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The Dreaded Playroom : Find Out Why It’s Difficult to De-Clutter Your Child’s Room

Alright, you know what comes first.. 

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Today we will be diving into one of the hardest rooms to de-clutter – your child’s room! Why is it so hard for us as parents/guardians to minimize this room? Today we will discuss this topic and move past the difficulties.

As I was doing research on this particular topic, I noticed that there were a ton of moms, dads, grandparents, etc. who were stumbling with this issue. We have the hardest time getting rid of items in our kid’s rooms because of these reasons:

  1. You never want to take away something that your child may love
  2. You’re saving it for future children
  3. It was given to your child or you as a gift

These are the top three reasons why it’s difficult to be a minimalist in your child’s room!  Sure they may be decent reasons why you should keep items, but let’s think out of the box and try to see why purging these items may be best for you littles.


Let’s Talk about reason number one – You never want to take away something that your child may love.

Though you may be thinking of your child in this instance, let me be the devil’s advocate for a second.  If you have been following this blog and putting it to action in your own home, what has been your main goal? To have less stuff, stress, mess, clutter…To have more room, money, organization, moments. Why are we not teaching our kids to have these same goals? It’s no wonder we have so many hoarders in America. We’ve all heard the phrase ‘monkey see monkey do.’ We all know that our kids, whether they admit it or not, do almost everything the same way that we do. So why don’t we start teaching them less is more when they are young. Do you want your child to treasure THINGS or treasure MOMENTS

This brings me to what we call the ‘Why behind the What.’ Why are we doing this? A blog I recently came across said it like this, “My why is the fact that I deeply desire to instill gratefulness in my children, and I want to give them the gift of less.” 


Let’s move on to reason #2 – “I’m saving it for my future child.”

Being a religious penny-pinching makes me lean towards this statement all the time. I have a ton of clothes and toys in tubs in our basement saved for our future children. However, here is the issue I run in to – having multiple of one type of toy. Need an example? – 3 Teddy bears, 2 sets of blocks, way too many large Lego blocks, 4 entire tubs of clothes. I am sitting here with a gold mine of items that could be given to someone in need. Though I plan on saving items for my future kids and I believe you should do the same, why don’t we save the minimal? One of each toy, a couple week’s worth of outfits….This will not only help us, but it could help others as well!


Reason #3 – It was given to you/your child as a gift

Three words to help you de-clutter. IT – DOESN’T – MATTER. Now some of you may say, “How dare you! Of course it matters!” Some gifts given yes definitely matter. For example, an issue in Charlie’s room was all the blankets she owned. She had over 20 blankets – some home-made and some not. So what did I do? I got rid of every single blanket (except for the one that came with her bed-set) and only kept the ones that were hand-made for her. 

Now what about toy gifts? I actually owned 4 different toys that each had a double due to it being given to us as a gift and I didn’t have the heart to get rid of them. And to be honest, Charlie really didn’t play with any of them. So what did I do? Bye-Bye toys!


Since we are on the topic of toys – let’s talk about getting them organized and de-cluttered.

  1. Take out every single toy from the closet, bins, under the bed….ALL OF THEM….and get them into one location.
  2. If any toys have missing pieces, try to find them and put them together.
  3. Throw away any broken toys or toys with missing pieces (Do NOT donate these)
  4. Allow your child to pick out their favorite toys to keep in the playroom.
  5.  Help them by talking through a couple of questions:
  • When was the last time you played with this toy?
  • Do you think you’re getting too old for this toy?
  • Is there someone you know who may love this toy?

Turn this into a ‘giving’ moment for you child. Teach them how it feels when you give something to someone else in need.


    Now how do we keep your toy room clean?

  1. Have a limit. Your kids can only have toys that fit into your (number of) bins.
  2. Label each bin with a tag that states what should be placed in them.
  3. Adopt the one-in-one-out rule. Once they receive a toy or buy a toy, they must give up one that they already own and give it to a friend or someone in need.
  4. When it comes to gift-giving holidays – Tell the grandparents they are only allowed to give your kids one toy each. Ask for family/friends to give you money to take a small vacation, go to the zoo, or anything you can think of that will bring your kids great moments instead of belongings.

Let’s move on to clothes.

How full is your child’s/children’s closet(s)? If only you could have seen Charlie’s when we first moved in. Charlie has been blessed with a TON of clothes. From her grandparents, aunts & uncles, hand-me-downs from friends, etc. So much so that we used to be able to go an entire month and a half without needing to do a load of laundry (and I am not exaggerating one bit!). Before I even heard about minimalism, I knew we needed a change. When we lived in California we had two huge advantages for Charlie:

  1. We didn’t need a ton of winter clothing.

  2. We had a very decent sized nursery and closet.

Our move to Tennessee has changed that incredibly for us. Her nursery is half the size of the nursery she had in Cali, and her closet is a fourth of the size she had in Cali. We tried to make are belongings fit in the space, instead of letting the space fit for us. Here is an idea of how many clothes to keep for your child (keep in mind that it may vary per age).

  • About 10 every day outfits
  • 3-4 dressy outfits
  • 3-5 pairs of pajamas
  • 1-5 jackets/sweatshirts (depending on where you live)
  • 3-5 pairs of shoes (mix of play, every day, and dressy)
  • I’m just going to go ahead and say……I have not done this yet for our nursery. However, I am excited to give it a go. Again – what are we teaching our kids? To treasure belongings, or moments?

How are you feeling so far? Overwhelmed? Maybe frustrated because you disagree or have a ton to do after you’ve read this blog? Before you begin….Read these two blogs written by moms who took this journey you are about to embark on.

http://alliecasazza.com/blog/minimalism-purging-kids-rooms

http://onecreativemommy.com/getting-rid-toys-made-us-happier-family/

Did these bring you a peace of mind? In my opinion, these moms just proved to us what this will do for your home and your family.

  1. It de-clutters your home
  2. It teaches your kids what to value and how to value

Don’t just do this for you…do it for your family. I’m doing it for mine!

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Now it’s time to get organized! LET’S DO THIS!

Upcoming Blogs:

  • An Organized Laundry Room
  • A Garage For You Car, Not Your Junk
  • How To Have a Successful Garage Sale
  • When It’s All Said And Done
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