see, every bit of research we have done has pointed to the same answer: buying a home is not a financial investment; it's an emotional one. And you don't have to be a genius to know that the current market is a seller's one; in no way is it a good time to launch into home ownership for the first time.

But deep down, if I'm completely honest, there's also a part of me that feels like it's time to move on. A few months ago Daniel and I discussed the prospect of finding a new home and after much umming and ahhing we decided that perhaps it wasn't the best decision. We wanted to stay because it was the easier, more comfortable option. Obviously we were wrong.

Ideally, we would like to be settled into a new home before Christmas. But one look at the rental market leaves me absolutely perplexed - so many overpriced homes with bright aqua walls and fluorescent lighting, so few options close to Che's school and Poet's preschool.

I am mustering all my positive energy and telling myself that the right home will come up. In the meantime I'll continue decluttering and start the mammoth task of packing everything into boxes. We have never moved with children before so I would really appreciate your advice. How do I make this task as stress-free and simple as possible?

Wish us luck!


  1. I empathise… our rental went on the market when I first found out I was pregnant with my third, we were all ready to buy but finding out about the pregnancy we decided to wait, only to find we were about to be on the move again. Thankfully my family stepped in and offered us a place to stay, and over time things all worked out wonderfully, better than I would have even imagined at that time (that was 6 years ago)… we moved a few times with young children, and what I learned was tell them about the move, have them babysat during the actual move, and make sure that their bedrooms are set up first, so when they come to the new house they have familiar things to help them to transition to their new home. Also, "when the time is right, the way will become clear" became my much repeated mantra over those years. xx

  2. We moved into three short term rentals while we renovated our house that was a deceased estate and unliveable. The first move was from Sydney with a 2yr old and an 8wk old baby who had arrived a month early. Looking back I don't know how we did it but we did. We couldn't afford removalists so we did the whole thing ourselves. We often packed at night after the littles were in bed. We'd download one of Richard Fidler's "Conversations" from the ABC and we'd get lost in someone else's life to take the focus off the overwhelming task at hand. We also had a small cardboard box filled with our eldest's "specials" eg a rock from a previous house, his favourite book and a few special toys as he found it hard having his belongings put away in boxes as we knew each move was temporary until we finished our reno. We read books about moving and surrounded him with family and normal routines where possible as it was a turbulent time for him. But through it, our little ones really developed a new resilience and we truly got a sense of home was wherever we were together. Best of luck Jodi, it must feel so overwhelming right now but exciting as well. I'll be thinking of you!

  3. I started with one room at a time, labelling each box for that room so when you unpack the truck in your perfect new home, the boxes go straight to the right room and you can unpack as required. Talk to Prue about boxes. Sending lots of love for a quick manifestation and smooth transition. Best wishes and good luck to you all. C x

  4. (I'd typed something and then it seems to have disappeared so re-writing this…)
    Hooray for new beginnings! It may seem daunting now, but you will find someplace equally wonderful where you can create memories and document your family. It seems that fate has intervened and that is very exciting. We've moved countries and cities 10 times in the past 8 years, each time with kids in tow, so I have a few tips. Get a box just for essentials (phone chargers, remotes, soap, toilet paper) so you know exactly where that stuff is when you move in and don't have to tear apart every box. If you can, go through the kids' things when they are not home. All of the sudden when it comes time to move, children get super attached to everything and pretty emotional, so it's best to remove things far from sight if you decide they're not heading to the new place. If you can, let the movers pack you. It's not nearly as costly as people say and I cannot emphasize how much sanity is saved in the process. Literally night and day. Last thing: there is always debris at the end (how did that wooly slipper end up with the potholder?!) so make sure you have a box for last minute stuff you can hurl in the back of your car. Good luck!

