Five easy ways to make the moving process a positive experience for kids

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-Written by Christina Baker

Moving tends to have an emotional and even daunting reputation – especially for children. They may not like the idea of too much change at once, and it’s probably overwhelming for them. However, there are several ways a child can learn to adapt to – and even enjoy – their moving experience.

Follow these tips to better your move for the whole family!

Explain the situation

Your children may be having a hard time understanding exactly why you’re moving. Have an open and honest conversation with them on why this is what’s best for your family. Encourage them to ask any questions they may have.

Prepare your kids for the move by having these conversations throughout the moving process so they will feel more comfortable.

Stay in touch & meet new people

A big part of the reason kids don’t want to move is because they might be scared to leave their friends. However, you can assure them they will still see their friends from your old neighborhood. Set up playdates for the future with the other parents so your child knows for certain that you’ll stay in touch.

It’s also important to let kids know they can make friends anywhere. Take them to your new neighborhood and introduce yourselves to the other families in that area. Taking this approach helps kids to see they can have friendships regardless of where they live.

Get them excited

You can get your kids excited about the move by taking them to the new house, if possible. Show them their new bedroom, and even ask them how they want to decorate it. Walk them through the house and explain to them the benefits of the new house, such as a pool, a new playroom, etc. Showing your children the endless possibilities of memories that can be created in your new space will allow them to look forward to living there.

Make it fun

Throughout the process of the move, try not to take it so seriously in front of your kids. Make games out of packing your belongings and allow them to have fun during this time. You could even keep your moving boxes. Kids love to be creative with objects that may otherwise be thrown away. Encourage them to even make a fort out of your moving boxes once you’re finished with them.

Mini Mover Mania Game & Coloring

If you want to keep your kids busy during the move, we have the perfect fix! Our interactive video game, Mini Mover Mania, gives players the opportunity to sit in the driver’s seat. This exciting racing game encourages players to get their customer’s belongings to their new destination in a safe way, while still trying to beat time and tackle rough terrains. For kids who would rather color, print off this TWO MEN AND A TRUCK coloring page! It’s sure to keep kids occupied as they color in Truckie embarking on a new travel.

To get TWO MEN AND A TRUCK’s Mini Mover Mania video game as well as the coloring page, visit our “Moving With Kids” page on our website!

Moving can be a hard time on your children. However, by following these steps, your transition should become much smoother for your kids, and the rest of the family as well!

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.

Eight ways to make moving with kids an experience to remember

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-Written by Andie Millerov 

Whether it’s a few blocks away or across the country, moving to a new place with unfamiliar surroundings can be nerve-racking. Many adults may experience that uneasy feeling as they prepare to move and envision how they will settle in. Now, imagine that feeling from a child’s perspective. No matter your child’s age, moving can be tough for them. Consider the suggestions below to help them adjust to the idea and help you breathe easier.

Give them time – Springing a move on your kids, even if your new destination is only a few minutes away, can lead to overwhelming feelings to arise. Take the time you need to figure out a gentle way to break the news, but try to give as much notice as possible so they have plenty of time to process the change before it happens. Be sure to answer questions and address any concerns they may have.

Introduce the movers – When the movers arrive on the big day, take a moment to introduce them to your kids. Doing so will establish trust and reassure them that their most treasured possessions are in capable hands.

Get to know your new neighbors – Depending on how long you lived at your old house, you and your family may have formed relationships with neighbors. Make an effort to do so at your new house if possible, showing your kids that a new house means new connections!

Get them excited about their new room – Be sure your child is involved in unpacking their own belongings and let them get creative in how they set up their bedroom and play areas – with your help, of course.

Keep in touch with old neighbors and friends – As you get settled in your new home, carve out some time to help your child write a letter to a friend or old neighbor telling them about their new house. Better yet, ask grandparents, aunts, uncles, or family friends to send a letter to your child. Everyone loves happy mail, and it’s bound to brighten their day to receive something at their new address.

Explore – Take a break from unpacking and go on a bike ride or walk with the kids through your new neighborhood. Or, if the weather is nice, pack a simple picnic and find a nearby park to enjoy it at. It’s important to take a break from the chaos to unwind and spend time together.

Repurpose your boxes – Once you’ve unpacked, use some of the boxes to create box costumes! The kids will love getting creative.

Be enthusiastic – The more positive you remain during the whole move experience, the more confident your children will feel about the change. Show them you are ready for this new adventure, and they will be too!

Click here for more information about moving with kids.

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® enters the gaming world with “Mini Mover Mania”!

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Attention all gamers! Grab your mobile device, head to the app store of your choice, and check out the “Mini Mover Mania” game from TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®!

