September 6, 2016

These past few days (okay, these past two months) have been absolute chaos. The movers came and unloaded our stuff in only a few hours, which is another perk to losing all of your stuff. Then Nick and I got right to work on unpacking and starting to make this place really feel like a home.

Last week I wrote about how I learned to love PCSing. And now that we are unpacking, I have even more reasons to love PCSing. The craziness of unpacking and setting up a new house is always hard to go through, but so much fun in its own way. Nick and I spent three whole days unpacking, setting up our furniture, getting rid of things that were weighing us down, and deciding where things should go — and we’re still not done.

Over the weekend as most of the chaos was happening, I couldn’t help but take a step back and think about how many ridiculous things that happen when you unpack your house and create a new one. When you are used to doing this over and over again, it becomes second nature, something you just do. It’s a crazy, chaotic, messy experience, but it’s also pretty great. I love it all.

If you’re about to move or are currently moving, I hope you can relate so that I know it’s not just me:


1. You find your blender in a box marked “bedroom.”

2. You start telling your husband how good he is at organizing, and wouldn’t he like to organize the pantry? He does such a better job!

3. You find things that you thought you lost. I have a fancy razor that I thought I left in Vermont. I kept putting off getting a new one, because why buy a new razor when you can use your husband’s? I’m so glad I didn’t get a new one, because it ended up being in the first box I unpacked. I love when the movers find things for me. If you are ever about to move and you think you lost something — wait to replace it until you unpack.

4. You believe it’s divine intervention when you unpack your wine glasses in the first kitchen box.

5. You spend two days organizing your kitchen, but have no energy to cook. So, you order pizza.

6. Then you eat that pizza on the floor because there is no space on the table for eating. It’s covered in wine glasses, picture frames, and kitchen gadgets that don’t have homes yet. Just call it a picnic and everything’s fine.

7.  You start calculating how many more times you will have to move before your husband can retire.

8.  You get rid of so. much. stuff.

9. You have zero guilt about getting rid of that stuff. I believe that unpacking is is the perfect and easiest time to declutter.  It’s easier to put things you don’t want or need in a donation box than it is to organize them and find them new homes. Especially if it’s stuff you don’t want anyway.

10.  Yet, you can’t get rid of all those wine corks. I’m going to make a cool craft with them. I swear. One day.

11. You stop everything you’re doing when you come across boxes of old photos. You spend hours going down memory lane. Then you put the photos in a closet and don’t look at them again until the next time you move.

12. You feel like you deserve a break about once per hour. Give me all of the chocolate.

13. You find things you didn’t even know you owned. You would think that after three moves, I would recognize everything that comes out of the moving boxes. If I didn’t even know I owned it, it’s going straight to goodwill.

14. You are so proud of yourself when you realize how strong you are as you move boxes full of books and dishes.

15. You are very sore the next day, and realize that you’re not as strong as you thought.

16. You are relieved when you realize that the movers used an entire box to pack one lampshade. Super wasteful, but less stuff to put away.

17. When you finish unpacking one box, you feel like a superhero. Breaking it down and dragging it outside is the sweetest victory.

18. You will think that you have the entire kitchen organized. Then you will decide it’s not right at all, and you need to start completely over. So you take out every cup, bowl, and gadget, place them on every surface of your home, and start over. Then you will finally have it exactly the way you want it, and it will feel oh so good.

19.  You think that you’re going to power through the unpacking in a few days. Then you will realize what a massive job it is. So, more chocolate. And more pizza.

20. You discover you have more pens than any human will need in a lifetime. This puzzles you as you remember all the times you frantically searched for a pen when someone was talking to you on the phone.

21. You tell yourself that this will be the house where everything is organized. No junk drawers. Then one will spontaneously appear before you even finish unpacking.

22. You realize that it’s going to look worse before it looks better. Accept it and keep going.

23. You procrastinate finishing unpacking by writing this post.

24. You look around and realize that this is your new home. Suddenly, this place that was once just a bunch of walls feels like home.

Our home that we can set up however we want. Our home, where we can hang up our favorite photos and display our favorite books. Our home, where we will have late nights with our family and friends. Our home, where we will spend countless hours cooking our favorite meals together, binge watching Netflix shows, and reading good books on the couch. Our home, where we will drink coffee in the mornings and have lazy days doing nothing. Our home, where we will laugh and cry and celebrate and rest. Our home. So many possibilities.

It’s worth the time and energy and many long days it takes to get it just right. And, sharing that home with Nick makes it even sweeter to me. The more I unpack, the more I realize how important it is to be patient. I would rather take my time to get organized and do it right than spend a few days just opening boxes and throwing things in closets. It’s our home, where we will spend so much of our life together. I want to make it great.

