Monday, February 23, 2009

Toys, Toys, Toys

Simplify and reduce are two of my favorite words. I'm always looking for ways to simplify around the house and reduce the clutter and stuff. That being said, there is one area where this rarely happens - the kids' play area.

Their toys seem to multiply over night and they tend to get out of control very quickly. I find that the more stuff they have and the more cluttered their play area is, the less they actually play. Cluttered toys means that they have to dig through lots of stuff (making messes in the process) to find whatever they are looking for. Chances are they forget what they were looking for before they find it.

I've been wanting to tackle this area for a long, long time now. But it's been a little too easy to procrastinate. It took about 4 hours, but I felt so good when I was done. And the kids were so happy to actually be able to play with their toys and not just make a mess with them.
This is what I started with. See how everything is just piled in spots and nothing is organized or easily accessible?
I am convinced the best way to tackle any big project like this is to just dump it all and start over from scratch.Gracie was a fantastic helper during the dumping process.And here is the finished product. much better! Everything is organized and rearranged. I know how much I like a new perspective in my areas, I figured the kids would like the same.95% of the toys down in this area are for the younger kids. Isabelle has her very own cabinet where she keeps her games and craft supplies. Alex, Olivia and Gracie each got a drawer of their own to hold their favorite, personal toys.Toy food and kitchen utensils were previously everywhere. I collected them all together and put them in a Kroger reusable shopping bag. It fit perfectly in the toy refrigerator.Plus, this makes pretend "Krogering" (which is Olivia's favorite thing to do) that much easier.I also moved some of the toys to a shelf in the kids' closet. I'd really like to rotate toys and only have half of them in the play area at any given time, but we just don't have the storage space to do that. This is close enough though.

Stop by 5 Minutes For Mom for more tackles, Lara's blog for more Talk About Tuesday, Mommy Community for Tuesday Toot and Blissfully Domestic for more I Am Blissfully Domestic.


Lori 10:57 PM  

I saw your link on Blissfully Domestic. I'm glad I stopped by. Good idea w/ using storage bins and labeling the child's name on them.

Jen 4:55 AM  

Pretend Krogering - Love it! LOL

~Sara 7:44 AM  

Looks good. My toy area frequently looks like your top pics! We did some organizing yesterday and I am feeling much better about it though!

Homesteader in Training 8:08 AM  

Wow excellent job! I am the queen of consolidation! LOL. Toys are such a thorn in my side...
You did a great job. I would have been tempted to just give them all away and start over! LOL.

Kristi 8:25 AM  

I love the idea of labeling the drawers. I agree about how to tackle a big mess. My husband always laughs at me because I always say that you have to make a bigger mess in order to clean up.

Anonymous,  8:38 AM  

That is an awesome cleanup. Great job! So functional.

Sherry 8:44 AM  

Wow! Great job! :D

Courtney 9:55 AM  

AWESOME job! I would love to come play! :)

AmyG 10:08 AM  

Wow, that looks great! I really like the idea of using the reusable grocery bag for the kitchen stuff.

Dreamer 10:15 AM  

Wow, that looks great. I am constantly reorganizing kid toys. We also rotate toys so that all the toys are not out at one time. It makes clean up a lot less stressful for them and me!

The Lazy Organizer 10:42 AM  

It looks great! Did you get rid of a lot of them while you were at it?

Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting 11:11 AM  

You did a great job! I love the reusable bag idea for their play food! And is that yarn for spaghetti? Neat!

Susie 2:03 PM  

That's an awesome tackle!!

Sarah 4:53 PM  

I am sooo inspired! What a great transformation!

itsahumanzoo 12:32 AM  

Came here through Tackle it Tuesday! What a great clean up job! That looks like a really fun play area,I wish I had the room for all that stuff!

leigh ann 10:40 AM  

Thanks for all the tips. I never thought of using green bags before as storage. I have a giant IKEA bag that would be great for toys!

Julie 2:36 PM  

Wow! FABULOUS!!! You took a very daunting task and made it look great! You also made it look very do-able. Thanks!

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