College Move-In Day: Tips & Helpful Items

Hello, my ah-mazing empty nest friend!
 
Here we go. Move-in day:  it looms ahead in the distance and then suddenly – WHACK – here it is. We are hit with the balance of being excited for our child as they begin their next adventure and the heavy emotions that arise when you realize they won’t be in your home to check up on anymore.
 
With my daughter heading into her junior year of college, bittersweet sums up my feelings this time of year. I’m unbelievably thrilled for where she is in life and feel her independence acutely. This makes me proud, happy, and excited for her. I can’t wait to see what she does. 
 
Will I miss her? Oh my goodness, you betcha! But this journey isn’t mine, it is hers, and it opens up my life to be sure I am on the right path moving forward. Sure, it can feel like part of me is breaking off but this experience allows both her and I to grow in ways that we couldn’t if she were to not be who she is meant to be. 
 
Whew, though, those emotions that come up – when you least expect them, they can be brutal.
 
My recommendation is to observe them and don’t run from them. Ignoring the emotions will create a resistance that has them always wanting to bubble up – but by noticing them, claiming them and processing through them, you become powerful! I know that you are strong enough to get through those emotions– no matter what they are. 
 
Anyway, below, I share with you five things that, being in year three of this journey, I have found helpful, or that I wish we had thought of earlier for move-in.
 
Our situation is that our daughter’s college is five hours from home, and we have a minivan to move things – so things that I find useful, may not apply to you. As always, take what I offer and consider if it will benefit your life. 
 
The following information is about the “stuff.” Life skills are a pretty big deal, and I talk about that in episode 32 of my podcast: What Life Skills Does My Child Need For College? My podcast is all about helping mothers through this transition, so if you are having a difficult time, I invite you to take a listen!
 
As always, Google will provide you with an overabundance  of information on what you should pack for college. I can’t possibly cover all of that, but I’d like to share with you my top five items. Also, two recent posts that I have found helpful are: 
 
My list below does contain affiliate links. By using my links, you support my podcast. Thank you!
 
Below are my top five college move-in essential items:
 

IKEA BAGS

These are the fantastic Ikea bags that we’ve had for years (before college). They are excellent to throw things in (bedding/pillows in particular), and they easily store in a dorm room. I had no idea you could get them with zippers, too!

COMMAND HOOKS

Command hooks and poster strips are unbelievably helpful. A place for keys? Got it! Need to put up an important piece of paper you got at move-in that you are afraid you’ll lose? Use a poster strip (there is a variety of sizes, too)!

WAGON

I love, love, love this wagon. This is one of the items that I purchased in year two of my daughter’s college years, and I wish I would have had it earlier. It was life-changing. There were days where I’d make the trip to her school and back in one day. Without the wagon, I was EXHAUSTED. With the wagon, it was a breeze because I didn’t even have to pull the thing – someone else always offered!

SMALL TOOLKIT

A toolkit is one of the things you think you won’t need, but in life’s rogue moments, a screwdriver would be incredibly helpful. It won’t only help your child (if you leave it with them), but if others find out they have a toolkit, there is a natural way to meet new people. We don’t have this specific kit, but it is an example of one.

TIME

No link here. This is a reminder to pad your time on move-in and move-out days to allow yourself and your child the flexibility to stop and chat with others; take advantage of something you may not have foreseen, should the moment arise; or, run to a local store if you see they need something. It gives all of you the freedom to be flexible. Also, other than taking a few photos, this is a lovely opportunity to stay off your phone and be fully present.

What are your top items for move-in? I invite you to share below.

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All College Topic Podcast Episodes:

You are preparing for the empty nest ahead as your child(ren) prepares, heads off to, and experiences college.

Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast, Episode 35: Leveling Up in Life – Donkey Kong your Life

Hello, my ah-mazing empty nest friend!
 
Life can be filled with lousiness sometimes. Right when you begin to feel like you are getting somewhere, suddenly something happens that has you feeling like you are back at square one. This is beautiful: it is real; it is life. Nowhere are we guaranteed smooth sailing or perfection, did you get that guarantee? Because I didn’t. But we get to live it – ALL of it. I encourage you to live through it, not run from it – the good, the bad, and the ugly – all of it because, you are ALIVE. It all comes down to who you want to be in each moment. I know you can be amazing, but you have to choose to live in it fully to level up in your life. In this episode, I share how I feel life is like Donkey Kong.
 
Take a listen or read the full transcript below. 
 
⇓⇓⇓ More goodies below, too! Scroll all the way down ⇓ so you don’t miss anything! ⇓⇓⇓
 

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This Episode is Brought To You By

What You Will Learn in this Episode

    • How life is like Donkey Kong
    • To notice that when you are sent back to the beginning of a level in your life, that how you show up is everything
    • The power in leveling up
    • To remove the drama as you play the game

Episode Questions for You To Consider

  1. Do you feel like you are continually back where you started
  2. Have you noticed (or do you now notice) the leveling up in your life?

