Did your playroom look like a bomb went off in it after Christmas? Ours certainly did. It took me an entire day to get everything put away. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining- our girls were very generously blessed this Christmas, and I’m grateful for our family and friends who wanted to give our girls gifts. We had to find some place to put all the toys.
As always, I’m not an expert, but I am more than happy to share what I’ve learned along the way.
But first, a warning: you may want to go through your children’s toys when they aren’t home. Even if something is broken, and hasn’t been played with for over a year, my oldest will still pitch a fit if I try to get rid of it.
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, here are my tips for organizing your playroom or toys after Christmas:
1. Get rid of any toys that are broken, missing pieces, or haven’t been played with in awhile.
My kiddo had some toys that were broken, and she also had a few things that she never plays with. While she was at preschool yesterday, I took the opportunity to clean out these toys. Our kiddo hoards coloring books, so I even went through those and threw away the ones that had been completely colored. I ended up with a stack of 8 coloring books that were mostly empty, as opposed to 14 coloring books.
2. Categorize your toys.
This one is time consuming. Take all the toys and dump them in a giant pile. Yes, you read that correctly. Once you have made your giant mess, sort the toys into piles. For example, put the Barbies in one pile, toy food in one pile, puzzles in one pile, etc. We used cubby shelves and fabric drawers to store toys. We then put a label on each drawer to help our kiddo know where to put everything.
3. Add some shelves….if you can.
We used to have just the two cubby shelves and one vertical shelf, but my parents graciously agreed to get us another shelf for the playroom. We chose another vertical shelf to match the one we already had. I put the kids’ stuffed animals, dolls, games, art supplies, and books on the shelves. I also went ahead and made sure all the toys with small pieces were placed near the top of the shelf. Our baby is tiny and certainly not mobile yet, but I didn’t want time to get away from us! Speaking of shelves, vertical storage is your friend- storage without taking up large amounts of floor space.
4. Less is more.
You don’t have to keep every single toy in the playroom. Our oldest is four. She tends to have a short attention span when it comes to toys. She loses interest once the new wears off. I packed away some of her toys so I can cycle them through regularly and then they’ll seem “new” longer. We also keep some books and toys in Emorie’s room on her shelf, and a basket of baby books in the nursery. We have baby toys that are too mature for our two month old- she won’t use them until she is at least six months old. I packed these away and will introduce them when they are more appropriate for her.
5. Put bigger toys in the corner to conserve space.
The biggest things in our playroom (aside from the four shelves) are the easel, the kitchen set, the dollhouse, and several small wheeled toys. The kitchen and easel are in the corner, the dollhouse is pushed up against the wall, and the wheeled toys are stored underneath the easel. This gives us way more floor space.
Stay tuned- I am working on a mini-redo of our playroom and am not quite done. I’m hoping to reveal the finished product really soon.