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Photos of very few toys... - Page 3

post #41 of 75
wow - yes - exactly - thank you - I needed this to help direct the uncluttering I am planning for the weekend. Well said.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver's Mama View Post
Just my two cents, but I think for some mamas, it's not about the toys intruding on our space and the appearance of our homes, but it's a bit deeper.. For me at least, having a small, simple collection of toys is my way of teaching my child to be content with what is given to him and let his imagination do the work, to respect his belongings and only keep what he has the room and energy to store and care for, and that everything that passes his way does not end with him... there comes a time when objects need to be passed on and shared to others, recycled, etc.

While the toy phase may pass, as teenagers it's about clothes, and as young adults, it's all the latest techy gadgets, and then they're adults and they need everything from crate and barrel and find themselves in a home of clutter from everything they've collected over 30 years. So I think toys are just the easiest vessel to start teaching, early on, an important characteristic that will in turn effect the kind of adult they grow to be.

I think this really struck me several months ago, when I had to opportunity to watch a group of Tibetan monks spend an entire week creating a mendala, which is an intricate art work created out of tiny grains of sand, carefully placed one by one. After an entire week of labor, the piece sits completed for maybe an hour and is then destroyed, to symbolize the impermanence of life. The sand is then distributed into a flowing body of water, returning it to nature. Some may think.. KEEP IT! FRAME IT! but what a lesson about how we do not need to keep everything -no matter how special or laborious it was to create- to have a great experience and lifelong memory. ds has a picture of it hanging up to remind me of this every day, though he reminds me too when he creates puzzles and "sculptures" and destroys them within seconds of completion... he doesn't care about the object.. it's the experience.
post #42 of 75
I am trying to purge as well, but am having a hard time figuring out WHAT to purge..

DS is 3 and has a box of hot wheels and mini monster trucks, a huge amt of wooden train track and table, LOTS of big plastic trucks for the sand box, play dough and a box of cookie cutters, a book shelf full of his books, coloring books, crayons, markers, watercolors, hats, stuffed animals, and his *tools, bikes, slide, trampoline, and sports stuff.. balls, bats, frisbee.. he plays with it all so I feel bad wanting to get rid of anything
post #43 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by bohmproof View Post
I am trying to purge as well, but am having a hard time figuring out WHAT to purge..

DS is 3 and has a box of hot wheels and mini monster trucks, a huge amt of wooden train track and table, LOTS of big plastic trucks for the sand box, play dough and a box of cookie cutters, a book shelf full of his books, coloring books, crayons, markers, watercolors, hats, stuffed animals, and his *tools, bikes, slide, trampoline, and sports stuff.. balls, bats, frisbee.. he plays with it all so I feel bad wanting to get rid of anything
MAybe don't cut down on the categories but the amount in each one.Like 2 trucks for the sandbox instead of LOTS.Or set up a container for each of the categories and only keep what fits.One basket of stuffed animals... a tub of sports stuff...a shoe box of play dough and cutters...
post #44 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by rere View Post
MAybe don't cut down on the categories but the amount in each one.Like 2 trucks for the sandbox instead of LOTS.Or set up a container for each of the categories and only keep what fits.
This is exactly what I do. Now that I have the toys pretty much organized I'm sticking with the container principle pretty strongly:

-His matchbox car basket is almost full so if he gets another one as a gift, we'll get rid of an older one.

-We still have plenty of room in his basket of animal figures, but I'm already thinking of weeding out some of the cheaper ones that barely stand up on their own and making room for more Schleich.

-I'm starting to think DS doesn't need both wooden road and wooden rails. The road pieces were a thrift store find and can't find a manufacturer or anything similar online so will probably be getting rid of them before Christmas to make room for more train stuff.

-I'm pretty ruthless about stuffed animals. My MIL keeps buying them for my son but I like to keep the total number under 6.

-The Megablocks are not seeing much play these days so I'm probably going to get rid of them since we have tons of great wooden blocks.

- The art supplies haven't been tamed yet, but I'm trying to find a nice tote where we can keep everything organized.

For me I'm starting to realize its a lot easier if you make it a continual process. A big decluttering is great and emotionally satisfying, but its very easy to end up right back where you started. The container principle is working well at keeping things from cluttering back up too far.
post #45 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by at_the_hip View Post
Wow, so inspiring, ladies...