Episode Resources

Send audio feedback to Coach Christine now: voicemail/text to 1-920-LIFEWIN (1-920-543-3946). 📞

Legal disclaimer: Listening to this podcast doesn’t make Christine your official coach, and this podcast is not meant to replace your doctor or therapist. Curious? Click here for the deets!

First time here? Try these episodes & resources:


Full Transcript

For those who are freaking out about the empty nest years. It is time to make the rest of your life the best of your life!

College Moms Conversation on The Scholarship Shark Podcast

Recently, I was a guest on the Scholarship Shark podcast!

The lovely Pam Andrews hosts this podcast and invited a couple of amazing ladies and me to share our thoughts and experiences as college moms. I had a tremendous amount of fun chatting with Pam, Monica, and Debbie!

Take a listen to The Scholarship Shark, episode #92 wherever you listen to podcasts or click here to listen now, via her website.

All College Topic Podcast Episodes:

You are preparing for the empty nest ahead as your child(ren) prepares, heads off to, and experiences college.

Cat Poop Around the House: Frustration or Entertainment?

This post was originally posted on an old blog of mine in May of 2017


For a while, we were finding cat poop around the house quite often. Thankfully, we’ve made changes to our cat’s diet that (at least for now) that has fixed our poop problem.

When we were in the onslaught of deliveries, it never failed to appear at the most inopportune time.

In the beginning, I was a stress fest, but by the end of the “run” I learned to pad plenty of time around almost anything I had planned, “just in case.”

Something to know: our cat has three legs. He was having trouble getting himself clean for a while, so to remedy the situation, he would scoot around the carpet dragging his butt.

Tripod kitty on a chair with an arrow labeled "culprit" pointing to him.Tripod Kitty on a couch.

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Tripod Kitty on a Chair

Oh my, if you were lucky enough to catch him in the act, it was difficult not to smile – or laugh.

Anyway, one of the things I was working on at the time was to wrap my mind around the fact that whatever happened in my day was supposed to happen and to just go with it. It didn’t go well at first, but by the end of our “poop trials,” I would look at the skid mark across our carpet and truly think, “Well, of course, he did that. Now he feels better; we are trying to figure out the cause; and in the meantime, my carpets are cleaner than they’ve ever been b/c I’m cleaning them thoroughly so darn often.”

Truly.

When you look at something that your mind has decided shouldn’t be there, and realize that maybe your expectations are what is wrong, not the circumstances, life can get interesting, in a super fun way.

Plus, how can you be upset with this face?

Update: he is so much better but we think he scooted for so long that he has created a habit – not to worry – he is under the care of a vet. 🙂 

Changes in four years since I first created this page: moved twice as a family, navigated all four years of out of state college for daughter (now graduated), I lost weight, started taking better care of myself, started working full-time while building this business, turned 50-years-old, hubby above is now ex-hubby, got a great new job, cranked out 150+ podcast episodes, attended my first podcasting conference, spoke at the next one, and just bought a manufactured home for me (and my daughter for as long as she needs to be there) to live in, changed my last name, podcast hit 100K downloads, and I’m working on a book!

Empty Nest Success doesn’t always look like over the moon happiness. Sometimes, it looks like accepting what is, processing emotions, and moving forward as peacefully as possible with little drama – and that feels amazing!

You are preparing for the empty nest ahead as your child(ren) prepares, heads off to, and experiences college.

Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast, Episode 3A: Registration is now open for my Online Private Coaching Program!

Hello, my Empty Nest Friend!
 
This episode is popping into your feed to make a quick announcement! 
 
The Empty Nest: First Steps Toward Success program registration is now open! 
Limited seats are available for this session so don’t wait to sign-up. 
 
Program begins on February 3, 2019. 
 
Looking for recent offerings? Check empty nest help.
 
 
Want to subscribe to this podcast? Great news – it is free!
> Click here, and then choose your favorite podcast app – be sure to hit subscribe or follow, once you choose your favorite!
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Announcements

Full Transcript

You are preparing for the empty nest ahead as your child(ren) prepares, heads off to, and experiences college.

Changes in four years since I first created this page: moved twice as a family, navigated all four years of out of state college for daughter (now graduated), I lost weight, started taking better care of myself, started working full-time while building this business, turned 50-years-old, hubby above is now ex-hubby, got a great new job, cranked out 150+ podcast episodes, attended my first podcasting conference, spoke at the next one, and just bought a manufactured home for me (and my daughter for as long as she needs to be there) to live in, changed my last name, podcast hit 100K downloads, and I’m working on a book!

Empty Nest Success doesn’t always look like over the moon happiness. Sometimes, it looks like accepting what is, processing emotions, and moving forward as peacefully as possible with little drama – and that feels amazing!