While we are known as the “Movers Who Care®” and spend most of our time helping people move all across the country, we like to provide a little fun for our customers – especially the kiddos. The IT department at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK’s Home Office in Lansing, Mich., partnered with IT Capstone Experience students at Michigan State University to work on and develop a game to keep kids occupied and entertained during the moving process.

Developed for children ages eight and up, Mini Mover Mania creates a virtual, fast-paced game setting centered around the moving process. This game is no walk in the park, either, and gamers will have to use focus and strategy to earn points and advance in the game.

“Kids love games and TWO MEN AND A TRUCK loves kids, so adding Mini Movers Mania to the list of ways in which kids can interact with our family-friendly brand is a win,” said Dawn Kroeger, the marketing and communication director at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®. “And, based on my experience, parents may find the new game entertaining as well!”

Here’s a breakdown of what gamers can expect when they download Mini Movers Mania:

-The name of the game is maneuvering through each course, trying to reach the end of each course with as many boxes remaining on your truck as possible.

-Your truck is loaded with boxes at the beginning, and sudden movements or jumps cause the boxes to fall off.

-Each course is layered with stops and elevations to create a challenge.

-Points are based on the time it takes you to complete the course and the amount of boxes you have remaining. Better results, more points.

-There are three levels of difficulty to choose from, creating a fun and engaging experience for all.

This game isn’t just a time-waster for a few minutes here and there, either. The more points you collect completing the various levels, the more you earn that can be spent in the store to unlock new vehicles and other perks to be used in-game.

Mini Mover Mania is now available in the App Store for Apple-based devices, as well as the Google Play store for Android-based devices, so everyone is able to join in on the action!

To find out more about how to get involved with this fun game for kids and other exciting activities we have developed to make the moving process more enjoyable for the young ones, visit TWO MEN AND A TRUCK’s Moving with Kids page.

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.

Set your kids up for success this school year with these back to school tips

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-by Anna Stephens

It’s back to school season, and families are shifting into school mode after a long, relaxing summer. As we approach the fall, nerves are setting in for many students starting their first day of school. New beginnings can be scary, especially for those children who moved to a new town this summer. Stay on your “A” game as a parent with these 10 tips for your child’s success.

1. Plan a fabulous first day of school outfit. Let your child plan what they want to wear on their first day. Make sure they pick an outfit that makes them feel happy and confident. If your budget allows it, purchase something brand new so they can start the year with a fresh, new look.

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2. Practice their schedule with them. Once your child gets their schedule, walk through their classes with them so they know where they’re headed for their classes. This is especially useful for incoming middle-schoolers, who will now be traveling to classes on their own!

3. Get fun and durable school supplies. Download your child’s school supplies list and do some research online for special school supply deals. Many websites offer package deals that include the same products as retailers, but at a lower price. Let your child have a say in what you purchase so they feel confident and fully equipped for school.

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4. Help to decorate their locker. Purchase a magnetic mirror, little magnets to hang pictures, washi tape, or other cute decorations. If possible, head into school during the summer, or after school lets out one day, to decorate the inside of their locker with wrapping paper. A personalized locker is sure to lift your child’s spirits if they’re having a bad day.
5. Make hearty breakfasts. Make sure your child goes to school on a full belly so they feel energized during the school day

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6. Pack nutritious lunches and include a note. Pack foods that are filling and healthy. To make your mornings easier, you can even pack lunches the night before. Also, leave a little sticky note inside their lunch to let your kids know you’re thinking about them!

7. Encourage them to get involved with an after school team or organization. Joining a team or organization can be a beneficial experience for your child. It will encourage them to be active, and will introduce them to new people. Push your kids to step out of their comfort zones and try something new and challenging.

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8. Keep communication with your child open. After school, show interest in their day and their homework, but don’t interrogate. Let them come to you with help and questions naturally, and always make sure they know you’re there to help if they need it.

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9. Get to know your kids’ teachers and friends. Your kids spend their entire day with their friends and teachers, so you should get to know them! You can understand your child’s perspective better if you are familiar with their main influences.

10. Show your kids extra patience and support. This is nerve-wracking stuff! Every child responds differently to stress, so be prepared and supportive through it all.

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TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® wishes you an enjoyable back-to-school season! In the meantime, we are here to help with any packing supplies, storage, local or long-distance moving needs you may have. We can even help after your move is complete with our in-home moving services, such as reorganizing furniture, or helping get rid of items you no longer need. Contact your local franchise to learn more.

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

 

Create a positive moving experience and lift your mini-movers’ spirits

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-Written by Anna Stephens

Moving is a daunting word for anyone who knows what it entails. However, have you considered it from the perspective of your child? Many children have difficulty with a move because of the stress they observe and the uncertainty of what’s to come. For better or worse, children are constantly listening, comprehending, and mimicking the behaviors of the adults around them. Stubborn as they may be, their admirably perceptive hearts and minds are quite impressionable.

