80% of the kids toys disappeared overnight and their reaction floored us. The feared mutiny to minimalism has never come and we’re all happier.
Before hosting my daughter’s first birthday we stashed nearly all the toys in the basement. Save one small toy basket, play kitchen and a ride-on, the rest were hidden away. All this was done while the kids slept and I steeled myself for the meltdowns in the morning. Except they never came.
Literally 80% of the kid’s toys disappeared overnight and they didn’t even seem to notice. Like didn’t say one word about it.
So we stuck with it, swapping the contents of the basket and larger ride-ons every couple days. Nightly clean up time was reduced to minutes and no one seemed to be too restless with less distraction options.
It’s been six months now and I’m finally comfortable enough that no mutiny is coming to have sold our large toy storage unit and pass along quite a few less-loved items.
Time and again he saw little people that were more emotionally balanced and happier when toys and busy schedules were simplified. And like my own experience, most of the kids he worked with didn’t even comment on a reduction in their toys, despite parents’ fears.
The book gives great advice on how to purge and the pieces to invest in, like kid-size table, costumes, a tent-like space. And those than can go, such as branded character toys with limited creative uses and noisy obnoxious toys (hurray).
Ironically after reading it I went out and bought something new for the kids- a small table and chairs as suggested. It seemed unnecessary but has become a place where both kids are drawn daily for self-directed creative play.
Simplicity Parenting offers no magic number of toys to possess and I never would have thought it’d be as low as our current number but for now its working. As the kids get older we’ll certainly need to adjust but I’m grateful for our little unplanned experiment to realize we can drastically pair down and all be happier.
I don’t think anyone has noticed but I’ve been wearing the same pair of socks for the last two years. Okay only kinda. The cashier did chuckle though when I walked to the counter with one dozen individual pairs of mid-weight navy women’s socks and another dozen individual pairs of men’s white socks for hubby.
Minimalism isn’t only about having less, its also about simplifying and turning down the stress in other ways. Yes, as the chief laundry doer in my house, mismatched socks were a source of stress. There always seemed to be a loner sock that had to be put aside for its pair to appear. And how long should you hang on to the loner before admitting the other sock is simply lost forever to the dyer vortex?
I now spend zero time sorting my socks. An extra sock just means it’ll wait around until the next load of clean laundry. Granted I can no longer express my individualism and personality through my socks. I actually really enjoy playful socks that say to the world ‘I don’t take myself too seriously’.
No Christmas or St Patty’s socks either. The trade off in terms of no sorting is so worth it.
My little ones have some seriously cute socks and I hope there will be no permanent damage to their development but I’m transitioning their sock drawers to identical socks too. Neither kid can seem to keep a sock on for a day’s duration.
I’m literally at ten socks without pairs for my toddler and tired of looking at mismatched socks on his feet. So goodbye truck and race car socks and hello a little more sanity for momma.
One of the pluses of a minimalist wardrobe is buying bigger ticket quality pieces guilt-free. I own one pair of everyday boots that get me through the early spring, fall and most of Toronto’s winter. Being a Canadian I still do own a pair of serious snowfall winter boots mostly for out of city excursions- shoveled sidewalks being a nice perk of big city living. Since I’m only buying one pair I look for something stylish that isn’t going to fall apart. So, I splurge on my Blundstones without any guilt about dusty forgotten ‘cute but man do these pinch my toes’ boots hiding in the back of my closet.
With the days getting cooler and my Blundstone’s soles looking rather sad after five years, it was time to scout out a new pair. I brought my toddler along on the shopping trip to get him his first pair of Blundstones or as they’re adorably called Blunnies.
Up till now I’ve gone the second-hand route for kids footwear but I’ve been finding it hit and miss on the shoe condition presumably because at this stage the shoes are getting more wear before being outgrown. At over $100 I’m really hoping that we will get a few seasons out of the Blunnies- fall, winter and next spring. I also steered clear of the army motif and bought a style that will work well for my daughter to wear as a hand-me-down. By the time she’s three, she might have something to say about overly “boy” clothes.
The Blunnies of course won’t get five years of wear like mine so is the investment worth it or should I have gotten something a little less durable? I’m thinking that at this point quality is worth it as both kids will be able to get a few seasons of super warmth and dryness from these and I expect to get a decent resale value down the line. And while I’m not too into dressing my kids like mini adults, these are just so darn cute. Definitively worth it for the planet too, as I’m sure these are going to see a lot more happy feet before they see a landfill.
Babies are such tiny things, but man do they come with a lot of stuff. My outlook with baby number 1 was to go minimal and do without a change table. The dedicated piece of furniture for bum changing would only be needed for a short while and hog space in the small nursery. Instead I registered for a keekaroo peanut change pad and placed it on top of baby’s dresser.
We used that thing daily and I have only great things to say about the product except turns out we didn’t even need that. Yep another $100 I could have put towards RESPs instead.
At 9 months Baby 2 has used the dresser top change set-up like maybe ten times. Mostly driven by the logistics of our toddler being in the nursery while baby room shares with us. We have only one tall dresser in the master so no space for a dresser top changing spot.
And I love it. We just use travel changing pads and I don’t know why I ever bothered carting baby #1 upstairs to the nursery for changes. Like seriously, why was I hiking upstairs ten times a day before?
Since baby spends most of her day downstairs, I converted part of the dining room buffet to store her diapering things and simply throw a change pad on the playmat as needed. In our bedroom we likewise just use a travel pad on the bed for changes. Turns out using one less “essential” thing has made life much easier for me.