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20 Smart Tips To Make Moving a Breeze

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20 Smart Tips To Make Moving a Breeze

Most people dread moving. Packing, organizing, transporting, attempting to bribe your friends to help — the whole process can seem daunting, but if you use these tips and tricks, moving day might be a lot less stressful. Happy packing!

1. Be thrifty, find free moving boxes

Save a little cash and acquire all the boxes you need for free. Best places: the ‘free’ section on Craigslist, grocery and clothing stores, and warehouse style stores.

    2. Purge your stuff

    Now that you’re sorting through all your things, it’s a perfect time to see what can be donated or chucked altogether! Make an effort to pare down your possessions so your move will be a little easier and your new home will be a bit less cluttered.

      3. Create a schedule so you don’t get overwhelmed

      Plan ahead! Don’t forget to defrost, towel dry, and clean your refrigerator 24-48 hours before moving day. Otherwise, it’ll be pretty stinky and leaky!

        4. Take pictures of your electronics before you unplug

        Before you disconnect them to be boxed up, take a picture on your phone or camera of the cords on the back of your television and other electronics so that you can remember where they all go! This will save you a ton of time when you set it up again.

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          5. Put hanging clothes in garbage bags

          Keep your clothes on the hanger, but wrapped up. When you get to your new abode, simply take off the garbage bags. Don’t forget to label so you know whose stuff is whose!

            6. Pack a first-night box

            Most people don’t think to do this, and end up rummaging through several boxes on moving day to get their pajamas or the coffee maker. Pack yourself a “first night” box with all your toiletries, some clothes, and anything you’ll need the following morning such as dishes and silverware or your hair-dryer. You can even buy this cute IKEA box if you’re tired of seeing your own handwriting:

              7. Safely pack your plates

              Since they’re already plate-shaped, foam disposable plates are awesome for packing your real plates. Put them in between each plate in your stack before you pack it all up. Plus, you can totally class up the cheap comfort food you’ll want to get after you’ve finally unpacked your last box some day. Here’s an example from TheFrugalGirls.com:

                8. Plastic Wrap Your Drawers — With Everything Inside

                Use plastic wrap to keep dressers drawers shut when the moving truck jostles them about, or for trays of items that would be just fine staying in the trays as long as they didn’t fall out. Plus, you can leave its contents in there, since the drawers no longer have a risk of sliding open!

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                  9. Use Wine Cases For Your Glassware

                  There’s bound to be a local bar, winery, or even some grocery stores that have empty wine cases you can snag. Keeps your glasses organized and it’s easy to stuff some newspaper and such in each compartment so there’s some padding to protect them.

                  33+ Helpful Moving Tips Everyone Should Know ~ Get free wine box cases from your local restaurants and use them to pack glassware!

                    10. Don’t Mix Items From Different Rooms

                    Keep items from one room in boxes separate from the others, it’ll save you a lot of sanity when you finally unpack.

                      11. Make A Packing Supplies Basket

                      Save yourself from losing packing supplies or running around your house/apartment because you left the scissors in one room and the tape in the other. Get a box or a basket for supplies that you can carry with you from room to room, that way you’ll have all of it with you as you switch tasks and don’t have to spend time retrieving supplies you left in another room.

                        12. How To Pack Jewelry

                        Use egg cartons to easily transport your jewelry. Tape them shut so nothing falls out! Also, use toilet paper rolls for packing necklaces or loose bracelets. Just put one end through the roll and fasten the clasp.

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                          13. Keep Screws & Bolts Organized

                          If you have to dismantle any furniture for your move, don’t forget to keep all the loose screws and bolts organized! Put them in plastic baggies and label them so you know which piece of furniture they’r for and don’t lose any.

                            14. Cut holes in sides of boxes for easy lifting

                            Use a box-cutter to cut triangle-shaped holes on either side of your heavier boxes to give you makeshift handles for easier lifting!

                            4 Weeks Before: Gather Materials

                              15. Use Storage Bins For Seasonal Items

                              If you don’t already store your seasonal/holiday items in plastic bins, now’s the time. That way, once you’re moved in, you can simply transfer the plastic bins to your closet or basement without having to unpack their contents.

                                16. Use Soft Items For Padding

                                You don’t need as much packaging material as you think! All sorts of soft items around your home can be used to safely and efficiently pack other items. Towels, socks, sheets, and other soft or cushy things make great and free packing material. Environmentally friendly, too!

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                                  17. Color-code Your Labels

                                  Black and white labels are hard to distinguish when you want to start unpacking at a non-glacial pace. Use colorful labels instead — you can handwrite them, or simply print some out — and devise a color-coding system for your boxes to easily keep track of what is where.

