If something is not working I am more than willing to try something new. I feel like with toys and keeping them organized and well played with you have to change it up every once and a while to keep things fresh. We have cut down the girls toys, but even still if they are all out at once they spread from one end of the apartment to the other. And once they spread they don’t get played with and boredom sets in. We have tried rotating toys, but I usually just end up forgetting about the ones put away. So I decided right before Christmas when I knew that new items would be coming into the house that something had to be done.
I went to the dollar store and found these 15 Litre clear totes. I brought them home and after the girls were in bed I sorted through all of the toys. I then separated them into categories. So we said we would see how this goes. They are allowed ONE bin down at a time. They are not allowed another bin down until the first bin is cleaned up and put away. I posted this idea on a mom group I am in and someone asked the question of what if they want to give their barbies a tea party…my answer was tough luck. I am pretty tired of the toys and clutter.
So we have 6 boxes in the works right now. This is what is in each box.
- Magnetic Tiles
- Kitchen play items
- Barbies (dolls, clothes) and Ponies
- Small random toys (little dolls, small animals, vehicles, a wooden puzzle house, and peg dolls, and a few random items). This is probably the most played with box.
- Craft Items (paper and crayons are always available, this is beyond that).
- Doll clothes and accessories.
We also have two canvas bins that hold stuffed animals and dolls. These bins are always available.
The bins get put on the top shelves of the bedroom closet. And they cannot get them down themselves. I realize that for some people this is not something they would do, but for us it is working really well.
The girls have been playing so well with this new setup. They are actually playing with their toys, and even more so they are playing with each other. The first day or so there was fighting over which bin would be brought down but that has settled.
Besides these toys the girls have a balance beam, a tumbling mat, 3 bilibo toys, a rocking horse, and their dress up bin. They have a doll house and barn in one room as well.
We got rid of their kitchen and instead they use their window ledge and other items to create their own restaurants, kitchens, and picnic spaces. I drew a small stove on the lid of their kitchen box.
I have found in the few weeks we have had this system set up that there have been some major changes in our daily lives.
- The house stays a lot cleaner
- The girls play more with their toys
- The girls play more with each other
- Their imaginations have blossomed
I truly believe that it is not about finding the perfect system that someone else uses. Or keeping the old system that you have always had even if it is broken. I think we need to find what works for us, in whatever stage we are in, for our own families, and for however long it works.
I am loving it. I am also loving stepping on less things.
Thanks for reading, commenting, and sharing.