When it came time to decide what articles to take with us we classified: keep, give away or sell, dispose of.
Moving! That was a scary thought. After living 52 years in the same house on the same farm, I was like an old apple tree, deeply rooted in the earth, enjoying my surroundings.
As much as we enjoyed our big farmhouse and yard, we were finding the work involved for the upkeep was becoming too much. My husband and I were both tired. Although we are in reasonably good health, we had become slower.
We sold the farm to a young couple and bought a bungalow in a nearby town, which has many familiar faces of friends who had previously moved there. We are now also close to our church, a variety of stores and medical help.
We were fortunate to have plenty of time to pack and get organized for moving day and blessed with family to help us.
We made use of e-mail and phone to notify newspapers and magazines of our change of address, and the post office can provide address cards to notify distant friends and relatives.
Utilities had to be cancelled in our name and transferred to the new farm owners and notified of our new town address.
Government departments such as the Taxation Office, Canada Pension and Social Security had to know of our move. I made a list beforehand of places that needed to be contacted and checked off each one as it was done.
When it came time to decide what articles to take with us we classified: keep, give away or sell, dispose of. Many charities, institutions and organizations are happy to receive household articles and you can check the phone book for listings. Good used clothing, bedding and clean articles suitable for rags were given to the Catholic Women’s League Clothing Depot in Saskatoon and the Mennonite Church and Salvation Army can also use similar items. Records and books were given to be sold at a fundraiser for the Saskatoon Symphony. Interval House at Lloydminster and Women’s Crisis Centre at Kindersley take clothing and household items. Magazines and books are sometimes welcomed by seniors’ centres.
If you think you have an antique or collectible, consult an antique dealer as it may be something valuable. Museums will often accept old artifacts also.
You may just want to give things away to someone you know who can use them, but remember, old cribs, baby walkers and car seats cannot be reused as they are not up to modern standards.
Garage sales and farm auctions are also good ways to downsize.
When it was time to pack, we obtained some sturdy cartons from one of our daughters who had saved them from her last move. We also got strong boxes from our local grocery
store. The filled boxes were taped and labelled as to contents and which room they belonged to and framed pictures were carefully wrapped.
If wardrobe boxes are available they make moving clothes easier as the clothes are simply hung and the containers labelled (Mom’s summer, Dad’s winter, etc.).
Furniture was cushioned with mattresses and quilts and boxes were packed around them.
Business papers and bills to be paid should be put in clear plastic containers and labelled so they are easily accessible.
We didn’t have to move any large appliances but I had two large freezers that I wanted to take. I emptied, defrosted and cleaned out one which was moved with the first load and plugged in at the new place, then the contents of the second freezer were quickly taken over and put in.
It’s helpful to pack a suitcase with clothes and toiletries to supply for a few days till you get settled. When we arrived at our new home we prioritized what needed to be done right away and what could wait.
If your fanily is unable to help with a move, recruit friends or hire a moving company as it is a huge task. It’s hard physically, mentally and emotionally so accept all the help you can get. Eventually you’ll be able to relax and enjoy your new home.
Naden Hewko writes from Macklin, Saskatchewan