Downsizing and Moving Tips-
#1- Don’t move furniture unless you have an EXACT spot and it is the PERFECT thing for that space-
#2- Pack by room and Declutter as you pack-
Rather than trying to pack all the books in the entire house in one box or all the clothes together pack by room. I think this is a common packing practice. But when you do it this way you can follow my Organizing Checklist and declutter as you pack! (Print your own HERE). I can’t stress this enough. Do not think you will declutter when you unpack. Do not waste everyones valuable time by packing things that you do not honestly use.
#3- Second guess the Storage Room-
You know how the storage room is already boxed up so it is easy to just pick up the boxes and put in the moving truck? Don’t do it. We did it. So we moved 12 boxes of my girls baby and little girl clothes with us! I knew we might have another child but who knew if it would be a boy or a girl and by the time we had another it was 5 years later. Baby clothes and kids clothes you can find for great prices, it cost way more to move it all. I should have went thru and picked out favorite things and really done that before I packed it away. I just thought that is what I was supposed to do! Also really question your seasonal decor before you move it, chances are you will not have the exact same home and need or want the same seasonal decor, I know I didn’t! Especially with downsizing. (Thankfully I was able to give all 12 totes of girl clothes to a couple who didn’t have much and had just had a baby girl in our church. It was a lesson, not a mistake).
#4- Examine Lifestyle and Entertaining Changes-
We had a 3200 square foot home that had a huge basement for entertaining. We hosted 25+ people for Thanksgiving every year. Had birthday parties with 25+ people. I didn’t consider the fact that we were moving AWAY from our large family and large group of friends. As sad as it sounds our lifestyle would not be the same. We would never have 25+ people in the 1200 square foot home we were moving to again. Did I need to move that giant turkey roaster? Did I need to bring the three gravy boats? Or the 3 different sets of dinnerware? NO! Did I? YES. I should have offered it to family and friends before wasting the energy to pack and move it all.
#5- Question Everything-
At the end of the day, become a questioner. I am actually a questioner by nature. We had moved before, just 20 miles each time, not 2,000 miles. The tricky part was we had MORE than enough help to help us pack everything up. So it was easy to bring EVERYTHING. But after the moving truck showed up 2.000 miles away from all that help in December (freezing cold) it was just Kevin, myself and my sister who flew with us to our new home. We should have hired help or paid for family to come. So if I really would have thought about that and questioned everything before packing ALL the stuff I did I would make drastic changes. I hope I inspired you to do so too. Because it was a really hard week that I don’t want anyone to go through. Question it all. Question what it in your home now!
These are the only photos I could find of our Utah home. Wish I had more to share. It had three bathrooms, 6 bedrooms, two family rooms, one kitchen on the main floor and another smaller kitchen (that had a stove added after these pictures), two laundry rooms and two storage rooms. It doesn’t look as big as it was on the inside. The basement was also a walk-out basement. I really would never do that again. I did not like how far away the backyard was from the kitchen. I love our new home that the kids can be in the back and I can see and hear them. Also we rarely used the basement, just for parties.
Ok are you ready to see inside our Utah home? A lot of these shots are vignette shots- wish I had larger photos of the space. And I wish I had photos of the laundry room, I had an old door we hung on the hinges and painted blue. But this is better than nothing!
Wow, your old home was huge! I can’t even imagine what a drastic move that was for you, from the moving away from family to the downsizing. But, Brooke, I can’t imagine another home but the Conneticut one. You know I’m in love with your current home-every single inch. And to see how some of the items you kept are used in both homes just shows how versatile your pieces are. Thanks for sharing. This was a fun post to see/read.
Gorgeous home but your CT home is beautiful also. I love the rug you had in your living room in Utah. Where did you get it?
Marty Oravetz says
Oh wow, what a beautiful home. You did an amazing job of decorating it and it looked so warm and inviting.
What a fun post! I love the tufted coffee table. And I noticed you still have your pink bistro chair!
[email protected] says
yes!! Thanks Nicole!
I cannot agree with you more on your moving tips. My now husband had a house before we got married and when we got married, I moved in from home and brought everything from my childhood with me. Since he was already living there, the home was furnished and was filled with handed down furniture, appliances, bedding, everything. It was already a hodge podge of items and then mixed with everything I brought (which I didn’t go through before hand because the wedding was creeping up and I thought surely I’d have plenty of time to go through it in my “new” house.. ha), things were a disjointed mess. With all the items and renovations, it has taken me three years to go through everything to where I find it’s manageable. There’s still things to sort through but I really wish I would have gone through it all before and had a huge rummage sale of both our things before I ever moved all of mine and mixed it with all of his. Even though it’s taken three years to get to this point, I’ve been able to hone in on what I love and don’t and that it’s okay to get rid of things we don’t use or love (even if someone gifted them to us).
