Moving with a baby or toddler can be downright difficult. From packing all of their essentials to baby proofing a new home, there are many steps that parents must take to ensure a safe and smooth move for their little one. There are also a number of things that parents should not do when moving with a baby or toddler. For a list of the dos and don’ts of baby proofing your next move, keep reading.
Do hire help
If you’re able to hire childcare on moving day, we highly recommend doing so. Not only could this help save your own sanity, but it will also keep your baby safe from harm. In the midst of a chaotic move, it’s all too easy to take your eyes off of a toddler. Unfortunately, doing so (even for a minute!) could spell trouble for your little one. So do your baby and yourself a favor by enlisting a friend, family member or babysitter to watch them during the moving process. Having an extra set of hands to hold, feed and play with the child means you’ll be able to concentrate on all of the moving tasks at-hand.
Don’t pack your baby’s belongings first
Boxing up the house for your move? While it’s tempting to start by first packing all of those noisy toys, stuffed animals and baby gadgets, we advise waiting to pack the baby items until a week or so before the move. The reason? The last thing you want do right before a move is have to go hunting through boxes to find your child’s favorite pacifier, blanket or toy. When you do pack up your baby’s belongings, make sure to label each box as clearly as possible. This way movers will know exactly where to place all nursery items as they unload the truck.
Do bring a pack ‘n play with you
Make sure you have something to contain your little one before, during and after the move. For many, this is typically some type of pack ‘n play (which can double as a portable crib!). Those who are temporarily staying in a hotel waiting for their belongings to arrive can use the pack ‘n play as a place for the child to sleep during the night. Other items that may be useful during a move include a high chair, baby gates, bouncy seat or anything else that keeps your baby or toddler in one place. This way your child won’t have a fall or unfortunate accident while you’re distracted with unpacking boxes.
Don’t put your baby in a truck rental
Most, if not all, truck rental companies encourage families to drive their own vehicle when moving a baby, toddler or small child. While many truck rentals are equipped with air bags and considered safe for adults, they may not meet requirements for car seats. In fact, many truck rentals are only equipped with two or three bucket seats up front – not in the back of the truck, as required for car seats. Additionally, if you’re flying in an airplane, there are certain rules for traveling with little ones.
Do be aware of window cords in your new home
Baby proofing a new house starts with the windows. When you move into a new home, it’s easy to forget about the cords hanging from your soon-to-be-replaced window treatments. Unfortunately, curious toddlers have a tendency to grab onto window cords from blinds and shades. This can lead to devastating consequences, as it’s actually estimated that one child every month dies from entanglement in window treatment cords. To keep your child safe, we recommend addressing your window treatments as soon as you move in. This may mean replacing them with cordless shades and blinds during the first week. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission also recommends that parents avoid placing cribs, beds or furniture close to the windows.
Don’t wait to unpack the nursery
Unpack and set up your child’s bedroom as soon as you move in. In addition to the kitchen and your own bedroom, the nursery should be a top priority on moving day. You’ll want to make sure the furniture is set up, the room is baby proofed and the boxes are unpacked. This will give your toddler a safe, serene place to sleep and will help them adjust to the move more quickly.
Do pack a moving day essentials bag for the baby
As you pack belongings, do make sure to include a bag and/or box of moving day essentials for your child. In addition to typical diaper bag necessities, you may want to pack their favorite stuffed animal, as well as a pacifier, sippy cups, bottles, blankets, a first aid kit and any other important medications. The moving day essentials bag should be placed in an easy-to-reach spot throughout the day, making it easy to access everything you need when you need it.
Don’t forget to cover electrical outlets with covers
Have a rambunctious toddler? Chances are, they’ll be crawling all over the new home in no time. In addition to eliminating window cords and setting up baby gates, you’ll need to cover all electrical outlets with covers. These child-proof outlet covers are an inexpensive way to make your new home as safe as possible for the kiddos. Fortunately, you can easily find them on Amazon.
Do remain calm during the move
We know moving can be a stressful experience (to say the least!). Unfortunately, toddlers and little ones tend to pick up on the stress around them – particularly the stressful emotions from their parents. If a child is already anxious about a move, this will only make the situation worse. Changes in sleep and eating habits, as well as sudden temper tantrums and crying spells are a sign that a toddler isn’t happy. To keep your toddler as calm as possible, it’s important that you remain calm during the move.
Don’t move by yourself
Finally, if it’s in your budget, we strongly suggest hiring professional movers to assist with all heavy lifting on moving day. This way you can focus on your baby and not on all of those stressful moving logistics. Fortunately, Moving.com has you covered. Our network of licensed and insured professional movers can handle all of your moving day needs, so you can spend valuable time keeping your little ones safe and happy. Best of luck and happy moving!
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