A shipping container - you may want one of these if your shipping your goods to AustraliaWhen we shipped our stuff to Australia we made the conscious decision to leave a lot of the furniture back in the UK.

Anything that we didn’t want to take with us was either sold or donated to family, friends or charity.

There were still a number of things that we decided to bring with us though.

First thing to join us was our bed. It was only about 6 months old and because it cost a bit (damn NASA space foam) we decided to bring it with us.

The irony is, because we needed a bed when we got here we bought a new one anyway. Still, we now have a nice bed in the spare bedroom for when people come to visit.

Second thing we bought was an old dining room table that used to be my gran’s. Probably the only thing I brought due to sentimental reasons and I’m so glad that we did.

Third thing we brought was a glass coffee table. Why? Well it was in the garage and there was room in the crate for it. Its actually a really nice table which was banished to the garage when junior was a toddler. Glass coffee tables and toddlers that are a little wobbly when they walk don’t really go well together but it looks nice in the home theatre room at the moment (until junior number 2 comes along and starts getting to that wobbly stage anyway)

Final thing we brought was some baby stuff. In particular junior’s old cot, a changing table and a rocking chair. We bought all this stuff new from a place called Mammas and Pappas and all the stuff was part of the same range. It cost a fortune and we wanted to use the set again for baby number two. Who were we to know that we would need it so soon :) ?

My grandma’s dining room table and the rocking chair were brought over fully made up. Everything else was returned to its flat packed form to assist with the move.

I guess this is the reason for this blog entry today.

Get ready to read some words of wisdom that will save you countless hours of time and frustration once you get your furniture shipped over to Oz.

Top tip number 1:

Remember to bring the instructions!

When you buy new furniture and you’ve celebrated the fact that your item of flat packed furniture now closely resembles the item that you saw in the shop keep the instructions.

I really can’t begin to stress how hard it is to rebuild a piece of flat packed furniture from scratch without any instructions.

It’s amazing how many bits of wood appear to fit perfectly together, that is until you’re left with your last piece of wood which doesn’t actually fit anywhere! Your memory is good but often not that good!

If you can’t find the instructions then take plenty of photos of the furniture from various angles before you take it to bits.

This will really save you a ton of time, tears and will seriously cut down on the swear words!

Top tip number 2:

Remember what you did with the screws!

Once you’ve dismantled your furniture keep the screws somewhere safe!

Best bet would be to stick them in a bag and tie or tape the bag to the furniture which should then be wrapped in suitable bubble wrap or similar in preparation for the long journey ahead.

This way, when you unpack the furniture in three months time with photo’s or instructions to hand, all the screws will be available for you.

Why do I think this is an important top tip? Well, with the arrival of junior number 2 imminent I was tasked in putting the cot that I mentioned earlier back together again.

I got all the bits of wood set out in some kind of order that would help me rebuild it (from memory).

Could I find the screws…? Nope!

Even to this day I have no idea where the screws are. We defiantly brought them and I have a feeling they may be hiding in an unopened box somewhere.

We could have bought new screws to put most of the cot back together, however some of the ‘special’ fittings were also needed and without these we were stuffed.

The cot cost about £650 back in the UK; it’s now sat in the spare bedroom, still in bits.

When your missus is ‘nesting’ and wants everything to be perfect NOW, ordering the parts via mail to complete the cot in 4 weeks time isn’t an option. Buying a new cot is however so I’ll leave it for you to guess which option I went for.

I guess by virtue of the fact that I’m still alive and well and typing this entry will give you a pretty good idea :)

If you want a few more tips on what you can and can’t ship out to Australia then check out this entry I made when we received our first quote.