Holiday décor and store: Believe in TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®

Written by Arika Ford

“Believe” is a term we can all relate to, especially during the holiday season. Believe it or not, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® can help you prep for the holidays, protect your decorations, and help you stay organized for years to come. While preparing your home for the holidays is an exciting task that can involve the entire family, just thinking about hauling out the decorations from wherever they are stored can be a stressful endeavor. We’ve complied a few tips to help organize and store your decorations for years to come. After all, we’re the experts!

dishpack kitPack perfectly: When packing up your picture frames, candles, and other non-festive items to make way for your holiday décor, try using one of our dish pack boxes. These are perfect since they’re double corrugated boxes making storage of heavy items safe to lift without worrying about the bottom dropping out of the box. The dish pack also comes with adjustable cubbies making it ideal for storing smaller, fragile items. Just wrap each item with packing paper then place it in its designated cubby and it will be safe.

Keep it clean: Are you having a holiday party and don’t want to completely trash your floor? We have a 25 foot roll of clear, adhesive carpet shield you can place over your floor in high traffic areas. You can customize the size by cutting it for the front door area or around the designated kids’ table!

Two Men and a TruckHire moving muscle: Do you wish you could rearrange your furniture to make way for holiday decorations but the thought of moving your heavy couch deters you from such a task? Give us a call to schedule your internal move. We are happy to rearrange any heavy furniture as our movers are professionally trained and will move the same piece until you are happy with its final resting place. When you are scheduling your internal move, don’t forget to schedule a time for us to come back after the holidays to move the furniture to its original position. Don’t risk ruining your holiday fun by hurting yourself. We are happy to help!

Believe it! We offer many practical products that are ideal for packing up seasonal items. These products come in various sizes and are ideal for all of your packing and storing needs. Make TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® your one-stop shop for all of your holiday needs this year!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® helping families in need this holiday season

Written by Claire Schneider

Giving back to the community is not only a Core Value we have posted on our walls, but a way of life at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®. It started back when our founder, Mary Ellen Sheets, decided to donate her $1,000 of profit to 10 different local charities her first year in business. Since then we’ve continued looking for ways to give back to the communities in which we work and play. Not only do we give back to local charities, donate moves, and give 10 cents of every to the American Cancer Society, we also have developed five programs unique to TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®.

Eight years ago Movers for Moms® was created to give back to local mothers in need on Mother’s Day. After seeing tremendous success with the program, we decided to develop additional programs to help families, veterans, and pets in need during the fall and holiday season.

Movers for Military

PrintVeteran’s Day is a time to honor the courageous men and women who have proudly served our country. Unfortunately many veterans are experiencing tough times and need the aid of local shelters and organizations to get back on their feet. As the “Movers Who Care®”, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® aims to provide critical assistance to local veterans in crisis with a program called Movers for Military – an effort to collect essential items that will be delivered to veterans living at local shelters during Veteran’s Day.

Local TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® locations partner with schools, businesses, and veterans’ shelters to begin collecting essential care items each fall and deliver them to the shelters the week of Veteran’s Day, November 11.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is committed to the communities it is privileged to serve. Through the Movers for Military program, we hope to provide critical support to the brave men and women who have made tremendous sacrifices to protect our freedoms.

Movers for Meals

The fall season typically involves family and friend gatherings around a feast to give thanks. Unfortunately many families are unable to participate in this tradition. To help support local families facing hunger crises around the country, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® locations host the Movers for Meals food drive each fall. Movers for Meals runs each October and November and ends just before Thanksgiving. Local TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® outlets partner with schools, businesses, food pantries, and local shelters to collect non-perishable food items with the goal of putting more food on tables.

Movers for Mutts

Don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten about our furry friends. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® developed Movers for Mutts in an effort to help local animal shelters support and foster stray animals. This program is hosted each fall and partners with local businesses, schools, and organizations to collect food, toys, and other essential items pets may need while living in local animal shelters.

Truckload of Warmth

PrintTruckload of Warmth is a program dedicated to supporting local shelters during the cold, sometimes unbearable, winter weather by collecting warm clothing including new or gently used coats, hats, gloves, scarves, and anything needed to stay warm. This program is relatively new in the past few years and began with only a few locations throughout the country who wanted to support local shelters during the cold, winter months. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® partners with local schools, businesses, and organizations to collect these items each fall and donate them to local shelters in need.

