Sunday, January 4, 2009

Three days left....

I've got 3 days left of my vacation and no more house guests (after 3 weeks worth). Although I am still sick (the damn flu-cold-cough-mucus thing but no fever), I'm not as bad as I was a few days ago as long as I don't talk too much (then I lose my voice or lapse into a coughing fit).
Anyway.....among my big plans for the next 3 days is to find a place for all of Maya's new toys (which includes about 9 Polly Pockets and all their gear--given to Maya by a friend of mine in Chicago who finds them at second hand shops) and BOOKS...oh, the books!

Now, this is where I need HELP! As a first time mother of only one child....I've not had too much experience with this.
How do I get a 6 year old to release her ownership of toys she hardly plays with anymore?
It was easy when she was younger, I simply took them out of her room, even in front of her, and she didn't notice as I dropped them into a bag marked LOPPIS* on the side. But now it seems she's made some sort of inventory of each little item! Since she's been older (around 4) I've been removing some things on the sly by placing them into a closet in a "holding area". So if she misses the item I can "find" it for her but if she doesn't mention it or miss it, then after about 2 months I've been placing that item into the LOPPISbag out of her sight. This method is not only time consuming but a part of me feels a little sneaky doing it this way and I'm not sure it's OK in the "good mommy" world. (If I'm honest, I'm not so objective either because I remove the items I don't like and leave the unplayed toys that I like!) On the other hand though, when I request her assistance in filtering through the toys, there is, of course, NOTHING she doesn't play with and she wants to keep it ALL! HELP...please give me ideas about how to go about this! She knows that her toys will go to a place where other children will use them...not just to the trash. Actually, she's ok with that...and even gives me one or two token items but it's not enough reduction in the clutter of her toy areas. We also read the above book...which was entertaining but not helpful in passing along the message!

Of course, her father and I should be role models for this desired behavior. Unfortunately, we both come from generations of sentimental pack rats! But when I do clean out my clutter, I should make sure she recognizes what it is I'm doing in hopes that she will follow my example one day!

Please leave me a comment about sorting through a child's toy area!
I can use some tips! Thanks!

*LOPPIS is a Swedish word for "flea market".


Sara said...

Love all the great pictures from the holidays! It looks like you had a wonderful time!!

As for Maya and her toys, be firm...something must go! We used to have two laundry baskets that the boys kept toys in (in the family room) Each year they had to clean them out to make room for the new stuff. IT worked, since something had to go and they certainly didn't want their new toys to go!

lizardek said...

I've found it doesn't work anymore to sneak them's THEIR stuff, and at a certain point you have to learn to respect that no matter how crazy the clutter might make you.

We do fairly regular fact, I'm planning one for today. But I don't do them all at the same time. I do clothes one month, books maybe a few months later, and then try toys...which is always the hardest, and I've discovered it's near impossible to get the kids to get rid of stuffed animals, for example. BUT, they do let stuff go eventually, so all is not lost, it might just take longer for them to outgrow the stuff than you might want. :)

Carol in Sweden said...

Thanks! I realize that the stuff she likes is not necessarily the stuff I we keep it all! And what's with the stuffed animals?...they BREED over night!

I"m keeping the easy 'baby books' for when she starts reading...hopefully soon!

I find clothes the easiest since it's all about fit and condition at this point anyway.

Rhonda said...

Hi Carol! Well your question is a hard one. As a teacher of children at 8 to 10, I'd say the best way is to allow your daughter to hand some of her toys to needy children. It's good for the child to realize that a real person is appreciative and if said child gives your daughter a "thank you" of some kind, that will reenforce the good feeling.
Hope that helps.

Lori S-C said...

I think it's okay to sneak them out. Just this weekend I spirited away a couple of pairs of nasty well used and loved sweatpants that embarassed me every time she wore them. On trash day, out they went. She hasn't noticed yet.
she is a sloppy enough dresser without those pants. Her sister was Ms. clean. This one is pigpen.