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we are drowning in toys and DS doesnt want to let ANY go I need help!

(33 Posts)
longtermfamilyplanning Sun 06-Sep-09 16:06:17

DS has loads of toys - he has 2 big plastic toy boxes in the living room mainly full of cars & weird odds and ends. Two small wicker baskets with games. Then his bedroom is full of them. He has a toy trunk, box, several big toys that take up a larger amount of space like a black & decker tool bench, his lovely ride on doggy that he got for his first xmas. He is 3 now by the way. The wardrobe in his room is also full of plastic storage boxes with things like puzzles, marble run etc

I feel he has too many toys, it feels claustrophobic here and we dont play with many of them at all. Most of them we do play with in a big rotation. We have a clear out every couple of months where I ask him to choose "loft, bin or give away" and he does do it but it just seems to make a teensy weensy dent. I am realising now Christmas is just 3 months away and more toys are on their way and while I have changed how I buy for him i.e. I try to buy him less now as I want him to use what he has more before getting new things, I know he will get new stuff for xmas. Most of that will be more medium-bigger stuff though from family and friends.

Anyway DS is very sentimental and is afflicted with that thing many children have where as soon as he sees something its his number one favourite toy ever and all the memories come back and its getting really hard to get him to part with stuff. How can I seriously pare down what he has? Like, 1/3, without being cruel!

policywonk Sun 06-Sep-09 16:09:27

Tell granny to take him out for the afternoon.

Go through toys and ruthlessly strip out anything you know he barely plays with. NB DO NOT leave black bin bags full of toys lying around in plain view - take them straight to the charity shop before he gets back.

He will NEVER notice that they have gone.

DiamondHead Sun 06-Sep-09 16:11:29

Take a box/ bagful and hide them away somewhere. If he hasn't noticied they're gone within a month then charity shope here they come.

Bellsa Sun 06-Sep-09 16:11:50

I feel your pain! I am about to do a big sort out. My sister did one 6 months ago. My ds and her dd react when they see even broken toys/toys they NEVER play with thrown away. I am reliably informed that the way to do it is to remove the toys when the child is not there and to make sure that the bin/charity bags are not visible. Apparently then they never notice.

MayorNaze Sun 06-Sep-09 16:13:15

ditto get someone to have child for afternoon. remove lots of crap. child will never notice. i do this periodically and have NEVER been rumbled grin

bubblagirl Sun 06-Sep-09 16:15:20

i move them all to living room and then when ds is asaleep i bag up and hide in my room and either stick in charity shop or freecycle

my ds never even noticed something had gone his fave toy clearly wasnt his fave toy the next one he could see was lol

longtermfamilyplanning Sun 06-Sep-09 16:20:32

thank you! I will do it! Now I just have to be ruthless enough to work out what to get rid of... the dog is staying I tell you that. Brings back memories of me propping him up on it when he was 4 months old at his first xmas grin

policywonk Sun 06-Sep-09 16:23:58

Um, this tactic might not work with big toys that are like furniture in his eyes - eg if the workbench suddenly disappears he'll almost certainly notice. You might have to approach the big stuff another way (I read on here someone who had told her child that Father Christmas wouldn't be able to bring much new stuff if there wasn't any room for it.)

usernametaken Sun 06-Sep-09 17:45:34

DD (4.5yrs) went back to school last week, I took the chance to charity shop LOADS. She was none the wiser as she was so tired from school that she failed to notice anything!

Get Granny to take him for the afternoon and go for it. He may notice for a day but it'll passs when he realises you have kept his favourites.

longtermfamilyplanning Sun 06-Sep-09 22:33:07

I'm going to take the plunge on the next available day and save some of my sanity!

bruffin Sun 06-Sep-09 22:47:30

We used to take photos of toys that were given away, they didn't seem to mind so much if they had a photo to remind them.

2rebecca Sun 06-Sep-09 23:32:05

Just put a box of stuff he rarely plays with in the loft. That's what I did. I'd sometimes rotate the stuff in the loft to give them different things to play with. If they really don't play with it and don't notice it's gone to the loft then chuck unless likely to have sentimental value, be wanted later on.

feedthegoat Sun 06-Sep-09 23:38:46

I've done this a few times and would agree with others who say do it when ds is not around. However, my ds has a memory for minute detail and wails at me accusingly 'mummee, you've sold my ...... on ebay haven't you?'.

