Skip to content

A Place for Everything and Everything in Its Place: Kitchen

2014 July 29
by Deandra Danch
kitchen

The kitchen is the control center of the house and typically the most used, which makes it susceptible to clutter! Whether you are unpacking your kitchen or giving it a tune up, here are some helpful tips on doing so with help from the book “Clutter Rescue” by Good Housekeeping Institute.

The kitchen should be the last room you pack when preparing for a move and the first room you unpack after you move. Having the appliances in place and functioning will make the flow of unpacking day easier. If you or your family get hungry, you will have access to food and cooking supplies while unpacking!

Organizing the kitchen will probably take more than one day, so plan accordingly. Conquer one clutter zone at a time.
Store items in the kitchen near where they will be used. This will make it easier to access those appliances as well as remember where they go. Keep this in mind as you are organizing each clutter zone.

1.    Cabinets
Start by pulling everything out of the cabinets and clean the shelves. Take inventory on what you have in your cabinets and take action:
-    Throw away open boxes of food that are more than six months old
-    Donate canned goods you’ve had for more than nine months
-    Discard or donate glassware, dishes or flatware without mates
-    Get rid of equipment or appliances you never use
After taking inventory, put similar items together, i.e., cereals with grains, canned goods with other canned goods, and glassware with dishware. The goal is to make everything in your cabinets easy to see and reach. One way to do this is place all food labels facing forward to make it easy to find what you need. Store larger items, such as mixing bowls, small appliances and pots and pans in under cabinets. Consider using tiered shelf platforms, basic wire shelves with legs or turntables to achieve your organization goals.

lid-rack-s3-medium_new

2.     Under sink space
Since the under sink area usually has odd dimensions, think of it as a puzzle. Make the space as efficient as possible by creating groupings for under the sink. Put household cleaners in one container, possibly a bucket. Do the same with poisonous household products and be sure to childproof these with a cabinet lock. You can add pullout stacking systems, stretchable shelves, towel bars to the under sink.

3.    Hanging storage
Much of what clutters cabinets and drawers can be hung from a ceiling or wall. This allows more flexibility to accommodate your height and reach. Look for unused wall space and hang cookware or utensils. It is best to avoid hanging items around the stove.  You can use rail systems, pot racks, hooks, hanging baskets and hanging glass racks to achieve this organization.

4.    Drawers
Because drawers are flat, pieces that should go in them are flat items, linens, napkins, flatware and cutlery.   This way it becomes clear to anyone in the kitchen where items go. Drawer inserts are available that could help maximize storage, including spice inserts, flatware caddies, expandable cutlery organizers, knife racks and expandable compartment organizers.

5.    Counter tops, Work Surfaces and Shelves
Separate the counters into stations, which will allow work surfaces to be confined and functional. Use storage containers as decorative pieces.
Cooking Station – Put items that are essential for cooking, such as cooking oil, utensils, lazy Susan, salt and pepper, near the stove. and etc…
Food Station – Group canisters holding sugar, flour and coffee in a centralized, accessible location. You can create several different groups in this station.
Appliance Station – Unless you use small appliances daily, these should not be on the countertop. If you use small appliances daily and leave them on the countertops, put them near outlets.
If you still need space, consider using stand-alone shelves or wall mounted shelves to store “overflow” that does not fit in a particular station.

organized-kitchen-cupboards-fb

6.    Refrigerator and Freezer
Cleaning and organizing your refrigerator will need to done on weekly basis. This area is the easiest to become unorganized because of the constant flow of the food. Move everything out of the refrigerator/freezer and get rid of old/spoiled food, food that you haven’t used in six months in the refrigerator, or nine months in the freezer. Clean the inside of each by taking out removable surfaces and wipe the rest with a cleaning solution.
Put everything back into assigned locations. For cheese and deli meats use the covered bins. Keep condiments together in the shelves on the door. Have a distinct area for leftovers so the family can easily access them and you can gage how old they are. Assign shelf space for different types of food and use labels so everyone knows what is what.
When putting new food or beverages in the refrigerator, rotate by putting the older items up front so they are consumed first.

