Kids toys seem to be a major barrier to a decluttered and organised house, and 13 months ago, I had no idea just how many toys we would accumulate! To be honest, I have hardly purchased any toys for Miss M, simply because I've been given so much! I have come up with a system to storing all these toys (which will constantly change as the toys change!) which makes tidying up after she's played with them so easy.
Obviously the less toys you have, the less you have to pick up, and what I've heard from friends with older kids is that they tend to play with the same toys anyway (so they would hopefully play with their toys more if they had less). Another trick too, is having a certain place for everything.
We don't have a playroom, and our house isn't massive, but I've been able to utilise the space we do have. I pick up after Miss M twice a day - during her morning and afternoon naps. There's not point in tidying up her toys any more than that, because it's a game to her - Mummy packs her books away, and Miss M pulls them all out! You have to laugh lol.
In our loungeroom we have a 16-cube storage system from Bunnings which holds our DVD's, and on the bottom row are 4 fabric boxes also from Bunnings which hold some of Miss M's toys.
The first two boxes are soft toys and dolls:
The 3rd box has her play food in a container, and her tea-set in another container. She can't open these yet, so I just take these out when we are playing with them.
In the 4th box are stacking cups, dolls clothes, her toy vaccum, and containers with instruments and dominoes.
We have a small bookcase with all her small books (board books on the bottom rows she can reach, and paper books (that she will attempt to rip!) are up the top). Miss M loves flicking through her books, and we read some together each day.
As her bookcase is so small, her larger books are kept in a $9 wire basket from Kmart which sit beside the 16-cube storage system.
Also in the loungeroom are her chairs and table. The chairs were only $5 each from Kmart (blue is available too) and I picked up the table (which is actually a side table) really cheaply off a local buy swap and sell site. Underneath is another $9 wire basket which has a few toys Miss M likes to play with often. We only have one puzzle so far, so I've sat this on top.
In our sunroom, we have added in this storage unit for more of Miss M's toys, and beside is a pram and a Little People dollhouse (all given to her!)
I'm not as worried what ends up in each of these, as long as they fit neatly inside. There are Fisher Price toys, things to stack, sorting games, a train, a toaster and kettle etc.
Over the other side of the room I have lined up her ride-on wooden truck, lawn mower, shopping trolley, camping chair and high chair. These are easy to keep lined up (so far!)
As detailed in last week's post, this is Miss M's busy bag container, which she will have lots of (quiet) fun with when she's older.
That's it for her toys, except for a couple in the car. I am hoping to keep the toys she has to a minimum, and give away a toy each time she is given a new one (which will help her learn to give later on as well). I'm hoping if we always have a home for her toys, that they will continue to be easy to tidy up each day.