Tiny baby & moving house = BAD combination
Tuesday, 13 April 2010 | Admin
Todays blog update is inspired by Josie, over at Sleep is for the Weak who prompted me to write about moving house.
I have one piece of advice. If you find yourself moving house with a tiny baby, use a reputable removal firm. With new lorries who don't double-book themselves!
On both of the last two occasions that I've moved house, I've done so with a tiny baby. Madness. 6 years ago we lived in Walthamstow, East London in a 3 bedroom terraced house. Walthamstow was great for us while we both worked in London as it was fairly close to the tube which was a quick and easy way to get to work in the city. Unfortunately however with a small child imminent and no friends or family nearby I began to feel more and more isolated towards the end of my pregnancy, worrying about how I'd cope alone.
So, at 34 weeks pregnant and panic starting to set in, we decided to swap our city living to move to the coast, sunny Seaford to be exact (just between Brighton and Eastbourne). It wasn't exactly the centre of the universe in terms of nightlife, but it did have a direct train service to London Victoria - well one train a day each way was direct. The house was a townhouse, brand spanking new so we could just move in without having to do anything. We signed the papers and waited for contracts to be exchanged...
But at 39 weeks, along came no1 son, a few days early but very welcome and we ended up completing on our new house when he was just two weeks old. Come moving day, our in-laws and my mother helped move us, along with the removal van. Our movers were recommended by my FIL and although they were very helpful, their van was a bit old and broke down on the journey back, eventually arriving three hours late, on the back of a rescue vehicle! By the time they arrived, I was past myself with tiredness and when my FIL spilled orange fizzy drink all over our new cream carpet, I have to say that I wasn't terribly gracious, considering that he'd just helped us move house.
Three years on. We're settled in Seaford, coping with the commute and have started to build a circle of friends. However the townhouse we so speedily settled for is up for sale because they layout doesn't make it ideal for family living. It takes a while to sell, but when it does, we buy a tiny bungalow 'with potential' to renovate, extend into the roofspace and be the family home we long for. Unfortunately, once again we find ourselves exchanging contracts in the last weeks of pregnancy and again, complete when no2 son is just two weeks old.
I have to say that this moving experience was horrible. We were moving in with our in-laws temporarily, so that we could do some of the work required without having to live in it. The removal company we used were unreliable, so we ended up carting a lot of it round ourselves in carload after carload. It took us two days to clear our old house and most of it went into storage (and then had to come out again a few weeks later).
Once we moved in, I spent three weeks stripping wallpaper in preparation for the electrician to come in and rewire, then a further three weeks painting once the walls had been made good. All of this with a tiny baby, less than 3 months old! I remember phoning my Mum, sobbing because I was only spending time with no2 son when he woke needing fed, which gave me a much-needed rest. And at 6 weeks old, we ended up without a kitchen for a week while the new one was installed, far from ideal with a tiny baby and pre-schooler living there.
We've been in this house for 3 years almost now. I'm starting to get itchy feet to move, but thankfully there's no small baby around this time adding pressure.....