5/17/17

10 Awesome Things

Hello there! I did not mean to be away for so long. But LIFE. We have had so many extra things with the end of school. I'm thrilled to finally see the light of summer around the bend. Whoo hoo!


Today, I thought I would share 10 awesome things that I heavily endorse. Don't you love a good recommendation?!

1. Caveman Bars - these are are mostly nuts and some chocolate. I have been looking for a somewhat healthful and delicious bar to eat for breakfasts on busy mornings or for an afternoon treat.
Larabars - no.
Cliff bars - heck no.
Caveman bars - thumbs up.

2. For some reason I am just now catching on to Costco's premade dinners. Our family has recently enjoyed the stuffed bell peppers twice. They are fantastic. It's basically a homemade meal that I didn't make. And the price is so reasonable considering you get a night off from cooking.

3. LAKE pajamas. Since I'm a 34 year old woman I thought it was about time to buy a decent pair of pajamas. These pj's are heaven. 100% cotton which is a must.

4. I picked up the Aztec Secret face mask at Whole Foods. I love it. It burns in the best kind of way - you feel like it's doing something - ha!

5. And to follow the face mask...St. Ives Face Moisturizer. It is much cheaper at drug stores than on Amazon.

The mask and the moisturizer are great products for their price.

6. My 8 year old received this amazing swing for his birthday from grandparents. It has become the new hearth of our home. We spend so much time gathered around this swing. We even read the children's bedtime story by the swing one night over the weekend.

7. A reader introduced me to Primary Clothing a while ago and I have yet to buy anything. I do plan to because I think the idea for plain, brightly colored children's clothes is genius. I am all about their swim collection and will totally be buying some rashguards before the swim season begins.

8. I have heard the author (Andy Crouch) of this book interviewed on two different podcasts. Everything he said was so thought provoking and good. I'm adding the book to my TBR list.

The Tech Wise Family: Everyday Steps for Putting Technology In It's Proper Place

9. This is a lovely blog post about losing weight and staying slim. Such sound advice.

10. I have been all about knotting my tees lately. I find it goes great with skirts or when you want a neater look but do not feel up to tucking in your shirt.

What is awesome and what do you recommend?

4/25/17

More Streamlining

May is less than one week away. 

Never before have I needed things to run smoothly and efficiently than in the month of May.

May is the busiest, not necessarily signing up for extras but fulfilling prior commitments. School has its end of the year projects and celebrations. Dance is finished off with a recital. There is prep required for summer activities, camps, and VBS. And then there is the beautiful weather which has us staying out longer in the afternoons. Oh, and the usual stuff like laundry, meals, carpool, 4 year old tantrums, 1 year old tantrums etc.

So I'm streamlining like crazy. Today, I want to share 3 more things I've added to my list of ways to make life a bit more manageable and that are now part of my streamlining repertoire.

1. The 3 oldest kids got a pair of Natives. My friends have raved about these shoes. You can get them wet. There are not shoestrings involved. They are durable. These shoes are a one shoe wonder in that they cover all our shoe needs.

These are my kids ONE pair of spring/summer shoes. Sure, we have back ups, but these are the shoes. I chose these because my children can easily put them on themselves. And that makes my life so much easier.

 '
This one, easy shoe philosophy could totally be done with shoes you already have. I'm not recommending everyone has to go out and buy a pair of Natives (though they are great). But, it's worth considering with your next shoe purchase how involved you have to be as the parent in helping with kids' shoes.

2. I've gone hard core (again) with our color coded cups. Each of my children (and one neighbor friend) has an assigned color. George and Caroline each have a sippy cup. When someone asks for a drink, I say -"where's your cup?" - and they have to find it.

It is my hill to die on.

This has cut way back on dishes.


The one pair of shoes and the one cup thing are teaching us all to be more disciplined about keeping up with our stuff.

It is truly so much simpler, a paradigm shift creating real habit change!

Last but not least...

3. I'm taking full advantage of Walmart grocery pickup, averaging about once a week. Because it's  usually required that you reserve a time slot 24 hours in advance, it's forcing me to be more organized. This service is saving me so much energy because what is more exhausting than taking little kids to the grocery store?!


If you have not tried it, you have not really lived.

The comments were so great on the last streamlining post. Share if you have more ideas!

4/18/17

Spring Around Our House












Loving Spring over here! It's my fave. We can't get enough outside time. The weather has been perfection.