At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® we are very grateful to everyone who has donated to these programs and have allowed us help others in need. Contact your local TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® location to learn how you can help your community.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

Trick-or-treating safety and etiquette tips

Written by Arika Ford

Though trick-or-treating can be a fun family outing, parents have a lot to contend with. From the increased foot and vehicle traffic, to kids running ahead of you, parents may need some help making it through what can be a long two hours of craziness outside in the d-d-d-dark. We’ve gathered a few age-appropriate tips on etiquette and safety to make this the most non-scary Halloween (for parents) yet!

Ages infant through age 4 obviously need additional supervision when trick-or-treating. To make them bright and noticeable in the dark of night, include glow sticks or reflectors on their costumes. This doesn’t have to ruin the costumes. With a little creativity, the reflectors could actually contribute to the costume and add a unique twist. If you live in rural areas, you can look into other types of social gatherings for kids like trunk-or-treats and parties at local businesses or churches. But let’s face it, neighbors love to see the little ones dressed up and festive. Plus the kids are very excited to get outside and collect their coveted chocolate treasures.

Ages 5 through 9 are still the perfect age for trick-or-treating but safety can be an issue, especially with excited kids who may want to run ahead of you. Repeatedly remind your children of sidewalk and street crossing safety beginning the week before Halloween so it becomes automatic in the child’s mind. Constant reminders on looking both ways before crossing the street cannot hurt and is better to remind too much than not enough. Again, going overboard with glow sticks and reflectors isn’t a bad idea. One fun idea is to use glow in the dark make up instead of the regular Halloween kind. You also may want to travel with your trick-or-treaters. Remind them to mind their manners as some neighbors only like to see the little ones, however if older children are very polite, it will remain an enjoyable experience for all.

Ages 10 through 15 are tricky! Some kids are smaller in stature and can totally get away with dressing up and trick-or-treating with no problem. Still others look a lot older than their actual age. My opinion is as long as they are in an actual costume, are aware of their surroundings, and are being kind and courteous, it is fine for them to trick-or-treat. Assign them to groups and be sure they have a watch or are able to use their phones to check in and keep track of time. They are still kids and you can’t blame them for still wanting candy! To keep them in line, make sure they know the rules and understand the consequences of not following them.

Food allergies Kids and parents should always be on the lookout for the teal pumpkins in the neighborhood. This is a project the Food Allergy Research and Education Organization (FARE) is implementing to bring awareness to the growing issue of food allergies, and to urge citizens to provide a candy alternative. Houses with a teal pumpkin are offering non-food treats, such as toys, to help each child feel included this Halloween.

The-Teal-Pumpkin-Project-5

Kids of all ages love Halloween treats and parents (be honest) love to sneak the candy when their kids aren’t looking. So have fun, be safe, and let some of the fear come out of Halloween this year.

Click here for more Halloween safety tips.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

 

Easy, inexpensive, and eco-friendly DIY Halloween box costumes

Written by Claire Schneider

The little ghouls and goblins are gearing up for their favorite time of year, Halloween! This holiday definitely isn’t just for the kiddos, so we’ve come up with a few Halloween costume ideas to involve you parents as well. These costumes are a fun and creative way to get your entire family involved this year.

Family of s’mores

Are you looking for a cohesive Halloween costume theme for the entire family? This s’mores-themed get-up allows everyone to be involved and is very simple to make. All you need is:

  • Smores2 large boxes
  • 1 dish pack box
  • Elastic or string
  • Brown paint
  • White paint
  • 2 white pillows

Begin with taking your two large boxes and cut four square pieces about 2.5’x2.5’ in size. These will become the parent’s graham cracker portion of the costume. Since I was using our TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® boxes, I just flipped over the box so the tan side was up. Next, I took the brown paint and began painting the dashes and indents to transform the cardboard into the giant graham crackers. Then cut two holes about a foot to foot-and-a-half apart for the straps. I used elastic for the straps but you could also use string or Velcro.

Next, take the dish pack and cut two rectangular panels to create the Hershey’s bar. Make sure the rectangle isn’t too big so your child can easily walk and trick-or-treat. Then, spray paint both panels brown. Once one panel is dry, take the white paint and write HERSHEY’S across it. Next, just like with the graham crackers, cut holes or tape straps to the cardboard panels.

For the marshmallow, all you need are two white pillows and string to make transform your child into a plump marshmallow.

