There is always so much pressure to shower children with gifts, toys, games and the latest technology. As the holidays approach, and this pressure intensifies, I want to offer my approach and some tips for staying clutter-free with kids:
*Set clear physical boundaries to set limits and respect the space that you have. If your kids have one bookshelf, you should limit the quantity of books to what fits comfortably on those shelves. (You can always go to the library or trade with friends). If you have six bins or cubbies for toy storage, let that boundary dictate how many toys you own.
*When the holidays are approaching, we make sure to set aside a little time to review and edit our toys and games in order to create space for new ones. Remind your little people that in order to receive new and exciting gifts, they need to create space for them. The one in, one out rule is key to maintaing a clutter-free space.
*Empower your kids by putting them in charge of picking their favorites and deciding what to donate. If they are resistant, give them a concrete number. Example. “Can you pick three games you don’t play with anymore?” I also frequently remind my girls how fortunate we are, and that donating items they rarely play with can really make a difference in another child’s life. This concept really helps them rise to the occasion.
*Focus on investing in timeless toys instead of trendy gadgets. Wooden blocks, quality art supplies and Magna Tiles are my favorites.
*Trust that your kids are blessed with endless creativity. When you clear clutter from your home, you are making space for them to dream, build and create. What could be a better gift?
photo credit: vivian johnson photo