Tuesday, January 6, 2009

My Toy Story

Hi! If you are joining from Rocks in My Dryer, Welcome! Feel free to learn about me here.

My version of Toy Story goes like this:

  • Baby is born and there are a small amount of soft small toys in the home.

  • Baby gets a little bigger and small soft toys are put away to make room for medium sized toys with few pieces.

  • Mommy knows where every toy is and dutifully puts them back with their proper pieces in the correct location every night.

  • Baby has first Christmas and number of medium sized toys increases as well as number of small parts in each toy.

  • Mommy still knows where each toy and piece should call home.

  • Baby has a few birthdays, a younger brother and more kids meals (with toys) and shaped chicken nuggets that he should be allowed to ingest due to FDA regulations.

  • Mommy cannot find her keys or coffee, much less care about where the Little People bus driver, lid to the special color wonder marker and Henry's coal tender belong (still missing).

So that is where the plot currently is. Or WAS. Until I decided to take control of the toy clutter after Christmas.

We all know that somehow your home implodes like pop rocks and Coke after Christmas (Where did they get that toy? Did it walk into the house? It is an action figure...). Our living room and playroom became a huge dumping area for the toys.

Not the crummy stuff. Oh, I toss those "character building" Chic-fil-A books and/ or CDs immediately. Come on Chic-fil-A. That's only if I don't turn them back in for free ice cream. Did you know you could do that?

But medium sized decent toys. That have lots of pieces and are learning toys so you feel guilty about tossing them and your mother will ask where it is next time she visits. The toys were seeping (crawling, maybe?) into our whole house. I was stepping on train tracks/ Mr. Potato Head's angry eyes/ magnetic talking letters in the bathroom. My bathroom. The sanctuary.

Welcome 4 new bins from Tar-jay. All things like puzzles, cars, coloring books, medium sized toys were separated into equal amounts for each bin considering craft vs. play, older vs. younger, car vs. tractor, equal toys for each age, etc. Who am I kidding? I kind of tossed them all in there. (But I did try to spread it out a little because I have issues.)

Here is the spreading process:

Here is the trick: we only get ONE OUT A WEEK for the kids to play with! Who really needs 8 coloring books at once (besides an octopus)? The kids think it's like Christmas all over again. We could have just brought out all that old junk. I don't know why we spent tons of money on new junk. Maybe this is why.

We put one away tonight and brought a new one out. BIG party 'round these parts. Doesn't take much, I guess. Here are the other 3 stored properly (and clogging up our coat closet a bit) and patiently waiting for their turn.

So, that's what's working for me right now. I'm enjoying seeing the floor for the time being. Hopefully the system will last for a while if I can remember to (and have the strength to- those boogers are wedged in there!) change out the toys. And maybe the boys won't beg for certain toys that are "locked" away.

I don't want to have to get out my angry eyes.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

LOVE the blog! You are officially my funniest friend of 2009. Glad we found each other again! Can't wait to catch up! Love, Rebecca R

Lori said...

Hello, I found you via Rocks and love your idea. Hope to try it out soon!

It Feels Like Chaos said...

Hi, I came over from Rocks in my Dryer and am always needing toy storage help. You're right, they get so excited about fresh toys. The other day when cleaning out a closet I brought out a baby toy and all 3 of my kids (even the 5 yr old) played with it for a while!

Stephanie said...

Smart tip. I've heard others who rotate toys, but in the end I've never found storage to do it. I'm trying desperately to be a minimalist... to no avail.

Lydia said...

Thanks for this tip! My son just turned one and I see storage bins in our near future!

Jeni said...

What a good idea! I may have to go to something like this soon. My daughter is 2, and we have another baby on the way, and the toys are taking over!

annieck said...

That is SO impressive...much better than what I've got going on. Maybe I should try that...
Thanks for sharing, Hil!

Anna Claire said...

Hi! This is Anna Claire from the Times (we spoke on the phone?). Just wanted to say I love your blog and writing style. Hopefully I'll have some freelance opportunities for you in the near future :)

Laryssa @ Heaven In The Home said...

Thanks for the tip! I was thinking about trying this with our kids too. Seeing how well it's working for you, I think I'll give it a go!

I'm going to BlissDom too! Maybe we'll see each other there!

Blue Castle said...

Okay, you may just have single-handedly saved my sanity. The toys are taking over my house! Love this idea. I think it would really work for us too. Thank you!!!

Meshellyn said...

Wow, I do see this coming in handy as our collection grows. It's a nice idea. Right now I'm in the stage where my keys are occasionally missing, but usually still turn up. Thanks for the idea!

becky said...

very good!! and can i just go ahead and tell you that micah reads your blog and thinks you are hilarious! he loves it. so, if you have something female to talk about, you may want to put a disclaimer. yes, my hubs is a stalker of anyone we jointly know. there, i said it. please don't turn him in. i need his income!

Hollie and Janie said...

You are too clever! I can barely handle Janie dragging out every toy she owns, so I can't imagine two kids' worth, well, I can... My nieces have a ridiculous amount of toys at mama and daddy's! After Mattie Claire's birthdays, we sometimes put away a few toys to bring out later and she gets sooo excited. Andi Grace doesn't really need toys, she's got the toilet/dog food/ magazines, etc....

Erin K. said...

Great idea! We are just now approaching the stage where toys are becoming a problem, so it's perfect timing for me to read this. Thanks for sharing!

Your Frugal Friend, Niki said...

It is only gonna worse the older they get. Sorry! LOL But it is true.

:)

amyswandering said...

What a great idea - thanks!

Hadley said...

great post! I might have to give that a try. I've heard of dividing them and bringing out one box at a time, but I always get stuck on how to divide them. Now, I think I'll separate like you, some small, some medium, some for each age, etc. Is there anything you keep out all the time? What about books? We have tons of books and I hate to get rid of any of them!

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