7.    Pantry
Prevent clutter and waste in the pantry by organizing what goes where. The pantry should be used as a backup storage area and should be organized by level depending on how often you use items. The most used items should be placed at eye level and items rarely used put on higher shelves.  No perishable items should go in the pantry. Dry goods should go in the pantry and in airtight containers. Paper goods should be placed toward the top of the pantry because they won’t get damaged if something spills. Most beverages can be stored in the pantry, which will free up space in your refrigerator. Cookbooks can be stored in the pantry.

pantry

6. Kitchen Table
The kitchen table can have many uses, which can cause it to have a lot of clutter. “Center piecing” is a way to beat clutter by creating a central area. Keep the table covered with a simple tablecloth or lay out place mats to keep the table free of the clutter cause by homework, work and bills.

A Few Tips on Keeping It Organized:
Empty sink, closed doors – Make a habit of emptying the sink every night and closing the doors to your cabinets. These simple acts make cluttered areas stand out.
Have a bin near the kitchen in which to store things that do not need to be in the kitchen. At the end of the week, have the family go through it and put things away in the proper place.
Assign one day every week to remove leftovers in your refrigerator.

Visit the blog on Thursday as we will explore the organization of bedrooms and kids rooms.

References: “Clutter Rescue” from the Good Housekeeping Research Institute

A Place for Everything and Everything in Its Place: A 10-Part Series

2014 July 24
by Deandra Danch
Order-Chaos

Whether you just moved or have lived in your house for 20+ years, organizing your household is a must for smooth and efficient daily life. In the coming weeks Wheaton World Wide Moving along with the help of “Clutter Rescue” from the Good Housekeeping Research Institute will help you get your home organized.

Good Housekeeping created a system that divides each room into manageable zones, which in turn allows you to devote less than an hour a day getting your home organized. This will help you find things easier, clean better and faster, and feel better about your home with these tips and tricks.

Below is the schedule and corresponding rooms that we will tackle. If there is a certain room you would like to work on, visit Wheaton’s blog on the scheduled day for in-depth details!

Clutter Rescue

Find Clutter Rescue on Amazon.com

 

Schedule:

Kitchen – Tuesday, July 29

Bedrooms – Thursday, July 31

Kids Rooms – Monday, August 4

Bathrooms – Tuesday, August 5

Family and Living Rooms – Thursday, August 7

Dining Rooms – Tuesday, August 12

Basements and Attics – Thursday, August 14

Garage and Sheds – Tuesday, August 19

Foyers, Mudrooms and Entryways – Thursday, August 21

Home Offices and Work Spaces – Tuesday, August 26

Laundry Rooms – Thursday, August 28

Let’s get organized together! See you on Tuesday!

 

 

 

References: Clutter Rescue – by the Good Housekeeping Research Institute

Wednesday Wisdom 7-23-14

2014 July 23
by Deandra Danch
#WednesdayWisdom will have moving tips and tricks every Wednesday

#WednesdayWisdom has moving tips and tricks every Wednesday

 

Wednesday Wisdom for 7-23-14

Sweet Summer Strawberries

2014 July 22
by Deandra Danch
Strawberry

Summer is the time for strawberries! Strawberries are great for a quick, healthy snack while packing and moving. Once you are at your new place you can explore your new neighborhood to find strawberry farms or fresh strawberries from the local farmers market! If you love strawberries, then this blog is for you!

Strawberries have many health benefits such as lowering blood pressure, improving heart health, reducing inflammation, reducing risks of cancers and improving cognitive function. Eight strawberries will provide 140 percent of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C for kids. Pregnant women who eat strawberries can lower the risks of birth defects in their children.
There are more than 600 different varieties of strawberries grown in the United States. While they can be grown year-round, strawberries are most prevalent from April through mid-August, which is a great time to go picking at your local strawberry farm!