I'm looking for a new audio book to listen to. Suggestions? Finished Lincoln in the Bardo....I liked it, but don't openly recommend it. It's not for everybody.

Failing at tea. I'm drinking coffee as I type.

Also, as I type, my kids are having "room time."  This is a new thing for us - 30 minutes to 1 hour of quiet in their rooms in the afternoon. I'm loving it and they are learning to love it.

Laurie's kindergarten class is celebrating the wedding of Q and U tomorrow and I'm making this cake.

Stephen is turning 8 on Thursday. He is getting this Statue of Liberty 3D puzzle. He's already done the Titanic and an aircraft carrier.

Jennifer's 10 Item Spring Wardrobe - love it. I look forward to her videos every Monday and Thursday!

Got to go...room time is almost up!

4/11/17

Helping Kids Push Past Boredom

The other day it was hot and my kids got bored, a glimpse of summer :) They were begging to watch YouTube and play on the the iPad (uggh!).

This got me thinking...about summer and the endless hours of free time at home while the baby will be (hopefully) napping.
 
On one hand, I'm all for kids being bored. But I do think it's too much to ask them to "figure it out" for hours on end. Setting a little inspiration before them can go a long, long way. This is sort of a recent revelation for me.

As my kids get older, they have more of their own agendas and expectations. I'm learning that those agendas need to be carefully managed. I need to lead them, guide them, provide ideas for them - "run" their life so they don't run mine.

Serve them strawberries so they don't raid the freezer for ice cream, literally and metaphorically. 

This takes energy and planning on the part of the parent. It's hard.


When they were full of complaints on this particular Sunday afternoon, I pulled out a new pack of beads and some Legos. I held firm. No YouTube. No iPad.


They got lost in their creations.


 


As I prepare for the summer, I'm filing away ideas of things to do. Simple things. But I have a feeling that my attitude is my biggest challenge.



Thoughts?
Can y'all relate? 
What supplies/materials do you provide for your kids to keep them busy? 

4/6/17

Clothing Budget + Enjoying the Burn

The beginning of 2017, I set a strict clothing budget for myself. I even opened a separate checking account to keep all clothing transactions organized and separated from our main checking.

I was seeking strict accountability for what I buy and how much I spend on my clothing. Clothes are my weakness. If I'm tempted to impulse buy, it's going to be on my clothes.


Oddly, even thought I showed weakened restraint when it came to clothes and I had plenty of clothes, I wasn't buying the right clothes. There was still holes in my wardrobe and things that were not really my style...just not quite right. Worse, I kept buying similar items. Hello I do not need anymore button down shirts!

Setting a strict budget was my attempt to rein it all in.

I'm also keeping a list of each item I purchase throughout the year. The list allows me to really reflect on what I buy - How much did I wear it? Was this or that a good purchase?

I guess you could say I've made a hobby out of creating a wardrobe that I love. It's a creative outlet and it keeps me from dressing frumpy (as is so tempting for moms at home). It is a hobby that overlaps with the necessity that I get dressed everyday.

I'm almost 4 months in, and I'm really feeling the benefits of this strict budget.

- There is freedom in the budget. The money is allotted for me to spend on clothes, and I don't feel guilt about spending the hard earned family dollars impulsively.

(A word about my impulsive purchasing - what I mean is....impulsive for me, a person who is not very impulsive about purchases. It's relative. In general, I'm an under buyer.)

- I've become a more cautious and confident buyer. The budget provides clarity because if I'm going to spend my precious clothing allowance, I want to buy something I LOVE.

- It's made me patient. My allowance is enough to enjoy and buy beautiful, quality clothes. But it's not enough to run out and buy a full season's worth of clothes and accessories. It's a slow and enjoyable process.

Jennifer Scott describes in one of her videos (though I can't find the exact one) about enjoying the burn, the slow process of building a great wardrobe, buying the best quality you can afford. I love this concept - enjoying the burn. It's an exercise - to budget, to have self-discipline, to refine my style.

Do you have a clothing budget?
Are you satisfied with your wardrobe?
How much do you care about your clothes? A lot, a little?

P.S. You would be so underwhelmed if you saw how I dressed. I'm no fashionista. I enjoy timeless, simple clothing. Though I am trying to dress a little more elegantly by slowly acquiring more dresses.

4/4/17

Plating and 6:30 Dinner

Whenever my parents are cooking for a group, they will often plate everybody's meal and serve it like a restaurant does. Everyone gets a serving of each part of the meal, beautifully arranged on their plate. This does not mean you have to eat it, but it makes it easier on the server and it is a lovely presentation. 

