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Big changes are difficult for everyone, no matter the age, but for younger children especially, a move can seem scary. And for mom and dad, moving with kiddos can pose more logistical considerations. Stick to these tips and you’ll have everyone feeling more confident about your family’s upcoming move.

Announce Early

Depending on your kids’ ages and personalities, you’ll want to give them time to get used to the idea of a move. (In my experience, the more prep time my kids have to get used to any idea, the better it is for everyone involved). Let them “get to know” the new town they’ll be living in by utilizing Google Maps, checking out websites for things like kids’ museums, and joining social media pages for (your new) locale.  Drumming up anticipation can remove some of the trepidation that naturally builds up for kids.

Get Them Involved

Whole family buy-in makes a big difference in how smoothly your move goes, so when you can, give your kids some say. My toddler wasn’t eager to pack away stuffed animals, but she did love putting color-coded tape on the boxes. View the kids helping not as an efficient, work-lightening opportunity (there’s a chance you might have to undo some of their “help”), but instead as an investment in your kids’ processing of the big change they’re experiencing.

Moving Day Fun Bag

It’s inevitable; most of the toys and fun items your kids treasure will have to be packed up before moving day arrives. That doesn’t mean they can’t have a few of their most-loved items with them for the journey, though. Stuff a backpack with their most favorites, add in some snacks, and then include a few small surprises for them to find on moving day. 

New Space, Familiar Surroundings

Your house and city may be totally new, but there are some small, easy things you can do to give your kids a sense of familiarity in the new space. Set up bedroom furniture like it was in their old bedroom and put the same decor up on the walls. Even if it doesn’t quite fit your vision for the new space, that sense of security is worth it until your kids get a bit more settled. Give special consideration to blankets, stuffed animals, sound machines and night lights; these items of comfort will be working double-time as your children adjust.

Smooth Move

Understanding that your kids will likely face some anxiety about your move is half of the battle. Giving them grace and preparing wisely is the other. Following these tips will help ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible for the kids and parents.