When choosing the most flavorful strawberries, look for ones that are brightly colored, dry, firm, shiny and plump that still have fresh-looking green caps attached. Avoid soft, dull-looking or shriveled berries. Strawberries do not ripen after being picked so avoid any with white patches on them. Smell the strawberries and if they do not smell like a strawberry, do not buy or pick.
Once you get your strawberries, do not wash them until you are ready to eat. Strawberries are like small sponges and will soak up water, which causes them to get mushy and rot quickly. Store in a moisture proof container in the refrigerator for two-to-three days at the most. Freeze the strawberries if you are not planning on using them for a few days. This will keep them unblemished. This is also perfect for smoothies, sauces and baking.

Once you are ready to use, wash the berries by putting them in a large colander and rinse with cool water. Dry with a paper towel or clean kitchen towel in a single layer. Hulling strawberries is removing the green caps. To do this, place the knife at the base of the cap, insert gently to remove only the soft white part at the base of the stem and slowly turn the strawberry. Once you come full circle the top will pop right off without sacrificing too much flesh.

Now you are ready to use your strawberries! Below are a few, popular recipes using strawberries:

 

Strawberry-Shortcake-Cake-Layered

Strawberry Shortcake
From: Diethood

Ingredients
For the Cake
• 1-1/2 cups cake flour
• 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 3/4 cup milk
• 3 tablespoons butter
• 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
• 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
• 3 large eggs
• 1-1/4 cups sugar
• 1 clamshell of fresh strawberries, halved

For the Filling
• 1 can (21-oz.) Strawberry Pie Filling
For the Whipped Frosting
• 2 cups cold heavy cream
• 1/2 cup powdered sugar
• 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Directions
• Preheat oven to 350.
• Set oven rack in the middle.
• Lightly grease two (9-inch) cake pan with baking spray and set aside.
• In a mixing bowl, whisk cake flour, baking powder and salt; whisk until combined.
• Set a small saucepan over medium-high heat and add milk and butter; bring to a boil.
• Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and lemon juice.
• In your mixer’s bowl, combine eggs and sugar; beat until pale yellow, fluffy, and doubled in size.
• With the mixer on, slowly pour in the milk mixture; mix until well incorporated.
• Turn off mixer and gently fold in the flour mixture.
• Spread the batter in the prepared pans and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean.
• Remove from oven and set pans on a cooling rack.
• Let the cake completely cool
• In the meantime, prepare the frosting.
• In a mixing bowl, combine the whipping cream, powdered sugar and vanilla.
• Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
• When chilled, beat the mixture until stiff peaks form.
• When cakes are completely cooled, cut one of the cakes crosswise so you end up with three round layers. One will be bigger than the other two.
• Spread half of the whipped frosting over one of the thinner cake layers.
• Add the thin cake layer over the whipped frosting.
• Spread the strawberry pie filling over the cake.
• Top with the last cake layer.
• Spread the rest of the whipped frosting over the cake.
• Top with fresh strawberries.
• Chill cake for one hour.
• Serve.

Spinach and Strawberry Salad
From: Good Housekeeping

Ingredients
• 1 pound(s) strawberries, hulled and sliced
• 3 tablespoon(s) lime juice
• 2 teaspoon(s) honey
• 1 teaspoon(s) olive oil
• Salt and pepper
• 1 container(s) (12-ounce) baby spinach
• 10 ounce(s) (2 cups) chicken breast meat, coarsely shredded
• 3/4 cup(s) walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
Directions
1. In blender, puree 3/4 cup strawberries with lime juice, honey, oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Transfer dressing to large serving bowl.
2. To bowl with dressing, add spinach, chicken, and remaining strawberries; toss to coat. Sprinkle salad with walnuts to serve.

