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Old 01-31-2005, 04:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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How do you organize your child's toys?


I have a small space so I need some space efficient and organized. I feel like we are overrun by toys and books.

I did just buy 2 new shelves for a bunch of the books so that should solve that. Now where to put them? :LOL

Thanks for sharing how you do it!

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Old 01-31-2005, 05:58 AM
 
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In the living room I have a big wicker basket (the lined kind) with a lid. It holds quite a bit of toys......I got it for 24.99 at Target. Here is a pic of it in my living room (next to the couch): http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v1...ngfamroom1.jpg

In Jevin's room I have one of those Target containers too, its wood with wheels and has 3 storage containers in it. It holds quite a bit too and still is compact.

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Old 01-31-2005, 05:59 AM
 
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I also ordered these 3 set of "ottomans" on gaiam.com. They are seagrass and they all can hold stuff AND be used as extra seating. It was only 69 bucks for all 3. They are on backorder but I am excited for them to get here! LOL

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Old 01-31-2005, 01:30 PM
 
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We have toy organizers that I bought at Target quite a while ago (on sale). They are wooden dowels that hold plastic bins. I liek these a lot, because each bin holds a specific type of toy, and can be removed easily. So when my son wants to play "spies", he can take the bin out, have all his grear handy, and then when he is done he just dumps everything back in the bin and sticks it back on the rack. There is no searching for toys, and you can see where everything is.
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Old 01-31-2005, 02:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by khrisday
We have toy organizers that I bought at Target quite a while ago (on sale). They are wooden dowels that hold plastic bins. I liek these a lot, because each bin holds a specific type of toy, and can be removed easily. So when my son wants to play "spies", he can take the bin out, have all his grear handy, and then when he is done he just dumps everything back in the bin and sticks it back on the rack. There is no searching for toys, and you can see where everything is.
I second this! I got mine at Toys R Us for the same 'sale' price that's at Target. I like that he can see everything. I can put all the music stuff together so we can just grab that tub when we want to play with that stuff. Other than that we do rotate toys by keeping a big plastic bin in his closet of out of rotation toys
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:25 PM
 
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We too have the Target toy bins. We waited for them to go on sale, though, because the price is insane normally. I wish I had known Toys R Us had them. Wal-Mart has a version of them, but it's flimsy and not as big.

I really like ours. It's a life-saver. I was going nuts trying to keep all their toys contained and trying to help them learn to clean up. This way it's so much easier.
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Old 01-31-2005, 05:38 PM
 
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my method is that i have a box for every 'kind' of thing ..ie musical intraments, people, animals whatever. All of the various boxes go either inder the train/art table or on a book shelf. This method makes cleaning up very quick b/c I just throw each otem in it's correct box. I am nak does this make sense?
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Old 01-31-2005, 08:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by abranger
my method is that i have a box for every 'kind' of thing ..ie musical intraments, people, animals whatever. All of the various boxes go either inder the train/art table or on a book shelf. This method makes cleaning up very quick b/c I just throw each otem in it's correct box. I am nak does this make sense?
What is nak BTW?

We also have seperate bins for each seperate things. An example- the balls in one bin, the little people in one place, the legos in their own large bin, costumes in their own dress up box, we also have a wooden kitchen set dh built for the xmas holiday that is also organized.
It is so much easier to do and its easier to clean up at the end of the day.

I also keep a basket that I put "stray parts/pieces" in. You know- you see a small little red block on the ground, a ribbon for a doll's dress etc, a little car. I stick them in the basket and at the end of the day- I put them in their proper bins. This is also great for when we host playgroup, it only takes a few minutes to clean up and I really beg the other moms to let me do it since its so easy. But usually the stuff is easy for the kids to clean up since it has a home in that particular bin.

Also- if there are certain toys that maybe should be put away for when company comes by- take the bin, put it in another room and put it back later. Also, if toys look 'stale' to your kids meaning they haven't been used for a while- rotate them. Put the bins in your closet for a few weeks and pull them out later- they are like new. Then replace them with other stale toys

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 01-31-2005, 08:07 PM
 
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nak= nursing at keyboard (computer)

I think that's what your asking, but I didn't see anyone using that so
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Old 01-31-2005, 08:14 PM
 
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I found these metal(tin?) something, baskets with cute star cutouts at Ross for cheap. and I put them on a small bookshelve.I also heve small plastic containers from Ikea for p uzzle peices.And baskets from the container store. I like to keep it all on a bookshelve in the playroom. Also, Ikea has cheap wooden toy boxes, we have a few and they can double as a coffee table in the living room if you paint the lid or throw a pretty peice of cloth over it

Due with number 5 in August. We do all that crunchy stuff.
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Old 01-31-2005, 08:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mraven721
nak= nursing at keyboard (computer)

I think that's what your asking, but I didn't see anyone using that so
Yes- gee I 'm not nursing for 4 months now and how soon I forget! (DD clw'd at 30 months)
I had plenty of naks as well as nursing anywhere else for that matter- enjoy it!