Milk & cookies

milk & cookiesContinuing with the food theme, I love this idea of having a parent dressed as the milk and all the kids dressed up as cookies. The awesome thing with this costume is it’s perfect no matter how many kids you have. The items needed are:

  • 1 medium box
  • 1 small box
  • White paint
  • Black paint
  • Brown paint
  • Elastic or string

Creating the milk carton is super-simple. All you have to do is cut off the box flaps of our medium box. Even though our TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® boxes are already white, I wanted to cover up the writing so I quickly spray painted it white. Once dry add a few black cow spots and the words MILK. Unlike the picture here, I decided to go without the hat portion. the The last step is to add straps. Same with the s’mores costumes; I used elastic since it’s more comfortable and adjustable.

For the cookie, take the small box and cut out two circle pieces. I flipped them over so the brown side was facing up and added chocolate chips using the brown paint. You can just draw circles but I wanted to have fun and draw the chip shape. Just add the straps and your little tike is ready to become a scrumptious treat.

Lego

LegoIf you’re not thrilled about dressing up this year, we have one just for the kiddos as well. For the Lego costume you will need:

  • 1 small box
  • 6 small plastic cups
  • Tape
  • Spray paint
  • Elastic or string

For the Lego costume I chose to cut off all the box flaps, but you could also tape up the box and cut out a head and arm holes instead. Then I used tape to affix the six cups to one side of the box and spray painted it red. Lastly, I added the straps last. And it’s as simple as that!

Check out our blog 5 simple DIY Halloween costumes for more ideas!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

Falling for fall

Written by Dawn Kroeger

autumn-homeNow’s the time when college football chatter is a hot topic at the office, caramel apple and pumpkin flavored drinks are available at your local coffee shop, the Pottery Barn Kids Halloween costume catalogue is delivered to your door step – there is no denying, signs of fall are everywhere.

I love everything fall – decorations, events, and food. Yet, here I find myself, dusting off the same old fall decorations (didn’t I JUST put these away?) and putting them on display, again. Every year I tell myself I will shop the 70% off sales at the end of the season for new fall decorations. And every year, by the time those sales come around, I’m completely over the season and well on my way to winter depression. So this year, I found a few quick ways to spruce up that awesome autumn atmosphere in my home and prepare it for Old Man Winter.

1. Homemade potpourri: In the absence of a fall candle, I remembered my grandmother used to simmer a pot on the stove and it made her home smell like fall heaven. I just threw together water, cloves, cinnamon sticks, and a sliced apple and simmered on the stove. Instantly, my family wanted to know what smelled so good. There are several other recipes to try, too!

2. Clean the gutters: Before the leaves start flying this fall, take the time to clean out your gutters. Clogged gutters can lead to damaged exterior surfaces and lead to water in your basement. Once they’re clean, look into gutter mesh guards to prevent leaves from getting in.

hurricane3. Fall hurricane: I loosely followed the instructions for the fall hurricane found here. It was easy and fun for kids to help create and it makes a festive yet affordable centerpiece. When the fall season is over, I plan to replace the seeds and candle with ceramic bulbs in holiday colors.

4. Fall flowers: Nothing says fall like a hardy mum. These babies come in many colors and can be purchased at your local farmers market very affordably. I purchased three: two for my front porch and one for my entry way. The site of the robust flower makes me happy each time I walk in my door. Added benefit for anyone with a less-than-green-thumb: It’s nearly impossible to kill one of these beauties.

5. Furnace: The weather is starting to get cooler and it’s time to give your furnace a checkup. It’s a good idea to have your heating system inspected by a professional and cleaned to ensure your home is toasty warm this winter. To avoid the last-minute rush, consider scheduling this task in early fall, before the heating season begins.

Now, with the time and money you saved, grab yourself a hot caramel cider and spend the afternoon on Pinterest pinning a multitude of fall recipes you may or may not decide to make.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

Downsize your home using these 5 easy tips

DSC_0274Written by Claire Schneider

Are you currently in the process of downsizing your home? Whether you’re an empty nester trading your home for a condominium or you’ve decided on a high rise in the city, what to keep is often the toughest decision in the process. We’ve compiled a few tips to help you organize and prepare for downsizing your life to make the most of the tighter space in your new place.

Assess your actual needs

In my opinion this is the hardest phase of downsizing, but it is the most crucial. It’s tough to go through every belonging and decide what needs to move with you and what needs to go. Make it easier by determining whether you would need to replace a specific item if you got rid of it prior to your move. Go through room by room starting with the kitchen, since kitchen items don’t typically hold as much sentimental value. Also, keep in mind how often you’ve actually used each item. For instance, that oversized platter you only take out for Thanksgiving. If you’re considering keeping something “just in case,” it’s a good indicator you should either donate it or place the item in storage.