An important part of the success of our 6:30 family dinner is plating all the plates at the same time. This is not a new invention, but new to me.

I used to prepare the children's plates, let them start eating, and then I would fix my plate. By the time I sat down, they were done and asking for more food or wanting to get up.


Last night we had our typical 6:30 dinner - minus my husband who was working later. We set the table, and then I plated the food (including my plate). I snapped a picture realizing how vital plating is to getting everyone to sit down at the same time, especially when my husband is not present. I really enjoy the formality of it and it enables me to sit with everyone while we eat.


I can see how eating family style or buffet style might work when the kids are a bit older. And maybe we'll tackle dress code one day, too. Laurie could not resist wearing her bathing suit to dinner last night. Whatever!

.....

I'm also thinking I need to do lunch this way in the summer when we are all home.

Do you plate everyone's food?

Family style? Buffet style? 

I've never given much thought to this, but it can really make a big difference for the cook and server in the enjoyment of meals.

.....

P.S. I loved every comment on Streamlining. Y'all gave me so many more ideas to think about. Thank you for reading and taking the time to share your wisdom!

3/30/17

Streamlining

When we had our 4th child, things got real. Not that they weren't real before, but adding another person + the combination of my oldest starting first grade made for a very demanding life. I now had "big" kids and little kids and a baby!

I had to get to 2 different schools during the day (preschool and big kid school). I had to wake up in the night with a newborn and set my alarm clock early to get everybody up for school. And don't even get me started on feeding all these people. The demands seemed merciless, especially those early newborn days. And honestly, it is still pretty challenging as we enter the toddler phase and the increasing homework load!
 

One day I took a step back and said what (WHAT on earth???!) can I do lighten my situation? I likened it to a business meeting, the kind where you would call your team in and discuss ways to make the company run smoother. What can we cut? What can we do better? How can we be more efficient? What can I streamline?

The list below is what I came up with...not in one sitting, but over the course of 6 months or so. This is the list I would give my younger, totally overwhelmed self. This is a similar list I gave to a friend and fellow mom of 4 not too long ago when she said "Help! Do you have any ideas? I'm drowning."

1 - hire some help

If you can afford to hire any sort of help - do it. We found a wonderful cleaning lady to come every other week. My husband said, "Let's view this expense like a utility." Re-framing it like that really helped me get over the expense. It's necessary for making our home run more smoothly.

Hired help could also be in the form of babysitting or yard work or even allowing yourself to get take out a couple nights a week without guilt.

2 - paper plates

Paper plates = less dishes to wash. I mostly use paper plates for dinner if the dishwasher is already full.

3 - auto draft your bills

If you are the family bookkeeper, you can save yourself so much time by putting your bills on auto draft. Most all utility companies and mortgage companies provide this option.This is a precious hour or two I can use for other purposes each month.

4 - Amazon subscribe and save

Dog food and diapers. Toilet paper. The things that you do not want to ever be without...sign up for a  subscription through Amazon. You will never be desperate, loading all your kids up at 5pm to go buy diapers. What a nightmare!

I especially like this for lager items because they take up so much room in the grocery cart.

5 - shoe station

Corral all your kids' shoes and put them in one spot. This way, the shoes are easy to find and it's easy for your kids to put them away.



6 - uniform basket (or church clothes or swim stuff basket)

Similar to the shoe station, keeping school uniforms or church clothes in one basket makes it so much easier to get everyone dressed! This will save you from running to all 4 corners of the house frantically searching for your son's brown belt and your daughter's navy blue leggings. It's all in one spot.

In the summer, I keep all our swim suits in one basket together, not in individual drawers and rooms.

7 - prepackaged snacks

A granola bar never hurt anyone. Embrace prepackaged snacks, especially if you have to pack school lunches - a few prepackaged items can give you so much peace. We also found that letting our kids raid the snack cabinet on the occasional Saturday morning gives the adults a little extra time to sleep. 

8 - if you have a baby, teach them to love their pack n' play

Teach your baby to spend a little time in the pack n' play each day. This is so helpful. Sometimes you need to unload the dishwasher quickly and efficiently without your 1 year old getting involved.

Just this morning, I put Caroline in her pack n' play with a puzzle while I did my make up and put some laundry away. She's 19 months old, a very active, never sitting still 19 months!