For this reason, it is simpler than one would think to convince children that moving isn’t as scary as it’s made out to be. It is much easier for children to look forward to a move if their parents show eagerness and confidence in the process. Moving is just as fun as you make it, so why not make the best of it?

We’ve compiled a list of creative ideas that will help change your child’s perspective on moving. Be sure to also check out our interactive activities for kids, including our Highlights coloring page, and our Travelin’ Truckie coloring book. Visit our “Moving With Kids” page, here, to learn more about these activities.

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1. Interactive calendar

Similar to an Advent calendar, create a calendar about 30 days out of a move with a countdown to move in day. Include small treats like candy, cards from family members, or coins as presents each day before the move. This prepares your children for the exact date so they know how many days are remaining. In addition, it gives them something to look forward to each day as they count down their final days in the old home.

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2. Pictures

If possible, take a picture of their bedroom in the new home and place it somewhere in their current bedroom so they can visualize what it’ll look like. On move in day, purchase a disposable camera and let them capture their new view of the space. It’s entertaining for kids to capture moments like these, and you can save these photos for the future.

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3. Custom boxes

Encourage your kids to decorate a Truckie’s Treasure Chest Box, which are designed to look like coloring book pages. These boxes allow children to carefully place their favorite stuffed animals, crayons, coloring books, reading books, etc., in an easily identifiable box and keep their prized possessions nearby at all times. Your child also may enjoy a Truckie Journal to document their moving experience.

Blog54. Meet the movers

Always make introductions and allow your children to interact with your move team for a moment before the movers get to work. ! Introducing the movers to the kids is a great way to establish trust that their favorite belongings are in good hands.

Blog65. Unpacking

Unpack your child’s room with them so they know where everything is. Let them provide input for the design and storage of their bedroom and play areas. Give them special tasks that they’ll enjoy so they stay busy and feel included.

Blog76. Familiar smells

Multiple studies have shown that scent is strongly correlated to memory and emotion. Find a way to incorporate familiar smells into your new home that help your kids associate with their old home. If you regularly have a candle lit at your current home, for example, keep it accessible and light it in your first few days in your new home.

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7. Play time

Schedule time to sit with your child in their new bedroom or play area and do their favorite activities with them. Encourage them to play with their most cherished stuffed animals or read their favorite book, so they feel a sense of familiarity in their new home.

Blog98. Attitude

As previously mentioned, children will mimic the behavior of their parents. Be enthusiastic about your move, and your children will mirror that.

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.

Parents who are moving with kids, keep your cool

Written by: Arika Ford

Our children mimic our behavior and as parents, we are their first teachers in life with a strong influence over them for many of their developmental years. The years when our children are growing and developing can be tumultuous at times, there may be many ups and downs, but it is crucial to stay positive.

Moving is a big life change and can be extremely overwhelming for adults and children. Sometimes, families move as a result of less than ideal situations, such as divorce, job loss, or other changes that makes this stressful event even worse. It is imperative we remain calm and positive, not only for our sake, but for the sake of our children whom we love and want to succeed in all things. Below are simple efforts you can do to keep calm, and maintain your game face for your kids during the move!

Maintain normalcy-If you regularly have a family movie night or game night, I encourage you to keep it scheduled and to not be tempted to cancel it. This is time well spent bonding and relaxing with your family. Many feelings and emotions can come out during normal activities with your kids and move time can bring on a lot of those. It is in everyone’s best interest that kids have a time to express their emotions verbally to you so they don’t act them out physically. Even if you ask them what is wrong, they are likely not able to vocalize their emotions simply Truckie’s Treasure Chestbecause they don’t have an understanding of what they are feeling or why. For these reasons and many others, keep a normal schedule as much as possible for as long as possible. Children feel secure with a routine. Play a moving game with them, get the toy trucks out and play “moving to a new house”. Who knows, you may enjoy it more than they do, and find it as a good way to release emotions as well.

Maintain positivity-If you are managing a move, you are likely dealing with an increased number of people, who may not seem as sensitive to your situation as you would like. This can easily build up frustration as your patience is being spent on interacting and managing your feelings around strangers. If you need a release, be sure you aren’t taking it out on your children. It is important we are aware of our own emotions during this time. We must remain positive, especially in front of our kids, and sometimes that means we need to have a little alone time to wind down. It’s okay to do that! If you need to talk with your spouse, siblings, or best friend to vent a little in order to come full circle in your own thoughts and feelings, do it! Be sure you also reflect on the positive side of things as this will not only help you, but your family as well.

Keep them involved-Moving is scary. Young kids may not understand what is happening, and there’s a good chance they’re nervous, too. “What’s the new house going to be like? Will I make friends there? What if no one likes me?” These are all common questions that go through kids’ minds. Keep your children involved throughout the moving process, tell them what their new home will be like and keep them updated throughout the move. You can even have them help you get packing done to prepare for the move!

