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Old 16.04.2014, 23:20
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3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

I'm sitting in my apartment in Toronto and my crap is just all over the place. I'm moving to Switzerland and I have no idea what to take with me.

I have an incredible amount of clothing. I've tried to get rid of some, but it's so very difficult. I am one of the people who hangs on to everything, ticket stubs, notes, letters and cards, little keepsakes from friends and vacation.

I just don't know what to take, what to leave and what to throw out. I don't have to worry about appliances and what not, since I'm moving back home until I find a place, but still. THERE IS SO MUCH!!!

I'm almost everyone on EF has gone through the same. How did you make decisions? What do I really need? HELP!!!
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Old 16.04.2014, 23:33
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

Your sense of humor your going to need it ? And forget about the other tat fill your boots with maple cured bacon.
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Old 16.04.2014, 23:34
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

Clothes - if it didn't fit anymore or was worn, it didn't make the trip. Other stuff - If it didn't fit in a suitcase, it didn't come with. Left plenty of non-urgent items with my folks (thanks, Mom!) and periodically brought items over when I went back for visits. Not sure if you have that option but this is a great opportunity to simplify the clutter in your life. Good luck!
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Old 16.04.2014, 23:40
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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I'm sitting in my apartment in Toronto and my crap is just all over the place. I'm moving to Switzerland and I have no idea what to take with me.

I have an incredible amount of clothing. I've tried to get rid of some, but it's so very difficult. I am one of the people who hangs on to everything, ticket stubs, notes, letters and cards, little keepsakes from friends and vacation.

I just don't know what to take, what to leave and what to throw out. I don't have to worry about appliances and what not, since I'm moving back home until I find a place, but still. THERE IS SO MUCH!!!

I'm almost everyone on EF has gone through the same. How did you make decisions? What do I really need? HELP!!!
Once upon a time I was in your shoes.

I didn't throw out anything of sentimental value. My first international move was back in the days when scanners didn't exist so I had loads of photo albums and I wasn't about to part with these.

I brought all my clothes, but I didn't have a ton to start with. Clothes are expensive here so I would bring what you like, and leave off anything which you have not worn in years or does not fit.

Avoid paying excess baggage costs. Arrange shipping through a consolidator. You can buy your own boxes and packing materials at a moving shop and get everything ready for forwarding. If you are Swiss and moving home there is a customs form you need to fill out.

Do consider whether you will have room for everything on this side. Otherwise you will have to arrange storage here.
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Old 17.04.2014, 00:32
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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I have an incredible amount of clothing. I've tried to get rid of some, but it's so very difficult. I am one of the people who hangs on to everything, ticket stubs, notes, letters and cards, little keepsakes from friends and vacation.
Consider what is most precious to you, that you do not want to lose, perhaps consider to store safely there so does not get lost in transit.

Consider as much as possible to pass on, give away with a light heart. Perhaps re read those letters, either scan or bin most. Ticket stubs, maybe make a note, are they worth anything if not scan, bin. Yes I like to keep cards but every so often, have to be ruthless.
With clothes, so I buy a new top, maybe another one has to go.

The lighter you can be the more receptive you will be to newness coming into your life.

Good luck & remember to go out for a walk when it gets too much
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Old 17.04.2014, 01:34
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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Good luck & remember to go out for a walk when it gets too much
My friend just brought over a bottle of wine. I'm hoping that does the trick too
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Old 17.04.2014, 08:16
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

We packed in two phases. One was essential items that would be absolutely needed on arrival. The other was our major shipment.

It is a very big challenge but I would say that in my mind it was a big opportunity to really reduce what had been accumulated.

Giving away as much as possible to people who could make use of things (our washing machine, fridge, large furniture, electricals etc).

Sending miscellaneous items to the second hand charity shop.

But more seriously, about 1/3 went to the rubbish tip.

If you seriously have to keep every single ticket, card, letter etc, then I think you might need a therapist. It depends on the volume of what you are talking.

Here is what I did:

1. Set up the garbage bin.
2. Set some boxes/bags and label them for things going to other people, with their names on the box.
3. Make a clear space where you will put the things you absolutely need, in a separate room.
4. Put out some boxes for things you do not need to take with you straight away, but are not going to give or throw away.

The start sorting. Try to do it neatly and deal with the items as you touch them. Try not to double handle anything. If you pick it is, you decide what you need to do with it, and you neatly place it where it needs to go.

Alternatively, make a packing list of essentials, pack those first,then call in help to,deal with the rest.

