Budget for Each Room


It is so hard to decorate your new living space.  And not only is it challenging to find perfect pieces, but it is also expensive.  My husband and I try to keep costs down by budgeting for each room.

So after all of your furniture and things from your move have been delivered, then get settled in.  Live in your new home and see what you need day by day.  And do lots of online shopping and searching.  My husband and I are always online looking at different pieces of furniture.  We also make many visits to local stores.  Shopping around is important so you get an idea of what you like-it also helps make sure you get an awesome deal on your things.

To budget for furnishing rooms, it is best to look at what you need for each room and set an actual budget.  For example, we need EVERYTHING for our master bedroom.  We need a headboard, footboard, dresser, two night stands, a chest, etc.  To decide on a fair budget, I advise that you do research online and in stores to see what an average going rate is to furnish each room.  Then, I try to stay in the average/below average range.

Please subscribe to my blog to gain access to my free checklists that I will exclusively send to my email subscribers!


Organize Your Moving Information

So the initial move-in process is very overwhelming and there are constantly new pieces of information being thrown at you.  I found it is easiest to buy a few binders, paper protectors, and dividers for organizing all of the information.  These are some of the things I keep in the binder:

-Closing information for our house

-HOA information from our neighborhood

-Tips from the builder

-All of the company/brand information that we have on our house (ex. Marble, cultured marble, garage doors, toilets, etc.)

-Any appliance information and receipts that my husband and I paid for

-Moving company information and checklists of numbers and missing boxes

-Bank information for our mortgage

Changing Your Address

Here is a list of all of the places that you need to change your address:

-Post Office

-Driver’s License (DMV)

-Car Insurance

-Tags and Titles for the car(s)

-Bank accounts

-Credit cards

-Debit cards


-Online subscriptions

-Online shipping address for websites like Amazon, etc.

-Magazine subscriptions

-You might even want to send a friendly email or letter to friends and family to let them know about your address change

Moving Checklist


This is the ultimate moving checklist.  If your moves go like mine, you usually have about 2 months to get it all together and get yourself moved.

8-6 weeks to go!
Confirm new living arrangements
Check out local moving companies


6-4 weeks to go!
Confirm local moving company or moving arrangements if you are doing some of the move yourself
Cancel any local memberships if you are moving out of the area (ex.gym)


4 weeks to go!
Confirm moving date/movers or packers if you are hiring them
Cancel lease (if applicable)


3 weeks to go!
De-clutter (go through your current space room by room)
Buy sharpies, boxes, bubble wrap, packing tape


2 weeks to go!
Take pictures and any other wall decorations down
Wrap all pictures and decorations in tissue paper
Cancel Cable
Cancel Electric
Cancel Water
Cancel Gas
Contact Post Office to put in new address and when to begin forwarding mail to that address
Contact credit card companies, banks, insurance companies, etc. to inform them of your new address
Only buy what you need from the food store to get you by, use up what you have!
Take pictures of how cords are connected to electronics and how furniture pieces are set-up so you remember when you get to your new place (and also to reference to make sure pieces aren’t damaged during move)
Wrap purses that you won’t use until the move is complete
Wrap any delicate jewelry in baggies and boxes to keep them from getting tangled


1 week to go!
Wrap any delicate/fragile pieces like china, bar-ware, and glasses with bubble wrap and tissue paper
Wrap all shoes in individual bags
Put clothes on a hanger and group with rubber bands and then put garbage bags over the groups
Pack bag that you will live out of until movers get to new location (include all vitamins and medications and don’t forget to check the upcoming weather reports)  


Make sure that you take any liquid out of containers before they are packed (ex. soap out of pumps, water out of teapot)
Put any cords in a box with labels so you know what you use them for (use twist ties and rubber bands with labels)
Throw out any extra food and use up what you have
Buy Lysol wipes, water bottles, paper towels, and soap to prepare for the moving day (and possible hand hold vacuum)
Wrap toilet cleaning supplies and toilet wands in separate bags to keep them from mixing with anything else in the bathroom
Wash shower curtains if they are fabric, if they are plastic, wipe them down so they are packed dry
Wash sheets while movers pack and fold them so they are clean when you get to your new place
Wrap mattresses and pillows with the zippered mattress and pillow protectors
Make sure that you bring any cash, personal documents such as passports and SS cards to make sure they get to the new location safely



Walk-Through Checklist

This is the checklist I used to check my house before closing.  This is a great list that can be catered to apartments/condos/townhouses/houses.  I left room for notes under”Done.”

