Tips from Mom: Moving Out On Your Own

mother-daughter-holding-boxes-looking-each-other-65387140We know you thought the time would never come, yet here it is: you are moving out of your parent’s home, ready to face the world with a place of your own and all of the responsibilities that come along with it!  First and foremost, congratulations on successfully avoiding becoming a Stepbrothers Brennan Huff (Will Ferrell) and Dale Doback (John C. Reilly) statistic!   Second, we get that this is an exciting as well as challenging transition for everyone involved.  While you may want flex your independence muscles and do it all on your own, we highly recommend taking some tips and advice from those adults who helped you learn how to take all the big steps in life.  And who else ranks higher on this list than your dear, sweet and wise mom?

Therefore, in honor of Mother’s Day, and without further ado, here are some helpful hints that your mom might share — if you asked her — to help you face the world with a place of your own and all of the responsibilities that come along with it.

Plan your expenses and make a budget:  You can’t eat your new digs.  Living on your own includes many expenses in addition to rent.  Make a list or spreadsheet of all of the monthly expenses you will have, including utilities, food, internet, car payments, insurance, gas and last but not least, entertainment!  Once you know how much it will cost to be on your own, you will have a better idea of what type of place you can afford and how much income will be necessary to make it happen.

Get a job and start saving: Before you take the plunge, find a job that will bring in enough income to handle your expected costs and then some.  Most rentals will require a deposit and/or the last month’s rent paid in advance.  It is best to have some extra cash saved for unexpected costs that can and will arise.

Pick a safe place to live: You may be tempted to choose a less safe area in exchange for a less expensive rent, but this is a trade-off you may later regret.  The security of your person first, and your belongings second, should be a priority.  And yes, this is a mom worrying thing, but worry intelligently honored is a sign of wisdom, and this is one worry to take to heart.

Write a chore list and hold yourself accountable: After all of these years, mom won’t be there to pick up after you, make your meals, wash your clothes, and do countless other tasks that she shouldn’t have been doing for you in the first place.  She also won’t be there to nag when you don’t get them done.   Set up a list of regular chores and household tasks, and stick to it.  If you have a hard time self-motivating, try offering yourself a reward for completing the tasks.  Once you get the hang of it, you will find that keeping up with your home can be quite satisfying when you are able to take pride in your space.

Choose your roommate wisely: If you will be sharing your new residence with someone else, don’t underestimate the importance of that choice.  If you have a friend or two with whom you get along well, that’s a great start.  Other factors you may want to consider are how reliable, responsible, and neat that person is.  Not only will you be sharing social time with your roommate, you will also be sharing the responsibility of paying the bills and keeping up the home.

Hit the yard sales and thrift stores: Once you decide to move out on your own, you may be surprised by how much stuff you will need for your new place.  Simply stocking the kitchen can easily wipe out your savings if you aren’t thrifty.  Visit yard sales and thrift stores to gather up many of the items you will want and need for your new place.  Save your money for a new, clean mattress and sofa, and most of the rest you can find used at a fraction of the cost.

Keep your pantry stocked and learn how to cook: While the value menu at the nearest fast food restaurant may be tempting, you will soon find that eating out on a regular basis is not only bad for your health, it is also pretty tough on your wallet.  Regular shopping trips for healthy and inexpensive food will insure that you will always have food options that won’t break the bank.  Make a list of the meals you generally cook and stock your pantry and fridge with those ingredients.  Then when you shop, look for your pantry items to be on sale and buy them up.  Keeping a pantry stocked ends up costing much less than buying everything you need each time you cook.

When all else fails, ask mom: We understand you are on your own, and the last thing you want to do when there is a problem is go crying home to mom.  Good for you for being independent and responsible.  But always know that if you find yourself in a situation that is a bit more than you were expecting, mom always knows best.  Just don’t even think of bringing your dirty laundry home for her to wash.  You were raised better than that.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

Tips for Moving Your Child Back Home From College

Father and Son Loading the Car

Doesn’t it all come in so fast?  We know it seems it was only yesterday that you went shopping for extra-long sheets, the perfect dorm chair and a mini-fridge.  Already, the year has passed and it is time to pack it all up and move your baby become college student home again.  While you may be excited to have your child back in your home for a while, you are probably not too excited about the prospect of helping to clean and pack up nine months of mess and accumulation and drag it back to your currently clean and uncluttered home.  Here are some helpful tips to ease the pain of the move, and to start your time off with your child on the right foot.