Another way to decide if an item should move with you is to think about how much space you’re willing to give that item in your new home. The giant, decorated vase may be very pretty, but are you willing to give up floor space for it? Instead, think of ways you can incorporate shelving or storage into your home décor.

For those sentimental items you can get rid of or put in storage, think of different ways you can keep it. Could your kids’ or grandkids’ artwork be kept in a scrapbook rather than a box in the closet?

Go through current storage areas

Storage spaces are areas we often ignore because the idea of sorting through them seems like a daunting task. Go through your basement, attic closets, and even your junk drawer. Take everything out and sort through each item, only putting back what you have used in the past year and donating the rest. Think about the storage spaces you will have in your next home and only keep what will fit.

Create a mock layout of your new rooms

Create a mock layout of the new rooms in your home to avoid realizing your oversized sectional won’t fit in your new living room on move day. This way you’ll have a great visual of what furniture will actually fit in the space, and avoid the unnecessary move day stress. Smaller home dwellers know it’s vital to avoid cluttering spaces with things which don’t serve a specific purpose. Instead, think of items that could serve dual purposes and incorporate them into your design elements.

Organize your move

DSC_0257When beginning to pack, be sure you pack items from the same room in the same box. This will reduce many headaches during the unpacking process. Label all boxes by what room they go in. You may want to buy different colored tape and coordinate it with each room in your new home.

If you’re moving to a condo or apartment with shared parking or an elevator, check with building management to see about reserving a parking space for the moving truck and if you can reserve the elevator on move day. This will not only make the move much easier, but if you hire movers, it will also save you time and money.

Be creative with new storage spaces

As noted previously, smaller homes generally lack storage. Once you’ve moved in, identify spaces where you can add storage space. A common hidden storage treasure is under staircases. Here you can use the wasted space to create a shelving unit or cubbies to hide items you use enough to not put in a storage unit. Instead of using a typical coffee table, invest in an ottoman and a tray. This way you can still have a place for your drinks as well as extra storage inside the ottoman. In the kitchen, use bench seats at the kitchen table; these are trending hot so there are a lot of choices, and, best of all, they provide ample storage.

At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® we realize moving needs are unique for every customer, so we’re ready to customize a move to ensure the best moving experience. Our uniformed movers and drivers undergo extensive training; they are permanent employees, undergo background checks, and are subject to random drug testing. They are committed to exceeding expectations and ensuring your move is completed efficiently to keep your moving costs affordable.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

Moving to an Island? TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® has you covered.

Written by Dawn Kroeger

During peak season, Mackinac Island is a tourist destination for up to 15,000 visitors daily and home to nearly 500 year-round residents. Perhaps the most noticeable observation upon arrival by first-time visitors is the absence of automobiles. Visitors and residents travel by foot, bicycle, or horse drawn carriage creating a throwback tempo comparable to the 19th century. Tour carriages and horse-drawn taxis transport folks wherever they need to go. But what happens when you happen to be one of those 500 year-round residents moving to the island? You call the best mover around, of course.

Bay 5Executing a smooth move is a work of both science and art. Over the past two decades many elements of the moving industry have changed, but some aspects have remained constant – movers, driver, and a truck. When the Bay City, Mich., location answered the call to move a family’s belongings to the island, they added a new element to the mix: movers, driver, and horse and buggy.

The Michigan franchise recently moved a customer to Mackinac Island, the premiere tourist spot for northern Michigan. The island, nestled within Lake Huron, is the perfect spot for hiking, biking, and indulging in infamous Mackinac Island fudge; however, it is not the easiest destination in which to complete a move. In addition to being surrounded by a body of water, the Bay City team had to undergo another obstacle since Mackinac Island outlaws motor vehicles, prohibiting a TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® truck from driving around the island.

Bay 1While every move completed is a bit different, the Mackinac Island move included a few more steps. The movers loaded the customer’s belongings onto the truck, rode a ferry over the waves of Lake Huron to the island, and then transferred the items onto a dray led by two horses. Once on the dray, the movers maneuvered the horse-drawn cart with the customer’s belongings through the bustling, winding streets of the island to the new home and unload. To minimize the length of the move, two horses and two drays each pulled 4,000 pounds at once and rotated between the dock and the customer’s home, creating a smooth move process uninterrupted by challenges.

“I was excited, nervous, and a bit shocked when we received the call to move someone to Mackinac Island,” said President of the Bay City location Jessica Pula. “We were bidding against two other major moving companies for the job.

In the end, the customer selected the locally owned TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® based on reputation and was thrilled with the outcome of the move to Michigan’s iconic Mackinac Island.

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TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.