 

Strawberry-Lemonade-Cocktail-1-of-1

Strawberry Lemonade
From: My Baking Addiction

Ingredients
• 1 cup sugar
• 1 cup of water
• 1 pint fresh strawberries
• 1 cup fresh lemon juice (this equaled close to 8 of my lemons)
• 4-6 cups cold water (this will vary depending on your taste)
• 1 cup vodka, optional
Directions
1. Make a simple syrup by combining the sugar with 1 cup of water in a saucepan. Place over medium heat and heat until the sugar in completely dissolved; swirl the pan occasionally. Let cool.
2. Once the simple syrup has cooled, puree strawberries in a blender with ½ cup water.
3. In a large pitcher, combine strawberry puree, simple syrup and lemon juice. If using the vodka, add it to the pitcher and stir to combine.
4. Add 4-6 cups of cold water. The amount of water you use will depend on your taste, so add as little or as much as you want to achieve your perfect sweet/tart balance.
5. Serve over ice. If desired, garnish with fresh strawberries and lemon slices.

Rhubarb and Strawberry Pie
From: Allrecipes

Ingredients
• 1 cup of white sugar
• ½ cup all-purpose flower
• 1 lb of fresh rhubarb
• 2 pints of fresh strawberries
• 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
• 2 tablespoons of butter
• 1 egg yolk
• 2 tablespoons of white sugar
Directions
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
2. In a large bowl, mix flour and sugar. Add strawberries and chopped rhubarb. Toss with sugar and flour and let stand for 30 minutes.
3. Pour filling into pie crust. Dot top with butter, and cover with top crust. Seal edges of top and bottom crust with water.
4. Apply yolk to top of pie, using a pastry brush. Sprinkle with sugar. Cut small holes in top to let steam escape.
5. Bake at 400 degrees F (200 degrees C), for 35 to 40 minutes, or until bubbly and brown. Cool on rack.

10 Minute Strawberry Jam
From: French Press

Ingredients
• 1 pint of hulled and quartered strawberries
• 3 Tbsp sugar
• 1/2 tsp cinnamon
• 1/4 tsp vanilla

Instructions
1. combine the berries, sugar, and cinnamon in a microwave safe bowl
2. stir
3. microwave on high for 3 minutes {uncovered}
4. stir, and if needed return for another minute or two
5. add the vanilla, and allow to cool
6. the jam will thicken as it cools
7. cover and refrigerate

Do you have a favorite recipe that includes strawberries? Post is below!!

 

References:

http://baby-recipes.com/strawberry-cantaloupe-baby-food-recipe/

http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/strawberries.html

Moving Tip Monday 7-21

2014 July 21
by Deandra Danch

Tool Belt

 

For more helpful tips on packing and moving your household goods, please go to: http://www.wheatonworldwide.com/planning-guides/

Combat Stress with 20 Minutes of Exercise

2014 July 17
by Wheaton World Wide Moving
158762352-628x363

Moving inevitably will cause stress under any circumstances, but one of the most important ways to combat it is exercising 20 minutes a day.

Exercising just 20 minutes a day can benefit your physical and mental health. Here’s how:

  • Exercise increases the flow of the blood to the brain, just as it improves circulation to the heart and the rest of the body.
  • Increased core temperature during exercise may lead to reduced muscle tension.
  • Activity also stimulates the growth of nerve cells in the part of the brain involved in memory. When we’re stressed, cortisol and adrenaline are surging and we forget things. In the brain, cortisol is binding with receptors in the hippocampus, the seat of memory formation and learning. If stress is left unchecked over time key connections between nerve cells in the brain won’t function as well, impairing memory and ability to take in new information and raising the risk for depression and anxiety.
  • Exercise produces neurohormones like norepinephrine that are associated with improved cognitive function, elevated mood and learning. It improves thinking dulled by stressful events.
  • Physical activity helps to bump up the production of your bran’s feel-good neurotransmitters, serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, which can affect mood and anxiety levels.
  • Blood flow drains metabolic waste products away.
  • Exercise pumps blood containing oxygen, fluids and nutrients to active muscles.

