Like so many others, I am in an organizing mood as of late. Possibly it's due to the new year and the need for things to feel refreshed. More likely it's due to knowing that we plan to sell our home within a couple months and I'm trying to get our spaces ready. (Alternate reading: I'm trying to declutter on a magnanimous level!)
Aaron & I semi-tackled the pantry last weekend and I'll share pictures of that when I get around to doing more but it wasn't a huge change and I don't have "before" pictures so I'll have to explain how it looked previously.
Today rather, I'm focusing on how we decluttered our kids' rooms. This was a multi-step process for sure and my hope is that it remains clean at least until pictures are taken for the house sale.
I don't really have "before" pictures of these spaces because I didn't like to look at the constant clutter, and I struggled to think of how to get toys off the floor. The boys have lots of buckets and bins in their room that we were encouraging them to put their toys in, but toys were just haphazardly placed in them which meant they might only be half full and not fit on the shelf properly which led to toys randomly being placed all over the floor. Also, everything was all mixed up so if they were searching for something particular, all the toys would end up on the floor and most likely would not be put away.
In Walmart this past week, I bought two canvas bins (one for boys' room and one for Avery's room). These bins kind of spurred along a new inspiration to organize.
In Avery's room after Christmas, we bought a red storage bin and put her stuffed animals and baby dolls in it. She has a vintage doll bunkbed and we use it for shelves. She has a few baskets on it (one for her favorite doll's clothes, one for her most played with Barbies, and one for dress up clothes). She also has a couple small plastic bins with lids and I moved the rest of her Barbies into one of these bins, then I put Barbie accessories in the smaller bin. These are stacked in her dress-up basket where she can easily access them and easily put them away. She used to have her big Barbie toys (camper, grocery store) in a striped canvas bin on her floor but it took up so much space. I eventually figured out if I really moved all of her stuffed animals to the red storage bin, I could free up the lower level of the doll bunk bed to put the striped pink bin. I put her Paw Patrol characters into a clear zipper bag and placed it under the bunk bed. Next to the pink bin, I placed the new canvas bin from Walmart & we're storing her horses and unicorns in that bin. The only things on her floor now are the Polly Pocket unicorn, the Paw Patrol tower & a trash bin.
It seems so much more spacious! For the moment I'm keeping her gigantic unicorn bean bag on her bed since it takes up so much space. This might move back to grandma's house when we list our home.
In the boys room, we have done ALOT of work over the past couple weeks. The boys spent New Year's morning sorting through toys & really deciding which ones they wanted to keep. We've made one run to the donation center and still have one or two loads to do over the new few weeks (the donation center was overwhelmed with stuff on New Year's day so we're giving them time to process what they've received before we inundate them with more things).
Noah has collected garbage trucks and police cars for four years or more and amassed quite a collection. We brought out a big plastic bin to the living room last weekend and lined up every garbage truck, police car, firetruck, and bus and told him he could keep whatever fit into the bin (with the lid still being able to close). He did VERY well and this eliminated about a third to half of his collection.
Yesterday, we hauled out every bin and bucket of toys into the living room and sorted them according to type ("emergency vehicles," "Legos," "Utility Vehicles," "Random Toys" etc.). Then we selected bins to match the amount of toys in each category (so "emergency vehicles" like hot wheels size police cars and police stations etc. were placed into an appropriate sized bin). These bins were then placed accordingly on their shelf. Today we reminded them that if they play with a toy, they should put it back in its bin before moving on to something else.
Tonight, the boys & I spent some time in their room cleaning out from under the bunk bed. We eliminated half a garbage bag full of trash! Little torn up slips of paper, broken toy pieces, etc. are now no longer hiding in the room. Taking pictures of the clean area & loads of floor space to prove to ourselves that this can be done was a great boost to our morale!
I feel WAY more at ease about the potential to photograph these rooms for a listing and I hope that playtime is more enjoyable for my kids since they can easily find the things they enjoy.
Until Next Time,
Much Love, Reba