Monday, March 21, 2011

Out With The Old...

So I know not all of you are in this boat, but someday you will be. What boat is that? The done having babies boat. So once you get in it, what do you do with all their stuff?

Not to fear... organization is here!!! Mwahahaha. OK, sorry. But seriously, what are we supposed to do with all the toys, high chairs, bibs, bottles, etc. when we don't need them for our own kids, but we know someone who comes over at some point will need them while at our home. Solution? Make a list of what you have, and downsize. It's harder than it sounds.

I've already purged boxes upon boxes of infant clothes, exersaucers (2, to be exact), a high chair, bags of bottles, a breast pump, a pack and play, sippy cups, infant toys, crib mattress, and an infant carrier car seat. I still have more bottle items, bibs, more infant/toddler toys, crib, pack and play w/changing table insert, a changing table, 4 strollers (one's a double), booster seat for the dining table, binkies and other random pieces showing up from some abyss. I have considerably downsized, but still have more to go.

I have finally gotten over my hesitance of "what if" if another comes along, so I can emotionally let go of the last of these things. But before I do, let's think about things realistically: I have siblings who are not done yet, and friends too for that matter, so I realistically should not purge EVERYTHING. I need bibs for meal times (who packs bibs?), sippy cups for emergencies (have had a few recently), pack and play for extra bed space for the little ones, a booster for seating at meal times, baby spoons to feed them, and toys to play with. So I need to keep just enough of all these items to get through a day with 4 little tykes and call it good. One cubby box of baby/toddler toys should suffice. The rest can go.

But, but, I might need it later....right? Uh, probably not, nor will you when you get to this stage. It's time to move on and grow up with the kids and their ever expanding horde of stuff. I mean, how can you put away buckets of Legos if the cubby spot is occupied with rattles?

If you are too heartbroken to just up and sell or donate it to charity, you can always do what I did. Give it to someone you know who isn't done. When I give things away I ask the recipient to continue the gesture and pass it on when they have finished with it. I love an Old Navy tag I saw on one of the old onesies I had, "Wear. Wash. Pass it on. Repeat."

When we purge our unused and not relevant anymore items, there is a momentary sense of loss. I get it. But there is a better feeling of freedom and uncluttered SPACE that follows. We don't need as much as we think we do. Let's all work on liberating our closets of our unused items this spring and see how much better we feel!