Item Done
Path to front door from driveway/street  
Front door painted black  
Side garage door painted black  
Front door knobs and lock  
Back door knob and lock  
Garage door to kitchen knob and lock  
Basement door knob and lock  
Handrails on stairs  
Crown molding on stair top  
Closet doors installed  
New wall paint on any scratches  
All crown molding on first and second floor in  
No dents on walls  
Floor vents in  
Dry wall in garage  
Hardwood downstairs (no scratches)  
Outlet in kitchen island  
Stainless steel appliances in kitchen (stove, oven, microwave, dishwasher)  
Lip on island  
Get both garage door clickers (garage doors open and close)  
Return spare keys (2) and get new keys for house  
Lights working on first and second floor (lighting fixtures installed)  
Water working (hot water)  
Everything installed to support refrigerator and washer/dryer


Patio/deck complete


Outlets working on first and second floor  
Heating/gas working (vents and thermometer)


TV hook-ups installed (kitchen, family room, office, dining room, and 4 bedrooms)


Flush toilets on first and second floor


Closet doors open and close


Garbage disposal working



Vents installed and working


Crown molding on floor and ceiling  
Clean-up was there to wipe things down and sweep  




Moving Into a House

Top 3 things you need to remember to do before moving into your new home:

1.  Water:  find out what water company you need to contact to get the water service in your name.shower-shower-head-water-drop-of-water-161502.jpeg

2. Power:  get in touch with the power company to get your power set-up in your name and turned on for your move-in day.


Hidden cost here-We had to pay about $400 (about 2 months of power) as a security deposit.  This number was based on the average amount our neighbors pay per month.

3. Garbage: call the garbage company to set-up your garbage service.


Don’t forget to ask if they provide a garbage can that everyone in the neighborhood uses, or you have to buy your own.  Most provide a garbage can.  But, we have to buy our own in our new house.

Also, ask if they provide recycling as well.  If not, find out what recycling company to call to set it up.




5 Hidden Costs When Moving


  1. Check your lease-if you are leasing an apartment, condo, townhouse, or home-CHECK YOUR LEASE. There are many hidden costs here to break that lease early.pexels-photo-323780.jpeg
  2. Check your cable contract-there are some that you will have to buy your way out of (Unfortunately, I have had to spend hundreds of dollars in the past to buy out of a contract for a cable company when moving out of state).pexels-photo-442576.jpeg
  3. Budget in money for hotels/food-if you have lag time from your current living situation to a new living situation, you will have to budget to make sure you have enough money for hotels and food while you are waiting to get into your new digs.pexels-photo-518244.jpeg
  4. Have some cash for tips-if you are having a moving company come or buying any furniture that needs to be carried into your new place, you will have to have some cash to tip.pexels-photo-545065.jpeg
  5. Car Registration-if you are moving out of state, a lot of the new car registration costs are intense. I have had some experiences where I have had to spend half my month’s rent of these costs.  Make sure to check it out online before relocating.pexels-photo-849835.jpeg

9 Unexpected Items that Movers Won’t Take

If you are hiring a moving company, there are some items that they will NOT take the liability of packing.  Here is the list:

  1. Flammable Items-such as, gasoline for a grill, lighters, candles, aerosolspexels-photo-266623.jpeg
  2. Bathroom Liquids-this means all the soaps for the bathrooms, showers, shampoos, conditioners, Listerine, and lotionspexels-photo-433624.jpeg
  3. Kitchen Liquids-some examples are condiments and oils (even if they have NEVER been open)tomatoes-ketchup-sad-food-161025.jpeg
  4. Open Food-this would pertain to food in your pantry like a bag of pretzels and/or half-used milk in the fridgepexels-photo-479620.jpeg
  5. Cleaning Products-this is your bathroom toilet cleaner, detergents, lysol sprays, shower sprays, glass cleaners, etc.
  6. Light Bulbs-the movers/packers will usually un-screw them from lighting fixtures and will leave them for you to packpexels-photo-256307.jpeg
  7. Frozen non-food items-this is means freezer packs, specialty drink coolers or ice cubes (my husband has special grey gin ice cubes for his drinks and beer cooling sticks to chill beer)glasses-ice-cubes-illuminated-drink-162475.jpeg
  8. Cash-which is a NO BRAINERpexels-photo-545065.jpeg
  9. Valuable Jewelry-they will not pack your expensive jewelry.  You will need to make arrangements yourself to move your expensive things yourselfpexels-photo-265883.jpeg

Applying for a New Job in 5 Simple Steps

Since I have graduated college at Penn State in Spring of 2012, I have worked in 4 different full-time teaching jobs in 3 different states.  I have also worked in 3 different part-time jobs in 2 different states.  In order to continue to set myself up for success, I need to organize my previous employment information.  I am currently applying for jobs where I am moving in Pennsylvania.  Here is what I do:

  1.  Organize your files-use a file cabinet and computer folders into categories according to previous places of work/company names.  Then add number of years worked there and dates.  I also add the state in the title because I move os much!  For example, I have “Montessori 2012-2013.”
  2. Get your important letters-fill your folder with important documents that pertain to the job you have worked in.  I put my recommendation letters and letters of service.
  3. Add certificates-get any important certifications or test scores for the state or job you were working for.
  4. Buy resume paper-update your resume adding your latest job and skill information.
  5. Time to write-make sure you get your cover letter written to match and highlight your resume.  Just remember, you will want to personalize it to the job title/position and company you are applying for.  So each time you apply or print this letter, be sure to make appropriate changes.

Now you are ready to get online and search for job openings!  I personally like using Indeed and SchoolSpring for the teachers out there!  Keeping all of this organized helps me easily apply for new jobs each time I move.  I believe that finding the next step in your career stems from organizing your credentials from your past career(s).