If you’re a new parent and your home is anything like ours, one of the hardest categories to maintain is toys—a group that tends to grow during birthdays and double during the holidays. We’ve found that by spending a little extra time creating a system, you can keep the collection in check and pair down to just what your household needs.
Here are six of our favorite tips to help guide you through the process.
As you’re getting started, bring the kids into the conversation
If you have children, you probably already know, it can be challenging to keep things tidy. But if your child is old enough to join the process, getting organized together can also be incredibly rewarding. The process can help you learn to support each other in the space. Plus, when you get organized together, you share ownership over the upkeep. When everyone is bought in, your systems for staying organized can stick, so you don’t need major overhauls.
Remember, the size of the bin often dictates the size of the mess
If your child tends to dump everything out to find what they need (or just for fun), it might be best to pick up a set of Medium Bins. This will ease the clean-up process and help you keep your collection in check.
Create activity bins
If your child loves arts and crafts, try to set aside a bin or basket with all the necessary supplies. When it comes time to create, they (or you) will only have one item to grab, and when it’s time to clean up, everything will go back to its designated place on the shelf. It’s a much easier process to manage than making sure all the different supplies go back in their respective homes.
Keep it simple
Take a moment to think about whether the system you've created is sustainable. If you're the only one who knows where things go or how they should be put away, then your child will always need help. The way items are stored should be clear and straightforward.
Make sure the essentials are accessible
We recommend keeping anything that requires supervision out of reach, but there should be a few items readily accessible. By placing a set of Large Bins on the floor for items like stuffed animals, you can encourage the habit of returning those items to their proper home.
Find a second home for what you don’t need
Pairing down the toy collection is always a challenge, but fewer toys mean fewer things to keep track of, fewer things to clean up, and more space. That said, it can be tough to get rid of things, especially if you’re concerned you might donate something special. To avoid this problem, try storing a group of toys out of sight for a few months. The goal is to pair down your collection to the toys your child actively seeks out, and find a second home for what you don’t need.