Moving is never an easy experience for anyone involved. But for children, moving can be a particularly discombobulating experience. How can you help them understand the idea of moving and get adjusted in their new surroundings? Luckily, many parents have moved their families and have ideas to share on making the experience as pleasant as possible. Below, the parents of Parent Soup share their favorite ways to keep their kids happy before, during and after a move.
Laying the Groundwork
"We showed our kids (ages five and two) a map of the U.S., and helped them locate New Jersey and Texas (our old state and our new state). I don't think our two-year-old understood too much but having him involved with the discussion made him feel important. Once we moved, I showed them the address change cards so they would know that our friends and family would know our new address. Next time, I will write to the chamber of commerce to get information and pictures to show the kids before the move and I will also take them on the first house hunting trip so they can see the new area."
~ Parent Soup member RNygard219
Easing the Transition
"We allowed our daughter to pick a special 'mover' toy to take with her at all times during the move. That way she wouldn't feel lonely when we were busy packing or moving. We also let her pick a special picture that she wanted on her wall, and had that hanging there when she arrived at this new house."
~ Parent Soup member CMizia
"I let them each pack a backpack full of their favorite toys to keep handy. I also let them help decorate their new rooms." ~ Parent Soup member GIN122270
Finding Friends Once You Arrive
"I made it a point to find a La Leche League group nearby to attend. We went to the playground often and took long walks around. We gradually met lots of people and expanded our circle of friends."
~ Parent Soup member ANMOSS
"Churches with mother's day out are excellent sources of making new friends. Also, my older two children are involved in scouting, and they joined their new local troops. They made friends there easily and always get invited to go places with the other scouts."
~ Parent Soup member GIN122270
"Our local library was a great help to us when we moved. It is very small, but has a very friendly librarian. They have summer reading programs, a computer, and know all the local gossip. (Tee hee!) We haven't been without friends since wandering in there five years ago."
~ Parent Soup member CMizia
Don't Wait for the Welcome Wagon
"Either go knock on your neighbors' doors or put a note in their mailboxes introducing yourself. Include your children's ages and your address and phone number. I did this when we last moved and made a great new neighbor friend!"
~ Parent Soup member Berk Place