Saturday, December 31, 2011

Out with the old, in with the zoo

Before the Christmas gifts entered our house, I knew the play room was reaching its saturation point.  It wasn't completely overrun with toys, but no more cars would fit in the car cubby.  Pull one book from the shelf, and three close neighbors would escape with it. 

We know we are very fortunate that Sophie and Michael are given new toys so generously by family and friends.  Even a new neighbor said she ran into Santa and brought over a couple of goodies for them.  But in order to keep our little home functional and moderately attractive (and to keep my sanity), I knew the full load of Santa's sleigh would have to be dealt with differently this year.

Here was my solution:

Mike took some outgrown baby equipment from our basement living space and storage room (baby bath tub, jumperoo, etc.) to a local resale shop to free up some of our prized real estate.  Although I still have several bins of outgrown clothes and smaller items to sell, we just couldn't wait for a mom-to-mom sale for everything. 

In the storage room I stacked six new clear bins of toys that previously resided on shelves in the play room.  Let's be honest, this was all just another excuse to put my love of sorting and my label maker to work.  We have a bin for books, another for instruments, one for stuffed animals, and so on.  I also bought one huge tub for larger plastic toys and intend to rotate everything through the play room again over time.

New table

Old beads, meet new push and pull toys.

I should have taken a before picture.  But trust me, this is a much lighter load.

For the time being, the selection upstairs is a tad sparse.  However, Michael and Sophie seemed perfectly satisfied with some go-to favorites and a handful of thoughtfully chosen new toys this afternoon.  I look forward to introducing some brand new ones in the weeks to come and making some old toys new again after some time out of sight works its magic.

Where there used to be a jumperoo and exersaucer

While I'd love to move into a larger home, for now I'll have to keep the old gear flowing out as new items come in and find other creative solutions as needed.  Perhaps one option down the road will be to convert our basement living space into a larger play room.  Today, thankfully, out with the old and some reorganizing made room for the new.  Welcome home, horsies!

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