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Moving 600 Miles & How: PART 1

Once you make the decision to make ‘the move’, you know the one. The one where you finally say “I’m going to do it….but how”. The one that makes your heart flutter when you think about it, but also makes your hands sweat? The move that requires you to pack your s*** and get your life in boxes? THAT ONE!

This may sound cliché but if I can do it, so can you.

There’s something seriously invigorating when it comes to life changes and the adventure that comes with them. Once I made the decision to move, like, not just talk about it and dream, but no, actually move…I was on fire, I felt unstoppable, I had a secret that was literally life changing, and about two days later reality set in. After a few google searches, I was lost.

Our new homestead in North Carolina

  • Do I rent a moving truck and drive it myself?

  • I know, I’ll buy a trailer and tow all my stuff—wait a second, how many trips would I have to make?

  • Do I hire a moving company..$$$$…WOAH, nope!

  • Do I sell all my sh*t and just start from scratch? What about my book collection? Can’t part with that!

  • Where the heck am I going to put the chickens? What about the coop?

  • Can someone tell me why the F moving boxes are $8-$30 a piece?

close laptop, contemplate why I even need to move in the first place

Take a breath my friend, we’ve been there. I learned a lot making this move, I’ve done the research, and I’m here to walk you through start to finish the moving process.


If you have doubt that is lingering your big move, rest assured we’ve all been there. If there was a lamp we could rub with a little magic moving genie that packed up your house, wiggled his nose and BOOM you’re in all moved and settled in to your new homestead—everyone would be doing it (and just so you know, there’s no such lamp, I’ve looked).

Something that helped take the doubt and crush it, was this:

Envision your life today, are you happy?

For me the answer was yes, I am happy!! I loved my job, I had a newly built chicken coop painted my favorite color, I FINALLY had house plants in every corner that needed one, my crystal collection looked pretty friken awesome in all the perfect spots that reflected sunlight just right.

Our backyard chicken coop in NJ. Built with recycled materials and our own design plans!

But here’s what did it, would I still be happy here in 5 years?

Instantly I knew the answer was no.

I had no more space in my backyard for anything, not one more potted plant, no more raised beds, and definitely no more animals, the house was at capacity, and to be honest I didn’t feel like cutting myself short. Would it have been easier to stay put, just where I was? Maybe? Would I have loved life a few years from that moment, no, I really don’t think so.

I think this little exercise and self-reflection made all the difference and got my mental game where it needed to be. Because from that point forward, when I was facing doubt or resistance, I had assurance that this was necessary to grow, be happy and live the life I wanted.


This...this right here, was a golden nugget of advice I am so grateful for. My brother and sister-in-law had just settled into their new homestead in Eastern Tennessee (check out Lee Hill Farm on Instagram :heart eyes:) but anyway…my sister in law told me to: get my sh*t together, throw out my garbage, and don’t pack what I don’t have to (I’m paraphrasing here, but that’s what I took away from the convo).

Now I knew I wouldn’t be moving for at least 12 months, but I also knew that I just spent the last six years moving into every inch of my rental home, making it my own, and collecting every knick-knack I could get my hand on.

Here’s some magic sauce to make your life easier.

Note: This can be 15-20 minutes a day if you are anywhere from six months to one year out. If you are closer to your move date, schedule dedicated time that fits in your calendar to make this happen.

Organize, organize, and then organize more.

  • Go through your clothes.

  • Anything you haven’t worn since high school, donate.

  • Anything that is damaged, see ya later alligator.

  • Socks that don’t have matches, bye!

  • Jeans that the zipper broke and you swear you’re going to get fixed, idk maybe keep those, but everything else release and let go.

There is nothing worse than when you are packing up to leave and you realize just how much you are paying to move. Boxes add up! Take an honest inventory of what you need to bring/save. When the time comes to pack, instead of sifting through clothes and deciding what you want vs. what you don’t, you’ll know everything in front of you is moving.

This does not have to be all in one day!! This can be 15 minutes of organizing your sock drawer, and tossing the underwear with a hole in it (because are you really going to pack those up and move them).

  • No one's junk drawer is organized, but yours is going to be. This sounds silly but the less clutter in your life, the less chaotic your move will feel. Throw away those old receipts, shred that credit card offer you’re not going to use, and file away those tax documents that have been sitting there since March.

  • Make sure that every item in your house has a home, in its designated room. When it comes time to pack up room by room, you don’t want to pack up your TV remote with the kitchen flatware, because you will be ripping open boxes looking for one single item, and it’s just not worth the time. This will also bring a giant sigh of relief when packing day comes, and you aren’t wasting your time walking things back and forth into different parts of the house because “this doesn’t go in that box”.


Sell what you can, and save the profits!

At this point you’re organized and feeling good about the shape you're in :high five:. Now it's time to recoup some of those moving expenses.

When moving to a new home there are things you may be ready to part with, because let’s face it, what we loved three years ago may no longer serve us.

There are virtual options like: Poshmark, Mercari, Facebook Marketplace, and Craigslist.

