Would it not be nice if the moving van came with a puzzle box bearing the picture of the perfectly packed cargo, customized for your personal belongings? Hmm! Perhaps I have just invented a new line of business here! Any takers?
We have previously explored packing strategies. Now, if you feel ready and willing to load and drive your own moving van, a few preparations will ensure your project goes smoothly, perhaps even as smoothly as if it had been neatly drawn for you.
First, make sure you have the proper supplies on hand: Plenty of moving blankets, a hand truck, load-locking straps and tie down straps.
Most of all, arm yourself with a good supply of water and patience. It might be a good idea to determine individual roles before you begin: Jane, you are good at figuring out the best way to pack things; you will oversee the wrapping of furniture. Michael, you have an eye for how things fit together; you’re in charge of loading. Diane, you are strong and have a good sense of organization; you guide us to decide what goes in first and what follows.
This does not mean a person is limited to their role and stands around the rest of the time; it means you have clear rules for the ways in which each individual can lead. Pre- established roles will make it easier to remain calm if you encounter a problem.
Also, before you start, plan specific break times. Taking the time to sit back together will keep you motivated and help you take notice of your progress. Even take a moment to laugh at those “candid camera” moments you will likely encounter during the day. This will go a long way to maintaining your team’s spirit. Moving may be a family project, but it is unlike any other family activity. It presents new dynamics that can be a challenge.
For this reason, also, young children should not take part in the actual loading of the van, or their participation should be limited in order to avoid injury. This may also avoid family friction. Moving can be very disorienting for children. It can be disorienting for the elderly as well.
There are ways young children can be involved while staying safe. Give them a camera and instruct them to document the loading of the van. They can turn this into a news report or funny collage showing mom trying to untangle the tying straps or dad trying to fit a lamp in five different positions before he finally gets it. If your child likes to be in the spotlight, this could turn into a school or family reunion presentation, or the highlight of your house warming party.
The company you rent your van from will have guidelines to determine what size van is most suitable to your circumstances. They may also have guidelines for loading strategies, but an important part of the puzzle is for you and your team to continue to fit snuggly in the dynamics of the moment. For the rest, I invite you to watch the following clip.
Click HERE for more van loading guidelines.
Also Read: Pack Like a Pro
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