So if you had to list "must have" toys for children aged 1-10, what would they be?
I've got 4 boys, aged (almost) 10, 8, 5, and 2.5. By far, the most useful and play with toys in our home are wooden blocks, little animals (some wooden, some plastic, some rubber), a wooden bowling set, and balls. lots and lots of balls - basketballs, footballs, little rubber balls, foam balls, balls, BALLS, BALLS! (LOL) All four of them will build with the blocks together, they build forts and cities and zoo's for the animals. The older boys love board games and will play together quite often, so I'd say that monopoly, battleship, and a good checkers/chess set are "must haves" for the over 7 crowd. The other "must have" in our house, that isn't really a "toy", is paper and drawing implements. We've got a wide assortment of crayons, markers, pastels, watercolor paints, colored pencils, etc - and they'll happily sit and create for hours!
post #46 of 75
Knitting in the shade--I could have written your posts. As I've been reading this I was wondering if anyone with more than a couple of kids, or with older kids would post.

We have a great set of school blocks that everyone plays with. I'd part with just about everything else first. My kids also have Kapla blocks which are awesome.

We just finished a round of birthdays that come hot on the tail of Christmas and so I need to get busy. Things have gotten a little wooly around here.

Among the things that need to go: the matchbox race track thing that never really worked, the barbies, the party favor stuff and the tool bench for my little guy. There's more. I just to get in there.

I'd love to see pictures of spaces multiple kids and older kids if anyone has any handy.
post #47 of 75
DS's room:

A view into the room - I purposely took a photo with the basket dumped to show how messy it gets at its worst. All the items around the bed can fit into the basket.
A closeup of the nighstand/shelf - the cloth play house holds small stuffed animal figures and finger puppets
Bin of stuffies at the end of DS's bed
DS's toy garden - I couldn't decide which photo to put up so there's one that shows DS sweeping it and one that shows the painting above it that I love so much!

DD's room:

View one
View two (the toy chest holds HER stuffies)
Close up of toy baskets - one holds bean bags and wooden animal figures, and the other holds playsilks

They also have outside toys (a couple of plastic riding toys, a big ball, a small ball, a slide, gardening tools, and a sandbox) and a bucket of various small toys for car trips. And downstairs we have books, a bin of musical instruments, and I'm putting together a large basket of play food. They're not interested in them yet but I make one piece at a time and I plan on giving them a kitchen for Christmas.

ETA: I forgot about puzzles... DS is really into puzzles so we have a rack of them. He uses the pieces as play things as well; you can sort of see it in the photo of his bed - he was playing with the vehicles of one of the puzzles and making them race and stuff.
post #48 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by rere View Post
MAybe don't cut down on the categories but the amount in each one.Like 2 trucks for the sandbox instead of LOTS.Or set up a container for each of the categories and only keep what fits.One basket of stuffed animals... a tub of sports stuff...a shoe box of play dough and cutters...
I've been doing this. First I had the kids sort thru and choose toys to be put away for right now. We have 3 big totes of toys in the closet that we are saving. I'm hoping to go thru them when the kids are not here and get rid of more. They have a big round bucket for stuffed animals and 2 drawer sets for everything else.
post #49 of 75
Thread Starter 
bumping this up again for more inspiration before the holidays.
post #50 of 75
My inlaws were raised in post-WWII Britain. As children they literally had each a single small chest of toys, and that wasn't filled up, either. I think MIL had a single doll for all of her childhood. They were a well-off family, and that would have been considered quite a lot of toys compared to many of their friends.

Has anyone read the Laura Ingalls book, when she talks about wrapping an old corn cob in a blanket as her 'toy' doll? Her sister had a real doll, and that was it for toys in their (1870s) household.

Until Xmas when Laura's big present (and only present besides special food and a bit of ribbon) was a doll of her own: I think she was 6yo or so.
------------

DS-10yo has in his room, that he considers his:

About 10 Star Wars Lego constructions (and boxes and instrux, he was ranting about selling them yesterday).
About 5 Mars Mission Lego constructions (and boxes and instrux)
About 50 books.
Some of His old school workbooks (about 5 inches high if stacked up).
A medium size velcro monkey
A HUGE teddy (present from his deceased grandmother)
An old laptop, and speakers.
Not much else.

BUT he has access to toys belonging to the family in rest of the house, and they add up to a lot! If he was an only child it would probably still be only a large toy chest full, though (not including stuff like soccer balls or his bike, obviously).

