If only moving were as fun as movies and TV shows made it seem--sure, no furniture yet so let's just order a pizza and crack open a bottle of wine and lay on the ground in bliss.  Too bad the struggle of that first wave of unpacking goes without note!  Seriously, when 453 boxes get stacked in your living room at the end of an exhausting day, where do you even start?  I was always a proponent of packing by room; there's a box for the bathroom, boxes for the kitchen, etc. but it all still gets to be such a mess.  

Enter the 'Open First' Box.

You can still roughly organize your packing by room if that's what works for you, but this little hack can save you a lot of time and frustration.  You can even make a 'Open Day Two' Box to further ease the stress. The first day of settling in will tire you out, and you’re going to need access to practical things to get you through it. Make sure these two boxes stand out to you, as well.  Cover them in colorful tape, or pack them in a different type of container altogether. 

Here are the must-have items to pack in your own 'Open First' box. It's a combo of kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom items.

  • Mugs
  • Non-perishable snacks
  • Paper towel roll(s)
  • All-purpose cleaning spray
  • A twist-off bottle of something fun to celebrate! (or make sure you pack the bottle opener if there's a cork)
  • Soap, shampoo, and conditioner 
  • Toilet paper
  • Shower curtain and liner
  • Towel 
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Deodorant
  • Sheets, a blanket, and pillows
  • T-shirt for sleeping
  • A phone charger 
  • An extension cord

Now that day one has ended successfully, you can get a good night sleep and get going bright and early on day two.  These items will ensure you’re getting a good start to the rest of your unpacking, and will help get off on the right side of the bed.  For your 'Open Day Two' box, make sure you have:

  • A comfortable change of clothes
  • Instant coffee or bottled cold brew
  • Dish soap
  • Sponge
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Extra cash for tipping movers

Everything beyond that can be a free-for-all.  Good luck!  Comment below if you have any moving day tips or must-haves in your 'Open First' box!