I am a champion list maker, but actually putting things into the boxes I've categorized on paper? Not easy. There's the sorting, the fitting into the boxes, finding the right size box in the first place, and also the part where you have a bunch of boxes sitting around everywhere. If I had the money, I would be sorely tempted to hire a professional organizer/packer.
Do you do this too? You're sorting through things to move and suddenly find a box of letters and cards from high school and suddenly you're in a black hole of old memories. Two hours have passed and all that was accomplished was a not-so-satisfying mess and a slightly smaller stack of letters you're hanging on to for ten more years (I did this two days ago).
Every move we've taken has been done very differently. In 2008, I moved from South Carolina to Spokane with some suitcases and shipped boxes of things I didn't need. In 2010, we stuffed our car full of possessions from Spokane to Naches, and on the way back from Naches to Spokane, we had to take two trips (wedding gifts) in that same Civic. In 2012 from Spokane to Cleveland, we sold everything that did not fit into a box or suitcase and shipped our belongings by train, packed that same poor Civic full, and drove. From Ohio to Tallahassee we decided that getting rid of furniture and having to buy new things was more expensive than renting a truck, plus we somehow accumulated a LOT because we lived in a house that had actual space and also had two bedrooms and a basement, so we rented a truck.
Loading a Civic down is not going to work for our trip to Germany, so we are doing something new and storing everything. After four years, we plan to part with some things, like our trusty Target bookshelves, and a few other things we use but don't love, but for the most part it's all going into a 10x10 space (and we hope it fits. I have no concept of how large or small that actually is). We plan to take two suitcases each, which sounds excessive and cumbersome until we remember we are going to be there for a year and we don't want to have to rebuy things we already own, like boots, just because they're bulky.
Anyway, I'm a little overwhelmed about how in the world to pack for a trip like this. In the past, we've packed sort of haphazardly, because in the three or four days the moving process has taken in the past, we haven't forgotten that the silverware is mixed in with the towels and socks are in with the pots and pans (full disclosure: I do not pack like that. In my desperate last minute rush to clear out our homes, I mainly throw things away, while Carson stuffs everything in sight into one box, so we will open one with pencils, someone else's slippers - happened last move - whatever was in the dryer, the toothpaste, trash bags, and a half-full bottle of water). This time though, I am going to follow the cardinal rule of moving which is LABEL EVERYTHING. I think it's right up there with starting early and getting rid of absolutely everything you haven't used in the last year and don't foresee using.
We will see how it goes, but so far our evenings have been far too relaxing and far too empty of actual moving progres. Five weeks until we leave Tallahaseee (six left in the States.)