                                    18. Use a Rubber Band to Keep Your Front Door Unlocked

                                    When actually moving your boxes into your truck or van, you’ll be going in and out of the house a lot. Wrap a rubber band around one doorknob and stretch it around your door to wrap the other end on the opposite knob. This will keep your door from accidentally getting shut and locking you out in case someone forgets to keep it unlocked!

                                      19. Keep ALL your liquids separate

                                      Cleaning supplies, dish-washing supplies, whatever it is, if it’s liquid put it in a separate plastic bin. If it falls or spills during the move and you’ve left it in another box, it’ll soak everything. Ew.

                                        20. Pack With a Guide

                                        Look up visual guides for packing your moving vehicle, like this one. Advice may differ if you have a van or a truck.

                                        33+ Helpful Moving Tips Everyone Should Know ~ How to pack the truck like an expert!

                                          Now go pack like a pro!

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                                          Featured photo credit: Moving truck/Matthew W. Jackson via flickr.com

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                                          Last Updated on January 27, 2022

                                          5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

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                                          5 Reasons Why Food is the Best Way to Understand a Culture

                                          Food plays an integral role in our lives and rightfully so: the food we eat is intricately intertwined with our culture. You can learn a lot about a particular culture by exploring their food. In fact, it may be difficult to fully define a culture without a nod to their cuisine.

                                          “Tell me what you eat, and I’ll tell you who you are.” – Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1825).

                                          Don’t believe me? Here’s why food is the best way to understand a culture:

                                          Food is a universal necessity.

                                          It doesn’t matter where in the world you’re from – you have to eat. And your societal culture most likely evolved from that very need, the need to eat. Once they ventured beyond hunting and gathering, many early civilizations organized themselves in ways that facilitated food distribution and production. That also meant that the animals, land and resources you were near dictated not only what you’d consume, but how you’d prepare and cook it. The establishment of the spice trade and the merchant silk road are two example of the great lengths many took to obtain desirable ingredients.

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                                          Food preservation techniques are unique to climates and lifestyle.

                                          Ever wonder why the process to preserve meat is so different around the world? It has to do with local resources, needs, and climates. In Morocco, Khlea is a dish composed of dried beef preserved in spices and then packed in animal fat. When preserved correctly, it’s still good for two years when stored at room temperature. That makes a lot of sense in Morocco, where the country historically has had a strong nomadic population, desert landscape, and extremely warm, dry temperatures.

                                          Staples of a local cuisines illustrate historical eating patterns.

                                          Some societies have cuisines that are entirely based on meat, and others are almost entirely plant-based. Some have seasonal variety and their cuisines change accordingly during different parts of the year. India’s cuisine is extremely varied from region to region, with meat and wheat heavy dishes in the far north, to spectacular fish delicacies in the east, to rice-based vegetarian diets in the south, and many more variations in between.

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                                          The western part of India is home to a group of strict vegetarians: they not only avoid flesh and eggs, but even certain strong aromatics like garlic, or root vegetables like carrots and potatoes. Dishes like Papri Chat, featuring vegetable based chutneys mixed with yoghurt, herbs and spices are popular.

                                          Components of popular dishes can reveal cultural secrets.

                                          This is probably the most intriguing part of studying a specific cuisine. Certain regions of the world have certain ingredients easily available to them. Most people know that common foods such as corn, tomatoes, chili peppers, and chocolate are native to the Americas, or “New World”. Many of today’s chefs consider themselves to be extremely modern when fusing cuisines, but cultural lines blended long ago when it comes to purity of ingredients.

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                                          Black pepper originated in Asia but became, and still remains, a critical part of European cuisine. The Belgians are some of the finest chocolatiers, despite it not being native to the old world. And perhaps one of the most interesting result from the blending of two cuisines is Chicken Tikka Masala; it resembles an Indian Mughali dish, but was actually invented by the British!

                                          Food tourism – it’s a whole new way to travel.

                                          Some people have taken the intergation of food and culture to a new level. No trip they take is complete with out a well-researched meal plan, that dictates not only the time of year for their visit, but also how they will experience a new culture.

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                                          So, a food tourist won’t just focus on having a pint at Oktoberfest, but will be interested in learning the German beer making process, and possibly how they can make their own fresh brew. Food tourists visit many of the popular mainstays for traditional tourism, like New York City, San Francisco, London, or Paris, but many locations that they frequent, such as Armenia or Laos, may be off the beaten path for most travelers. And since their interest in food is more than meal deep, they have the chance to learn local preparation techniques that can shed insight into a whole other aspect of a particular region’s culture.

                                          Featured photo credit: Young Shih via unsplash.com

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