---------

MIL is one of the most generous givers of toys to DC! I think she loves making up for her own minimalist childhood.
post #51 of 75
We've probably got way too many toys to be posting on this thread, but I have to admit that we love them, and we play with them a lot. I'll share pics anyways just because I think it's fun to see how different people set up their toys. I have two boys (6 and 3.5) and a one year old baby girl.

Some of our toys live in our playroom. This is a room that's off the back of our kitchen. The kids often play here while I work in the kitchen. We also snuggle on the couch and read lots of stories.

View into the playroom

View into the kitchen-these bookcases hold most of the toys

Bookcases with doors open

The rest of the toys pretty much live in my boys' room.

View into their room

Blocks, a few games, and some action figures stored under one bed

Pullout drawer with dress up clothes on one side and train set on the other, basket of dinos

A couple of shelves with "special toys" on them--toys from dh's, his dad's and his grandpa's childhoods (I'm not sure why this pic turned out so poorly. Sorry!

The baby has one basket of baby toys in our living room, too. We've got a couple of bookshelves in the hallway with the rest of the kids' books. We also have a bunch of art stuff in a cabinet in our LR/DR.
post #52 of 75
Thread Starter 
Great pictures, Vanessa! I love the nook off of your kitchen. I'm making a note to self to include something like that if we ever design a house.

I also like the "under the bed" storage idea.
post #53 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver's Mama View Post
Just my two cents, but I think for some mamas, it's not about the toys intruding on our space and the appearance of our homes, but it's a bit deeper.. For me at least, having a small, simple collection of toys is my way of teaching my child to be content with what is given to him and let his imagination do the work, to respect his belongings and only keep what he has the room and energy to store and care for, and that everything that passes his way does not end with him... there comes a time when objects need to be passed on and shared to others, recycled, etc.

While the toy phase may pass, as teenagers it's about clothes, and as young adults, it's all the latest techy gadgets, and then they're adults and they need everything from crate and barrel and find themselves in a home of clutter from everything they've collected over 30 years. So I think toys are just the easiest vessel to start teaching, early on, an important characteristic that will in turn effect the kind of adult they grow to be.

I think this really struck me several months ago, when I had to opportunity to watch a group of Tibetan monks spend an entire week creating a mendala, which is an intricate art work created out of tiny grains of sand, carefully placed one by one. After an entire week of labor, the piece sits completed for maybe an hour and is then destroyed, to symbolize the impermanence of life. The sand is then distributed into a flowing body of water, returning it to nature. Some may think.. KEEP IT! FRAME IT! but what a lesson about how we do not need to keep everything -no matter how special or laborious it was to create- to have a great experience and lifelong memory. ds has a picture of it hanging up to remind me of this every day, though he reminds me too when he creates puzzles and "sculptures" and destroys them within seconds of completion... he doesn't care about the object.. it's the experience.
Amen! That's exactly what I'm trying to do. I don't want to make my kids feel deprived, but I do want them to be content with what they have and appreciate and respect those things. Sometimes I look around the house and wonder how the kids manage to entertain themselves because we have such few toys compared to everyone else we know. But then when we're at other people's houses I wonder how in the heck they ever even play with everything they own!

I do like the seeing toys around the house because it's a reminder of little ones in the house. It would be so sad if my house was so immaculate that I didn't allow toys anywhere but their own room and they could not even enjoy them there.
post #54 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver's Mama View Post
Just my two cents, but I think for some mamas, it's not about the toys intruding on our space and the appearance of our homes, but it's a bit deeper.. For me at least, having a small, simple collection of toys is my way of teaching my child to be content with what is given to him and let his imagination do the work, to respect his belongings and only keep what he has the room and energy to store and care for, and that everything that passes his way does not end with him... there comes a time when objects need to be passed on and shared to others, recycled, etc.

While the toy phase may pass, as teenagers it's about clothes, and as young adults, it's all the latest techy gadgets, and then they're adults and they need everything from crate and barrel and find themselves in a home of clutter from everything they've collected over 30 years. So I think toys are just the easiest vessel to start teaching, early on, an important characteristic that will in turn effect the kind of adult they grow to be.

