Moving – tips and tricks from a family of six!

moving Building House Making Home

Moving for our family of six is not what I would call fun, however, I do see the positives in it–moving is always a good exercise in decluttering and organizing ALL THE THINGS!  The first time we moved “with kids” was 10 years ago and it was what I would call a “fairly organized” move.  I was then running a home daycare and so could pack and organize in any little pockets of time that I found available throughout the day as I was home all day.  There are four moving tips that I used ten years ago and found that those same tricks are still just as valuable and time-saving ten years later–especially since our family is moving twice in six months with a full-time job for mom and four kids this time around.  #whatwerewethinking

color code move

#1.) COLOR CODE YOUR MOVE:  I used a color-coded system where I chose a color for each room in our new house, used corresponding colored construction paper squares to write the contents of each box and taped it to the side of the box.  I also wrote in sharpie on the top of each box the contents and what room it went in.  Then at the new house, I taped a large sheet of the colored construction paper to the doorway of each corresponding room and then anyone helping us move in would know where each colored box went.  I also taped the appropriate colored construction paper to furniture for each room and tied matching colored ribbon onto garbage bags that held pillows, bedding and other bulky items.  I plan to use the color coding strategy for this move as well – click here for a great blog post about a similar system.

#2.)  MAKE A MOVING BINDER:  Megan from The Homes I Have Made blog knows a thing or two about moving!   Married to a US Marine, her family is in their 6th home in 10 years!  Megan is a girl after my own heart as she has made resources that can organize your move into a military operation in itself and they are FREE!

smooth move binder kit


Megan’s moving binder is my number one moving tip (and it is super cute and did I mention free?)!  I made a binder of my own with her printables and loaded her moving spreadsheet onto my skydrive so I could keep everything at my fingertips and up-to-date both at work and at home during our last move.  Since we are currently living in a rental home while we build, we are staring down ANOTHER MOVE in the very near future–ugh!  However, this move will be so much more exciting as we will be moving into our newly built home–woot woot!


#3.)  LABEL THE SIDES OF THE BOXES:  Another one of my favorite moving tips is to make sure that you label the SIDES of the boxes.  Labeling the sides as well as box tops is important because when they are stacked on top of one another, it makes life so much easier. For six months we have been living in a rental house with a basement full of stacked boxes and if we have needed something that is packed, I could simply run down to the basement and do a quick scan of the sides of the boxes to find what I needed. That tip is a total life saver this time around for sure!


#4.) PACKING KIT/CADDY:    A packing kit/basket/caddy is super efficient and the best strategy for those of us who tend to get interrupted while packing (ahem, hello moms and wives who have to squeeze packing into already overstuffed days…) ;-).  Make sure you include scissors, packing tape sharpies, labels, {color coded labels, color key, paper and ribbon if you are color coding your move}, box cutter, and timer if you need to set one for extra motivation– “You can do anything for 15 minutes” ~ Flylady  ;-).

Here are a few of my other favorite moving Pins:


Hope the above tips and tricks help you if you plan to move in the near future! Oh, and one more share… this is my fave youtube video with moving tips from WhatsUpMoms (I am totally crushing on her “Book It!” t-shirt!!!):

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Thanks for stopping by and come again real soon!   Tina

Building Update – Where we are at right now…

Today we were at the lot all day cleaning and putting up the railing on the deck.  This seems to be our new Saturday routine:  sleep in a bit (yay!), have bacon and eggs for breakfast made by my fabulous husband, pack up the back of the pickup and head to the lot, work on projects and clean up inside and outside, pick up pizza for lunch, work on projects and clean up inside and outside, head home for a late supper and Saturday night hockey on tv.

I really wanted to share the progress on the house so this post will be mainly pictures.