9 - quit something

There's a saying that I love "Why do today what you can throw out altogether?" Is there something you can quit, at least for a season while you're stressed, while you have 4 babies under the age of 6?

If there is something in particular that you dread and it totally frazzles you and it doesn't seem worth it - quit!

4 year old t-ball
Wednesday night church
school volunteering

It's not mandatory!

You have to put the oxygen mask on yourself first. 

One thing I quit doing was taking meals to new mom friends. Sorry new mom friends. I love you. Right now, it about kills me to take a meal to somebody. So I quit and I can take this up again when I don't have a toddler literally under my feet 24/7.

10 - Rest

Two nights ago, Stephen and I stayed up until midnight thoroughly enjoying ourselves, watching our new show.  The next day - unproductive and monster - are the two words that best described myself. I felt terrible. I had a headache. I over ate. I yelled. I was horrible, all because I did not get enough sleep.

Sleep is vital. Everything is better when you are rested. Aggressively developing good sleep habits is worth the effort! And sure, the occasional late night indulgence of TV happens. But it's not the norm.

Good sleep = better performance in parenting, in adulting, in everything!

 

How do you streamline?

I'm always looking for new ideas?

3/27/17

Adorable Boy Clothes

Over the weekend I was "shopping" for spring and summer kids' clothes, and I could not stop squealing to myself over these adorable Fiream boys' items. I would have died if this stuff was available at such affordable prices when my firstborn was really little.

I was compelled to do round-up! Too good not to share. Moms of little guys, you're welcome.




1 / 2 / 3
4 / 5 / 6
  7 / 8 / 9  


Revised to add: The Fiream brand cotton does not seem as thick and sturdy as the material used for minBoden. However, the girls Fiream clothes we own have washed just fine, and we have enjoyed wearing them. They are all 100% cotton. They are of lesser quality than miniBoden, but still pretty good. 

Links are Amazon affiliate links.

3/23/17

Pom Pom Trim Curtains

Caroline will soon be moving up and moving out of her teeny closet nursery. She's a great sleeper, and it's (almost) time for her to join her siblings on the other end of the house.

Almost 2 years ago when putting her nursery together, I made these easy, simple curtains out of white sheets and pom pom trim.

I can be so critical of my own projects and often grow unhappy with them over time, but I am still quite fond of these curtains.


I took a plain, white cotton sheet and cut it to the size of each window. Then I sewed the pom pom trim on the edges. Easy.



If you don't sew, I'm sure you could use fabric glue.


The pom pom trim adds such a nice touch, I think.


I'm going to miss this being her room. It's definitely bittersweet.

Link is an Amazon affiliate link

3/20/17

6:30 Dinner

We have never had a dinner time. But recently, after a long season of chaos surrounding when to eat, I set a dinner time, 6:30.

The issue at the center of all this is that my husband does not arrive home for the evening at the same time every day.

And so it goes...the children get hungry early, but I want to wait on daddy. So most of the time I feed the kids, and I wait (starving, hangry) until my husband gets home...unless I decide to go ahead and eat (alone) after the kids. This is depressing!

And it was happening more often than not.


On a whim, I declared a dinner time. And now, for almost 3 weeks, we have sat down to eat at 6:30.

Laurie likes to set the table, we light candles, turn on music, plate the food, say a blessing. I sit down with the kids, phone off, eating when normal people eat. There are still evenings when daddy is not home at 6:30, but having the time gives him a goal to work toward.

And now the kids are so funny, telling him, "Daddy, you missed dinner." Like it's a grand event! 



This dilemma is representative of many household "problems" that I continue to let happen. It does not even occur to me to take action and seek a solution or improvement.

It was such a win, and it's got me thinking - what else can I fix?
....

Dinner time has been especially helpful with the time change, too. It feels too early and light outside to eat, but it's time. And it's important that we get on with dinner, so we can get on with bed time because we still have 2 full months of school!

.....

Do you have a dinner time?
Do you eat as a family every night?

3/10/17

My Winter to Spring 10 Item Wardrobe

After a year of having a capsule wardrobe, I have settled on Jennifer L. Scott's 10 item wardrobe philosophy. 

winter 2016 capsule wardrobe
spring 2016 capsule wardrobe

The premise is you have 10 core items that are the workhorses of your wardrobe, items like jeans, dresses, and structured tops. These are the clothes you wear every day in heavy rotation.

And then you have extras - t-shirts, leggings, coats, special occasion wear, church clothes, etc.

