My daughter, 2 years 6 months, has turned into quite the tornado! We have done our best to teach her to play in her bedroom, for short periods of time, but in ten minutes she is capable of removing every item off every shelf, empty every basket, turn over her big toy box, pull everything out of the dressers, take her sheet off, dump out her shoes, and move her brother’s bed. It was like she was destroying the room on purpose instead of playing in it. We do our best to have our children go to beds with clean rooms, so cleaning EVERYTHING she owned everyday was getting to be too much.
I never intended on my children having so many fancy toys, but since they were virtually all gifts I kept them. So instead of purging and donating the vast majority, I purged and put 2/3 of the toys into the closet. I did not get and ‘after’ picture, but my kids loved the new set up so much they spent their afternoon playing with toys they forgot they had. It was WONDERFUL. I have no idea how children think, but for some reason, having less toys out made them focus more on individual toys and less on mess making. Things were still where they belonged when they were finished playing. Complete transformation.
We are not home very often, but every few visits home we will rotate out different toys and books to keep their interest peaked and the mess manageable.
Maybe some parents are so much more amazing than I am that they can teach their children to play without making too much of a mess. (if that’s you PLEASE tell me how you do it ;) Since I’m not that amazing, I’ll just teach my children to help me clean up the messes they do make.
Tomorrow, I tackle the clothes…