Lisa Leonard Designs

the great toy clean-out.

March 5th | older posts

on saturday i spent about 3 hours going through all of the boys’ toys–organizing and getting things together to donate. you may not know, but i’m not the most organized person. we had toys in baskets in the living room, toys under the coffee table, toys that no one played with and took up lots of space. i was brutal–if they didn’t play with it, it had to go. now the toys are organized in baskets under the bed and in the closet. everything is accessible. it’s amazing! i feel like i can breathe. and guess what…the boys actually play with their toys. funny how that works, isn’t it?! oh, and don’t worry, i tucked a few special things aside.

how do you keep on top of the toy clutter?

20 Responses

  1. Jayme says:

    Where did you get the baskets for under the bed? I really like those!

  2. Annie says:

    Oh, my favorite activity!! I love getting rid of stuff my husband or I don’t use or the kids! A couple of my tips are: Never, ever by something you are not 100% sure about. It keeps me from spending on unnecessary items and keeps the clutter at bay. Secondly, I go through my kids stuff and my stuff probably once a month. My mother-in-law goes to a bible study where they sell all of the donated items! So the church gets money and I get rid of my stuff! And some people get some nice stuff!

  3. bethann says:

    I was wondering where you got those baskets, too. I need a bunch of those.

  4. Leigh says:

    I have what we like to call the “toy rotation.” I basically change toys out about every 2 weeks. The toys not in use get to stay in the closet in baskets. What I love is that each time I change toys out it’s like Christmas to them!! It’s also much easier to get rid of “items” this way.

  5. Jen says:

    I like the baskets too and I’d like to know where you got them!

    I just did a toy purge this weekend, it felt so good. It’s always really hard for me because I feel so guilty getting rid of things that were given as gifts. They definitely have their favorites though, everything else just sits there!

  6. Lisa says:

    the baskets were from target a couple months ago. i think they were in the college ‘dorm’section.

  7. Dawn says:

    Oh, I love a good clean out!!
    We try hard to limit what comes in the door in the first place. The hardest thing for me is that we have a lot of handmade toys from relatives… it is hard to pass on those special items and well, we have too many of them! What to do? I good dilemma to have but dilemma just the same!
    Thanks for sharing some inspiration for spring cleaning out!

  8. Deanna says:

    We do some rotating as well.
    And we try to not buy toys ourselves but enjoy what special friends and relatives choose.
    What I’d really like to get better at is teaching my son to *want* to do a regular cleanout. Whenever I go through and purge/organize they enjoy their things so much more. I keep thinking I can start them on better habits than I’ve had!

  9. Theresa says:

    When the kids were little, we use to go into their rooms the day after Christmas and go through everything. I use to tell them that is they keeped all the stuff there would be no room for the new stuff. It is a trait that my 16 y/o still follows.

    Have you noticed that Legos and Duplo blocks seem to grow in numbers. I use to find them everywhere. :)

  10. rohanknitter says:

    We’ve always done pretty much what you’ve just described – a cleanout, a couple times a year. (usually once right after Christmas and once again in the summer) It was pretty easy to identify toys that the boys played with lots, (lego, matchbox, blocks, gi joe) and what was mainly clutter. Good news – now that they are getting older, they pretty much do it on their own!!

  11. Joanie says:

    So nice! Amen to getting that fresh feeling of having more space in the house!

  12. Cristy says:

    ha! my answer? i don’t. sigh. it stinks.

    cute baskets though. where did you get them?

  13. Kimberli says:

    LOL….that’s my answer too …HA..I don’t! Hence my blog name… =)

    The way I do it… I wait years, until I just can’t take it anymore, and I go in with the big black lawn and leaf bags… I think it’s time….

  14. Karyn says:

    Every year, after Christmas we send the kids to the grandparents for a night and we gather all the toys and put them in piles: trash, goodwill, keep. It is such a great feeling. What size clothes do your boys wear? Maybe I can send some hand me downs your way.

  15. Denise says:

    First, I *love* the little 2-shelf bookcase! So perfect for little ones!

    I have 2 kids, and each one has a big plastic bin for “their toys”. Smaller toys are in a storage unit with plastic bins.
    When my daughter gets older, I’ll do another toy binge. We donated a bunch to a family in need.

  16. deezie says:

    I just love those baskets. I love decluttering, it feels so good right:) Love the idea of the little tags on the baskets. How creative

  17. Lisa says:

    I cannot stand clutter. It make me absolutely, positively insane. I am constantly getting rid of c*r*a*p … when she gets new toys, I encourage her to give old ones away to ones not so fortunate. The tiny crap that collects… I throw away in small batches when I see she has not even so muh as glanced at it for some time. She never even misses it!

  18. Chrissy says:

    How timely! This is what I spent my week doing (in small increments b/c my son got sick and blah, blah, blah). I was sooo tired of the kids’ rooms being a mess – and sending them to their rooms wasn’t really working anymore b/c they could play to their hearts content – and our “playroom” doesn’t actually have room for toys (strange, I know). Our guest room was housing a bunch of toys, making that room pretty much unusable. So, I ended up choosing the largest room in the house and, after going through everything, sorted things into plastic bins with lids … by categories. This way, ONE room in the house might be a mess but I don’t HAVE to look at it. It’s not perfect especially since this room has all our armoires in it (we are currently in Germany and Germans don’t have closets in their houses so the military lets you borrow armoires). And my desk. And computer. So, the largest room in the house is getting pretty crowded but for the past week I have walked into BEAUTIFUL clean bedrooms. And that is so worth it!

  19. The Nester says:

    Oh MY GOODNESS this room is adorable–will you please be my mommy?

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