I love this idea of having a small, beautiful, workable wardrobe. In my 10 item wardrobe pictured below everything mixes and matches so well. Literally, all the tops go with all the bottoms. Getting dressed is fun - and easy - and I feel put together on the most harried of days.

This little collection of clothes was spontaneously organized because we are having the mildest  winter, and it looks like spring will be, too. My winter clothes were just not working! I can count one hand the number of times I wore a coat.

In attempt to align my clothing with the weather, I purchased a few tops, a new pair of white jeans, and my mom bought me a dress. Combined with some items I already owned and ....

Ta-da! I feel so refreshed!
.....

My 10 items

3 blouses
2 light sweaters
1 long cardigan
3 pairs of jeans
1 dress







A huge goal of mine is to wear more dresses and skirts as we move into the warmer months. I hardly own any dresses because last year I was nursing a baby and the year before I was pregnant. So I will slowly buy them as the budget allows.


I will wear this winter to spring wardrobe probably through the end of April. I kept the sweaters in because temperatures will be all over the place, and we will most likely have a handful of very cool mornings. In my extras, I have t-shirts for warm days and coats for cold ones. 

What do you think? Would you have a 10 item wardrobe?

.....

To give you a little more information about the 10 item wardrobe, Jennifer L. Scott has a fantastic TED talk.

She also has a wonderful blog, YouTube channel, and has authored 3 books. I have really enjoyed following her the past couple of years, and I have acquired so much wisdom about making the most of everyday life! Thank you, Jennifer.

3/7/17

Hi - and Three Things

I have every intention of blogging more, but those darn kids!

So today I will say a quick hello, thanks for your comments, and here's 3 great things!

1- I stayed up late last night reading The Wife, The Maid, and The Mistress by Ariel Lawhon. If you like mysteries, it's great! It's based on the 1930 real life disappearance of New York Supreme Court Judge, Joseph Crater.

 

2. A thought: when and why did women stop dressing up? I'm thoroughly depressed at the everyday wear options and norms of the American SAHM. Jeans, I'm over you. One huge goal of mine is to wear more dresses and skirts. But they are hard to find! This gorgeous Boden Skirt caught my eye. I'm thinking on it. Also, if it worked, I would shorten it a little.


3. Last night we had Change-Your-Life-Chicken for the second time. It is EASY, amazing, and delicious, a one pan wonder. And there are plenty of leftovers to get me through a few lunches, too.



What are you loving? 

What do you think about women and their everyday dress? I'm currently obsessed with this topic. 

Amazon link is an affiliate link

2/23/17

Besides Coffee and Jesus...My 3 Sanity Savers

My oldest is coming up on 8! That means I've been home with babies for almost 8 years. I absolutely love being home with my kids, taking care of the house, and generally managing all the things. BUT, as beautiful as it is, the mom thing can be an excruciatingly boring, thankless, and isolating job.

I'm preaching the choir, right?


In the early years, to keep from losing it, I embraced hobbies like photography, blogging, and sewing. But as time went on and we had more kids, that time for myself has dwindled down to the nubbins.

This has been my biggest struggle over the years...the ever diminishing time for myself.

However, I'm still hanging on to 3 things that save my sanity (besides coffee and Jesus, of course). I dabble in these 3 things every day and they continually minister to me on the darkest of mom days.

1. Audio books and podcasts.

I listen to audio books using Audible.

My most recent favorite was The Boys in the Boat, and I'm currently loving Parenting: The 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family... by Paul David Tripp.

I listen in the car, while I'm cleaning the kitchen, on walks, etc. Love love love me some audio books.

As far as my 3 can't miss podcasts...I've mentioned them all on the blog before.

The World and Everything In It (news)
Sorta Awesome (everything awesome)
What Should I Read Next? (books)

2. Pilates

It's really hard to find time to exercise, and I discovered that the only way to be consistent is to do it when Caroline takes her nap. I use a subscription service, The Balanced Life with Robin Long that provides workouts varying in length from 10 - 40 minutes. Laurie even joined me today!

This is geared towards moms who don't have any time! So it's perfect for me. I love that there is not a lot of talking, music, or storytelling during the videos. It's strictly business. I also appreciate the modest workout clothes that Robin wears. I always have kids walking in on me while I'm exercising. Some of the YouTubers I've used in the past have been so scantily dressed, I was always stopping the videos. 

