We don't buy much. Our parents give the kids SO much stuff. We live in an apartment, 900 sq feet, four people, which is completely do-able but with stuff constantly coming in and no closets, it's a problem.
And yeah, we tell them to please limit gift giving, give lessons, experiences, whatever but nothing has changed much.
How do I get rid of it all? What do I do with what's left? How do I get myself organized? It's really driving me crazy!
Sorry for the freak out.
A tradition in my family that is not seasonally helpful, but that I love is the weekend after Thanksgiving is spent gathering toys, clothes, and stuff to donate to the homeless shelter. We get our closets clean, make room for the anticipated overabundance of the coming season, and become aware of how much we have, with an attitude of gratitude.
Rhu - mother,grandmother,daughter,sister,friend-foster,adoptive,and biological;not necessarily in that order. Some of it's magic, some of it's tragic, but I had a good life all the way (Jimmy Buffet)
drop them over.
next time say oh thanks but now she has two of the same thing.
once you bring a gift 'back' to the store they will feel badly and ask.
You could ask about starting traditions that involve buying, my mom buys shoes for every kid on their birthday its great and I know to expect it.
8 might be enough?
Or maybe 9 will be?
EDD September 18, 2015
I love the idea of bringing it back to the gift giver's house! A great way to swing that is to say 'we have soooo many toys, this gets lost in the shuffle, I'd rather keep it here where it can be a special toy she plays with when she visits and associates with her grandma, etc etc'
We live in a hundred year old house, and it's challenge to store things.
It makes me realize how materialistic we are compared to people one hundred years ago.
I'm looking into those closet units at Ikea. I have one wall that may become a closet.
Ikea is a great place for storage ideas. European houses usually are much smaller than ours and the people are generally more creative with space and storage.
We just had a big decluttering the past couple of weeks, too. I reduced her stuff down to My Little Ponies (dolls and one playset), model horses, Angelina dolls and one playset, a shoebox sized container of Barbies, art supplies and Play-doh (they have their own cabinet under the fish tank), 10 games and a collection of books. The books are in our livingroom. My toddler has more toys but we culled them down to what we can fit under the bed in storage drawers and what we can fit on one small shelf in her closet. Both kids seem perfectly happy with fewer toys and they play with them in very creative ways.
Originally Posted by plagio
there is just so much stuff floating around out there that it's easy to snap things up if you need them, and hopefully easier to let them go when you want to.
The only problem is DD is still at the age where she doesn't let go of anything easily, though out of sight is out of mind. She was very upset the other day that we got rid of my mother's old couches (my parents still can't get over how fast I had those couches gone - yay freecycle!)
My kids closet was big enough for a wire thng that has 4 shelves(free from my parents who no longer had a use for it), and on the shelves I put dish pans (around $1 ea. at Target), ea shelf could fit 2 dishpans. Then I filled ea dishpan with their books, standing upright, that way they are easy to flip through and see the titles, and easy to put back in. They have a ton of books so this really helped. Next to the wire shelf thingy we have a toy bin, this kept all the toys and books in the closet and freed up more space in the room. I know a lot of people don't like the toy bins, but they worked fine for us, guess my kids have a lot of small toys. (Legos, wooden blocks, little people). The big shelf at the top of the closet could fit 4 huge rubbermaid bins with lids, where I would keep the extra toys. I would rotate the toys every few months with the toys in the bin and they were like new again. The containers were not see through, so my kids would mostly forget there were more toys up there and not nag me about them.
I kept each person's extra sheets and bed linens in under the bed storage boxes under their bed.
Each season I would clean out their drawers and rotate out of season clothes. The out of season clothes that I thought they still might fit into next season, went into their old toy box. I had hated using this big wooden chest as a toy box but it works perfect in the back of my big closet, as clothing storage. In my closet I also kept a wire shelving thing that had sliding drawers, for all of our homeschool stuff we were working on, since we had no extra cabinets or closets for it, or even room for an extra bookcase.
In my kitchen I had a wall organizer that had pockets for scissors, pens, odd and ends, since I couldn't spare a drawer as a junk drawer. I also had a wicker basket on the bottom shelf of my pantry to hold kitchen towels, pot holders, etc. since we didn't have an extra drawer for kitchen linens either.
The thing I am looking forward to most about my new house is all the closets, since I've been there with the limited storage space. Who needs crown molding and corian countertops, it's the extra storage space that got me.
Former wearing, ing, pole dancing, pushing, survivor & single mama extraordinaire to .
Now that's a mouthful!!!
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Originally Posted by Shiloh
well since grandma thought that toy was so great and you don't have space she'd LOVE to have it at her house for the kids when the come play
drop them over.
We have 3 people in <800 sq ft, with very little closet space and no storage (attic, basement, garage...). I find that it is a constant process. Each time I tidy a room, I am removing a few things. I don't know where the stuff is coming from, lol! But, when I look with a critical eye, there is always stuff that can go--that no one will miss.
And I remind myself that decluttering begins at the point of purchase. I may love, love, love that thriftshop bargain, but I love my living space more. Or dd may love that wonderful toy, but she needs the living space more so that she can enjoy the wonderful toys she already has.
Dh, otoh, is another issue. Now that I think of it, I *know* where all that random stuff is coming from
I was looking at one of the wardrobe things from Ikea for by the front door to deal with some of the clutter from comings & goings. They also have a ton of great ideas for how to better use space. My big problem is the emotional part of getting rid of stuff, but I've come to a point where I feel I deserve to have a nice space to live in & I don't want expectations to determine what I have in my house, but what I love. It's hard & I'm still working on it .
I agree with the grandparent thing though...go for experiences rather than stuff. My mother usually renews our children's museum subscription every year & we also belong to the Bronz Zoo & the local Y. Also, if it's too big, just tell them you don't have room & want to keep it at their house to play with. If they don't respect your wished, then feel free to return it.
We ended up purging a TON of stuff when we moved into the space, and I kept decluttering the whole time we were there.
We bought a wardrobe from IKEA as well (for underwear/ socks, my DH's clothes and we used the biggest drawers for linens -- one side was sheets and pillowcases, the other side was towels.)
We had another dresser for the front door, where we kept hats and scarves and such.
We didn't have any baby stuff at the time to deal with (that was where we lived when we first started TTC, and we moved twice in the time it took us to actually concieve!)
Originally Posted by girlie_librarian
My closets are teeeeny... The house was built in 1920 and they had fewer clothes back then, so there are clothes and clothes for days... :
I am leaning heavily toward the Ikea closet system. Ikea also has a bed with drawers underneath.
Her bedroom is the smallest in the house and has no closet.
Old houses are so quirky.
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