Thanks for the insight!

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 01-31-2005, 09:41 PM
 
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I use cloth, drawstring bags of different patterns for toys with lots of pieces.

If you are a little bit crafty you can make them yourself for cheap. If you are craftilly challenged, like myself, Bag and Forth makes wonderful bags. http://www.bagandforth.com/
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Old 01-31-2005, 10:43 PM
 
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Great thread! My mil is the queen of organization and she was helping me this weekend to get the toyroom in order. Besides shelves with clear, labelled bins, I got a few small bookshelves and an over the door shoe holder (the one with all the pouches) for those odd little toys that have no other home.

I'm so excited about this new forum!
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Old 02-01-2005, 12:16 AM
 
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Those over the door shoe holders are great not just for small toys, but also for craft supplies for kids and mom. Keep scissors, glue, anything you don't want them getting into up high and put stickers, foam, anything they can have access to in the lower bins. I have one of my own just for my scrapbooking. I can file pictures, stickers, die cuts, etc. that I want to use for a specific layout in each space. Plus they're clear, so you can see what's in there in a glance.

I'm a big fan of those things and you can find them so cheap.
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Old 02-01-2005, 11:26 AM
 
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I purchased pine shelving at menards for $15 each. I cut them in half because they are so tall and then I have two smaller shelves. I then put baskets on the shelves and I get my baskets at thrift stores and garage sales. Sometimes I buy new because JoAnnes and hobby lobby will mark their baskets 50% off sometimes.

And I actually just removed about 50% of their toys from the toy room. They had too many and it was overload. They now actually PLAY with their toys and not just dump them everywhere.

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Old 02-01-2005, 11:46 AM
 
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this is a GREAT thread! Glad I came !!
ONCE AGAIN I need to get that PLAYROOM organized!
I think I will finally do it right this time
I told the kids we would put labels on the Bins and now my dd is prompting me to do it! Im sitting here typing with a massage-thingy on my finger so i remember to tell her a polar bear story and then get the room worked on!!
WE Can DO it! Right ladies?!
-- another thing: did anyone else SWEAR they were going to somehow limit the number of new toys at x mas time? ... Yet, why is still sooo cluttered

~L
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Old 02-01-2005, 01:52 PM
 
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I have a six-year-old and our organization methods have changed as she's gotten older.

We used to have those wooden-dowel/plastic bins organizers in our family room and they were great.

Now that she is older, the toys are really all in her room. The only things in "common areas" are games music and videos which fit very nicely in the family room furniture we have. We bought new furniture a year ago and made sure to get things with lots of drawers of different sizes.

In her room, she has a beautiful book rack from Pottery Barn Kids which holds a ton of picture books face out. She also has a bookshelf (we have a ton of books!) that is over a three-drawer dresser and that holds books as well. I gave her an old IKEA bookshelf from my post-college apartment years and on that we have a few lined baskets that hold toys, a bunch of small plastic bins that are labeled and hold tiny things like small doll accessories, and there are other things that come in boxes such as craft kits on those shelves as well.

My daughter is an "out of sight out of mind" kind of kid, so if she doesn't see it, she doesn't play with it. I do have three under-bed plastic drawers filled with things that are large or rarely used. And she also has a small three-drawer rolling plastic organizer for all her crayons, paper, stickers and things like that, and it's next to her small table and chair set.

Another great item is this thing that is like a shoe bag, but is made of fabric mesh that stretches, and the pockets are doubled to add more storage space. It is attached to the inside of her closet door and goes from the top of the door way down to the bottom and it holds all her dolls and stuffed animals and toy horses and such. Great thing. here it is:

http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/prod...3&BTSMode=true
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Old 02-01-2005, 03:47 PM
 
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We are trying to get all the toys under control and having a little luck.

We bought a shoe cubby / rack from Ikea. It has 8 cubby holes and is made of wood. Then, in baskets, we store their toys according to type. Cars in one, planes in another, you get the picture.

It has helped a little but then we still have the books and big toys that don't fit.

I think that our best bet is to really give some stuff away. I think my dcs have way too many toys.

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Old 02-01-2005, 04:18 PM
 
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We are trying to get all the toys under control and having a little luck. I think that our best bet is to really give some stuff away. I think my dcs have way too many toys.
I see what you mean. DH has said on many occasions that we have enough toys for 10 kids in the play room. He's right- when we last hosted playgroup (eight 2 year olds, 2 crawling babies, and 6 moms) there were more than enough toys to go around and I even put some stuff away before hand!

I always rotate toys and that helps a boredom factor. We also give away toys.

I learned thru my decluttering that when an item comes into the house, a simliar one goes out. That helps. Fo example, we received a wooden puzzle we already had for xmas. I donated to our preschool and dd never knew. Also since we have it already, the giver sees it in our playroom when she comes to play.

