Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The dreaded toy purge

Ugh. I'm having a panic attack just thinking about it.

We have a boatload of toys in our house. Big toys, little toys, stuffies, McDonalds happy meal toys, musical instruments, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles from the 80's, a dress up box, a play kitchen, a play workbench - the list goes on and on. Some of the toys are in a daily play rotation and some are collecting dust. But whenever I suggest to The Babe that we possibly give a few toys to other kids, I'm met with a resounding "Nooooooooooo" and tears. And so the clutter becomes more clutter, the toys begin to stack up, and I can feel the space shrinking by the minute. 

The thing is, not only does she not have a favourite toy, she also has an excellent memory. I pulled out a stuffed toy she had not put hands on for at least 6 months and as I put it in the donation pile, she began to cry and told her dad that I was giving away a very special gift someone had given her over a year ago. Seriously?!? How do you remember that, but not what you had for lunch today? The clutter problem is compounded by the fact that we have another child, also a girl, who may want to play with these toys in a year or so. So I go back and forth on what to keep and what to donate. Sometimes sneaking things out under the cover of night when The Babe is asleep and stealthily putting the boxes in the trunk to drop them off, where she cannot see them. 

I will say that our message to our family to buy our children less stuff has been heard. Recent holiday and birthday gifts have been more along the lines of memberships for activities, movie tickets and gift certificates. It's hard to give people ideas for non-stuff gifts. Clothes can be good, but only for the older one as the younger one has more than enough hand-me-downs. 

Back to the purge, sigh. How do we do it? We can tell her the old toys are helping other kids, but how do we show her where the toys go and how they can help? She's 3, not 10. Will she really understand? She doesn't understand why she should share with her sister, or why Annie's Bunnies cannot be eaten for every meal, so I'm not sure she will grasp the concept of service and goodwill.

Share with me your tips, tricks and funny stories about how you deal with the toy clutter and purge in your house.

~ H

1 comment:

  1. Heheheee, you're not getting rid of my toys. lol, she is 2 cute!