January 06, 2010

Stacker, Shape-Sorters and Rattles, OH MY!

Well. I've done it. Or, at least, a large part of it.

What is "it", you might ask? I'll tell you what it is...I have sorted, organized and somewhat decluttered the basement playroom.

It amazes and disgusts me to see the sheer volume of toys that 2 small children have accumulated. I will admit that the majority of them have been handed down to us by some friends, and many more are gifts from well-meaning grandparents and doting uncles...but some, well...some are just BB and I not being able to say no when we see something cool that we think would be great fun for the kids.

Hence the reason we have a total of 36 storage bins, baskets and tubs in varying sizes and shapes. Target has had these nifty little baskets, almost like a rectangular laundry basket, with handles and wheels that can stack. Mom bought 4 of them for my house and 2 for her own in primary blue and yellow for Captain's toys when he was about 9 months old. Yes, 4 of them. We already that many things that were appropriate for him. After DestructoGirl was born, we found them in lavendar and cotton candy pink and picked up 4 more for my house and 2 for my Mom. And again...we had toys spilling over...falling all over the place...it was crazy!

At a local hardware store, we picked up a dozen nifty bins of smallish size with nice handles, and BB built a cubby storage system for them. Our thinking was "great for Legos, matchboxes, small toys like blocks and the like". They were heaped full until today. Then, you know those nifty little shelves you can find at Target and Wal-Mart with the colored plastic bins that sit at an angle? We have 2 of those...all of which were heaped to overflowing...

Today, I went downstairs, and just started dumping out bins and baskets and sorting through things.

I can now say that Little People and their appropriate settings (farms, airplanes, grocery stores and playhouses) are all in one of the rolling baskets. Balls are all together in various sized bins on the shelves from Target. The handmade cubby storage system actually has 5 empty buckets, and those that are filled have like with like (blocks, Legos, matchbox cars). I even have one rolling basket of just stuffed animals. One is full of dress-up items that we already had. Captain's tool benches are not organized, and I still need to install the nifty shelves for books, DVDs, and videos, along with art supplies and games that the kids can play with. I also have boxes and boxes of puzzles to go on the high shelves, out of their reach.

Once this is done, the remaining piles and stacks of things that BB insists we keep will go into the corner closest to the kids' area, my office will go into the current sitting area, and BB will frame and drywall what is currently my office.

Also on my list of "things to do before #3" include:
  • sort all baby clothes by gender and size
  • shampoo nursery carpet
  • purge books from the dozen or so boxes that came out of the guest room
  • make extra bread for BB and freeze it
  • make a few casseroles and freeze for the first 3 months after baby arrives
  • make cookies/cookie dough and freeze for after baby
  • make things like spaghetti sauce and meatballs that can be frozen and just thawed out and cooked fast
I know that I'm probably crazy, because BB can cook, and do laundry, but I also know that if I were to be out of town, rather than recovering from having a baby, it would be easier on him to be both Mommy and Daddy along with all the other roles he'll have to play, that it will be nice for us to have as much of an advantage with pre-made meals and the like.

After all...if I do the hard stuff now, I'll be able to relax and enjoy my children that much more as we settle into the new routine of "and then there were 3" as my FIL likes to call it.

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