3. Wine

I drink 6 oz of wine every evening. Yes, I measure. I'm prone to headaches and much past 6 oz crosses the line from being beneficial to migraine city. My wine ritual means it's quitting time. But since I'm a mom and it's never really quitting time...it just means I stop doing housework and move on to the evening activities of dinner and bedtime routines. I shift from being house-focused to more people-focused.

The wine is symbolic. It's when I switch from being Martha to Mary.

So...

How do you deal with the relentlessness of motherhood and homemaking?
What are your daily things? Hot baths every night, reading, running?

2/10/17

Netflix Recommendations and Links

Netflix is killing it. I can't believe how much great stuff there is to watch right now. As I was scrolling through today, these caught my eye.

Woman In Gold

True story - Jewish woman tries to recover a famous piece of artwork from the Austrian government that was taken from her family during WWII. Fabulous!



The People v. O.J. Simpson

Tragic and fascinating dramatization of the O.J. Simpson trial. I was too young to really know what was going on when this actually happened. So so interesting.

This is a series. 


For the kiddos...

Finding Dory


Babe

Remember Babe? Great movie.


Honorable mention...The Parent Trap....the old one. My kids watched it a few weeks ago and loved it.

....

What are you watching these days?

.....

Ok, how bout some links?!

I'm trying a new budget thing for clothes for me (needs it's own post), and this J.Crew red bathing suit was the first thing I bought. I love it!

For When Systems Can't Save You
I'm such a systems lady. For better or worse.

The Little House books were released on Audible this week, read by a wonderful narrator - Cherry Jones.

If you are planning to make sugar cookies for Valentine's Day, here's the recipe you should use.

Laurie and I love watching The Very French Girl do her makeup.

On my menu this week...black bean and goat cheese quesadillas. Yum!

Speaking of dinner...I'm working on committing to a more consistent dinner time complete with candlelight.

One week of life with a cat and we are still standing....

Ok, signing off. Have a great weekend!

2/7/17

Toy Storage

The Spooner kids don't have a basement or a playroom full of toys.

We have one toy closet, 2 baskets of dress up clothes, 2 small baskets in the main living area, a toy kitchen, a dozen or so stuffed animals/dolls, several outdoor riding toys, plenty of books and games, and some crafting supplies. We also have 4 extra large stuffed animals, gifted to us by my parents with the birth of each child.

We have a huge yard and mild weather year round. I realize what an advantage this is!

That pretty much sums it up.
.....

Kids don't need tons of toys. In fact, the quality of their play is much better the less they have.

There are countless articles and research out there supporting this, but I'm speaking from my personal experience.

Without a bajillion toys...my kids are more creative, they play outside more, they read, they craft.
....

Fewer toys is for their well being, but even more so....it is for my well being.

Over the years, as we have pared down our toys, I have become a better parent!

I have become a better parent because our home is more manageable. 

I have less to pick up. Also, my children can actually play a valuable role in clean up because it's not overwhelming.

But let's keep it real...it can still get really crazy. And my kids are not always contentedly doing a puzzle with classical music playing in the background. They whine, complain, fuss, get bored. They are human.


A low point over the weekend.
.....

Here are my three nuggets of advice. This is what my 33 year old self would tell my 26 year old self....

-Don't have more toys than you can comfortably store.

-Don't have more toys than your child (or children) can reasonably clean up.

-Declutter the toys until you are not constantly irritated. You'll know when it's the right amount.

Take these tips with a grain of salt. Kids go through phases and stages. You do what works. You do your best!
.....

Here's how we store what we have...

The building toys - Legos, Magna Tiles, blocks, and trains are stored in clear plastic containers.




These containers are stored in our toy closet in Laurie's room.
 

I'm pretty conservative on my purchases of storage bins and containers. I repurpose shoe boxes, plastic ice cream tubs (the gallon size for smaller Legos), and other sturdy boxes to round up all the odds and ends that children collect.


We have one basket of girls' dress up and one boys' basket. I regularly go through and throw out torn or stained dress up clothes though I try to keep enough for a group of 4-5 friends to play and all have a costume.


This toy kitchen is mostly abused, but I'm keeping it long enough to see if Caroline will play with it.



These baskets hold the toys we keep in the teen room. I use them as a catch all if I'm doing a quick clean up and don't feel like sorting everything.


We do birthdays, Christmas, and gifts from grandparents. There are surges when we have more toys, so I will store things away or do a purge or find plenty of forgotten or broken toys that can be trashed.

There is an ebb and flow.
....

Please share, do you struggle with the amount of toys your kids have?

How do you store your toys?

Advice? Questions?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...