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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It's not like I am a neat freak or anything but I am starting to go nuts in this cluttery house! I am really tired of all these toys that have 346 parts each.
I am thinking of telling my family/in-laws that if they are wanting to give DS any x-mas gifts, please only give things that either a) don't have any detachable parts or b) don't have more than 4 pieces.

I spend so much time collecting stuff and sorting things back into little groups it's crazy!
MIL is big into garage sales. I think we must have gotten at least 15 of these cardboard infant puzzle things before DS was even 3 months old.
Monday after DH went to work (he contributes a lot to the messiness. DS and I can actually play very nicely together with only a few toys out rather than the whole living room littered) I sorted through the toy boxes and living room and actually threw away a whole garbage bag full of stuff!
It felt very liberating. Then I packed away nice toys that DS had simply outgrown (he's 16 months old now) and I wanted to keep for the next baby or to give away. Now I have a neat little pile of toys he actually likes to play with.

I can breath again!

But seriously: would it be super rude to ask gift givers to stick to some guidelines? I am already getting lots of stuff I wouldn't buy DS myself (electronic readers when I am perfectly capable of reading to him, etc. If I get any more animal puzzles I am going to scream!)
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by KBinSATX View Post
But seriously: would it be super rude to ask gift givers to stick to some guidelines?
I did.


I figured I'm the parent; I get to decide what my children play with. I don't want a bunch of useless toys that I have to worry about the safety of. I don't care if people think it's rude because I would rather her get NO gifts.. than junk. If I get junk, I may just return it or donate it.
 

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I don't think it's rude. I did it. I told my mother that I only wanted her to buy my dd a few (2 or 3) gifts for x-mas. I know that won't happen but I told her that I only wanted wooden or plush toys. I am sick of plastic. She agreed. We'll see if she really follows through or not though
 

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My family was given specific sites that I deemed appropriate for toy buying. We are also a no plastic toy household. Most of them did buy nice wooden toys etc. My sister on the other hand bought plastic toys that require batteries and make loud sounds. All things on my no no list.
:

You can always return things you don't like.
 

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I give obnoxious toys to the charity shop down the street. I'd rather not throw away plastic. I am lucky enough to have a small collection of cloth and wooden toys (and a few plastic ones that DD adores), but I know that lots of kids are needy for ANY toys at all.

So...no, I wouldn't ask people to stop giving toys/give advice on what kind to buy. I would express delight over toys that were particularly nice, and would just smile, nod, and "disappear" toys that I didn't want DD to become attached to.

Also, I would forget trying to keep all the parts of the toys separate. Throw them all in one big box. When your DS wants the toy with all its parts, he'll have fun hunting around for them.
 

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I don't think it's rude at all. We told our in-laws early on that we didn't want to deal with buying batteries all the time, so no electronic toys please. Granted, we use rechargeable batteries, but it was a more believable way of telling them no electronic plastic flashy toys.
And for the most part it worked. If they insisted on giving us toys we didn't think appropriate for the baby, we'd thank them and then return the toys or give them away.

Now with the Made in China scare, we've told them we aren't getting any toys or items made there anymore. Thankfully they're okay with it. That too might help you.

As for the clutter -- we bought some soft toyboxes and LOVE them. Here are some we got:

Big one -- this one is MUCH bigger than we thought it would be, and it comes with a roomy bag for carrying toys. The toybox is 24"x15"x15" and soft sided so it doesn't hurt when she leans into it.

Smaller one -- we keep her stuffed animals in this one. It's 13.4" x 13.4" x 13.4" and has handles.

Both of these soft toy boxes live in the living room, which is the main play area indoors.

For the bedrooms, I also bought two cheap, big soft baskets with handles from Hobby Lobby and put her toys in her bedroom and in the pre-bedtime toys in our bedroom in those.

We use her walker wagon as a travelling bookshelf. When she was learning to walk, it helped to have the wagon weighted down a bit.

We keep her tiny board books in old wipes containers. Same with crayons and whatnot.

Her outside toys go in a big, soft, plastic basket on the front porch. I got it at Target for cheap on close-out.

Her wooden blocks and things like that go in a small clear Rubbermaid bin.

Granted, most of those holders and things are a type of plastic, but she doesn't play with or chew on the toyboxes themselves, so we're okay with it. She's a bit clumsy (like me!) and using wooden toyboxes wasn't a good option for us.

It drives me nuts to have stuff all over the house, but I wanted the baby to have easy access to her toys and things, so focusing on soft toyboxes was a great solution for us in de-cluttering!

I also store her outgrown toys in bins in the closet, with her outgrown clothes. That way they're handy should we ever have another child, and if not, they're still handy for selling one day.

Oh, and we have this puzzle holder. The chunky M&D puzzles don't always fit with the pieces in their spots, so we just scoot the pieces a tiny bit and then they fit fine. It's wooden but it's really short and holds a ton of puzzles. I highly recommend it!
 

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I think that the recent product recalls from China will help give guidelines, or at least an excuse for them. "Due to the recent recalls of plastic toys from China, we're trying to stay away from those types and will focus more on wooden toys." Most people can't find wooden toys very easily or know where to look so you might get less toys, lol.

My MIL is totally into second hand stores, so I feel your pain. She means well, but some of the items are unwashable (a gigantic teddy bear, for one) so it's kind of "eww" to me to have something like that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by TinyMama View Post
Also, I would forget trying to keep all the parts of the toys separate. Throw them all in one big box. When your DS wants the toy with all its parts, he'll have fun hunting around for them.
He's only 16 months old. He has no idea what goes with what, especially those da** yard sale puzzles. For all he cares he's fine with A,G and H being under the couch, the cat sleeping with P and leaving R and W in the sandbox...
 

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I keep ds's interactive toys-blocks, puzzles, etc...on a high shelf and we play them together-only. Then put them right away. Other than that, he gets a small tote of toys to play w and I rotate them-to the closet or w friends.

I have been toying w the idea of gift-guidelines. My dh won't allow me to donate/regift MIL's toys. He thinks it is rude. BUT come on! She sent 3 boxes of stuff for his B-day!!! I am scared to see what X-mas brings. She also gives us clothes in the same way...I would rather have a few quality items than SO MUCH STUFF!!!
 

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I was fed up of picking stuff up all the time so now I get out maybe 1 puzzle, 1 shape sorter and 1 other toy a day plus some toys that are permanently around like balls and bricks. Ds plays with those toys all day, I put them away once when he's gone to bed.
 
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