Maintain work life-Yes it is tempting to use work time to handle all of the moving business we must take care of such as changing your address for the entire family, or finding new local schools, stores, or the many other searches we can conduct online to Moving with Kidssooth our nerves about an upcoming move into an unfamiliar area. But don’t do it! Now is not the time to slack at your job, you must keep up with deadlines and the pace to maintain business as usual. Don’t be sucked into conducting personal business while on the clock. Of course take care of important needs after the workday or during lunch breaks, however keep a regular schedule as much as possible, and take the time to learn exciting new places of interest once you have settled into your new home. Make it a fun event by taking the family out to explore as a fun way to relax once the move is said and done.

Playing creative and fun games with your kids during this time can certainly ease their stress, which will in turn, ease yours. Just remember to stay positive about all moving aspects, there is a bright side to most things in life and moving can definitely be one of those bright sides! To make moving with kids even more stress-free and positive, hire a professional moving company to take the stress away on move day.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. We work day in and day out to move people forward®. To learn more about us, subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

Tips for starting a new school

Guest blog written by Lindsey Schaibly

The first day of school can be nerve-wracking, especially if you’re the new kid in school. Here are some simple tips to help your kids prepare for their first day.

Meet the Teachers

Meet The Teacher NightCheck if the new school offers an open house or a “Meet the Teacher” night to allow your child time to tour the building, meet his or her new teachers, and become acquainted with future classmates.  If not, schedule a time with the teacher(s) to introduce your child and to tour the building.  A few familiar faces and knowing where to go will make the first days much easier for your child.

Discuss Curriculum

If you are able to meet with the teachers, get an idea of the upcoming year’s curriculum and how it aligns with your child’s previous education.  Being aware of any educational gaps can assist you with helping your child, if necessary, with upcoming schoolwork. You could even ask for an overview of your child’s current curriculum to have a better idea of where s/he places in terms of classes or levels.  If your child has special needs, find out what services are available and hold those discussions prior to the new school year.

Confirm Registration

Be sure to check with the main office that you have competed all of the required paperwork and have all necessary medical forms, immunization records, etc.  Ensuring your child’s first day will be free of trips to the office and confusing questions will make the first day much less stressful.

Do a Practice Run

There is nothing worse than feeling lost in a new place.  Before school starts, allow your child a trial run of a school day. Practice walking to the bus stop, walking the route, or driving to school. Then rehearse navigating the building while stopping to find important places, such as the main office and restrooms. Visit every classroom your child will be moving to throughout the school day: library, music room, gymnasium, etc. Covering all of the bases will make both your child and you feel more at ease on the first day.

Meet New Friends

Future friends can be found in the neighborhood, summer camps, playgrounds, and even the local library.  See if it’s possible for a teacher to recommend a student to be your child’s buddy for the day and to show him/her around the new school. Your child could even shadow another child to get a better feeling for the school day. Having at least one friend right away will prevent your child from feeling alone in the new environment.

Arrange Play Dates

Another idea is to arrange play dates for your child with nearby families or children from school. Your child may feel more comfortable hosting the first play date and inviting a small group of friends to the new home. When visiting other homes, be sure to accompany your child to the first play date and be clear with any questions or expectations you have for the parent(s) who may be supervising your child. If play dates continue, research additional ideas for successful play dates and how to approach difficult situations if they arise. The most important rule to remember is your child’s comfort with the arrangements.

Offer New School Supplies

Another way to make starting a new school more exciting is allowing your child to select new school supplies. Contact the teacher(s) for a supplies list, and ask your child to decide what types of supplies, what color backpack, and the type of lunch sack s/he would like to take to school. If your child is more comfortable with the backpack from last year, allow that since it may provide a sense of comfort in the new place.

Remain Patient

Moving brings significant adjustments for every member of the family, but having to simultaneously change schools and grades is a lot for children to endure. Remember to remain patient if your child struggles with the transitions and be supportive of any hesitant feelings.  Your child may surprise you and easily adjust to the new environment. However, if necessary, seek help from a professional if you feel the struggles are too difficult for you to handle on your own.

family3ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Lindsey Schaibly is the training and development specialist at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®/INTERNATIONAL, Inc. Even though she now works with adults, she is a pro when it comes to working with kids. Prior to working at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® / INTERNATIONAL, Inc. she received her Bachelor’s degree in Education and her Master’s degree in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, K-12. She then went on to be a middle and high school English teacher for six years. She is also a loving wife to her husband, Nick, and caring mother to their one-year-old daughter, Ryan. It’s an exciting time in the Schaibly household as they wait to welcome a little boy to their family in October!

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.