Moving Hacks

Moving isn't fun. It's a lot of work, time consuming, expensive, borderline dangerous, and very stressful. However, the internet is a powerful place full of great (and terrible) ideas, and suggestions to make this process smoother, easier, and a lot less of a headache.


Top 10 Moving Hacks

10. Prep.

There's no such thing as being too prepared. Consider what you can do to make your transition easier. If you can, clean your new bathroom(s) and kitchen before moving in. That way they are ready to use by the time all of your stuff arrives to make it dirty again--but at least it's you that's making it dirty. Prep meals and food. When you're moving, you're not going to throw things away that you can still use. If you have canned items, or food that you want to bring with you that can withstand the move, pack it! For your first couple of weeks living in your new place, you might be taking some time to settle in. Make ahead some meals you can stash in the refrigerator or freezer. Moving in, but haven't got a fridge yet? Make sure you are stocked with snacks and food items that you can eat without all of the bells and whistles. Sometimes PB & J is the best kind of breakfast, lunch and dinner. Don't feel obligated to take every single thing you have ever owned in your life with you. Sometimes you don't need four hair dryers, or seven pairs of jeans you haven't worn since 2012. When you're packing up your stuff, make a pile/box designated for donation or sale. This way, you thin out what needs to be moved, and you might be able to make some money in the process. Last, but certainly not least, CHANGE YOUR ADDRESS. Do your change of address on all of the important stuff (post office, bank, etc.) at least one week before you move, that way you're not scrambling for it once you have already moved in. Also, if you're moving out of state, having as much mail as possible with your address on it will make your life easier when it comes to getting a new ID and driver's license. 

9. Reuse. Recycle. Repurpose.

When it comes to packing, consider what you are packing your stuff up in and with. Do you really want to go to Home Depot and spend $40 on boxes and packing peanuts? Probably not. Check around your place for boxes first, and then you can check out grocery stores, and other retailers for gently used boxes that they were just going to throw away anyway. When it comes to packing filler, old magazines, papers, and junk mail work wonders. Even if you don't have any, your friends and family do! Have super important valuables? Wrap them up with clothes you are packing to keep them safe and concealed. Utilize suitcases for moving your heavy items--they have wheels! You really can use anything as a box if you put your mind to it.

8. Label everything.

Come up with a system that works for you and utilize it. If you are going to write the name of the room on your boxes, make sure to do it on the side of the box, not on the top so that when you stack the boxes you can still see the labels. You can also come up with a color coding system, sectioning them off a certain way when you pack the boxes into the moving vehicle, etc. Figure out what works the best for you, and do it!

(IG: majorlmove)

7. Keep your plugs with your electronics.

Don't have a box just for wires. You'll never be able to find the HDMI cable for your television ever again. When you are packing up your electronics, make sure you pack them up with the wires--or again, find a labeling system.


6. Pack a "Must Have Box", and keep it with you.

I recently moved back to Los Angeles to start my big girl, adult life. I was without my belongings for the first five days of being in town--and it was awfully annoying. I moved out on Friday, started my new job on Monday, and I didn't have any of my stuff--clothes, hair brushes, make up, perfume, etc--until THURSDAY when FedEx finally decided to get my two day shipping to town (shipped the previous Monday btw). I had to buy a lot of stuff at Target over the weekend that I knew was going to be arriving at the house soon, but had no choice because I was in such a rush and I didn't think ahead. Don't put yourself in this situation. It's such a waste of money, energy and stress. Make sure you pack a box or a bag of stuff that you can use the first week that you move just in case. What is it that you need on a daily basis? Make sure you have it with you and keep it with you. If your stuff gets delayed in the move, or the boxes get moved in, but you just don't have time to unpack immediately, at least you still have all of your essentials for your first week. Even after my stuff arrived, I didn't get to touch any of it until Saturday because of work. BE READY.

