Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Moving Day!

I have been resurrecting all my old project manager skills as we approached Moving Day.   I keep telling Mr. W that I'm going to project manage the hell out of this move!
Here are some of the things I did to stay organized and help things run smoothly.
I prepared a furniture layout for each room as well as created signs for each room which included a list of the furniture to be placed within it.   I posted these on the door or closest wall of each room so that there would be no question for the movers (Not to mention Mr. W!) I then compiled that into an entire list which I had on a clipboard for easy reference on moving day.  This way as things came off the truck or out of the POD we could direct the movers to the appropriate room in which to place them.
Part of making this work was labeling the boxes with the destination room as we packed them.  Mr. W did not grasp the importance of this concept as well as I had hoped so many boxes were labeled with where they were in the old house.  Or not labelled at all!  Needless to say a lot of questionable boxes ended up in the basement.  But on the whole the off load went smoothly and very few things aren't in the right room.
We took possession of the house on Friday at 5 pm.  I packed a separate "advance team" box of supplies I'd need as we moved in.  It contained:
  • rags
  • furniture oil
  • window cleaner
  • surface cleaner
  • masking tape
  • assorted light bulbs
  • extra vacuum bags
  • extra mop head
  • WD40
  • toilet paper
A few things I wish I had included:
  • large garbage bags
  • flat & phillips head screw drivers
The seller left a little gift for the boys and a card for us.  I thought it was a sweet gesture.
My mom offered to watch the boys all weekend so she came to pick them up Friday afternoon. I had considered going to make a few early runs of fragile items up to the new house, but didn't want to lose my parking spot.  We needed to save spaces for the moving truck the next day.  I was hoping we could use both our vehicles plus our neighbors, but I hadn't seen him all week.  Thinking ahead,  I had parked our pick up poorly assuring two spots there.  What I failed to overlook was that we needed to take one of the cars up to the house that night before the movers arrived!   Fortunately I was able to get our friend Mr. F used his car as a place holder for us Friday pulling in right as we pulled out.
That night we walked through, hardly believing that the house was finally ours after everything we had endured.  And then I set to work sweeping and mopping the billiard room.  Even though we had specifically stated that we did NOT want the sketchy old red rug in the rumpus room, it was still there when I did  a walk thru with the realtor on Thursday.  Since it wasn't removed until after their cleaning crew was here I knew I needed to do it so the movers would have a clean surface to place furniture.  Luckily the floors on the first and second floor were satisfactory so I didn't have to sweep and mop everything.  I'll tell you though, I definitely felt like I owned the place mopping up the basement late at night!
I had sent out two of our rugs to be professionally cleaned so they'd be ready to have furniture placed on them on Moving Day.  Unfortunately I completely forgot to pick them up on Friday, so after the movers arrived Saturday at 8 AM I went back to the new house to meet the delivery of the POD and then went to pick up the cleaned rugs.  It was a long day of finishing up packing things ahead of the movers and answering questions for them.  It was hot too!  On the one hand we were relieved to not have our things covered in rain, but on the other hand, it seemed such a shame to waste such a rare, sunny Portland weekend on Moving Day.
After filling their truck with most of the contents of our house, we drove the 20 blocks to the new house and they began to unload.  The off load was faster and went smoothly since I had labelled all the rooms. 

They also had some time left over to attack the POD.
Sunday Mr. W and I returned for more packing, packing, packing as well as doing some unpacking at the new house so we could reuse boxes.  In addition to more fragile/hard to pack items like lamps we used Sunday to move the antique stained glass windows I inherited from my dad.  We used his truck with glass rack to transport them safely.  I say we, but really it was Mr. W and Mr. F while I watched the children.
During all of this I had a horrible cold.  The boys and I had met Ms Mc and her boys at Laurelwood on Wednesday for dinner and Baby Boy promptly got a cold the next day, by Friday night I was starting to feel sick too.  I've officially sworn off Laurelwood and all other kid-friendly restaurants with play areas until he is past the stick everything in his mouth phase. Clearly these places aren't cleaning the toys on a regular basis and I can't take any more of this contagion that spreads thru my house.  Especially before the big move.  I was so, so physically exhausted.  And constantly having to find kleenex.  Our Little Helper had developed the cold too so I was really worried how I was going to coordinate the next day with the movers if I had to keep the boys home due to illness. Miraculously Our Little Helper felt fine enough to go to preschool so I let him and figured I could bring him home early if needed.  Baby Boy seemed fine enough too once he woke up.
Monday was Moving Day Part 2 with the movers who finished up with the boxes which remained in the old house as well as the planters and outside things.  They actually did it in an hour because by the time I returned from dropping the boys off they were just about ready to head to my mother's for the second half of the load.  In the end I decided to use specialty movers for the piano and pool table she wants to give us, so we had them move the other furniture that either was my dad's or she no longer wanted like the Art Deco radio, chinoiserie parlor table, and a pair of wing back chairs.  Her basement pool room was jam packed with boxes of things we couldn't fit in the POD, but needed to get out to stage the house to be on the market.  And a lot of toys!  At some point I decided to leave some of the boxes there for us to get later; I was beginning to get nervous about time and whether they'd be done before I needed to go pick up the boys.  Having the movers unload the POD before they were done was also a priority for me.
In the end it all worked out, they were able to offload the truck and the POD before I needed to leave to pick up Baby Boy at 2 PM.  It was another long hot day though.  The temperature changes between the attic and the basement are intense, and unfortunately for the movers, there were a lot more boxes for the attic today.  Mr. W and I decided to try to keep the basement clear as a work room for him so things like luggage (which gets backed in our bedrooms anyway), baby clothes, and our out of season clothes should be stored in the attic.  
I have a call in to have to POD picked up to free up the driveway for me to park there.  The house is a catastrophe of boxes and strewn newspaper, but we are in.  I feel good about the move and am both excited and overwhelmed with the unpacking process.

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