Thursday, November 8, 2012

Packing the little stuff

Packing is one thing. Packing stuff you use on a daily basis is another.

How do you deal with packing the stuff you actually use? Computers, TVs, the bathmat, the skillet, the pet bowls, that last coffee mug?

In this as in all things, it helps to have a plan.

Our moving situation is a little unique in that our stuff is disappearing long before we personally show up in our new city. I'll spend next month with a friend in Boston. That makes things a little easier in the kitchen, since all the stuff I can't use up and can't pack (baking supplies, oils and vinegars, spices) can go with me to her place, and then just stay with her when I leave. Ditto cleaning supplies and bathroom stuff.

It's all the other little things. The cup we keep pens in. The canister full of whisks and spatulas. The cat food bowls. The toilet brush. The butter dish. All those things have to be washed, dried, and packed away ahead of time.

This dovetails nicely with our plan to get rid of all the crappy Tupperware. We'll keep the good stuff, but we've ended up with a hodgepodge of scratched, melted, cracked, and/or stained Tupperware as well. Two old Tupperware tubs can stand in for the cat food and water bowls. Ditto the butter dish. In a pinch, you could even use a Tupperware tub as a glass to drink out of, I suppose. We can eat out of the Tupperware as well, so that we can pack the rest of the china.

I'm going through the house and collecting all those bits. I took the pens out of the mugs, saved out a few for immediate use, and packed the rest along with the mug. We're in the process of going through our clothes and shoes, setting aside what we'll keep with us, and packing the rest. The stainless steel things I keep makeup in were packed; now all my makeup resides in a plastic shoe box. The little bowl I keep salt in was washed and dried, and the salt placed in a Ziploc bag. Same with the last spices; I put a little of each in a Ziploc bag, to go with me to Boston, and the rest will get packed.

Ziploc and Tupperware go a long way here.

We're also in the process of backing up all our files, so that we can at least pack the desktop and printer (the laptops stay with us). I'll back up everything on an external hard drive, which I'll keep with me. I'll also update our "Doomsday List" which stays in offsite storage with my parents--a list of all our financial information, bank account numbers, user names and passwords, plus copies of our driver's licenses, passports, Social Security cards, and marriage certificate. In case something happens to one or both of us, someone can deal with our credit cards, student loans, etc.

Be sure to set aside a "last box," which will hold all the things you'll need first in your new home. Shower curtain (and rings), sheets, pillows, travel mugs, a couple of glasses, maybe some disposable silverware, a flashlight (just in case), a roll of toilet paper, a roll of paper towels, a couple of lightbulbs, a towel or two, and all your bathroom stuff (toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo, soap, etc.).

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