For smaller items like backpacks, clothing, kids' toys, hand bags, drones, throw pillows, anything easily packed up in a box I’d say ten pounds or less, Mercari was the way to go. I made close to $800 on Mercari. I did price things to sell, and I covered the shipping cost to move items faster. You will have the option to have the buyer pay for shipping costs, totally up to you.

For larger items like mini fridges, book shelves, computer desks, Facebook Marketplace was where it was at. It connects you with locals, searching for the item you have, and boom cash in hand. I strongly advise to have someone present with you whenever facilitating online meet ups.

Facebook Marketplace generated an additional $1,100 for simply selling the things I knew I no longer needed, or wouldn’t fit just right in my new home.

Then of course the classic garage sale. I sold everything from one off light bulbs to margarita glasses and picture frames. This generated another $200. Saturday and Sundays are the most popular days for garage sales. For the highest chance of success post this everywhere you can (street signs, Facebook, craigslist, town newsletter, anywhere and everywhere!).

Begin collecting moving supplies:

I felt ill when I saw the prices of moving supplies. Because now on top of every other expense, I had to invest in wrapping paper, boxes and things that I would never use again. Talk about being out of my reduce/reuse/recycle comfort zone. No. I did not pay for one single box and here’s how.

Contact your local Starbucks.

This is specific, but it worked. Starbucks receives a weekly order, that is decent in size, the higher volume the store the bigger the order. These boxes simply get broken down and taken out to their dumpster for recycling. Give them a call, or head in the store to connect in person, and request they save their large boxes for you. In most cases you are saving a barista a trip from inside the store to the dumpster outside, and they’ll be happy to do so. Confirm a good time for you to pick up the boxes that works well for them, because they can’t leave a pile of broken-down boxes saved for too long inside the store.

If you have any local grocers, check in with them as well. In most cases they’ll be happy to give their boxes a second life.

Contact your local moving company.

In many cases local moving companies provide a pack up, move, and unpack service. Leaving them with used boxes, LOTS of used boxes. These boxes, again get taken to the dumpster and are recycled. Give them a call and see if you can give their boxes a second life! These are higher quality boxes and a real score if you can find them!

Call your local food pantry.

Food pantries get weekly deliveries of eggs, donations from Costco and Sams Club (those are box gold), and guess what happens to those boxes, you guessed it…garbage. On your way to the food pantry be sure to drop off a donation in exchange, because what better cause is there to support?

Save! Save! Save!

When possible, save the daily newspapers, and packing materials that come with your Amazon boxes and Chewy deliveries. I promise you having these materials on hand when you have to wrap 10 coffee mugs, and 8 wine classes come in handy, because who wants to spend money on something that is going to get crumpled up and shoved in a box?

The Amazon bubble packers make an amazing padding for small dishes or even fragile items that need extra cushion.

Once you have a large box saved or scavenged, build it, and neatly store all of your packing materials. And after a few weeks you will have a serious reserve of moving supplies.

Did you know a sturdy cardboard box holds up better in moving trucks/trailers than a plastic bin? By using sturdy cardboard, you can avoid items being crushed and damaged in the move.

Beginning this process earlier on, the less you’ll have to spend on moving supplies, and every penny counts!


Packing Day (s).

Packing day should really be packing days. You are now totally organized, decluttered, and have some extra dough in your pocket…you’re almost there!

Now it’s time to start packing. Trust me, packing up your life is tiresome and sometimes emotional work and should not, I repeat, should NOT be attempted in one single day. Moving is a marathon, not a sprint so don’t tire yourself out before the journey even begins. By packing up little by little your body and mind will thank you.

Here’s how:

  • Pack room by room: Pick a room and start there, and do not deviate from that room. Because I promise you in a few weeks you will not remember that you put your husbands xbox controller in with your Halloween decorations out of convenience.

  • Do a box or two each night. Packing an entire home? Overwhelming. Packing up a box or two after work? Totally manageable.

  • Enlist in help. Have Mom come over for wine and cheese and have her wrap glassware, while you strategically pack it. More hands equate less work.

  • Pack the non-essentials first. Pack up your décor, your candles, your artwork, if you have 10 coffee cups like me, pack up eight of them. Leave out the essentials only. This will make the last 30 days before your move easy as pie!

  • Label, label, label. I had a few moments during the move where I thought Kitchen would suffice as a label on the box. Uhmmm no, I had about 7 kitchen boxes and really did not want to be opening up my Thanksgiving cookware during my first week in my new home. Label like you mean it and your future self will thank you!

  • Use things that are definitely coming with you on the move as packing supplies. Have extra pillow cases that are making the move? Use them as padding between fragile items. Afraid your Ninja Foodie might need some extra padding? Place a folded throw blanket underneath it. Not only will this save on moving supplies, but it helps fill every nook and cranny of your moving boxes making the most of your space.

Now you’re almost there:

Part 2: How to move cross country?

Compare the many ways to move cross country, and hear what we chose and why!

Part 3: Prepping you and your animals for a big move!

Feel confident that you, your family, and fur/feather babies will be happy all the way to your new home

It's worth it, I promise!

Planet Homestead

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