Proof You’ve Been Storing Your Children’s Toys All Wrong

By Elizabeth Summers / May 3, 2022 / No comments
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It’s no exaggeration to say that having a child turns your home upside down from as early as the newborn stages, when childproofing, changing tables, and practical setups understandably become your priorities. Even as your kids get older, however, the need to make space for toys that seem to multiply of their own accord, and which never quite manage to remain in your child’s bedroom as much as you might like, can see you compromising on household appearances. 

Unfortunately by this point, the chances are that you’ll be beyond the point of willing to overlook these appearance-based compromises. Instead, you’ve likely already trawled the internet looking for storage solutions that can keep your rooms clear at last. Yet, despite your best efforts, you wouldn’t be alone in finding that storage lasts for less than five minutes once your kids get home. This can be an incredibly frustrating reality, and may even make it feel like there’s no point fighting this losing battle. In reality, though, if toy storage isn’t sticking right now, it’s likely because you’re making these simple yet surprisingly rectifiable mistakes with your efforts.

# 1 – Piling everything in one place

When you have a whole house to clean, it’s always tempting to pile stray toys in one massive toy box or storage chest without thought. After all, this is the fastest and most efficient way to keep your rooms clear. Unfortunately, there are two prime issues with doing things this way, and they are – 

  1. A failure to take stock of what you’ve got
  2. The risk that your kids will struggle to find what they’re after

Unfortunately, with toys often building without your noticing as a result and with your kids often needing to take every single one of those toys out to get to what they want to play with each day, you’re ultimately facilitating more mess here. That’s why you instead need to implement segmented, specific storage for things like soft toys, puzzles, educational toys, etc. This way, as well as being better aware of what your kids have (and importantly what they don’t play with/won’t miss), there’s far more chance that your kids will go directly to the toys they want, instead of pulling every single thing out of their toy box to get it.

# 2 – Failing to consider the appearance of your storage

If you have toy chests and filled boxes of books etc. in every room, then even a so-called ‘cleared’ space will inevitably look messy and cramped. This can lead to generalised dissatisfaction across your home and is something that you can overcome by simply thinking about more appealing storage solutions. Most notably, options like personalised, decorated toy boxes could be your best bet here. Many parents are also finding that, far from hiding toys away, putting attractive toys like wooden additions, learning materials, etc. on display can help to make toys a feature of a room rather than a hindrance. This is especially possible if you make an effort to incorporate attractive units or shelves like these made from reclaimed scaffold board. As simple as that, toy storage may become a joy that makes any room feel like even more of a family space, rather than just another task that you can never quite get to grips with.

Pexels Image: CC0 Licence

# 3 – Taking responsibility solely on your shoulders

Perhaps the most fatal toy storage mistake of any parent is that of taking sole responsibility for clean-ups without getting the kids to do a single thing. While this might lead to more satisfying results in the moment (after all, you’re far more experienced at this than your kids), it has the unfortunate side effect of meaning that they never get a chance to learn how to clean up after themselves. And, if your kids continually refuse to clean, then even your best efforts are unlikely to save you from having to put at least some toys away every night. By comparison, getting your kids to store their toys once they’re done can help you to remove this task from your to-do list at last, and might even help your kids to stop taking everything out when they know the work that goes into cleaning it all up!

Toy storage is a catch 22 situation in many homes, with parents continually battling piles of toys and spaces that don’t always cater for them. That said, there are ways to keep toys in check, and avoiding these mistakes could be the best chance for you to start enjoying them.