Sort Early into Keep, Store, Donate, and Trash Piles: Have your child begin the sorting process long before you arrive to pick him up from school.  When sorting through items, there should be four piles: 1. Items he will need to keep and have access to while at home for the summer; 2. Items he would like to keep but won’t need again until next year; 3. Items he is ready to get rid of that may be of use to someone else; and 4. Trash.

Consider Summer Storage: For all of those items in the “keep but won’t need again until next school year,” consider the option of storing them locally.  The cost of the unit will be recouped in the time and money saved not having to make extra trips back and forth from campus to your home.  And just think how much easier it will be when moving it all back again in just a few short months.

Start the Move Early:  If your child is coming home shortly before school is out for the summer (spring break perhaps), or you are planning to visit him during this time, have him think about what he won’t be needing in those last few weeks of school.  Bring home his winter coat and snow boots, and that new sled he bought to ride down the campus hill one time in the snow last December.  The more you can move out before the last day of school, the less overwhelming the task will seem to you and your child.

Sell the Books:  Encourage your child to sell back any texts books he will no longer be using (but also take it from an English major, an exception should always be made for a good novel!).  Gone are the days when you are victim of the campus store who tells you your $160 Psychology Textbook won’t be used by the professor next year.  You now have the option to sell online to someone who will be using that textbook next year.  If you want to be certain they will take the time to sell their books back, you can let them keep the money.   The proper incentive should insure there will be no heavy textbooks to lug home!

Consider Donations:   For those items in the donate pile, encourage your child to donate them before you arrive.  The Goodwill or other local thrift stores are great options to drop off, and some will even pick up large loads.  Many campuses have a site specifically for dropping off useful items to be reused by others.  This helps out their students and keeps the dumpsters from being overfull on those last few days of the semester.  For items that need to be picked up, check out freecycle.org, an online site that helps to keep items out of the trash by allowing people to post offers of items for others to pick up for free.

Return What Belongs To the School: Remind your child to return any items that may belong to the University (library books, sporting equipment or uniforms, etc.) before you arrive.  This is called forward planning: nothing feels less special than receiving an overdue notice in place of your diploma!  And that last day of packing up will be plenty full without having to find the time to run around campus returning that catcher’s gear your son still had buried in the back of his closet.

Bring along some supplies:  Always be prepared.  It may be the motto of the boy scouts, but unfortunately, not so for the typical college student.  Bring along empty boxes and bins, sharpies for labeling, packing tape, and plenty of black and white trash bags.  Not only will the trash bags be useful for all of the trash accumulated under your child’s bed, they also make a great place to pack linens, clothes, and many other items for easy transport in your vehicle.

Show up with Coffee, Doughnuts and Tunes:  Everyone works better with good tunes cranking, a full belly and a caffeine rush.  This day will be the start of your young adult’s summer back at home with you.  Start it out right by reminding him how awesome and thoughtful you always are.   Never too late to model good behavior!  And believe it or not, it is coming ’round about that time when he may actually start to appreciate you.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

Earth Day is Every Day for These North Carolina Organizations

change the worldApril is Earth Month, and April 22nd Earth Day, but for many North Carolina environmental non-profits, Earth Day is every day.  So we at Truckin’ Movers would like to send some love and appreciation to these and all North Carolina environmental organizations.

 

The Eno River Association   Since 1966, this organization has worked to conserve and protect the natural resources of the Eno River Basin. Their efforts have resulted in more than 7,000 acres of protected lands surrounding the Eno River, largely contained within five public parks (Eno River State Park, Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area, West Point on the Eno Durham City Park, Penny’s Bend Nature Preserve and the Little River Regional Park).  Their Festival on the Eno brings thousands of people together annually to the banks of the river to listen to music, share regional arts and crafts, eat local foods, and celebrate and support the river, watershed and its value to the community.

Triangle Land Conservancy  This gem of an organization strives to create a healthier and more beautiful region right here in the Triangle by protecting our clean water and natural habitats, supporting local farms and food, and connecting people with nature through land protection and stewardship. Their Nature Preserves are located around the Triangle and open to the public at no cost, year round.  These protected areas preserve valuable natural resources while providing opportunities for residents to appreciate and enjoy the natural world.

CHER (Center for Human – Earth Restoration)  With the intention of “Bringing the earth into the hearts of all,” CHER’s work focuses on providing unique opportunities for children and adults to enhance their relationship with the natural world through nature-based education, camps, eco-restoration, reflective journaling , seminars, and natural excursions.  This grass roots Wake County non-profit recognizes the value of connection with the natural world both for human health and the health of our planet.

Conservation Trust for North Carolina – This organization helps protect and preserve the streams, forests, farms, parks, and scenic vistas along the Blue Ridge Parkway of North Carolina by working with landowners, communities, and local land trusts.   Their work has protected 32,464 acres in 57 locations and has helped to transfer nearly 4,000 acres to the National Park Service or other government agencies for public enjoyment.

