If you are like most families in America and other developed countries, your kids probably have WAY more toys than they need. There are probably more DVDs and games than your family could ever play, and you all probably have more clothes than you could ever wear. Which makes me wonder WHY we will be giving each other MORE stuff? But I digress, that is a topic for another day…
What I want to help you do is to prepare your home for the new stuff that will come in. I know that even in families where the parents may try to limit their giving, by the time you throw in cousins and grandparents you still end up with STUFF. And while we appreciate this new stuff, as moms we sometimes stress about where to put it.
Clearing the toy clutter
Explain to your kids about children who don’t have toys for Christmas. Explain how there are children with so much less than they have. Jokingly reason that they don’t play with many of their things anyway. Explain that they will be getting plenty of new toys to play with and that they need to make space for them. Many parents use a certain container or shelf as a way to maintain how much their child has. It has to fit in that space.
Tanja Hoagland from the 30 Day Clutter Bootcamp suggests this fun game for getting your kids on board:
The 10 minute Toss
1) Take a minute to explain what you’re doing, why you’ve been
tossing stuff, and how it’s helping out their life and yours. Explain that
you’re donating items to charity to help out kids and adults who don’t
have as much as they do. Ask them to join in by doing the 10-Minute
Toss Game. Bait them with a reward if they agree to do it.
2) Put on tunes that all of you like and start shaking your booties.
3) The rules of the 10-Minute Toss:
- Everyone has to keep dancing the whole time. If anyone is caught not dancing, they have to get rid of more stuff!
- Each person grabs one item per minute that they own and want to donate to charity.
- They bring it to the living room floor and then go back foranother, dancing the whole time.
- At the end of 10 minutes (set a kitchen timer) anyone who doesn’t have 10 things in the pile has to add an extra 5 items.
- At the end of 10 minutes whoever has the most stuff in the pile wins.(They can win front seat rights for a month, staying up late rights for a week, an extra trip to the ice cream shop, you choose a good motivator.)
Taming the game and movie clutter
What do YOU do to get your house ready for the new things coming in?