I think this really struck me several months ago, when I had to opportunity to watch a group of Tibetan monks spend an entire week creating a mendala, which is an intricate art work created out of tiny grains of sand, carefully placed one by one. After an entire week of labor, the piece sits completed for maybe an hour and is then destroyed, to symbolize the impermanence of life. The sand is then distributed into a flowing body of water, returning it to nature. Some may think.. KEEP IT! FRAME IT! but what a lesson about how we do not need to keep everything -no matter how special or laborious it was to create- to have a great experience and lifelong memory. ds has a picture of it hanging up to remind me of this every day, though he reminds me too when he creates puzzles and "sculptures" and destroys them within seconds of completion... he doesn't care about the object.. it's the experience.
This really resonates for me. I don't just want to have a less cluttered space, I want my children to develop into conscientious consumers. I have to model and encourage for them to learn less is more, quality over quantity, care for over dispose of. I've also found that my kids are simply overwhelmed when there is anything more than x amount of choices and end up playing with nothing. It seems like the fewer toys available the longer and more creatively they play.

In their bedroom we have the Waldorf-y toys - playstands, dollhouse, tabletop kitchen with accessories, play silks. I'm this close to selling the playstands since they take up a ton of space and the kids could care less about them.

In our greatroom we have a block shelf - KEVA planks, unit blocks, some Spiel and Holz stuff, truck, boat, figures.

On the kitchen counter is paper, pencils, and crayons always available. In a cupboard is a shelf of art supplies - playdough, watercolor and tempera paint, a few different kinds of paper, glue, tools (scissors, brushes, droppers, paint pallettes) - and on the other shelf is board games, manipulatives, and puzzles.

In the living room is a basket of musical instruments, a basket of train parts, a basket of marble run parts, a walker wagon, a push toy, and a ballon ball.

They have bikes, balls, and a few sand toys for outside and that's it. I still think it's a lot, though it's about a 1/4 of what most people I know have and it is for three children, plus the ones I babysit.

I'll post pictures soon.
post #55 of 75
I posted our photo of minimalist toys back in March.

I'm happy to report that things are pretty much the same (after a recent decluttering ). My son's room currently looks like this. I included plenty of notes so you can see what we have in the baskets - just move your mouse over the picture.


This is all of the toys we have except for a play kitchen and train table elsewhere in the house, and a few outside toys (a ball, bike, Tonka dump truck, and a bucket and shovel).

Also, lest anyone think my son is deprived - we also have the usual assortment of art materials, games, puzzles, and homeschooling supplies which I keep in a cabinet in the office. I should also note that we go to a play group and a YMCA childcare center several times a week where he gets to play with all kinds of different stuff. I'm thrilled that he gets that variety without having it clutter up our lives.

I am really happy with the toys he has and I'm kind of dreading Christmas now. Fortunately the grandparents agreed to one toy each for birthday and Christmas, so I think it won't be too overwhelming. I really truly believe that having a small number of open-ended toys is best for kids. Lately my son's block play has really taken off - we create cities for his cars and have such a great time developing different buildings and scenarios!
post #56 of 75
Thread Starter 
RoundAbout, this is such an inspiration to me.

How old is your son?

And how, oh how, did you get the grandparents to agree to one toy???
post #57 of 75
Thanks! My son turns 3 next month.

We told the grandparents they were free to send things throughout the year if they saw something special, but that we wanted to keep Christmas focused on fun family times and a spirit of giving and not on getting presents. He's the only grandchild and has a December birthday so I think they realized things could get out-of-control quickly. Oh and we also told them we were holding both sides of the family to the agreement, so they wouldn't feel they were being singled out or feel competitive. They both still buy him too much when they come to visit, but we're working on it.
post #58 of 75
Roundabout-where did you get the rainbow people airplane- I love it, thanks!
post #59 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by O's mommy View Post
Roundabout-where did you get the rainbow people airplane- I love it, thanks!
I get all of my wooden toys from Three Sisters Toys. They have great shipping.
post #60 of 75
i like the concept, however it would be too hard for me to stick to just 2-3 toys per child as there would be endless fighting going on. so i've decided that a few categories of group toys works much better. i have 3 children (8mo, 3yo, 5yo).
our group toys are for the 2 older children to play co-operatively are:

-marble track block set
-stuffed animals/dolls
-play shop
-lego
-figurine/house play
-puzzles and games
-arts and crafts (playdoh, construction paper, paste, pencils, textas, clay, paint, glitter)

the baby has rattles, small stuffed toys etc in her own basket.

it sounds like a lot but for 3 children who are practically home all day, it isn't. we also have a sand pit and a small indoor cubby.
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