Anyone who completes a move understands the stress and chaos it brings. After attempting to make a list of how I can help others going through this process (and coming up a bit short), I asked fellow military spouses how they received assistance or lent a hand to another family moving across the country. Their ideas are creative, kind and would be perfect for any friend preparing to move.
Here are ways you can help a friend during their move:
Organize (sell/trash/donate): Help your friend stay realistic while preparing for a move. The box they haven’t opened since their last pack out? The stack of magazines they keep trying to find time to read? It often takes an outsiders perspective to help whittle down the belongings before a big move. Offer to bring things to a recycling center, donation location or assist with a garage sale.
Childcare: The most essential day to be child free is the pack -out. There is no way to keep an eye on the packers, your belongings and manage the children. It would also help to watch the kids for a few hours prior to the move, so that the parents have time to organize (without someone following along to undo their efforts).
Feed: When you know a move is on the horizon- you try not to buy any groceries and eat out of your existing pantry and freezer. At some point a can of beans and some pasta is just not appealing! Make a meal to share and save them from a smorgasbord of canned goods.
Room and Board: Instead of the family sleeping on an air mattresses with bare bones supplies, offer to host them for a night or two during their pack-out.
Heavy Lifting: A trusted friend is the ideal extra set of hands (and eyes) during pack out (can help put labels on everything).
On the flip side, you notice a new family is moving in next door (ALERT: potential new friend!), here are some ways you can help ease their transition:
Share your WIFI password until they can get their Internet services set up.
Share cleaning supplies. Their supplies are packed (and probably not easy to find or get to) and this will allow them to tidy up their new place before their belongings are delivered.
Bring a meal (with disposable eating ware so they don't have to worry about cleaning and returning dishes.
Have you given or received help from a friend during a move? Please share your experiences in the comments.
About the Blogger: Briana Hartzell is a Navy spouse, mother to two beautiful girls (3 years and 6 months), a former full time USAA employee and a graduate of Texas A&M University. Briana writes at Being Briana, a blog focused on the joys that military life and parenthood can bring.
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