What are some ridiculous things that have happened to you while unpacking?

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20 responses to “24 ridiculous things that happen when you’re unpacking.”

  1. Audrey says:

    I just helped my best friend move apartments a few weeks ago and we ended the day on the floor amongst boxes, eating pizza. Haha!
    I’ve been in our house for 3 years and I STILL feel the need to reorganize and the move the kitchen around. Haha!

    • Carolann says:

      Eating pizza on the floor is just something you have to do whenever you move. It’s such a great feeling after a long day at work. Plus, I’m all for any excuse to eat pizza.

      Oh gosh, the kitchen! I think it’s the hardest part of the house to organize. I thought I would focus on the kitchen before moving onto any other rooms, but it’s always going to be a work in progress!

  2. Sarah Bence says:

    I feel this so much! I’m about to fly back to the UK in a few days and move into my new house…. Looking forward to finding a few lost things, and eating pizza on the floor 😉

    • Carolann says:

      I hope you find whatever you may have misplaced. I really thought my razor was gone. I was just being lazy about getting a new one. Good luck with your move and enjoy all of the pizza! Moving is crazy and stressful but it can also be really fun, especially when pizza is involved.

  3. Jen says:

    Oh my goodness yes!!! Haha especially finding things packed in totally random places. We had our gardening tools packed in our deep freezer lol. Sometimes you just have to laugh at the chaos.

    • Carolann says:

      That is crazy! It’s funny, because I always feel like I watch the packers, but you can’t see everything. There are always so many random surprises. I love finding things I thought I lost or forgot about. It’s a big trip down memory lane. Now we are almost done unpacking and I can see the light! I love how everything is coming together.

  4. heidi says:

    This is so true! We just moved, too, so I can totally relate. Pizza for dayzz. 😉

  5. Number 11 was the story of my LIFE this summer.

    • Carolann says:

      I just decided to let it happen! We have so many pictures and I love looking at them all. It’s making the unpacking process take a lot longer, but it’s also a lot of fun!

  6. Jenn says:

    <3 I can't wait for our stuff to get here!

    • Carolann says:

      I am having so much fun setting up our new home. It’s taking longer than I wanted, but we are going to be here for 3 years so I really want it to be right. I think it will always be a work in progress but it will be good enough to have people over very soon! Over the weekend, we got a new bookcase and ordered a few other things. After I put all of my books in the bookcase it really started to feel like home.

  7. Janet says:

    This is great! I’ve moved several times in the past few years and I can relate to so much of this!

    • Carolann says:

      It makes me feel better to know that I’m not the only one. It’s such a weird experience, moving. It’s stressful and sad and emotional but also exciting and fun and a fresh start. I am taking this move slowly and seeing where it takes me.

      Your post today was beautiful. You’ve inspired a post that’s brewing in my head — let’s see if it comes to fruition.

  8. Natalie says:

    I love this! My family moved a lot when I was little thanks to my dad’s job in the banking sector, and I remember always getting excited about seeing our stuff in a new house. Now that I’m married and have my own family, I still like moving, even if I’m not so great about umpacking all of the boxes in a timely manner. We actually moved most recently about 2 years ago, and I’m JUST getting around to unpacking those last few boxes!!

    • Carolann says:

      I lived in the same house my entire life, until it was time to pack up and move from New York to Hawaii. Since then we have moved two more times and I’ve grown to love it. It’s so much fun to see different places and experience new things. My husband and I had a blast over the weekend embracing the chaos of unpacking. We went shopping, put together a new bookcase, and organized and reorganized our kitchen. I already put a few boxes into a closet “to get around to” — we’ll see if that ever happens! Once it’s in the closet it’s organized enough for me!

  9. Mandy says:

    I relate to this post on every level! Moving is crazy and exhausting and yes, we donated skip loads of items to charity when we moved.

    • Carolann says:

      I always love when someone says they can relate to my post. It makes me feel like I’m not alone, and not crazy. Every time I add something to the donation boxes it makes me so happy, because we are getting rid of stuff we don’t need and I hate having a cluttered house, and because it’s going to someone who can use it instead of the back of my closet.

  10. Alan says:

    Did you write these down as you were unpacking or think of them all in one go? Very fun article. 🙂

    • Carolann says:

      Haha! Thanks! I remember looking around and thinking about how normal all of this is to us, but how crazy and ridiculous it actually is. I really wanted to find our blender because is the one appliance I keep out all the time. I was getting upset that I couldn’t find it. After we found it in the “bedroom” box, I started writing down things as they happened on random pieces of paper or my phone. So everything that I wrote really happened in a matter of one week. After we were pretty much done unpacking, I told Nick how good he is at organizing the pantry and asked him to work on it while I ran to the other room to write the post!

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