5. Research.

I know this could probably fall into the "prep" section, but there's so much that goes into research that I wanted to give it its own number on the list. Research is important. There's a ton of research that you can do in order to prepare yourself for your move, or right after your move to help you settle in--so do it. It's maybe a half hour of your life on your computer that you're spending on Buzzfeed anyway, so make it useful. Research other moving hacks and tips. Find out what kind of apps you can utilize to help with the move. Research your new neighborhood. Find a new route to work from your new place that works the best for you. Research new furniture, DIY projects, etc. Make your house/apartment/hovel a home. Check out these links for other moving hacks:
Top 50 Moving Hacks and Tips: Ideas to Make Your Move Easier
Top 50 Moving Hacks of All Time
24 Ingenious Moving Hacks That Make Packing Painless
20 Smart Tips to Make Moving a Breeze

4. Schedule your actual "move in day."

Schedule out the moving in. Start the day at 8am with packing up the transport vehicles (or do this the night before), arrive at the moving site at 9am, 9:15am designate boxes to specific rooms, 10:00am break for breakfast, 11:00am unpack kitchen and bathroom, 1:00pm break for lunch, etc. Make sure you stock up on water bottles and little, easy snacks to keep yourself fueled for a day of lifting, moving, organizing and yelling.


3. Rent the damn moving van/truck.

Yes, it goes against everything a "hacks" list stands for by telling you to spend money on something, but at the end of the day this will save you so much time, money, and aggravation. If you're not moving a lot of stuff and you happen to own a large enough vehicle, awesome. However, if you're moving a house load's worth of stuff, just rent the truck and make one trip. This is so much easier than making multiple trips, risking things being broken, and making the drive a lot more dangerous by making your car one big blindspot full of laundry and your favorite lamp.

(MatthewJJackson, flickr)

2. Use any hack you can to make sure you don't get locked out.

Whether it's the old rubber band around the doorknob hack, keeping your keys on a lanyard around your neck, or making sure there is always someone inside of the house during the move, just make sure you don't get locked out. 


1. Assemble a task force of capable pals. 

Don't move alone if you can help it. Start contacting people a couple of weeks in advance for help. No one wants to help anyone move--no one wants to move themselves, but at the end of the day you have family and friends that will be willing to help in any capacity. Assemble your team. Prepare. Come up with a plan. And move!


Spring Cleaning Do's and Don'ts

It's spring time! Spring is the season of transition. It's time to get tidy, healthy, and ready for summer. The weather is improving, the birds are chirping, and it's time to get CLEANING.

When it comes to Spring Cleaning, it's not just about your living space (home, apartment, bedroom, etc.), but it's an opportunity to make some changes in your living as well to "clean yourself up a bit." Let's break Spring Cleaning down to three major areas:

The Home

The home is literally your home. Whether you live in a house, apartment, dorm or whatever you find yourself sleeping and eating in these days, this is your opportunity to spruce the place up.

The Tech

Believe it or not, your tech gets just as dirty and unmanageable as your closet or toilet bowl can. Clean out your computer, phone, and other tech spaces in order to keep your devices safe, secure, and working properly.

The You

Time to reflect on yourself. I'm not one for believing in any kind of self help or new age-y crap, but at the end of the day it can be good to do some self sprucing. Whether it's setting fitness goals, changing up your diet, learning a new skill, etc, give yourself the chance to cleanse yourself for a season of opportunities.

The Home

DO: Come up with a game plan.
It's important to know what you want to get done and what you need to get done. Cleaning can get crazy pretty fast. Come up with a plan for what you need to do. For example, you can break up the cleaning by room, or by specific tasks that you want to get done.

DON'T: Go overboard.
I know there shouldn't be such a thing as "too clean," but there is a line that should be drawn in the muck. Sometimes people can overwhelm themselves with cleaning tasks, or perhaps even clean things that didn't need cleaning (which can get costly if you end up breaking the thing by accident. Don't try to get it all done at once. Pace yourself.

DO: Change out air filters.
During the winter, air filters can get pretty gunked up. This is a good time to give them a good cleaning/replacing. You don't need to do this on a monthly basis contrary to popular belief. It should be a seasonal task, bi-monthly at the most.

