Eco-thrifty Living Blogger Zoe Morrison, shares her top tips for reducing 'Toy Clutter!'
"I don’t know about your children but my kids have their favourite toys that they play with all the time. The rest of them - they find interesting for a bit but then they ignore them for months. I recently had a massive clear out of the kids' toys and literally took around half their toys away. I waited a week and neither of them mentioned anything – they didn’t even notice! At the end of the week I asked them if they wanted to keep any of the toys. They took one or two and the rest we donated to their school. My younger son loves being able to play with his toys with his friends at school and I feel we are still getting good use out of them... And more importantly they aren’t cluttering up our home.
The toys that the kids find interesting for a bit are good toys to have..but really they need to be rotated. For example, puzzles, games, dressing up costumes (although we have some favourites here that they wouldn’t want to rotate) and large toys like big cars or castles. There are various options for decluttering your home of toys which include the following:-
1. Hide some of the toys away for a bit and then put them back out after a while. Hide some different toys or even just move them to different drawers or cupboards.
2. Borrow toys from a toy library for a short while and then return them and choose different ones.
3. Host a toy swap party. Ask your children to choose some toys they are happy to swap, invite some of their friends round and ask them to bring toys to swap. Put everything out on a table and let them take it in turns to choose which toys they want. You might be surprised that at the end of the toy swap party you end up with more than you started with though. From my experiences of swapping parties people take less than they bring!
I tend to do a combination of all three of these. I think toy libraries are great, but my nearest one is out of the way for me so I can’t go too often. Last year I ran a toy swap stall at the school summer fair and I plan to make it a regular feature at school events. I also plan to host toy swap parties at home as well.
It's now great watching my kids really enjoying playing with their toys and getting the most out of them. I love the inventive ways they turn under a chair or the bed into a whole new world to explore.
Remember, when your oldest child does grow out of their toys, but you're saving them for little number two or three...! You can free up valuable space in your home by storing them away with a Storemate until your toys are ready to return home again for a second life."
Zoe Morrison writes ecothriftyliving.com a lifestyle blog documenting her experiences of making and saving money through being eco-friendly. She can often be found chatting on Twitter at @ecothrifty and you can keep up to date with her latest posts on Facebook.