- Hold your own goodbye party and invite the families of your kids' friends too. Make it a potluck (I'm big on potluck- so much easier!) and outside (again, easier!).
- Make a list of the 3 places you want to see again in your town before you leave and then see them! You can change the number of places depending on the length of time you have before you go. Take pictures and put them in the album in #3.
- The last month/week you are in town go around and take pictures of your kids with their favorite people (friends, teachers, neighbors) and in the places they went the most (school, library, tennis class, soccer field, ballet). Make a cheap photo album with them and let them decorate the cover. Let them bring the album in their suitcase or carry-on.
- Use a shoe box or gift bag and let them fill it with "special things" from the place your leaving (flowers, peebles, bus tickets, things that won't fit in the album). They can decorate the outside and bring it with them.
- At the end-of-the-school-year party, let their friends draw and write goodbye pictures and messages on a t-shirt or large poster board to bring with you.
- Always talk about your move in terms of an adventure! Kids love adventures! When you all start to bemoan all the places and people you are going to miss, acknowledge the difficulty with moving and commiserate, but then balance those sad thoughts with happy and exciting ones, all the places and new people you are going to see! Do some research on the internet and find some cool places that you'll go to in your new town. Talk them up!
Onward, nomads, onward!
Spouses, any other ideas to smooth over the rough edges of "the move?" Please share.