Disclaimer - we have never sold any of his toys on ebay but I did flippantly joke that I'd sold his potty on ebay when I wanted him to use the toilet blush grin

kreecherlivesupstairs Mon 07-Sep-09 07:23:21

Same situation here. Periodically I fill a bag with -shite- her belongings and either take them to the brockenhaus or to the immigrant centre near us. The worst trauma she ever sufferd was the loss of gordon the giraffe. when we left Thailand I sorted out six black sacks full of toys and assorted crap. This went to an orphanage. When our shipping finally arrived in Swiss she couldn't find quite a lot of stuff, chiefly Gordon. I said a box had not been delivered. TBH, this box must have been the size of a container or similar.
Recently I culled a load of her books, surely eight is too old for Spot? She visited the friend whose sister is now the owner of books and remarked that she'd had the exact same ones (around 50) but couldn't work out where or when they'd gone. She seems a bit slow.

WhereTheWildThingsWere Mon 07-Sep-09 07:30:17

Have to admit I do cull and ds does notice, we hunt for the lost things and eventually he gives up quite happily provided I am prepared to help him.

Before I get lots of shock and hmm] I have to point out the child has a sodding photographic memory for every toy, picture, wilted balloon, stone, dead flower he has ever collected and I will be buggered if I am keeping them allgrin.

twofalls Mon 07-Sep-09 07:33:53

I told DD (3.4) that there are lots of children in the world without any toys or any teddies to cuddle at night. She felt so sad at this thought that she happily sorted out a black bag of books, teddies and toys that she doesn't play with any more (putting a few little ones aside for our new baby due in March).

Might not work with all children though - DD is a bit of a softie!

Tinkjon Mon 07-Sep-09 07:40:14

I am SO with you on this, I am in exactly the same position. My fmily insist on buying loads of little bits for them at Xmas and b'day and it drives me nuts. DD is so stupidly sentimental that she once even refused to let me throw away an empty cereal bar wrapper!!! Like Wildthings, my DD would (and does) also notice when things have gone. It's so hard. I took a bunch of stuff to our local hospital children's ward and that assuaged some of the guilt I had at clearing out her toys without her noticing.

LOL at "Mummy you've sold my toys on eBay", feedthegoat

longtermfamilyplanning Mon 07-Sep-09 07:47:07

DS is a cross between wildthings DS with his photographic memory and twofalls DD with some sentimentality - either way I am gearing up for battle!

FourArms Mon 07-Sep-09 08:02:44

Can you sort a load to leave at nanna's to play with?

I now ask my in-laws/parents to contribute to a specific present (e.g. DS for DS1 last year) or to give money which we use for annual passes (aquarium, play farm..) when the current ones expire. They still buy little bits, but it does limit the impact!

LightShinesInTheDarkness Mon 07-Sep-09 08:08:48

I do agree that chucking out when he is not around will solve your problem, you are always going to come up against it.

Have a bit of a clear out when he is out, then why not give him some (limited) choices? Choose one puzzle out of two, half the books etc? Then introduce a 'one in, one out policy'? If he gets a new toy, he has to make space for it by getting rid of an old one. This works for us, and the kids do learn we do not have limitless space.

longtermfamilyplanning Mon 07-Sep-09 08:09:02

well he doesnt actually have any grandparents living in this country. He has "adopted" grandparents but they always come here so toys at theirs wouldnt really work. I'm going to cull and judge for myself the bin/give away/loft while he is out one day. Will speak to him about the bigger stuff!!

twoisplenty Mon 07-Sep-09 08:26:07

Hmmm. What about all the stuff (plastic rubbish) on my dd shelves in her bedroom? There is no room left on the shelves, and it is all tat! But she knows where everything goes. How do I get rid of some of it? It drives me mad!

And yes, I shall also get rid of loads of old toys/games once they are back at school (not till Wednesday) <sob>

Tinkjon Mon 07-Sep-09 10:47:17

twoisplenty, do you have room for a tiny chest of draws? We have a tall, thin one with the days of the week on - all DD's crap lovingly-collected objects go in there and she chooses a few random bits to put on her windowsill every week or so.

CyradisTheSeer Mon 07-Sep-09 11:11:13

Message withdrawn

meltedmarsbars Mon 07-Sep-09 11:16:12

We have a sort-out time, where we tip out a crate/shelf/cupboard, and separate into three lots:

one back in the crate for you to keep
one straight into a bag for the charity shop for the children who have no toys
one for the bin (the real crap)

And I make sure the bin and charity shop stuff is straight into the bag out of sight otherwise they ferret them back out.

And I sometimes take toys for bad behaviour. grin

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