The same thing was happening in our house every. single. day. And it was driving my husband and I nuts!
Our kid`s had quite a lot of toys. Each day they would get them all out and spread them all over their room and the house. They had enough toys where once they were all out it was seriously hard to navigate, let alone clean or enjoy our home. They were both fully occupied for the time it took to get everything out, but then after that they were bored. They were not actually playing with any of their toys. Instead Briar would nag to watch TV and eat snacks, and Boone would follow suite with less coherent whining. None of their toys were particularly loved or well used.
Despite cleaning up the toys at the end of each day (realistically every few days) our house was still always a disaster. The kid`s stuff was covering every surface and for no good reason. Having a messy, toy covered house made me a momster. I could not handle the mess any longer!
I finally decided to put all the toys away and just leave out a few.
My theory was that even if the kid`s still followed the same pattern, at least there would be less stuff to clean up at the end of the day. And I would be able to walk from one end of the house to the other without stepping on a hundred toys.
It was a miracle!
With fewer toys my kid`s actually played with the ones they did have. They started playing together and their little imaginations developed at light speed! They started playing for hours together without any interventions from me. I have so much free time on my hands!
This is the current toy situation in their room!
Initially l just put the toys away so I would be able to get them out again later, but after the first few days I was sold and I donated most of them. I ditched everything plastic and everything that takes batteries. Now there is just a handful of toys that I rotate through every now and then. We don`t hold on to anything that is broken or missing parts. I also make a point to specify at holidays that experience would be better for the kid`s than toys so that way we don`t end up back where we started.
Getting rid of toys was the best decision I could have made and it has brought so much peace to our home! These are all the benefits I have noticed since stripping toys down to the bare minimum.
1. My kid`s "read" more books. I always find them flipping through the pages of a book with each other.
2. My kid`s will play independently for HOURS. (I get asked a lot how I run a business with two toddlers - this is my secret!)
3. My house is mostly clean at all times. For real, when you take a bunch of toys out of the picture it is much easier to keep everything tidy.
4. It is more realistic to make your kid`s responsible for their messes (at the toddler age) if they are expected to tidy up one small tub of toys instead of an entire room/house full.
5. They have both developed outrageous imaginations, which I can only assume is good for their brain development.
6. We save money at holidays and in general because we know that what they already have is ENOUGH.
7. They have learned to share with each other.
8. There is overall less fussing, whining, and crying.