Some things this week prompted some cleaning:
This mom, I don't even know which blog it was...I found it randomly, did some major cleaning. She let her kids pick two toys each to keep, and the rest she put away in the garage. Her plan was to see how they did and then re-evaluate at the end of the month.
We had a missionary couple visiting our church this week. As I listened to them talk at various events throughout the week, I once again was reminded of how much (too much) we have.
I've been noticing a bad attitude in my girls lately. Spoiled- is the simplest way of putting it. Alice, my 5 yr. old, comes to me daily asking for extravagant activities to do. She asks when we're getting new toys (as if she's deprived), and acts dissatisfied with ALL that she has.
So... I started cleaning. I didn't go extreme, I just started taking out what they don't play with. Then I went another round, and took away more.
Here's the results so far:
The most drastic change is in the stuffed animal collection. When we moved here I had four large tubbies full of animals, and this was after the pre-moving cleaning!!!! (I'm embarrassed to tell you that... my girls are obsessed with animals, you see.) When we unpacked I put two tubbies in the garage. Well after cleaning yesterday, it's down to maybe one tubbie. Pretty good for us!!
Next I tackled the plastic animals. We had two smallish tubbies of them, and I let the girls each keep a lion family and a few other favorite random animals. ...resulting in half of one of the tubbies.
I put away a large garbage bag of baby dolls and misc. doll clothes.
I put away a med. sized box of books. I wanted to just keep out the good ones... ones that are worth reading over and over again.
I pretty much completely emptied the "random small toys" basket and left a few bouncy balls and cars for a small drawer.
I cleaned out the toy kitchen... putting away an entire set of dishes. Instead of having a big tub of dishes and food to dig through, now there's only what will fit in the kitchen itself and what will hang on the wall.
Anyway... I think that's about it... I got rid of some baby toys too. But I can already tell a difference. They play with the toys more now. For one thing, they can actually see/find the toys they like!! No more digging through junk they don't play with. Also, especially with the stuffed animals, it creates a sense of attachment to "what they've got." Alice actually played quietly on her bed with one animal for 20 min. or so... I think she started because she was bored, but ended up having a good time :)
All in all, I hope it will make them less absorbed in quantity, more imaginative, and more content.
I also have a plan for how to keep my artist daughter from using piles of paper continually.... but I'll save that for another time :)