Wednesday, September 24, 2014

What happens when you have kids? You acquire LOTS of stuff.

When you have kids, you have a lot of kid-stuff in your home....almost without having a say in it. You really do have to accept the fact that you'll have this extra truckload of stuff in your home.

How does one manage the piles and piles of things that make their way into the house? I can comment on how I manage it...for now, I don't really involve the kids in this process because they are still too young to get it. Of course I never get rid of their beloved/favorite toys...they have never noticed when I've gotten rid of something broken or donated something they never played with much in the first place.

my living room - pre and post toy declutter sesh.
  • I try to go through the kids' clothing, books, dishes, and toys every couple of months or so, to keep the sheer amount of stuff from taking over the entire apartment, and to rid ourselves of the stuff that is useless, broken, or too small (if clothing). 
  •  First, get all of it out in the open. From every single room, nook, and cranny of your house. You have to see everything you're working with. 
  • Four piles: keep, donate, trash, and store (toy rotation can be a good thing).
  • Keep the toys that still work and that you notice the kids playing with. Donate toys that the kids have outgrown or don't really use anymore. Trash toys that are straight up busted. Store toys that you wish to rotate out, so that not ALL the toys are out ALL the time.
  • Put the "keep" toys back using a storage system that is easy-access, yet discreet if it needs to be.
  • And done! Your kids no longer have to sift through busted toys to get to their favorites. And you're not having to manage the cleaning and storing of said busted toys any longer.
Other things to note, regarding the intake of kid stuff....
  • I try not to buy the kids physically huge toys (read - would need to sit out on the floor at all times) unless they are a true value-add.
  • I do my best to keep toy-buying to birthdays and special occasions (and limit the volume during those times), but that isn't always realistic, as we do like to get them things off-cycle from time to time.

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