Of course, we can’t even begin to list all of the fantastic organizations in our state doing the valuable work of preserving and protecting the Earth. On behalf of the seven generations to come, to each of you, and to everyone who makes choices every day toward a healthier earth and a more sustainable future, we say: thank you.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

Truckin’ Movers Glossary Project: Containerized Moving

dictionary-150x150This post is part of the Truckin’ Movers Glossary Project, in which we first post here some new, scintillating words from the moving industry and use them in a sentence — later to be archived for posterity.

The words this week take us back.  Truckin’ Movers was the original containerized moving expert.  Our first solid wood, long distance modular pod, was developed in the 1980s, almost two decades before PODS® made their debut in 1998.

con.tain.er.ized mov.ing

[kənˈtānəˌrīzed/  ˈmo͞oviNG/]
Definition:  A method of freight transport where items are packed into containers, which can then be loaded and unloaded,  stored, or transported efficiently over long distances.
Truckin’ containerized moving, efficiently shipping household goods since before PODS® were born.
For more information on Truckin’ container and storage options, see:

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

Laughter is the Best Move Medicine

We know that because you chose Truckin’ Movers as your professional moving company, you are so stress free that you have more than enough time to order and send moving announcements.  Right?  Right.

Seriously, with all of the tasks and responsibilities that come with moving, even when you engage a full service mover, we thought you could use a good laugh.  Here are a few humorous moving announcements you can send to your friends and family.  Unless, of course, you don’t want them to know where you moved to — mums the word on our end.

Happy Moving!

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These and many others can be found at a variety of websites including mint.com, tinyprints.com, and notthepostoffice.com.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

Tips for Transplants: Preparing for March Madness in the Triangle

natalieSure, we know, you had college basketball where you came from.  But we’d be remiss in our Southern hospitality duties if we didn’t duly warn you that you ain’t seen college basketball until you’ve experienced the spectacle called March Madness in this here The Great Triangle Nation of North Carolina.  To be ready for this highly exciting and competitive season, we have prepared a friendly list of advice to help you easily blend with the locals once the wild rumpus starts.

1. You must, must, must, fill out a bracket.  Whether you are a seasoned basketball watcher hoping to win the office basketball pool with your intimate knowledge of the game, or you are planning to flip a coin to choose your teams, we strongly recommend that you bracket-up.  When the first Cinderella team wins and everyone is asking if you had them in your bracket, an answer of “Bracket?  What’s a bracket?” will be a sure sign that you’re not from ‘round here.

2. You may NOT root for ALL of the Triangle’s teams. You must choose sides!  You’re not in Switzerland any more.  You live in the Triangle now, home of some of the best college basketball in the country.  Sure, it would be great to see Duke, Carolina, or State win, so why not root for them all, you may ask?  Well, don’t ask!  This rivalry runs deep, so pick a team, get yourself some team gear and learn to talk some smack.

3. Prepare to see grown men (and women) scream, fight, and cry. Whoever said big boys don’t cry never had their team lose the NCAA championship game at the buzzer.  Be prepared for plenty of screaming, fighting, and yes, some crying.  But no worries, it’s all in good fun.

4. Learn to pronounce Coach Krzyzewski’s name correctly. Whether you love him or hate him, there is no coach more well-known than Duke’s own Coach Kryzewski.  If you are not familiar with his name, you will most certainly mispronounce it, so here it is (shə-shef-ski).  Agreed, it is pronounced nothing like it is spelled.  If you are finding it hard to remember, just call him Coach K.  No one will suspect a thing.

5. Never, ever utter the words “It’s only college basketball.” Speaking this phrase in the Triangle is like telling Santa Claus “It’s only Christmas.”  We have waited all year for this.  What could be more important, more exciting, or more fun to watch?  If perhaps you do not agree, just keep shoveling those nachos in your mouth and resist the temptation to speak.  We promise you, if you stay here long enough, you’re bound to catch the madness too!

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

Truckin’ Movers To Keep On Keeping On Moving Green

truckin-movers-green-movingYes, we admit it.  We can be kinda stubborn.  So despite the uncertain future of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), we assure you that Truckin’ Movers is committed to a business model that incorporates green technologies and approaches. After all, there are no regulations that dictate the moving industry has to be green.  We do it because we love this shining ball of blue we all call our home.

As you might expect for a professional moving company, one of the biggest challenges to keeping a small footprint is, well, moving trucks driving!  To address this we start with bio-diesel move trucks that we give loving care to every chance we get.

