I am officially all moved to Washington DC! This time around, I did a kind of hybrid move and boy am I glad I did. I tried out a new company called HireAHelper and I’m pretty sure it’s the only reason my body isn’t 100% of the way dead.
This whole endeavor came to be rather quickly. After finding out I didn’t get the job in California, I went all in on moving in with my friend Erin. Her roommate unexpectedly moved out at the end of February and left the perfect vacancy for me to slide into. (side note: you should definitely follow her on Instagram. She’s taken a lot of great photos of my cute cat!)
At the same time, my friends back home in Chicago were gearing up for a fun weekend to celebrate a birthday and I couldn’t miss out on that. The timeline looked like this:
Thursday night: move the cat over to our new home
Friday morning: Fly to Chicago and have fun!
Friday: do all the fun things!
Saturday: eat all the things!
Sunday: more of the above!
Unfortunately, all good things have to come to an end and my weekend of fun and gluttony was no exception. Monday morning I left Chicago to drive to my hometown. While there I had lunch with my best friend, ran some errands, packed the rental truck and had dinner with my family. Tuesday I got up early and drove across Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. 9 hours in a box truck on the interstate with no cruise control is not what I classify as fun.
Wednesday I drove across West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Maryland to my new DC home. I arrived completely and utterly exhausted. Thankfully, I decided to hire movers to help me unpack the truck and I don’t think I’ve made a better decision recently. I went through HireAHelper and found the process to be super easy. Way easier than hauling all my crap down a narrow flight of stairs in a Victorian house!
The movers I hired through the company did an amazing job! It took me and 3 friends the better part of 2 hours to pack the truck. It took 2 movers just about 45 minutes to unpack the truck and move everything up several flights of stairs. That’s incredible! I highly recommend both Hire A Helper and the local moving company for help with a move. I’m pretty sure my days of lugging everything up and down stairs is over.
I also discovered it costs just about $300 to stock my kitchen with food. I moved in with basically no food, so I needed to stock up on basically everything. Condiments, cooking ingredients, fruit, vegetables.…. you name it, I needed it. My roommate has a Costco membership, so I really got to stock up!
On the other hand, we are set on things like rice, syrup and olive oil for many months to come, so it wasn’t all just for this month.
I also discovered the power of reservations. Now, I have known to reserve things well before I need them for a long time. Several things on this trip I did not get a reservation and I added a little bit of unnecessary angst into my trip because of it. I thought about reserving a rental car in Chicago to drive to my hometown and thought “how hard can it be to get a car to drive one way from Chicago?”. Turns out.…. really freaking hard. Every single car was reserved or not available for a one-way trip. I ended up having to go 45 minutes out of my way to get a car. Annoying but not the end of the world. If that failed, I just would’ve taken the bus home, but I didn’t want to do that because it would’ve taken longer to get home and I wanted to have lunch with my best friend.
I had a similar story with the hotel room in West Virginia. It’s right off the interstate, it’s a Tuesday night in March, they have like 8 hotels right there, how hard can it be to get a room? Turns out I had to call 3 different hotels before I found one with an open room. Instead of staying in a nice hotel with a hot tub and sauna, I stayed at a Super 8. It wasn’t bad, but I could’ve done better.
I did, however, have a reservation for the rental truck and it saved my life. I wanted a 14′ truck, but the only one available when I did the reservation was a 16′ truck. More room than I needed, but not bad. On the drive from Chicago, I get a call from the rental place. They don’t have any 16′ trucks but they do have a 26′ truck. I wasn’t thrilled with the idea of driving a 26′ truck through the narrow streets of DC but if the alternative was hauling all of my stuff on my back, I’d pick the truck. Fortunately, he called me back and said they found one 90 miles away and it would be ready for me by the scheduled time. My reservation came through as he also said another couple came in wanting it but I reserved it first so I had first dibs. Win!
Now that I’ve been in my new place for a few days, I am working on settling in and getting my stuff organized. It’s harder than I thought it would be. I’m a recovering pack rat and getting rid of things is tough for me, but I’m getting better at it! My roommate is super gracious about the cardboard boxes and stuff cluttering up our place. I should make some money back from selling duplicate things I no longer need like an extra suitcase, plates, and some Ikea table tops.
Wish me luck as I unpack more things and get settled in for real!
Thanks for reading! Have you moved cross country before? Did you DIY the move or hire movers? Sound off in the comments below!