How-I woke up one morning and just dug right in! I got each child two bins and filled them toys that they actually do play with. Everything that didn't fit into the bins went into piles. One pile was for goodwill, one for grandmom's house and one for craigslist. I started to see a light at the end of the tunnel. I decided that all of their toys could go upstairs into their rooms. They have large rooms and large closets. So I took everything up and told them they could play while I finished downstairs. I have a large chest that I kept full of board games and a cabinet that I used to keep books for downstairs. Two more bins for art supplies and homeschooling items. I took all of the ride on toys and big toys out, too. Somethings went to the garage for spring and I did keep a grocery cart and baby stroller downstairs.
The effect has really been great. The kids haven't missed any of their toys and they play upstairs for long periods of time. They have been more creative in their play and I have seen lots more pretend games, reading and just contentment. I love that the toys aren't taking over our lives anymore! They do make a mess upstairs but it is more contained and I can take ten minutes before bed to clean it. I am on my way to bringing to my dining room back, I just need a table;)
The cabinet that holds books and one box of legos that need adult assistance
The chest is perfect for puzzles and board games
The now empty shelves...the baskets on top hold diapers and some special books that the kids need me to read with them
The plan is to get rid of the couch and add a table. Not sure what I am going to do with the shelves yet but I might keep them as decor:)
It feels so good....