Whenever you move, it always means that you must pack. As a kid, I moved all the time, so I thought I was ready for this move. However, I have discovered packing for an international move is WAY harder than just moving a few blocks, or even states away.
The first challenge to an international move is power. Most other countries use appliances that run on 240 volts. America, however, runs on 120 volts. This means that standard appliances won’t work in other countries (especially Morocco) without a voltage converter. This might not be a big deal for some people, but I am a kitchen appliance junkie! I had every kitchen gadget known to man (blender, toaster oven, food processor, juicer, panini press, tortilla maker, ice cream maker, waffle maker, KitchenAid Mixer, steamer, etc.). So, the question became – do I get rid of the appliances or buy A LOT of converters. I decided to do a little of both. We are taking the most important appliances with us: the KitchenAid Mixer, tortilla maker and panini press. The others have been sold or donated. This way the converters are minimal, but I get to keep what I like best. Outside of the kitchen, the only “needs a plug” items we are bringing is one TV and our computers, all of which are dual power and will work there, same as here.
Once we started weeding items out for voltage reasons, it felt like the weeding out process exploded. Knowing we were going from a 3 bedroom house with a full garage to a 2 bedroom apartment with little storage, we knew we had to get rid of some stuff. So, we have gone through EVERYTHING, from clothes to books to cups to toys, figuring out which ones we REALLY wanted to take, and which ones just weren’t that necessary. This process can be quite nice actually, allowing you to get rid of “stuff” that you don’t really need, but keep around because you don’t know what else to do with it. We have dropped off an uncountable number of loads to Goodwill, sold items in numerous yard sales and given our friends tons of items. My husband even bought me Kindle as a way to get rid the 7 boxes of books I had planned to take. Just when I think that there isn’t one more thing left to “get rid of”, I open another closet or drawer and find more!
Now, we’ve given away or sold just about everything we’re going to, even the 4 chickens which lived in our backyard and provided us with our daily eggs. We’ve packed boxes and more boxes. We’ve sorted out which items are going to go with us on the airplane, and we’ve even talked to the Container Company. The container company will drop us off a 20 foot long container on June 2nd and we will load it up, to be taken to a boat and sent on to Morocco. We even have an estimated date that the container will arrive in Casablanca. Everything’s set, sort of.
I wish I could say everything is packed and ready, but there are still things to pack, and I’m not sure when the appropriate time to pack them is. How long do I wait before packing up coffee mugs and pots and pans? How early is too early to pack up at least SOME of the kid’s toys? Every time I decide to go ahead and pack something up, I seem to need it the next day. I really don’t like living among boxes, but it is all part of the process, and like the other parts of the process, this too shall pass.