Do you rotate toys? We do.
My kids kind of make me feel bad for rotating toys because they just love that toy that I’m putting at the top of the closet, the one that they haven’t played with in three months. But I rotate toys anyway. It keeps things clean and picked up, but it also is more fun for them because in a few months, when I rotate again, the kids have “new” toys that they haven’t seen in ages.
My rule of thumb is if you there’s a toy you don’t feel like cleaning up, then don’t have it out. It’s that simple.
So during pregnancy, we rarely pull blocks out, and that’s OK. It’s just a stage of life.
I have two ways of rotating toys. The first is simple. I keep boxes that are not transparent at the top of one closet. Every once in a while, I pull out the contents of those boxes and put other things away in them, usually items that haven’t been played with in a while. The reason I don’t want the boxes to be transparent is that my kids will ask me about those toys every single time I open the closet door to get out a pair of shoes. So out of sight, out of mind is true with rotating toys. I also rotate larger things into the attic. Our toy kitchen is currently in the attic because it is huge and was not being played with frequently. When it comes out of rotation eventually, it will be well-loved by the kids.
The toys that I’ve rotated out of the supply are in those boxes. This is also proof that I can’t cloth diaper all the time! So if you’ve been wondering how in the world I manage it all, just know that we do real life over here, and sometimes we can cloth diaper and sometimes we can’t. I’d never want you to think that I’m SuperMom.
The other way I rotate toys is that we have an additional (small) closet in my boys’ room where I keep a lot of extra gear (like my free breast pump, breathing machine, humidifiers, extra nursing covers, etc.). At the bottom, I keep toys that I simply don’t want out all the time.
My “extra closet” in the boys’ room is great for surplus gear and rotating toys.
My rule is that the kids must ask permission before getting these toys out. I almost always say yes, unless it’s 5 minutes before bedtime or right before we leave to go somewhere. Always saying yes makes it easy for my kids to obey this rule, and then there are real consequences for not asking me first.
If I don’t feel like cleaning up Legos, then the Legos are not going to be out all the time. We have five different kinds of blocks (Legos, MegaBlocks, bristle blocks, wooden blocks, and castle blocks) and I simply do not feel like
stepping on cleaning up blocks all day long, or making them clean them. I usually limit them to only one or two types of blocks out at one time.
Do you rotate toys? How do you keep the toys under control?