Packing is a long and complicated process that you should begin at least one month before your move. However, there are certain items that you shouldn't pack in advance. Remember to leave the following necessary belongings unpacked until moving day to minimize stress and ensure your move goes smoothly.
When you're packing up the contents of your bathroom for the move, don't forget to leave out your shampoo and conditioner for your moving day morning shower. You could even fill small travel-sized bottles with just enough for your and your family to use, and pack the full-sized bottles the night before.
2. Soap and deodorant
Just as with shampoo and conditioner, make sure to leave out soap and deodorant for moving day. You'll have a long day of hard work hauling boxes and furniture out of your home--it's important to be clean and fresh! After everyone in your household is showered, be sure to pack these items (along with any other essential toiletries) into your first-night kit so they are easily accessible your first night in your new home.
Your moving day morning shower won't be very pleasant without a clean, dry towel to dry off with afterwards. Leave at least one towel per member of your household unpacked until moving day. After showering, you can toss the damp towels into a large plastic bag so the moisture won't ruin any of your other belongings. Be sure to pack some clean towels in your first-night kit as well. You may also want to leave your shower curtain up until moving day--simply pack it in your plastic bag along with your used towels.
4. Toilet paper
Often overlooked, a full roll of toilet paper is important to have in your bathroom on moving day. If the roll on your holder is running low, be sure to leave an extra out when packing the bathroom.
5. Coffee maker
Moving day is exhausting and hectic--you'll need your daily cup of hot, fresh brew to get you through the day. Unless you're planning to send a member of the family out to get coffee for everyone (including your movers--while not required, it's a nice gesture to offer), make sure you have your coffee maker unpacked--and coffee, milk and sugar, too! The energy-packed fuel will give you the necessary jolt to breeze through the many tasks of moving day--simply wash out the pot and pack the coffee maker in your first night kit so it's available for your first morning in your new home.
Unless you want to sleep on a bare mattress, you should leave your bedding unpacked until moving day morning. It's important to get a good night's sleep before a move, in a bed that is as cozy and comfortable as possible. Bedding is super easy to pack--after you wake up, simply pack your blanket, sheets and pillows in a large plastic bag to toss onto the moving truck--or your own vehicle. If you're moving long distance, your shipment may not arrive to your new home for several days or even weeks.
7. Pet supplies
In the midst of the moving chaos, don't forget about your furry friend. Keep his dishes unpacked so he can enjoy his last meal in your new home--or simply use disposable paper plates and toss them afterwards. If your pet is on any medications, be sure to leave them unpacked so you can administer his usual dose before you hit the road.
8. Chargers and batteries
If you need your cell phone, laptop, or other electronic device on moving day, be sure not to pack your home or car chargers. A fully-charged cell phone is essential on moving day for driving directions, in case of emergencies on the road, and for looking up takeout places to order from when you arrive at your new home! Batteries may also be helpful in case you need a flashlight during the move.
9. First-aid kit
Accidents happen - keep your first-aid kit on hand to treat injuries in case of falls or other mishaps. Additionally, if you are on any prescription drugs, be sure to leave them unpacked so you can take your usual scheduled dose. It may be beneficial to also keep some OTC drugs on hand, in case a strained back or stiff neck suddenly ails you. Remember to pack your first-aid kit in your first-night bag so you have in your vehicle in case of emergency during your trip to your new home.
10. Toothbrush and tooth paste
Make sure your moving day breath is fresh and minty--don't pack your toothbrush or paste until the big day! After everyone in your family has scrubbed their pearly whites, pack the brushes, toothpaste, and mouthwash in your first-night kit for easy access when you arrive at your new home.