Then, we add in an element we call “smart moves.”  As an industry pioneer in containerized and express moving, we have long utilized our extensive network of move partners to coordinate shipments that optimize fuel-burning miles by minimizing deadheading — the driving of empty trailers long distances.  Over the last year, we have been very excited to see an increased collaboration between the trucking and moving industry — this can only bode well for efficiency.

When we aren’t driving the open highway, we’re still seeking ways to green our impact.  Our off-the-grid Durham, NC storage warehouse was built using a green design that keeps it at an ideal climate for long-term storage of household goods, particularly antique furniture, without the need for ancillary heating or cooling.  In 2014, we also took our adjacent offices off the grid when we installed a solar panel roof.

Last, there is the holy grail of green: recycling.  All of our packing supplies are reused and recycled. This means that we can offer boxes at a very low rate and we’ll also buy back your used boxes after your move! We provide a recycling center for our employees, and our office staff recycles everything from old file folders to computer equipment.

Over the four decades we’ve been moving families throughout this good old U.S. of A., we’ve found that our investments in green moving technologies and approaches have stood the test of time.  So, EPA or no EPA, we’re planning to keep on keeping on the green way.  Reducing our footprint is simply good sense for people, the planet and our business.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

 

International Moves with Love: Immigration Stories for Children

As an international moving company, we have helped to move families to and from every continent on this marvelous planet except Antarctica.  So we know first hand that relocating is never easy, even in the best of circumstances.  When a family is fleeing a dangerous home country where they face persecution or worse, the stress of moving multiples.  But over our forty years in the professional moving industry we’ve also learned that love and compassion help, that a family who feels welcome and safe in their new community can thrive.

We’ve also learned that we humans, with our babble of languages, our diversity of customs and ways of governance, are not so different after all.  And we find that it is through the sharing of our stories and the finding of commonalities, that empathy is built.  In this spirit and with full credit and thanks to her, we share our favorite tales of immigration from Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich’s suggestions for books to read with your children.

Rhuday-Perkovich writes: “As the refugee situations worldwide grow increasingly urgent and complex, be proactive about engaging your children in conversations about what it means to be a refugee, and how citizens of all ages can work to make newcomers feel welcome and safe.”

For her complete list of book suggestions, see: http://www.readbrightly.com/books-to-help-kids-understand-what-its-like-to-be-a-refugee/.

We hope that you will find these books of value to share with your children.  Perhaps one thing we can all agree on is that every child deserves to feel safe, every child deserves to feel loved, and every child deserves a place that they can call home.

 

by Margriet Ruurs, illustrated by Nizar Ali Badr, translated by Falah Raheem

Nizar Ali Badr’s striking stone art inspired Ruurs to create a narrative about a family in Syria who attempts to walk to safety and freedom in Europe with only what they can carry on their backs. Booklist called this free-verse tale “a unique offering that will open eyes and soften hearts.”

by Francesca Sanna 

Sanna writes that The Journey began when she met two young girls at an Italian refugee center, then “began collecting more stories of migration  and interviewing many people from many different countries.” The striking result, in a setting that is not specified, is a simple yet powerful illustration of the anxiety, exhaustion, and heartbreak a family faces when displaced by war and conflict, as well as the courage and hope of their journey

by Thanhha Lai

Lai’s bestselling Newbery Honor book, written in short free verse, powerfully captures the alienation felt by a child forced into a new and often unwelcoming world. As 10-year-old Ha tries to adjust to life in Alabama, where she is bullied by her peers and befriended by a teacher who has some understanding of her experiences back in Vietnam, readers can empathize with Ha and all of those who are considered “foreigners” in this story of strength and resilience.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

Tips for Moving with an Elderly Parent

elderly movingApproximately 51 million Americans, or 16.7 percent of the population, live in multi-generational housing — a house with at least two adult generations, or a grandparent and at least one other generation, under one roof (1).  Extended family living isn’t always easy, especially when the generations first move in together.  We offer some tips for a smooth transition.

Keep it familiar:  As we age, we are more likely to get confused or disoriented in new surroundings.  Be sure to bring and decorate your mom’s room with her favorite knick-knacks and please don’t leave dad’s favorite chair behind.  Having familiar items will make the new space feel more like home, and can also be reassuring if parents become disoriented or confused about where they are in their new space.

Bring and hang plenty of photos: Cover the walls with photos of family and friends, and leave a few photo albums on shelves and coffee tables.  Having photos of loved ones and good times will help to keep your parents’ memory strong when old ties are broken, and will bring them joy as they adjust to new surroundings.

