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When Nate was littler, I just cleaned out the toys occasionally to keep some semblance of order in our family room. Now that he's old enough to have some say in things, I asked him if there are some toys that we can get rid of, and he's readily suggesting toys, for which I'm grateful. Lily says we need to keep everything so far, so I'm cleaning out her toys.

Does anyone have some suggestions for cleaning out the kids toys? This time seemed way too easy with Nate, and I have a feeling the next time might be more challenging....

Cassandra
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When Nate was littler, I just cleaned out the toys occasionally to keep some semblance of order in our family room. Now that he's old enough to have some say in things, I asked him if there are some toys that we can get rid of, and he's readily suggesting toys, for which I'm grateful. Lily says we need to keep everything so far, so I'm cleaning out her toys.

Does anyone have some suggestions for cleaning out the kids toys? This time seemed way too easy with Nate, and I have a feeling the next time might be more challenging....


Do you do Santa at your house?

I have friends who every year in November or early December tell their kids that Santa can't bring more toys until they give up some of their toys to charity.

They have their own little charity drive in their homes.

You could make up your own version of this myth somehow....

MOI
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There came a point with my kids where I told them they could choose five stuffed animals. All the rest went to storage, and they could redeem one each week if they kept their room clean. No stuffed animals were ever redeemed. . .
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For our kids, typically we showed them the space available for toy storage and told them that all their toys needed to fit in that space. Provided lots of inexpensive (wire racks or assemble yourself) shelves and baskets or crates for them to organize and store. After holidays and birthdays, that often meant deciding what needed to go to make way for the new things.

The "space" rule applied to toys that could be "left out" in the family room, as well as their bedrooms/playroom (as the main . In the family room/living room (aka "tv room"), they each had a basket...so stuff had to be put away and fit in the basket when they were done for the day. Excess stuff needed to go their bedrooms/playroom, each which had its own designated area for storing toys.

To capitalize on a well known phrase..."if the toys don't fit, to Goodwill they must deposit".

Anyway, this approach worked fairly well. The tricky part was getting them to pick-up each day!

Making Trax
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I'm dealing with a husband who won't let me give away toys, even toys we were given second-hand "in case" Anthony would want them. For some reason for my husband if someone "gives" something too us, it's sacred.

Lara Amber
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MOI,

Yes, we do Santa here-we celebrate Hannukah and Christmas. :)

Cassandra
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Lara,

Oh, jeez. I'm so glad my husband doesn't considered much of anything sacred in this house. I'd be in BIG trouble.

Everyone,

I like the idea of having to clean out for the holidays so Santa can come. Ad we do have a limited amount of storage space, so quitting that the toys fit there is good, too. And we used to do that, but it kinda got outta hand.... Need to get back to that!

Good idea, too, about the stuffed animals. We have a toy chest that all the stuffed animals go in. Not sure IMF they all still fit since they ALL seem to be in Lily's crib right now!

Cassandra
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Oh, and I'm keeping a few age-appropriate toys for the baby. But not much, really. Cuz they don't need much, and I figure he will end up playing with the big kid toys anyway!

Cassandra
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Oh, the irony....

The very day I'm cleaning out toys, I opened my front door to discover a neighbor of ours left two bags of toys and books for the kids....

Some of them are pretty awesome, and about half went straight into the car to go to charity.

And tonight I loaded my car up with toys and books. Probably 5 or 6 big garbage bags worth!

Overall, it felt really good to clean all this stuff out. Especially since I know there will be more coming in over the next few weeks.

Cassandra
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Foremost, I tried to model moving stuff out of my room and the kitchen as well as her room. So, we made donations regularly, and suggested that it was a normal cycle to get rid of items.

when I was on track I had a chore once a month to go through her room with her (this started when she was 5, I guess). Books/Toys/Clothes One of those categories a month, so we were checking each one every quarter. I asked her what she was ready to send to the thrift store (we'd try on most of her clothes to see what fit).

One thing that helped was a space on the couch where we could put things we weren't sure of. If she decided she wanted something back, she could take it off the couch. After a week or so, I'd tell her that I was going to take the things to the store. Sometimes she'd have something to add and sometimes she'd take back an item or two.

We didn't buy separate toys, just Legos after she was 3 or so (she was a careful child, we had no younger ones around) - so we would make vehicles or buildings as needed for play.
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