Relocating can be expensive, so here are some ways to save money and exercise at the same time:

  • Go for a walk! If you have a dog, take them because they need it just as much as you do! Go to a park or around the block. It’s always good to get fresh air.
  • You don’t have a buy a workout DVD’s anymore (you can if you want). You can find workout and instructional videos all over the internet and they are free! Find something you would like and keep up with it. Some places to find these at youtube.com or Pinterest. Learnvest.com posted the best free workouts online: http://www.learnvest.com/2013/01/10-free-workout-sites-youll-love/
  • Put together a routine. For example: 10 pushups, 20 sit ups, 25 squats, 20 lunges (10 per leg), 80 jumping jacks and 60 second wall sits. Repeat three times or when 20 minutes is up.
  • Do you love playing sports? Join a recreational league and play your favorite sport. You might even make new friends!
  • If you sit most of the day, take a walk on your break or leave some time for your lunch. Sitting all day is not good for your health, so the more you move throughout the day, the better.

Remember certain exercises aren’t for everyone. Know your limits. Start small and work your way up. It’s better to be doing something than nothing! Get exercising!
References: Community Health Network, Learnvest

Need a Vacation? Visit These Top Vacation Spots in the Country

2014 July 15
by Wheaton World Wide Moving
Ocean City

Want to get away after a move across the country or just need a vacation? You are not alone! About 89 percent of people in the United States are planning a summer trip this year, according to a survey by TripAdvisor. These are the top destinations around the United States.

Key West, Fla. – The Southernmost city in the continental U.S. is a 120-mile long island chain connected to mainland Florida by US 1. Obviously, the main attraction is the beach but there is a lot to do and see,  such as the John Pennkamp  Park (the nation’s first underwater park), Duval Street, Theater of the Sea, the Everglades, Dry Tortugas National Park, just to name a few.

SanDiego

San Diego, Calif. Photo from Orbitz

San Diego, Calif. – San Diego is known for their extensive beaches, mild climate year-round and natural deep water harbor. Things to do include Balboa Park, Belmont amusement park, San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park and SeaWorld San Diego.  San Diego hosted 32 million visitors in 2012. Between Coronado, the Ansa-Borrego Desert and the Laguna Mountains, there is plenty to do whether it’s relaxing by the beach or spending a day hiking and exploring.

San Francisco, Calif. – The City by the Bay is known for its cool summers, fog, steep rolling hills, eclectic culture, architecture and, of course, the Golden Gate Bridge, cable cars and Alcatraz Island.  Every neighborhood in San Francisco has its own personality, but the most popular is the Marina District that has perfect views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Pier 39, sample cheese at the Ferry building, and Delores Park across from Ocean Beach. Fisherman’s Wharf is San Francisco’s most popular attraction where you can visit Pier 39 and watch sea lions lounge on the rocks all day.

Virginia Beach, Va. – The city is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as having the longest pleasure beach in the world. Virginia Beach is a resort city with miles of beaches and hundreds of hotels, motels and restaurants along its oceanfront. It is also home to several state parks, several long-protected beach areas, three military bases, a number of large corporations and two universities. The Virginia Beach boardwalk is three miles lined with hotels and restaurants with lanes for walkers, bicycles, roller blades and surreys.

Orlando, Fla. – What else can you say about the city that has Disney World – aka “the Most Magical Place on Earth”? Orlando is one of the leading tourism destinations in the world, boasting 59 million visitors a year.  The resort is 42,000 acres, with 24 resort hotels, four theme parks, two water parks and four golf courses.  Other non-Disney parks in Orlando, include SeaWorld Orlando and Universal Orlando Resort.

Ocean City, Md.  – Ocean city stretches along 10 miles of beach from the inlet to the Delaware State line. It offers a three-mile classic wooden boardwalk lined with hotels, food, games and shopping. Ocean City is visited mostly by people living in the Mid-Atlantic region, which hosts eight million visitors annually.

Destin, Fla. – Who wouldn’t want to go to a place that has beautiful, clear green water and beaches with the whitest, softest sand in the world? Destin is located on Florida’s Emerald Coast and sees 4.5 million visitors each year. One of the most popular activities in Destin is chartering fishing vessels. You can visit the two-year old Destin boardwalk that has water attractions, restaurants, zip lining and amusement rides.

New York Times Square - Photo from Wikipedia

New York Times Square – Photo from Wikipedia

 

New York, N.Y. – Home to more than 8 million people and the most populated city in the United States, the Big Apple hosts around 55 million visitors annually. The many districts and landmarks will keep you busy the entire time, with the most popular being Times Square, Broadway Theater District, Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Central Park, Rockefeller Center and the list goes on. No wonder why they call it “the city that never sleeps.”