DON'T: Clean when you feel like it.
Nobody wants to clean. No one wakes up in the morning, "Ahhh, you know what I'm going to do? Vacuum, clean the gutters, scrub the baseboards and then for a treat clean out and scrub the fridge!" However, if you hold yourself accountable to a set time and date, there's a higher chance you will get the cleaning done. If you pace yourself for a month of spring cleaning, set every Saturday as a cleaning day with a specific section of the house. You'll get it done.

DO: Yard Sale, Let-Go, auction, etc.
Most of the stuff cluttering up your home can't just be Windexed or wiped or swept away--it's actually stuff. However, some of that stuff has value, so make some money back with your cleaning! Host a yard sale, post on selling apps such as Let-Go, or bring your stuff to auction. If you don't feel like selling stuff, or if you have stuff you can't seem to get rid of, drop the items off at your local Goodwill. Not only will you be cleaning house, but you're not being wasteful--and you might make some money too, which is always rad.

DON'T: Use too much cleaning product.
You'd think this one would be a no brainer, but more often than not people use way too much cleaning product when trying to get the job done. Utilize and make the most out of your cleaning products.

DO: Read the cleaning products label, and use the correct product for the job.
Please don't use Pledge to clean your windows. Figure out the products that are best for you, and are best for the job at hand.

DON'T: Mop/Swiffer the floor before you vacuum it.
Again, you'd think this would be a given, but many people--including myself, I'm sad to admit--in an attempt to just get it done, try and skip the initial step. Vacuuming and sweeping/dusting the floor is crucial to the success of a clean floor. If you try to mop/swiffer initially, then you're going to run into the annoying problem of having wet, gross dust and muck all over the floor.

DO: Clean where your food is!
Pantry, bread drawer, cereal cabinet, spice cabinet, refrigerator give them all a cleaning. Throw food out that's expired. Wipe shelves down.

DON'T: Forget the overlooked spots of your house.
It's a given that you're going to scrub down your toilet, and vacuum the rugs, but what parts of the house do you normally look over when it comes to cleaning? Baseboards, walls, door frames, etc.

The Tech

DO: Buy back ups.
Before you start cleaning out your tech, make sure that you have a hardrive or a couple of USB thumbdrives to store information on. When you're cleaning out your computer, you probably don't need your tax files from 2009 on your computer, but having them on a special drive you can store in a safe, allows you to always have the information, without it taking up any room on your computer. Back everything up!

DON'T: Download apps you don't need.

DO: Uninstall programs that you don't use.

DON'T: Forget other tech tune ups.
Don't forget there's a lot more tech in your life than there has been before. Make sure all of the tech in your life is up to date and speed from your phone to your washing machine to your cable box.

DO: Update your tech.
Update your laptop, phone, etc. If it has an operating system that needs an update, update it!

The You

DO: Set goals.
Set goals for yourself. It'll keep you motivated, and in a constant state of improvement.

DON'T: Try to change yourself.
There's a difference between trying to be more positive, and completely altering your personality in order to fit what a specific set of people would consider you being more positive would be. Think of ways to improve yourself, not change.

DO: Journal.
Write down what you want to improve, or what's happening in your life. It's interesting to see how you are prioritizing or spending your time. It also allows you to work through stuff much easier, and with more of a plan because you have to work through it on paper.

DON'T: Give up.
You can do this.

Happy Spring!





Country Cozy

DIY: Painted Garden Stones

Spring is just around the corner! Time to get your gardening game on with these super cute and helpful painted garden stones from Etcetorize.


Step One:
Gather materials-
-Stones (you can find these at Michael's or Dollar Tree)
-Black paint
-Vinyl (if you have a Cricut machine, bless your heart, then you can cut and print these words out using vinyl sticker paper)
-Black sharpie

Step Two:
Design your stones.

Painting on your letters:
-place your stencil on the stones
-paint over letters to spell out vegetable/plant
-dry with a hair dryer

-use stickers to spell out the words
-design your labels in your Cricut program and print out accordingly

-Write/design your stones with the Sharpie
-Bake the stones at 360 degrees for about 10 minutes to set the ink

Step Three:
Place in your garden!