  5. Moving is always hard when you love a place so much, but maybe you could buy your rental! =)

  6. I don't have any advise but I wish you well. Moving house can bring about an unsettling feeling but it will pass.

  7. I would say buy if you can. Sellers market or no. If you want to stay somewhere for a while, the emotional investment is 100% worthwhile, just so it's always YOUR decision how long you stay, not someone else's. That said, moving is always so fussy that staying somewhere longer than we ought is what we often do. x

  8. We were forced to move from our rental with a 4 week old and a 2 year old so I can understand your frustration. It pushed us to FINALLY buy after years of contemplating and we couldn't be happier! We're now living in a compact rental with tiled floors and cringe worthy vertical blinds. But when standing at the kitchen sink looking at our less than ideal surroundings I think about how wonderful our new home will be - timber floors, space and that view!
    How wonderful that this decision was made for you and you have this incredible full moon energy today to help things along. The right house always comes along, it's just a matter of letting it all go. Good luck!

  9. i wish you all the best of luck and the right house will definitely come along. we have moved twice since having Lily and the one thing i can say is, both times we moved, the first room i put together in the new house was hers. because i wanted her to feel home right away with all her things.

  10. Hi Jodi, we moved into our newly built house in the country while I was pregnant with our third baby. I organised for the move to take place while I was 28 weeks pregnant so that I still had a little bit of second trimester energy left (I wanted to avoid any upheaval during my third I find this is a time for me to sit, reflect and be present...and it's also a time for my body to fall apart a I didn't want to place any unnecessary pressure on myself). We paid extra to have the removalists pack and I can't even begin to tell you how worthwhile this was for keeping my stress levels to a minimum. And we also organised for my parents to care for my 4 and 2 year old while we spent a few days unpacking/nesting. I've moved a few times with children and this time was by far the easiest. Goodluck with moving! x

  11. Jodi,
    I truly feel for you too. We had to move when I was 34 weeks pregnant with Cameron. We probably found out a few months prior to that, and my goodness that was a heart-wrenching and stressful time (though of course we didn't realise that the real heartbreak was to come later). I too had pictured bringing Cam back to that home of ours where we'd lived since we were first married.... Since having the boys, we've moved twice and I think my biggest tip would be: send the children to grandparents for a two-night sleepover if at all possible. This should give you enough time to move and unpack almost everything so that life can carry on as before. I hope the right home comes along real soon.
    Lots of love,
    Ronnie xoxo

  12. Oh Jodi, that sucks! We got kicked out of our last place because our landlords were selling. My only advice is to put it out there to everyone you know that you are looking because I always think it's better to find something through a personal connection. And it's even better, as you know, not to have to go through a real estate agent. xx

  13. Moving, especially when it is not entirely your decision to move, is always so unsettling.
    Although I was pleasantly surprised by my toddler's reaction to moving…I think seeing his toys in new way made him interested in everything again and he spent three days playing independently while I cleaned and unpacked.
    Good luck house hunting!

  14. I'm so sorry, that's a lot on anyones plate, but with a babe on the way and two littles, it's extra hard. It may sound cliche or trite, but usually when something like this goes down, there really is something better waiting for you. I haven't moved since I was pregnant with my second, and my little one at the time, loved taking things out of my boxes I was packing, so I just handed her her own and let her "help".

  15. Tough at first but as others have mentioned, the possibility of a new beginning. You are well on your way to minimising your life, your things. That to me is the absolute fundamental thing to do before moving. Kids and babies will go with the flow of what's happening around them. Our last move was with 2 very young ones and they had a ball. My main issue was that the new house wasn't really kid safe so that was our first priority. As soon as that was done, I relaxed.

  16. I just read your latest posts and I'm sorry to read you're having such a streak of bad luck, Jodi!
    Poor Poet with her head wound... that must have hurt badly and I can imagine the shock you've gone through. (Fortunately we have no experience with bleeding wounds here, but I remember the shock quite well when my son broke his arm earlier this year.) I'm glad Poet's doing fine again and I hope the leaf is healing fast!
    And I can sure understand all those tears of yours when you heard the news about your house! I wish you luck to find the most lovely place very, very soon.

