Day One of Two – Packing and Shipping our Belongings to Perth!

I’m sat in the garage watching the rain come down and drinking tea as our very friendly removal men go from room to room packing up all of our furniture and belongings in preparation for tomorrow when our 20ft container will arrive.  Its destination….Perth, Australia! For the first time since planning our move I feel pretty relaxed about everything. No really! It’s almost a sense of relief to have actually reached this point knowing ‘this is it!’

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We chose Doree Bonner to pack, ship, store and deliver our items for two reasons.  Firstly, they offered us 8 weeks free storage in Perth, which will allow us plenty of time to find the right home without the added stress of needing to settle on somewhere quickly. Secondly, they are local to us and we had a good ‘feel’ about the company during their call out visit.  So far we’ve found them very friendly and efficient.

I tried to research as much as possible about what to pack and what not to pack,what to take in our container and what to leave behind in advance of today. I found a lot of great tips especially when it comes to travelling long distances with small children and to be honest after a lot of small holidays with our little ones over the past few years, I found packing our suitcases quite a breeze… especially with my packing lists at hand! I could even go as far to say that I’m becoming a bit of a packing expert at this point.  It’s a bit like a military operation and my husband tends to stay out of the way and not ask questions, which is probably for the best….

During my many evenings trawling various expat websites and blogs, I found very little information on what to actually expect when the removal men arrive and how to fully prepare prior to our moving date. I quickly asked the question on the Perth Poms forum website and received some great tips on how to get as organized as possible and how to make the moving as seamless as we could. The general consensus seemed to be that if we were organized then they would be happy and everything would be so much more relaxed and effortless during the two days. So in the past few weeks, we’ve been happily ticking off our to-do jobs whenever we get a free evening or during the girls’ daytime naps.  We emptied the loft, arranged our boxes in the garage, defrosted and cleaned out the freezer, dismantled the girls’ cot beds, semi-dismantled the wardrobe, cleaned all outdoor equipment and shoes, boxed up our bathroom products, cleaned out the vacuum cleaner, organized all of the girls’ toys (taking out all batteries) and sorted through all of our cupboards and drawers etc etc… And so now the house definitely feels at its best…clean and nicely organized, probably for the first time since the arrival of our second daughter last October!

So this morning the Doree Bonner team arrived and were pretty delighted at how organized we were.  They were pretty much clapping their hands at the prospect of two relatively easy days ahead as we’d fully prepared for their arrival. They introduced themselves by name and walked the house with us before getting stuck in to the job in hand. The house was quickly full of wrapping paper, boxes, packing tapes and crates. So with the men at work and us wanting to stay out of the way, my husband and I based ourselves in the sanctity of the garden and garage, providing rounds of coffee and biscuits and busying ourselves with cleaning windows (and then it rained…), weeding the garden one final time and mowing the lawn.

The best advice I received was that the two days are over like a whirlwind and so it’s important to have your suitcases and ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING AND ANYTHING you DON’T want to be shipped, out of the house or on a designated table or workbench before the team arrive. This is SO true. Within an hour of our team’s arrival, our sofa was dismantled, dining table and chairs wrapped up and half of our kitchen cupboards emptied.  These guys work quickly! Our IPad almost made it into one of the kitchen boxes as I’d popped it on the window sill for literally a few minutes…The removal guy’s friendly response was ‘if it’s not nailed down it will be packed!’ Valuable lesson learnt!

So with the packing under way and a pretty successful first day I think I’ve most definitely deserved a glass of wine this evening and an early night before part two commences tomorrow! This is it!

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