I set a very form goal of dealing with the accumulated clutter of 5 people (3 kids) and to me it was a sense of taking responsibility for my own materialism. My mother-in-law is a hoarder from a family of hardcore hoarders, so I know what can happen if you are unable or unwilling to take responsibility for your own need to collect material things...l

It is extremely cathartic. I do not miss or regret anything....except entrusting our dinner set, which was a wedding gift from my family, to my mother in law, who has now buried it in her hoard...we went back after 3.5 years and we know it is there somewhere. But had no chance of finding it!
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Old 17.04.2014, 09:44
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

As others have said work out what you'll need now and get that sorted. Things like winter clothes, books, consider sending on later by economy parcel post, it'll be cheaper and if you don't need it right away then it doesn't need to arrive by a certain date.

As someone who've moved around 10 tonnes 3 times now (yes, collector hubby hates to throw things out) I can sympathise. Luckily we were able to get professional movers to tackle it the first two times. The last we did ourselves as we were only moving about half a kilometre, but even so it took us weeks, nearly did us both in and we still ended up leaving a lot of stuff in the attic - much to the new owner's displeasure. NEVER AGAIN! If we ever have to move again I'm insisting that most of the junk we live with is going in the bin!
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Old 17.04.2014, 10:13
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

I brought an electric guitar, a desktop computer (laptops didn't exist then), my CDs and cd player, a motorcycle, and a bunch of clothes.

Tom
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Old 04.07.2014, 22:16
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

I FINALLY made it to Switzerland - Yay me! In total I had 3 suitcases and 2 carry on's... and the cat. He is doing okay, but I am still keeping an eye on him


I flew Iceland Air, a pretty good Airline for anyone looking for a cheaper, no frills Airline.


I think I am excited, though I am still a little numb and I really hate the german keyboard.


I am looking forward to summer and Switzerland and hopefully attending one the the Bern dinner events.


Thank you to everyone for all their insights and support over the last year or two leading up to my move. I really appreciate it.
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Old 04.07.2014, 22:18
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

congrats - and update your location!!
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Old 05.07.2014, 02:25
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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I think I am excited, though I am still a little numb and I really hate the german keyboard.
It's probably jet lag

I have an English keyboard I don't need. I think I put an ad on here.
Send me a PM if you are interested.
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Old 05.07.2014, 03:51
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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I FINALLY made it to Switzerland -. and the cat. He is doing okay, but I am still keeping an eye on him
it.

Hi Welcome to Switzerland & hope you & family have a memorable tine,

re : Your cat: suggest you contact Animal Doctor, during your first week, as there was a post within last 48hr talking about time limit I believe of 10 days to get paperwork within order or loose animal
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Old 05.07.2014, 09:21
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

One advice, forget the thick winter clothes you use in TO, winters don't get as brutal over here.
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Old 05.07.2014, 10:22
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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Hi Welcome to Switzerland & hope you & family have a memorable tine,

re : Your cat: suggest you contact Animal Doctor, during your first week, as there was a post within last 48hr talking about time limit I believe of 10 days to get paperwork within order or loose animal
I'm curious what you are talking about? We mode with our cat over a year ago, and I know others more recently, and we did not have to do anything once we passed customs here. There were requirements before leaving and we had to show paperwork and get scanned at customs, but nothing to do here.

Don't want the OP to start freaking out!
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Old 05.07.2014, 10:46
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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I'm curious what you are talking about? We mode with our cat over a year ago, and I know others more recently, and we did not have to do anything once we passed customs here. There were requirements before leaving and we had to show paperwork and get scanned at customs, but nothing to do here.

Don't want the OP to start freaking out!
I will not be surprised if I get a big bill very soon in my postbox. It is Switzerland, just when you thing you got away, you are in for a surprise
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Old 05.07.2014, 11:41
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

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...re : Your cat: suggest you contact Animal Doctor, during your first week, as there was a post within last 48hr talking about time limit I believe of 10 days to get paperwork within order or loose animal
Welcome to Bern, Mandy. PM me if you'd like to meet up for a coffee.

I think the 10-day rule is for dogs. Not cats.
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Old 05.07.2014, 12:42
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

Yes, 10 day rule is for dogs, not cats so no problems there.

If you "know" your English keyboard, i.e. what keys are where normally, then you just need to change the language setting in the control panel of your computer to English. Then you can type as normal. Y and Z will be in their "correct" places then.
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Old 05.07.2014, 13:56
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

Regarding the keyboard, I am using my father's computer since he doesn't have wifi. If I went and changed the Settings he would be completely lost. I will eventually get used to it (or not).


I think I have to go to the Gemeinde and Register myself within 10 day. Something I should probably do on Monday or risk whatever penalty they can think up.


Thanks again for everything!!.
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Old 05.07.2014, 20:04
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Re: 3 Suitcases, the cat and the kitchen sink

If your flat burnt down - what would you REALLY miss...... Take those things. What is cheap to replace ?? leave these.....

I wrote a blog post about this recently..

http://www.anexpatwife.com/swisswife...n-the-planning
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