Kid's Stuff!!

stir_fryiApril 27, 2009

I just cleaned out my daughters' bedroom that they share. So much stuff!! Not just toys but papers, jewelry, McDonald Happy Meal toys, lip gloss and enough stuffed animals for 20 kids.

I dread it when they go to birthday parties and bring home those little bags of junk that end up all over the house for a week before I can safely and secretly throw it all away.

My dd will be turning 9 soon and I am bribing her with an extra large present (American Girl doll or Nintendo DS) to NOT have a party this year. The thought of 8-10 friends bearing gifts is more than I can bear.

Also, my kids produce at least one "Masterpiece" a day (craft or picture) and have a fit if I throw it out. If I kept everything they made or brought home, I'd need a shed.

Please give me ideas on how to contain the beast.

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Regarding your kid's ''Masterpieces''...It's a common practice in some households now to take a picture of the actual piece. (Digitally ''saving'' it takes much less room so you don't need physical space.) I think it also helps establish a pattern of ''out with the old/in with the new'' if they can be part of the process of knowing items will only be physically displayed (in a finite amount of square inches...perhaps on their bedroom door?) for a short time. Let them take the best picture of it for their memories, and once a year you can easily go through the pictures with your kids to keep the most important/best ones. After can't keep it all; Where would you put it?

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 2:34PM
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My kids LOVED to do art project too!

We covered the art with clear contact paper and used them as placemats.
The kids had no trouble tossing them when they got funky....

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 4:23PM
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Just a about having a "charity" birthday party? Your daughter would still get to have a party and fun with her friends, but instead of gifts they could bring a toy or food to donate to your local shelter. Your daughters would not only get to have a great time with friends, but they could also feel good knowing they're helping someone not quite as lucky as they are.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 9:22PM
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stir fryi- We finally had to come up with the rule if one toy comes in one old one goes out. Art is the same- you make me a new picture, fantastic, throw the old one on the fridge away.

If you are sentimental about their artwork- try scanning it and saving it digitally.

ebear- I love the idea of a "charity" party- even making a donation to a local shelter/organization of the birthday girls choice.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 9:44PM
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I thought I was the only one bribing the kids not to have a party. I've offered $50 each. So far, the boys are waffling. I may have to up to $75 each. It's still cheaper than going through with a party and I don't have to stop progress on what I'm doing.

Pre-K and Kindergarten are the two hardest years to get through in terms of keepsakes. I have a 3-Ring binder for each child and stuff gets put in there. I'm also keeping a box for the bigger items and writing names and dates on the back. I keep this upstairs which for right now is just a dumping room. I'm slowing working my way up there to get organized. I figure I can keep the boxes for a couple of years and then get more perspective on what I want to cull. I have plenty of space in my house so no immediate decisions have to be made. The downstairs is our main living area. Keeping extras is not impacting us for right now.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 9:53AM
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When my kids were at school, I'd sneak in their bedroom and just bag up all that excess and put it in the trash. They had so much stuff they didn't even notice.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 1:04PM
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I would get rid of things that they didn't play with and they didn't even notice. Of course I would do it a black bag at a time. Stuffed animals take up so much room.

As far as art work. I would never through it out if they were home. I would wait until they went to school. I couldn't keep the 10 papers they made this week and again next week. The ones that I kept I would put inside the roll that paper towels came in. When I started getting to many I would toss a few.

When kids have to many toys they get overwhelmed on what to play with and of course if there isn't much room for storage they get overwhelmed when they have to clean up.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 11:40PM
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Oh, stiri_fryi, come sit over here by me!

We can keep each other company.

I have thrown my kids' things away completely without guilt. When they weren't looking.

I do wish, however, that I had simply *made* them throw things away, or at the very least, made them see what I threw out. No reprieves, but they have to hear my reasons for throwing it out. If I'd started than when they were littler, I'd have a much better situation now, and they'd be more willing to cull on their own.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 10:41PM
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