So with Christmas less than two months away, it’s time for the Toy Purge. What’s that you ask? The Toy Purge is when we go through all the kids toys and get rid the ones that are outgrown, broken or not played with. It’s not a fun chore and one the bigger kids kind of hate. However, we have limited storage space so it’s a necessity.
This year’s Toy Purge is going to be a little bittersweet. Since P is our last child, it’s time to actually get rid of the baby toys. In past years, I’ve boxed them up or moved them to the basement. Now it’s time for them to move one. Some of the bigger items we’ve had since T was little. It’s time for someone else to enjoy them.
Earning a Ticket to the Toy Purge
So figuring out which toys to purge can be hard. Here are the questions I ask about each toy and which answers earn a toy a ticket to the Toy Purge in my house.
Do the kids play with them?
This is the most important question for me. I see no reason to keep things no one plays with. For the smaller kids, I start by moving things I don’t think are being played with to higher shelves. If the kids ask for it (or in the case of G climb to get it), I’ll move it lower again and move it off of my potential purge list. With my bigger kids, if it’s something I rarely see them play with and it’s something they can play with completely independently, it’s likely to get purged.
How do they play with them?
Sometimes the kids still play with a toy but they’ve really outgrown it, so the way they play with it isn’t always safe. For example, we have a V-Tech Sit and Stand Walker, P still plays with it but because she’s learning to climb, I frequently find her attempting to perch on the top of it. This isn’t safe so it’s time for the walker to go. I also tend to get rid of things that just get thrown around but not actually played with.
Does it have all of it’s necessary parts?
This is a big one. If we’ve gone through all of the bins of bits and pieces and a toy is still missing too many parts to play with, it gets pitched. A toy doesn’t have to have all of it’s parts to get saved, only all the ones that are crucial to play.
Where do they go?
So now I have my bags of purged toys, where do they go? I know plenty of people that take good toys to consignment shops and this is a great idea. We don’t take ours to a consignment store because the nearest one is 30 minutes away and incredibly fussy. Our stuff usually gets donated to Goodwill or one of the other charitable organizations in the area. The exception to this is things missing pieces. If it doesn’t have enough pieces for my kids to be able to play with it, it doesn’t have enough for someone else to either. Those things go in the trash.