Las Vegas, Nev. – Leave the kids at home and head to the Entertainment Capital of the World, which hosts the best casinos, shopping, fine dining and nightlife in the country. Stay and walk on the Las Vegas strip, which is 4.2 miles long and has 15 of the world’s largest hotels. The most popular, free attractions are the fountains at the Bellagio, the volcano at the Mirage and Festival Fountain at Caesar’s Palace. If you have any money left over after hitting the numerous casinos, go see one of the many shows Las Vegas has to offer.

Myrtle Beach, S.C. – The Grand Strand stretches 60 miles of the South Carolina coast, making Myrtle Beach a vacation destination for 14 million visitors in the spring, summer and fall months. With 87 golf courses in the area, Myrtle Beach is a golfer’s paradise.  There is plenty to do, such as visiting Broadway by the Beach, Carolina Opry, Barefoot Landing, Legends in concert as well as countless restaurants and bars.

Where do you and your family like to go on vacation? We would like to know!

 

 

 

References: TripAdvisor.com, Disney.com, Wikipedia.com, Chamber of Commerce Sites for each city

Landing a Job in Your New City

2014 July 10
by Deandra Danch
job-interview-session

Moving is a daunting task, but moving without a job can be completely overwhelming. Whether you are trying to find a job before you move or once you are settled in your new home, here are a few tips on how to land a job in your new area.

Research

Research the city that you are relocating to and learn about the industries that are located in that particular area. Pinpoint three-to-five companies that might interest you and think about what you, with your skill set, can bring to that organization.

You might want to research the geography of the city in relation to where these companies are located. Consider your commute to and from work as it might affect your decision on what neighborhood fits best.

Learn as much as you can about the culture of the city because these can be some great talking points in interviews.

Plan

When moving, planning is essential to alleviate stress. The same goes for finding a job, too.

Start by vamping up your resume and cover letter. A cover letter not only allows you to sell yourself, but can be a useful tool to explain your move and work availability. When possible consider using a local address on your resume since many larger human resources departments may filter out-of-town candidates from the pool. This will help you get past initial screenings.

Always be honest about your intentions to move. In your cover letter and in-person, make sure you are confident in your story as to why you are moving and when. It is essential to show hiring managers that you are not only committed to the move, but to the company and, most importantly, can remain composed under stressful circumstances.

Set a time frame and have a plan for your move when the time comes. There are many questions as to how much it will cost to move, who will relocate you, and how to pack your household goods. This will be much easier if thought out before moving day arrives. Here are some helpful tips when considering your relocation. http://www.wheatonworldwide.com/household-moves/first-timers/

Network

In recent study, 80 percent of jobs were found through networking as it can set you apart from a vast candidate pool. Be sure to connect with people in the area to let them know your intentions on moving. In addition, let family and friends know about you’re moving because they might have a link to someone in the area as well.

Consider reaching out to local recruiters or employment agencies. Their job is to find the best possible candidate for an open position at a company. Do a local search and explain your intentions with the move.

Try visiting the area before you move to meet up with these connections. If possible, plan your trip around local job fairs or networking events that can help build your network.

If you cannot visit before the move, the Internet will become your best friend. There are many career resources and job sites, such as LinkedIn, Indeed, Monster and CareerBuilder, which will help you find job openings. You also can search local newspaper and government Web sites. Change your location on your social media profiles, including Facebook and Twitter, to begin networking with companies and people in your new area. Join local industry groups on LinkedIn as they may post job openings and give advice for job seekers like you.

Persistence

Finding a job takes persistence. You might not get call backs or interviews right away, which can be very frustrating, but don’t give up! The perfect job for you will come along; you just need to put in some work finding it!

 

Have you landed a job in a new city? What advice would you give to someone who is planning on doing so?

