Wow, it is so hard to believe that school is here, and life has gone back into overdrive. Youngest is a senior in high school, and oldest has started his second year of college. Wait? What?!? Second year? Yes, it has been a crazy few weeks. Now that he has successfully settled into school, I can sit back and share some of my best packing tips for college parents. It doesn’t matter if it is your child’s first year or the last, preparation is key to a successful start to the school year.
As a Mom of a college student that has “been there, done that”, it is a great joy to share my favorite packing tips for college parents. After all, our students have completed the hard work of getting accepted into college, the packing part….well, that is what parents are for, right? They will still always need us for that! So what are these awesome packing tips for college parents? Be sure to read on to find out what they are!
Simple Packing Tips For College Parents:
My first tip is a simple one: have a plan. Without having a plan, you will find yourself so overwhelmed that you may become panicked and not be able to do anything! So grab a pen and some paper, and start jotting down some notes. I found that the best time of the day to do that was first thing in the morning before anyone else in the house is awake. I could also have a good cry without my son knowing. In any case, these tips will get you through all of your student’s college experience.
So, now that the mushies are out of the way, here are some tried and true packing tips for college parents.
- Checklists are your friends. There is something about having a checklist that makes packing for college seem less intimidating. There are so many different checklists out there that you may not know where to start. I suggest heading to your student’s college website. The housing page is a great resource, and gives you great suggestions. More importantly, is gives you a list of things not to bring. That is just as important to know.
- Less is more. I have boys, so maybe that is easier said than done. After having two different move-ins to compare things to, having less things definitely made things easier. If you live close, you can plan a few day trips to take a few things up or to bring a few more things home that your student has not used or doesn’t want.
- Have more coffee. I don’t think that needs any explanation. Coffee helps me focus on my lists, and tends to keep the headaches away. It also bring me comfort with the routine at home. A slight touch of rum cream to make it smooth, and I am off and running. Or should I say writing?
- Plan for the unexpected. This is one item on your list that you need to start planning for as soon as your child decides where they will be attending. As a parent that went through a medical nightmare, this is one step that you CANNOT forget.
- Be prepared to shop once you are at school. Despite your list, you will forget things. Or, things just will not fit, not matter how well you play “car tetris”. Don’t stress, don’t beat yourself up over it. Before you head to campus, Google some local stores near campus you can run to. Luckily, where my son goes to school, there is a Target and Walmart, along with a Bed, Bath, & Beyond fairly close. A short car ride, and we can get those last minute items.
- Enjoy the moment. There will never be a more exciting time in your family’s life. Own it. Embrace it. Feel it. Your student has worked hard to get there. You have watched them pass tests, sacrifice fun, and more just to get where they are standing right now: the door to their future. Share in the excitement of planning and shopping for their new home away from home!
I know that it seems like a really simplified list. But truthfully, overthinking it makes the process so much harder. I can’t guarantee that you won’t cry or get emotional, but know that you will at least be prepared. You can save the emotional stuff when you share these 5 important conversations with your college student.
So there are my best packing tips for college parents. I hope that you found them useful, and that it will make your child’s big day a little bit easier. Be sure to comment below with your best college packing tips. We can all help each other out.
MY FAVORITE COLLEGE DORM TOOLS:
- Making Your Home Energy-Efficient When Traveling
- Preparing Your Car For Your Next Road Trip
- Packing Tips When Traveling With Teen Boys
- Travel Food Hack: Slow Cooker Cranberry-Apple French Toast