Quick tip: slide to open cheap resealable bags

You know those tiny little bags of screws and bits you get with Ikea furniture and computer components? Don’t struggle to pull them apart, just squeeze and slide!

opening zipper seal bag

The cheap re-sealable “Ziploc” bags that come already filled are often made out of very thin plastic and the seal can be stronger than the material to which it’s attached. I’ve found that the easiest way to open these little bags is to slide the two tracks against each other and the bag will pop open at the corners. In most cases you can even open the baggies one handed, keeping the other hand free to pat yourself on the back (something I find necessary since my wife is rarely as impressed with me as I am with myself).

A couple box packing tips

When a release is finished at Microsoft people pull their heads out of their current product and frequently move around between teams (and that means packing up your office to head to a new location). Watching professional movers pack my house for the move to and from Ireland did teach me a little about moving. There are two biggie tips, however, that stood out.

Tape your boxes the wrong way first

Going from flat cardboard to a box can be awkward with one person. It’s not tremendously hard to assemble a box, but if you want it to be nice and square you can speed the process by running the first piece of tape perpendicular to the seam.

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Align the bottom flaps and run a piece of tape across the bottom of the box and it will be held closed and aligned while you tape the seam.

Pack your boxes on top of other boxes

The first tip will save you a little time, but this second tip will save your back. No matter how careful you are, moving is tiring and often hard on your back.

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Once you have a box or two packed, put your next empty box on top of your packed boxes. Loading this top box will be much easier as you won’t be bending down to put items in the bottom of the box. You should, of course, protect your back from the beginning and start your first box on a chair.

Combo bonus!

I recommend combining the two tips and build your new boxes on top of the other boxes (see first picture). Constructing your fresh box on a raised pedestal will preserving your back even when you’re straining to lift your collection of dolls action figures.

Watch what you eat

Not really a packing tip per se, but the logo on the bottom of the packing boxes did make me worry that if I’m not careful I might die of dysentery.

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