Inside: Move-in day for your college student will be emotionally tough. Prepare yourself with these practical dorm room essentials. This post contains affiliate links. When you click them and then make a purchase, I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.
How. Did. We. Get. Here ?
Just yesterday she squealed with delight as I pushed her on the park swing, her little pigtails flying in the breeze.
Today she schleps boxes upstairs to her second-floor dorm room.
Move-in day will be fraught with emotion, tears and a teenage eye roll or two. There’s nothing you can do about that, but these 10 dorm room essentials will help make moving day a bit easier.
10 Dorm Room Essentials to Make Move In Easier
Nothing is more frustrating than balancing an armload of stuff, huffing up flights of stairs, just to find the door clicking closed.
A simple doorstop will save you more than one headache on move-in day. When school starts, your student can prop their door open and invite their new neighbors in…much more inviting than a hallway of closed doors.
2. Extension Cords
Long ones. Both my kids are in older buildings that were designed with only a few outlets. Long extension cords help kids make the most of their limited space. (Caveat: check with your college first to make sure they are allowed.)
If they loft their beds, buy cords that will reach all the way up for clip-on lamps and phone chargers. I’d add a surge protector in this category as well and extra long phone charging cords.
3. 3M Command Strips and Hooks
These babies can hang most anything. The strips are what you need to hang posters, memories from home and wall art.
Little hooks can help you string up lights so her room looks just like her Pinterest dream board.
Big hooks keep wet towels off the floor. No promises these hooks will get used, but a girl has to dream sometimes…
While you won’t need a complete toolbox, make sure you bring scissors, pliers, and a screwdriver. Then you can cut off all the zip ties, shrink wrap and other irritating packaging material without going on a scavenger hunt down the hall to borrow scissors.
5. Cleaning Wipes and Paper Towels
Sometimes things just need a good wipe down. Enough said.
6. Water and Snacks
You will get hot, thirsty and cranky on move in day. Stay hydrated and don’t get hangry. Even better, bring some snacks to share – it’s a great way to break the ice with the new neighbors.
7. Garbage Bags
To load up the piles of wrapping and packaging material you’ll drag to the dumpster. Use extra bags to store off-season things under the bed, or in the closet.
8. Duct Tape
Who doesn’t need duct tape? This stuff is indispensable to tape down extension cords, make small repairs, etc.
Keep in mind something will go wrong, the image you have in your mind may fall apart, and schedules will be blown. Patience may be the most important of all dorm room essentials you bring to move in day.
I remind myself that this is all about her, not about me. She’s excited but nervous. I’m excited but sad. I bite my tongue, smile and make one more drive to Target – glad that today she still needs me.
10. Oh, and one last thing: Kleenex
Because you will shed a tear or two.
You’ll have a moment where all you can see when you look at her is that little girl on the swing.
The Most Important Part of All
And while you can’t go back to those days, remember that your child is ready and you’ve done your job well. This is what’s supposed to happen. Good Job Mom.
I never say “Goodbye”.
Always “See you soon!”
After all, it’s only 82 days until Thanksgiving.
Not that I’m counting or anything.