While I love Christmas and all of the joy and magic that comes along with it, I have to admit that the massive wave of new toys it brings into my house kind of stresses me out.
That is, it did stress me out... until I discovered a few easy tricks to keep the clutter- and my anxiety- at bay.
Donate or trash old toys before birthdays or holidays.
One way that I keep the clutter to a minimum in our house is by removing old or unwanted toys before holidays.
For example, I always have my children sort through their belongings on Christmas Eve and pull out anything that is broken, doesn't work properly, or that they never really loved. Then we make a pile to donate or trash.
For the record, I never make the kids get rid anything that has a special emotional meaning or attachment.
Keep the clutter to a minimum with the "One In, One Out" rule.
After doing a larger purge, we like to maintain and keep clutter under control by practicing the "One In, One Out" rule. This means that for every new toy that comes into the house, an old toy must be donated.
You'll be hearing more about this rule throughout our organizing series!
Keep toys easily accessible.
It is crucial to put toys in places where they are ready to use and can
be easily accessed and enjoyed. Otherwise, the toys will most likely be forgotten and the children will grow out of them by the time the toys are rediscovered.
Practice toy rotation.
One instance in which you don't have to keep all toys handy is if you are practicing toy rotation.
Toy rotation is essentially only keeping a portion of your child's toys and games accessible at one time. After a few days, weeks, or months, you rotate out the toys they've been playing with and substitute in some other toys that you've been hiding away.
This is a great way to ensure that all of their toys get appreciated and enjoyed, and it is also an easy way to manage clutter.
Create an organization system that your children can follow.
I've found that using bins is an easy way to help my kids keep their belongings in order. When they were younger and could not read, I'd label the bins with a picture of its contents rather than by spelling out the word. For example, if there was a bin meant for Barbies, I'd paste a picture of a doll to the outside of the bin instead of writing "Dolls" on the label.
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