Sunday, August 12, 2012

Organized: Toys

Over the years we have been pretty selective as far as how many toys and what kind of toys we get the kids. Even grandparents know our wishes (when we express them) and have been been fairly supportive in the endeavor to keep things simple. Despite all this, our toys had gotten completely out of control over the last year.

With Noelle being at the age where she would actually play with toys, everyone kind of went crazy with pink and girly toys. And it was actually fun for a while. But if you add to this equation the fact that we have the Mercy Closet at church (a small portable building that houses the stuff everyone brings from their house and allowing everyone to get things they need from others) where the boys are always grabbing something new - you get a plethora of stuff.

This was quite a job because the toys had been in a place that was out of sight, out of mind. I've realize that is not a good thing. I usually don't allow toys in the bedrooms because then things just get crazy, but somewhere I had slipped up and stopped caring.

Here was my process:

First I filled out a roadmap for where I wanted to go with the toys. Then I got to work!

 End of the hallway, toys are in buckets and bags. I separated them into different laundry baskets by type of toy. Dinosaurs, Imaginext, Cars, Girly, etc.

 I happened to go into the blue room (boys room) and saw this mess.

 I recruited the boys to pull everything out from all the crevices in the room - anything toy related, toy-ish, ANYTHING having to do with a toy.

I separated those out into the baskets also, with the other toys that I had already gone through. I trashed some, and others...

... just had to find a new home. :( This little bear was a gift from us to our oldest son, Christian (now 16) after he had his first ear surgery. He was 4. There was a time where he wouldn't part with this bear, then he kept it clean and put away. Then he just didn't care one way or another. So I snapped a pic and sent it off to be loved by another child. We got rid of 4 trash bags of toys. 

I put everything into small bins or ziplock bags. I only kept things that they really play with. The only battery operated items I kept were the things that were Noelle's as well as some trucks the boys got for Christmas. The thing is, Noelle NEVER plays with the battery operated toys. But I'm not moving them out until they are replaced with open-ended toys. I will be working on filling the Amazon wish lists with some ideas for Christmas and birthdays. Another excellent thing that all the grandparents (and sometimes the Aunt and Uncle) do is give memberships to cool places like the zoo, science museum, and living history village.

This is a coffee table that a friend of my grandmother's built for her. It sat in her living room for 20+ years and now it is in mine. She passed away this spring. I loved this coffee table as a child. It has a neat little compartment that she would put magazines and things in. 

And right now, that little door's hinge is broke due to Princess Noie trying to close it. :(

Where we go from here:

Some of the toys are in another room on a shelf in their ziplock bag or bucket. I rotate them out every few days because we have so few of them out at a time. Clean up is EASY and we do that about 3 times a day. One major problem we are having is Noelle dumping all the toys. She really doesn't play with any of these toys so she is bored out of her mind while we are doing school work. I'm working on a solution to that problem. 

What I really hope to do is move my desk. Pete just built me a desk inside of my prior prayer closet. He built one for him in there also. We share a chair (not at the same time) and it is a perfectly small space. I need to post about it and will when I get things moved over here.

In the place of the desk I plan to put a Trofast frame and buckets. I'm not sure how high this one is, but I would really like to add a cushion on the top and make it into a reading spot. 
Though I might end up choosing something more like this one and still doing a reading spot on the side. The colors mean nothing, they have several to choose from. I would go with the green to match our living room. These are a bit harder to slide out (to deter a little dumping girl) and yet would allow us to still keep 6 sets of toys out a time.

This last week I worked on school bookshelves!! Pictures to come on that next week. My next project is decluttering a major holding station - the pink room - because we are renovating the house starting there!

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1 comment :

Brandi in TX said...

nice job! you did good! I know this must be a huge relief. I love rotating toys. In a couple of weeks we will be pulling all the toys down from the barn and going through them get rid of things they have outgrown and do a major swap. But first I have to go back through the bedrooms : )


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