Keeping the kids’ toys in some discernible order may seem like an impossible task (and sometimes a pointless one), but with a storage system and plenty of storage space, the toy clean up won’t seem as impossible.
Cleaning up the kids’ toys is a lot like painting the Harbour Bridge: once you’re finished, you have to go back and start all over again. This leaves you with two options: banish toys altogether (though we imagine you’d soon find yourself with a sly toy racket on your hands) or implement a toy storage system that makes the clean up easier for you and the kids-if you go with the latter, try and keep toys organised with a system like this:
- Before you do anything you need to sort the headless Barbies from the 1000 piece puzzles that only have 69 pieces in their boxes-toss this stuff out. Once you know what you’re working with, arrange everything into categories.
- Make sure you have a place for everything and that it’s easy to find things and return them back to their home-if a much-used toy is difficult-to-reach shelf, for instance, it will never go back to where it came from. Likewise if a shelf or container is too full.
- Label everything and we mean everything. Label every shelf, container, hook or cupboard so there can be no excuse for not knowing where something goes. It’ll also make toys easier to find, which means the kids won’t have to tear the place apart to find what they’re looking for.
- Keep some extra storage containers in the lounge and other areas the kids are likely to play-this will make the clean up easier when you’re in a hurry.
- Don’t leave the clean up until the end of the week or the end of the month or until the kids bedroom looks like Chernobyl-make sure they’re tidied up at the end of each day and returned to their correct storage spaces each time.
Don’t forget our previous tips for making rooms seem spacious-kids love to have space around them while they’re playing, so make sure your storage shelves or containers don’t take up too much playing space.