First up is our new/old fireplace:

reclaimed brick fireplace

I just love the look of reclaimed brick fireplaces and also barn beam mantels.  We picked out the beam at our previous neighbour’s “scrap yard”.  If you like to renovate or build things yourself, he is the perfect neighbour to have!  In our last house, we were almost finished with our basement fireplace and had just run out of stone.  He happened to have the exact stone we needed to finish!  We also used one of his barn beams on that fireplace as well.  He is such a sweetie that he sent us home with three beams this time so we could choose the best fit once we had them on site.  We are going to use the others around the house for shelves and other projects so watch for those to appear in upcoming posts.  We are hoping to install shiplap above the fireplace similar to this:

from Fox Hollow Cottage

OK, enough about the fireplace, next up is the kitchen:

kitchen drywalled Building House|Making Home

Or, what will be the kitchen anyway…  At the very left of the photo you can see where the refrigerator will be set into the wall.  That black thing hanging down is where our vent hood will be over the stove.  Can’t wait for installation of my farmhouse sink under the window – I’ve always wanted a window over my kitchen sink!  On the very right of the picture are the sliding glass doors to our back deck.  Speaking of the back deck…

deck railing install Building House|Making Home

There’s my sweetie working away on the railing for the deck ;-).  Love that guy!  Do you see another one of my sweeties in the background “tending” the fire?  It is our youngest’s job whenever we are at the lot to start and tend the fire as we always have scrap wood and cardboard to burn.  Might not be the perfect match for his ADD tendencies as the fire kept going out today ;-).

deck railing install2 Building House|Making Home

There’s the railing install progress.  As you can see, we are going to need to finish that little project up before we are awarded our occupancy permit–that deck sits very high above the ground!

And finally for today, the dining room:

dining room drywall Building House|Making Home

This room has two windows that overlook our front porch and a portion of the room (on the left) that will be a spot for our home office.

Here is an inspiration picture that I will use for this little office nook:

office nook

Can’t wait to show you the chandelier and style board for this room!

We have been building for three months now and although everything is running fairly smoothly and quite quickly, we are getting so excited to just be done and move in!  My heart is telling me to relax and and enjoy this particular situation because it really is fun for us to dream and plan and see our visions become reality.  We are very blessed to be able to do this “build a house” thing not only once, but twice.  Stay tuned for more progress pictures and many style boards to come!

Thanks for stopping by and come again real soon!   Tina

We are building a new house…..again!

What!?!  Didn’t we JUST do this (well, 10 years ago, but still)?  I thought we said we would NEVER do this again!  Comfortably settled into what we thought was our dream home (pictured below), a few life situations came up last fall causing our family to question the logistics and value of putting the house up for sale and finding a lot to build another new house on.  Does anyone else eat more when they are stressed?!?

building house making home dream home #1

Here are a few amazing resources about buying property/building a house that I have found informative and helpful:

Tips on Buying Land (Build a Home on a Budget Series)

10 Things to Consider when Building a New Home

How to Protect Yourself When Buying a Farm or Rural Property (or any property for that matter!)

After searching for a bit, we found a few good prospects about 20 minutes away from our current house.  When our real estate agent took us to one lot in particular, my heart skipped a beat – this was IT!

Big but not too big?  Check.  The lot was 1.5 acres.

Existing trees and grass?  Check.  Three sides of the lot are bordered by trees with a cute smaller “grove” of trees in the center and the entire lot was planted with grass already.

Not too close to neighbours?  Check.

Reasonable commute to work?  Check.

All this with the bonus of being just outside of the cutest little town you ever did see with a cool cafe, boutique shops, pizza places, a hockey arena, grocery store and OUR bank!

Lot sold building house making home


building house making home lot
Our vacant lot view facing the road

Please excuse the blurry phone picture and the ugly grass–it was very early spring.  Round one (10 years ago) of buying a lot and building a house for us meant planting every single tree and blade of grass ourselves since we basically purchased a corn field ;-).  We were smiling from ear to ear with all of the trees and grass that came with our lot this time around.

Building House|Making Home Backyard

Building house making home backyard 2

Smiling until we realized we would be moving… twice… sigh.  Let the stress eating begin ;-).

Stay tuned for our next episodes:

Selling Dream Home #1 where I give you my very best tips and tricks for STAGING and SELLING your house FAST!


Top ten things to consider when selecting/planning a FLOORPLAN!

Thanks for stopping by and come again real soon!   Tina

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