    As we moved house and town last year with our first son (who was than Poet's age), me pregnant with our second baby, I want to share some tips:
    - Don't wait to tell the kids, they need to (mentally) prepare, too
    - Spare them the stress and let them play in your parents garden/your in-laws/friends while you're packing and during the actual move
    - Accept all the help you can get (and go for the advice some of your readers gave to let the movers pack - I wish we'd done this, too)
    - Pack the kids rooms last and unpack them first
    - Even though this may sound strange: stay away from the actual move. There isn't much a pregnant woman can (or should) do on actual moving day and I'm sure Daniel will do a great job, while you rest at your parents/friends house with the kids (we actually stayed at my parents for about 5 days after the move, so my man had lots of time to install all lamps, assemble the furniture and unpack the first boxes with the help of our dads)
    - Play pretend games: Being pregnant you'll find that you'll need a lot of rest in those packing days, and when the kids want to play with you, you might not always muster a lot of energy. I then often made our bed or couch be a pirate's ship, so I could lay and rest my body (and baby) while giving my son the much needed attention during this unsettling time. When packing his stuff in boxes we later pretended to pack treasure chests, which made it so much easier for him. (If you're not into pirates, you could try astronauts on a mission to find a new planet.)
    - take it slowly, step by step
    You're already doing the very best thing: to declutter and keep your positive thinking!
    Good luck, I'm sure it'll turn out fine!

  17. I would venture to say that the thoughts that you had a few months ago was the Universe preparing you for this moment. I'm certain that you will find exactly what you need and it will feel like it was meant just for you :) Good luck in the transitions! They are the hardest part. {{hug}}

  18. So sorry you are all going through this upheaval, but often things happen FOR you, not TO you and in the end there are now wonderful possibilities.
    I have moved many times and best tip is put everything as near as possible to where it was in the previous home, so you can find things, you can rearrange later. Don't let anyone help unpack, as you may not find some things for many months .
    A box with essentials is a great idea, last to go and easy to find in new kitchen, Jug, mugs, milk, tea, muffins,cutlery, plates etc for the first snacks or meal needed for the day of the move , even if main meals have been organised elsewhere.
    Please don't dismiss the idea of buying, I can't even begin to tell you all the levels of joy there is in owning your own home. A home is your nest, your private choice, let someone else pay the big bucks ,find somewhere with possibilities. Happiness is a small mortgage.
    Happt hunting, whatever you decide.

  19. I'm so sorry to hear this. Although I wasn't pregnant, the last time we were evicted for the same reason, I decided I had had enough and we decided to buy. I haven't regretted it for a second. As said above, your home is your nest and I adore being able to do as much (or little) to it as I want. And when the oven breaks, I don't have to wait 6 weeks for a landlord or agent to do anything about it, I do it right away. (This actually happened when renting - no rent reduction for not being able to cook for 6 weeks. With two kids. I was so miffed). And then any future children can all come home to the same home.

    Oh and I also cried at leaving the house where I brought my firstborn home too. It still holds a special place in my heart.

    In terms of packing, I'd really recommend paying the movers to do it. They are quick (ours did it the day we moved) and with 2.5 children will be sooo much easier on all of you.

    If this is too expensive, then I'd say do it all last minute. Yes, declutter now, but doing it in small chunks is a false economy. It takes longer as with every piece you think "Will I need this in the next [week, month, etc] before we unpack it?" It makes things really disruptive for all of you for longer (with some things trapped in boxes for however long). The tip I learnt from watching the movers do it was to start in one corner of the room and collect everything in your path til you get to the next room. Made unpacking a breeze also.

    All the best!

  20. We have moved TEN times in 4.5 years. We have moved a few states due to my husbands job and then our last move was cross country with a 2 year old while I was 6 months pregnant. It almost makes me cry just remembering it. The bright side of all our moves is that we truly do not have anything we don't need. We live in 750 square feet and everything we own we use on a daily basis. Simplifying now (which you are already doing,) will make your life so much easier! Taking the time to organize boxes as you go is definitely worth the extra effort. And getting a very early start, (which I never do,) is the answer. I usually can't handle chaos and boxes everywhere since we have always lived in such small spaces, but the night before moving day I am always in a pile of tears because there is just too much to be done and I never gave myself enough time. It just always takes longer than you think. Good luck mama!


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