Think ahead: If your parents are getting around well, then making the space accessible may not be a concern just yet.  But in time, accessibility of a home can become a big obstacle for them and you.  When considering your home choice, look for a home where the living space can be accessed without using stairs.  You may also want to think about the layout of bathrooms and bedrooms, and whether these spaces may need to be accessed with a walker or wheelchair at some point in the future.  Thinking about our parents losing their mobility is never easy, but it is best to be realistic about what their needs may be in the future so that when the time comes, they will be able to continue living with you for as long as you and they would like.

Set boundaries: So, you’ve decided that mom and dad are best served living with your family.  Now the big question is “Just how much space do you and they need?”  While parents may spend a considerable time with their family, many would prefer having a space of their own.  And let’s be honest, you will probably prefer it too.  Whether it is a guest house, basement apartment or just their own suite with bedroom, bath, and a sunroom, a space that mom and dad can call their own will be appreciated by all.

Keep an essentials bag handy: Keep a necessities bag or bin handy with all that you will need to have immediate access to during and after the move.  Make sure any medications, glasses and any other possible needs of your parents are easily accessible and available in the bag.

Send mom and dad on an outing on moving day: See if you can plan a fun day for your elderly parents on moving day.  This will help to take their mind off moving, minimize their stress, and allow you to focus on moving rather than caring for a parent or calming your overly anxious mother as they move her favorite and fragile antique mirror.  Mom and dad will be glad to spend the day with their cousin Harriet, and you will be glad that there is one less thing to stress about on moving day.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.

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(1) http://www.pewresearch.org/daily-number/fighting-poverty-in-a-tough-economy-americans-move-in-with-their-relatives/

Let it Snow . . . North Carolina Style

imagesIf you have moved or are moving to North Carolina from the North, then we trust you know your snow.  Well, perhaps it’s better to say we trust you know your Northern snow.  Snow down here below the Mason Dixon is a whole ‘nother ball of water.

Take for example all of those fun times you had with snow chains so you could drive through a blizzard to get to work like the rest of your neighbors.  You might as well leave those chains off the move truck.   Oh sure they’d still do the trick in the event the rare blizzard descends, but they’re pointless when not a single neighbor is going anywhere.  So here’s the deal in five easy to remember tips.  May the North Carolina snow gods be with you.

  1. Everything will close when it snows. In a state where winter may come and go without a flake, we are admittedly a bit unprepared for a snow storm. Plows are few and far between, no one has snow tires, and many of us don’t even own a snow shovel.  You may look at this lack of preparedness and wonder why we would not be ready to clear our roads, shovel our driveways, and get on with business as usual.  The truth is, we’d much rather stay home and play in the snow.  Who knows when it may come again?
  2. School snow closings do not require snow. When it comes to many local schools, snow closings do not always require snow — or any precipitation for that matter — to fall from the sky.  The very threat alone of the icy little flakes falling in our area, nay, even the threat of the thermometer dropping below freezing, is enough for many schools to close their doors to avoid the challenge of meeting the snow (that we don’t have the equipment to clear, remember) head on with kids potentially stranded on buses or in classrooms.  Can you blame them?  If thousands of kids are getting stranded anywhere, it better be at home with mom and dad.
  3. Beware of the ice, it is real and sometimes invisible. Be prepared for countless closings, delays and early releases that will occur on account of “ice.” This will seem like #2 above until you have your first encounter with the slippery demon.  There is something about the barely freezing temperatures that allows snow or wintry mix to melt and refreeze almost instantly on the roads, turning them into mini ice skating rinks where even the most experienced drivers will find their vehicles slipping and sliding out of control.  If you do slide off the road into a ditch, however, we promise that as soon as the temperatures warm they’ll be more than one smiling and friendly Southerner who’ll come by to offer you a tow.
  4. When snow is forecast, run, don’t walk to your local grocery store for bread, milk, and water. At the very mention of snow, Southerners descend on their local grocery store to stock up.  Your local store will almost certainly run out of water, milk, and bread, among other necessities.  If you can’t be without these necessities, get them long before you need them.  In the event of some real snow, it can sometimes take days before you will see a plow on a back road or in a neighborhood.  If you are living for the first time in a home with a well rather than city water, remember that your well will not pump water without electricity.
  5. Be ready for the snow party. In North Carolina, we consider snow, among many other things, a good reason to throw a party.  It is beautiful, fun, it makes us feel like a kid again, and let’s face it, we’re not going anywhere so let’s enjoy it.  With this in mind, be sure to stock up on your beverage of choice before the storm as well.  Bread, milk, and water are all important, but let’s face it, they won’t make for much of a snow party.

© Truckin’ Movers Corporation and truckinmovers.com, 2017.