[email protected] says
I totally feel you!! It took me about three years too!!! Dang it! If we would have only known!
Your Utah home was lovely and huge! I like the idea of using the tin in your kitchen cabinets too. Big house and a lot to clean. LOL I love your CT house too. Any house you live in would be wonderfully decorated because you have the talent to make it special! Thanks for taking the time to list all the tips for moving too. Always enjoy your posts, they are always special just like you.
Rosemary Bedosky says
Your comments are right on. We retired and sold our huge home and moved to a good size coach home in FL. I thought I did well selling stuff/downsizing before we left, but we still have more to go. You are so right about not entertaining parties of 25+ anymore. But all those dishes/servicing pieces were wedding presents. Very hard to part with! Same with Christmas decorations. I bought 4 bins. Main area is too small for Christmas Tree (and I don’t really have place to store it). Plus I’ll probably go to see family at Christmas. Mostly new decorations too. I think I’ll be bringing those back to CT trip by trip! I did bring a few smaller odds/ends and figured they’d work until I found something better. But overall lots of great thrift shops in SWFlorida and you can take your pick.
Ginny Bates says
Very lovely home and perfect for a growing family. Wonderful job on the basement kitchenette.
In one photo there is a half shot of a tantalizing-looking recipe for coconut protein balls. Any chance you’d share the complete recipe and directions?
Thanks so much!
Gorgeous! Style has definitely evolved over the years! But that’s the great thing about decorating is that you’re able to constantly reimagine/restyle and restructure your living spaces for what best suits you at that period in your life!
Love following along with you! Very inspirational!
Nice but I like your current cottage better! 💖
Brooke Greetis says
Hi Brooke! I love your blog, and think your style is charming. I currently live in a house just over 3200 sq ft, and dream of a smaller place! I look forward to downsizing someday:) Right now, everything is expensive and time consuming….cleaning, renovating, maintaining, and decorating/furnishing so much space! Thanks for providing fun-to-read, creative and thoughtful content:)
Wow! Your style really has changed a lot. Even with such a large space you managed to make it look cozy too. You have a gift! Thanks for sharing!
Love your blog!! Totally agree with you about moving!! Your new home is amazing and perfect!! We went through the same kind of move 4 yrs ago. Our home sold within days and after a quick pack of ALL our “possessions “ we spent a fortune on movers and storage fees. Our old furniture isn’t the right scale to our downsized home and the daylight and window size is different as well. (Making lots of our furniture wrong for this home) I could of completely refurnished my new home just with moving fees! Next move I’m bringing my photo albums, couple of family heirlooms and my grandmothers china! I could of saved myself a lot of stress by letting go of everything and having fun designing and creating our new home spaces!
My new motto… Less is More!
All the best to you!!!
I love seeing your Utah home and spotting all the things that you have incorporated into your Connecticut home! Even the little heart garland that I think is in the girls room on their book case? Love that exposed brick wall in your kitchen and I think I recognize that pink chair!
P.S. and of course you moved that box into the house for her!!
Thank you for sharing these darling photos of your home. I LOVE YOUR STYLE!!!! Cutest rooms EVER!!!
[email protected] says
WOW, did you ever down size! I love your current home, and I think it perfectly suites your family and current lifestyle. 3,200 square feet and all the stuff that made it look so good also looks like a lot of commitment to things, which you have traded for commitment to family and memories.
shawnna griffin says
hey girl- looe the house! so cool!
My daughter son in law and grandbabies live in Utah. I only get to fly out there to see them every 4 months. So hard being so far away.
Hubby and I live in a Michigan.
Kristin Robson says
I have seen pics of your Utah home before (on here)- but more in this post- so pretty, I LOVE the brick wall in the dining area, it adds so much charm!
It is true about moving, I think the other hard part is sometimes you don’t really know you won’t use the stuff you bring until you live in your house for a while. I have 4 bins of Christmas stuff (4!) in our attic, but only use one. I put out a lot less than I used to. But I thought we did well getting rid of stuff, and we did, but we definitely need to fling open our attic windows and throw some things out (don’t you WISH it was that simple? Ha. Instead, I will be navigating the narrow and wobbly pull down steps!). 😀
And furniture! I just realized a few months ago that we only have one piece of furniture from our first house in this (2nd) house- because as you said, it either did not work or out tastes changed.
Both of your homes (present and past) are so warm and inviting, thank you for sharing them! 🙂
[email protected] says
You are so right! I ended up keeping 4 pieces of furniture that we had in our old home!! thank you Kristen!!