The Upsides of Downsizing and How to Prepare

2014 July 5
by Wheaton World Wide Moving

Are you considering downsizing to a new home? Sometimes downsizing comes by choice, sometimes by constraint. No matter the reason, downsizing has some serious upsides.

The Upsides

  • A Simpler Life: Downsizing means you can sort through your things and decide what you really do or do not need. This will make life easier, since you’ll only be living with the things that you actually use or that truly make you happy. You won’t be constantly wading through needless items.
  • Cash: You probably won’t have room for everything when you move into your new home. Many downsizers hold yard sales prior to their move. You can also sell your extra items on the internet. For any antique items, consider contacting a professional dealer to help you assign value and sell your items. This can mean extra cash for you and fewer things to pack and move.
  • Easier Maintenance: Having a smaller (and less cluttered) home means that cleaning and maintenance becomes so much easier–vacuuming the house is no longer an all-day chore, and you don’t have to wade through a sea of litter just to scrub the kitchen counters.

How to Prepare and Pack

Downsizing’s main benefits come from de-cluttering your home and your life. This will require preparation before you move in order to decide what you’re taking with you and what you’ll be giving away, selling, or throwing out. As you sort through your things room by room, put items in separate piles. These piles can be given labels like keep, sell, donate, trash.

Deciding which pile each item belongs to can be difficult. When you look at a pile of your belongings, you may not see clutter, but a lifetime of memories. And even for practical, household items, you may not realize what you really need and what you’re just storing needlessly. For help determining what you do and don’t need, ask yourself these questions:

  • What is the purpose of this item?
  • Do I have another item that serves the same purpose?
  • When was the last time I used it?
  • How often do I use it?
  • Do I love this item?
  • Does it have sentimental value that is irreplaceable?
  • Is it in good shape?
  • Is there someone else I know who would benefit from this more than I would?
  • Is there a place or need for it in my new home?

When you’ve decided what to do with each item, take action as soon as possible. Donate your donation items. Sell the items you want to sell. Getting rid of your items quickly means you won’t end up deciding unnecessarily to keep them later and will make it that much easier when moving day arrives.

For more helpful tips or questions about downsizing or moving, contact us.

Piano Moving: Don’t Let Your Piano Fall Flat

2014 July 3
by Wheaton World Wide Moving

When you’re moving, it’s difficult to figure out how to safely transport your piano. Whether your piano is a family heirloom or you bought it brand new, it is a prized possession that requires great care.

You can move your piano yourself, or you can hire professional movers to move it for you. To plan for either scenario, you should know what to do for each.

If You’re Moving a Piano Yourself

  • Ask for help. Pianos are extremely heavy. The most important thing you need to do if you’re moving a piano yourself is to enlist other people in the process. Ask friends, family members, or neighbors to assist in lifting and maneuvering the piano down stairs, up ramps, and into the truck. Do not even attempt to do this by yourself.
  • Secure the keyboard lid before lifting or moving the piano. You don’t want the keys to get damaged. Lock the lid if you can.
  • Wrap the piano in blankets or protective tarps. You can also add padding if you like. Make sure the corners are protected and there aren’t any exposed surfaces that could get scratched. Be careful when securing the coverings that you don’t get any tape on the piano’s surface.
  • Use either a furniture dolly or heavy duty straps to lift and move the piano. A dolly is preferable. You will still want to use straps to fasten the piano to the dolly.

If You’re Hiring Piano Movers

  • Check that your moving company is capable of moving pianos. If you’re hiring a moving company to handle your entire move, don’t assume pianos are something they can manage. Not every moving company is equipped to handle large instruments.
  • Consider hiring specialists. Some moving companies dedicate themselves to moving pianos and other large instruments. If you don’t need a full-service moving company, then piano-specific movers are worth looking into.
  • Understand that damage may still happen. No one is perfect. However, movers are much less likely to damage your piano while moving it than you are.

Other Considerations

  • Pianos should never be moved by their legs. The legs are delicate and break easily.
  • If you’re moving from one climate to another, you may need to re-tune your piano after it has acclimated to the change.

For experienced and reliable piano movers, contact us today for an estimate!