Can you imagine moving 5 times in the span of 6 years? Believe it or not, but this series of moves was my reality not too long ago! I'm sure it comes as no surprise to hear that these seemingly endless moves aligned with some pretty monumental occasions in my life. However, I'm not just talking about the kind of important type of milestones, I'm talking about life-altering, pivotal events.
When my husband and I first started dating, I lived an hour and a half away from him in the most peculiar attic apartment. I may not have had a dishwasher, but I did have every woman's dream closet! The paint colors were quirky and the plaster walls were badly peeling. The stairwell was dangerously steep and narrow, and the low ceilings often grazed the tip of my topknot. The excitement of getting an offer for my first big girl job quickly wore off as I realized that moving out of this cozy little space of mine during the dead of winter was going to be a nightmare.
Fast forward a few weeks and I had finally found a place to live that would not only be closer to my beau but also my new job in downtown Salt Lake City. Unfortunately, I wasn't permitted time off to move, so I phoned up my dad and he quickly booked a flight. He actually works in Utah from time to time, so it worked out fairly well. Wildly enough, this was the first time that my boyfriend (now husband) met my dad - talk about high stakes!
One and a half short years later, I found myself returning home from the best trip to Island Park with a new fiance and the most beautiful custom engagement ring! To add to the excitement, I was starting my dream job the very next day. I even had my first business trip the following weekend and I was more than a little excited to be flying first class. Needless to say, things were definitely looking up!
A couple of weeks prior, Steven and I made our very first purchase together - a giant sectional that we had agreed would live at my house until we moved in together. On Thursday afternoon, I got an email saying that it had finally arrived, so I drove home excited to set up my new couch and pack for my upcoming business trip. Things kind of took a turn for the worse when I found an eviction notice on my front door. I was so utterly confused. I paid my bills on time always, I had just finished redoing the entire front yard, and I took such great care of my beautiful home! The property management office was closed for the day and I was reeling with the news of having only 30 days to find somewhere to live.
Ironically enough, that same night my husband's roommates told him that they had found a home and were moving out at the end of the month. My husband owned his house, so he obviously couldn't go anywhere. It almost felt like a sign from the universe, except for the fact that if we moved in together my commute would be nearly two hours. Oh, and our parents were both completely against us living together prior to getting married.
Long story short, we decided to take the leap and get married before the end of the month!
That weekend, Steven and his mom hauled their horse trailer to my apartment while I was out of town for my business trip and started moving the furniture that I didn't use on a daily basis. After I returned home, I spent a number of late nights packing all of my belongings into boxes. It felt so strange to be doing this all over again so soon. The following weekend, my in-laws and my fiance volunteered to help move the rest of my things to his house. That was about all we had time for because Steven then headed out for a 2-week course in Kentucky. I spent those 2 weeks adjusting to the commute, slowly unpacking and finding room for all of my nonsense, and learning the ropes of my new job.
When Steven arrived back home, it was a Thursday. For some reason, we agreed to elope the very next day! I called a few friends to see if they would be willing to act as our witnesses and we booked an officiant that we found on the Weber County Courthouse website. It turned out that he was the president of a local motorcycle club who also doubled as a Chaplin - classy, I know! We chose a random field up in the mountains where we had once gone on a date for the ceremony. It was the peak of fall, so we found ourselves surrounded by the most gorgeous fall foliage! We opted not to invite anyone else because none of my family would be able to fly in on such short notice. After our short and sweet ceremony, we celebrated our nuptials with a fancy dinner at our favorite restaurant in Ogden Canyon. It was such a spontaneously beautiful experience.
Now with all of that being said, there are definitely some serious DOs and DO NOTs that these crazy moves have taught me!
✓ Try to keep the original box that your dishes, appliances, and other breakables come in.
✓ Label each and every box. The more specific that you are, the more your future self will thank you!
✓ Use stretch wrap on EVERYTHING. Especially for your bins full of hair products, this allows you to keep everything upright and unpacking simply requires you to cut off the stretch wrap.
✓ Protect your couch cushions and other fabric pieces with trash bags.
✓ Use towels, sheets, and rugs as protective cushioning for breakables.
✓ Be sure to have a few Mr.Clean Magic Erasers on hand. Nothing removes scuffs from walls and baseboards as well as these bad boys.
✓ Leave your clothes on the hangers, tear a hole in the bottom of a big black garbage bag and use it like a garment bag. Be sure to tie the ends to keep dresses from dragging and all of your clothing clean.
✓ Make use of your suitcases by filling them with all of the clothes that don't live on a hanger.
✓ Try to find little cubbies to maximize space as you're packing. For example, fill your vases or empty flower pots with scarves or socks.
✓ Do not continue with your normal grocery shopping routine right up until moving day. Transporting large amounts of food that need to be frozen or refrigerated is not worth it.
✓ Do not expect your plant babies to survive without some serious love and nurturing before, during, and after the move. Plants are fragile, especially if you are moving during the colder months.
✓ Do not plan on everything making it in one piece, especially if you don't splurge on professional movers.
✓ Do not forget to be grateful for anyone and everyone willing to help.
✓ Do not fail to label boxes as "fragile" or "heavy".
✓ Do not hesitate to get rid of things that you have not used in a long time.
✓ Do not have your friends/moving company show up until EVERYTHING is packed. Obviously, if you've paid your moving company to also pack your belongings, this does not apply.
✓ Do not expect amateur movers to be capable of navigating tight spaces without causing some degree of damage.
I hate to admit it, but if there is anything that I've learned from really taking advantage of the DIY moving approach it's that you absolutely must plan for damaged goods. Unfortunately, this isn't the best news for those of you who share my love for uniquely beautiful mango wood dressers that dent easier than a banana. If you can swing it, save yourself the heartache and splurge on professional movers! They're called pros for a reason.
If you're local to the Ogden, Utah area, Muscle Men Movers, LLC is a great option! Being a small business owner myself, I'm always looking to keep my spending local, especially when it allows me to support other small businesses. Not only does Muscle Men Movers offer free quotes, but they also have their very own fleet of moving trucks equipped to handle even the heaviest of dressers. These guys will also provide all of the moving equipment necessary to keep your belongings, walls, and banisters protected.
In other good news, if your family is as deeply passionate about guns as mine is (welcome to being a military wife), and you've invested in a safe to house your weapons, Muscle Men Movers actually specializes in moving gun safes in Ogden, UT! They offer white-glove installation regardless of what level of the house you want your firearms to live.
If you've got a big move coming up and have been on the fence about hiring the pros, save yourself from weeks of unnecessary back pain and give these guys a call. Your friends and family will thank you!