I do an occsl throw out- the small toys like happy meal stuff, prizes etc.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 02-01-2005, 04:23 PM
 
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I cant believe no one has mentioned this:

PARE DOWN THE TOYS!!

After you have done that, it gets easier.
Here are how we have the toys:
I have a clear storage bin for books. They stand upright in it,a nd It is great for library day. I have all felt pieces in a basket. I wish I could do upright folder in a filing box, bc they would be easier to find, and I do aspire to that. I have a large wicker basket with hanles for misc toys. I have a desk that's shelves hold more books. I have a wooden crate for blocks. Both the basket of toys and the crate of blocks are tucked under tables. I have the Band in a Box by melissa and Doug and most of their instruments are in htere. I also have a pretty basket on the table that hold a few more beautiful wooden ones. I have a wicker hamper with a lid that holds our "sensory toys" and I have a "gardening bag" you know, the ones with all the pockets on the outside? That holds the puppets. So, that is our living room.
In the kitchen, I have a rubbermaid tote tucked under a small card table. That holds legos(we have alot of legos)
The garage is our playroom. I have a low lang table for playing and crafting. I have school stuff tucked under there in rubbermaid totes. I have puzzles and games on open shleves. I have art supplies in pencil boxes and glass jars in a cainet out there.
In their room, they have a small lego box that holds the toys, I put the dress up clothes in a big tote and those are in the closet. On the other side of the closet(this is a tiny closet) is a sweater box, with no lid and their stuffed animals fit in there. That is why we cleared out so many stuffed animals the other day, so they could fit in the box.
I hope to get a digital camera this month, and then I will post pics of my house!

Listing them all like this, it sounds like a lot of toys, but it really isnt. I live with my family of five in less than 800 square feet and my friend walked into my house the other day and said "It is so spacious in here"
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Old 02-01-2005, 08:59 PM
 
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We have four rubbermaid totes that the toys are divided into- every week I bring up a different tote and put the toys on the shelf.

Personally, I don't like toy boxes/chests because I feel like things just get lost in their. We do have a wooden chest from Ikea that we keep wooden blocks in.

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Old 02-05-2005, 11:01 PM
 
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We have 2 large plastic toys indoors for the winter in the living room (cozy coupe and kangaroo climber). Otherwise, we try not to store toys in the living room, but a few wander down and stay there each day. The older girls have their art supplies in the kitchen in some plastic boxes with locking lids (to keep the toddler out of the markers/pencils).

Upstairs in the older girls' bedroom we have just their beds, toys and books. (Their clothes are in the next currently unused bedroom. Keeps the messes separate at least!) The books are in shelves that my husband built into the wall just last month. Very nice! We have about fourteen shelf feet of children's books. The upper shelves of the bookshelves are used for toys in clear buckets, sorted by type. Also the clothing closet in their bedroom is just toys. Dollhouse on the floor of the closet, clear buckets again on shelves out of their reach. We find we do best if we keep the toys up on shelves and the girls have to ask for each one, putting away one box before getting another down.

Our bucket categories: Barbies, Barbie furniture, Polly Pockets/My Little Pony, Dollhouse Furniture, Playmobil, Lego, Baby Doll Clothing, etc. Sounds like a lot of stuff, and it is a lot of little pieces, but each bucket is not that large, about 10x10x18.

The toddler has her own room currently, with just a few toys that are kept in a toy wheelbarrow as well as three small open buckets on the floor with board books lined up in them.

We get rid of stuff frequently either to charity or to friends. I agree, being honest about what your kids really play with and getting rid of the rest is the first step. Next, what do you want your kids to play with? We have just one musical instrument in the house, despite the fact that we love music, I just couldn't stand the chaotic noise of tambourines and harmonicas. On the other hand, I have a small box of wooden Waldorf figures (expensive!) that the kids rarely play with but I love dearly. I get them down occasionally but wouldn't get rid of them for anything.

LeeAnn

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Old 02-07-2005, 11:27 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by averysmom
I use cloth, drawstring bags of different patterns for toys with lots of pieces.

If you are a little bit crafty you can make them yourself for cheap. If you are craftilly challenged, like myself, Bag and Forth makes wonderful bags. http://www.bagandforth.com/
Thanks for this suggestion! I ordered some and am anxiously awaiting their arrival! I keep thinking about what I'm going to put in them!

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Old 02-07-2005, 07:17 PM
 
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I had dh make a set of shelves for me, then we went through all the toys and separated "like" items into various bins. To make it easier for the kids to help put things away, I printed out pictures of what was supposed to be in each bin and taped it to the side. Since the little ones can't read, it didn't make much sense for me to label them with words, now dd can see what goes inside and it is much easier for her to help clean up.

I also go through the toys every couple of months and pare things down. With 3 little girls, you can only imagine how many dolls and doll paraphanalia (sp) we have in this house :LOL
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