After closing on Big Blue, we realized we had only a few weeks left on our lease and NO MONEY to rent a U-Haul (the preferable way of moving) to get all of our shit the three towns over from the nice townhome apartment/shopping district, to the home with a quaint view of the edge of urban living. Or, if you will, "Spitting-distance-to-'da-hood'" home.
This meant a lot of "Hey Man, Can we borrow your truck?" and a lot of "Dude, I only need your help for a couple hours and I'll buy you a pizza." Luckily, my husband's group of friends were very willing to help out and we (eventually) were able to get everything over to Blue without having to rent any equipment.
If anyone is going through this same type of experience, here is my #1 suggestion: Pick your most important rooms to move first since you just can't have it all.
For us, this was our Bedroom, Kitchen and Bathrooms. This meant that we could at least sleep, eat, and shower comfortably while we were missing a lot of our stuff.
I don't recommend this approach because it leads to a lot of "where's the broom?" or "do you know if the frying pan is in here or the apartment?" If we were able to, I would have really preferred to just get everything in at once instead of spreading it out over three weeks. Not only do you not have a lot of your stuff (that is being left unattended somewhere...) but it is also hard to feel any sense of accomplishment. You finally get a room unpacked and feel awesome only to come home the next day to have 30 more boxes sitting in the same room you just finished.
Can you say exhausting?
Exhausting, yes, but at least it saved us the couple hundred bucks that it would have been for us to rent a UHAUL. Self moving trucks are time effective, yes, but because we had a few weeks left on
our lease and weren't in a hurry to get our stuff out, it was money that
was stipulating the conditions of the move. It is way easier to spread gas money out over the course of 3 or 4 weeks and paychecks rather than dropping the money for one exhausting weekend. (Note: This only worked because it was only June and we had until July 31 to be out of our apartment. If you're in a hurry, you are going to have an exhausting weekend whether you rent a truck or use your friends' cars regardless)
Luckily, along with Nate's awesome friends, we have one of my best friends who lives about 2 hours away and was willing to help me get the bedroom painted before we got our bedroom moved. This was before we found my camera ("is that here or at the apartment" moment) so I only have cell photos, but we were able to get the master and guest room completely painted before any furniture was moved in. Due to the fifteen layers of popcorn on the walls, it was quite arduous, but we got it done and painted it a warm linen gray. This matched an awesome rug that Nate picked out from Home Goods that became the inspiration for the entire room.
As soon as the load of stuff with our bedroom came I made the guys put everything together so that I could make the bed. They thought I was crazy at the time, but boy, was Nate grateful after a hard day of moving stuff that he had a clean, crisp bed to climb in to.
Even if you don't have to do the small load move, always make your bed when you move in. It makes for a comfy retreat at the end of the day. And because we were able to decorate the room as well by buying things ahead of time (all on clearance, of course!) it meant that even if the rest of the house looked like shit for a few weeks, at least something was done and off the to do list.
Here's a picture of the basic mini-decorating that I did right when we moved in. I'll describe all the master bed goodies in time to show you that this is possible to do for LESS than design shows. It has changed a little bit now that we're settled but it really was a life saver. I recommend it to everyone!