Quality Vs. Quantity: How Many Toys Do Kids Really Need?

two boys playing with wooden blocks in a room

Tired of toy overload? πŸ§ΈπŸš€πŸŽ Discover the benefits of a simplified playtime with our latest article! 🌟

by Kim Payne

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When my boys were little, I thought the way to show them I loved them and wanted the best for them was to take them to the toy store. I didn’t have the funds to do so, but I thought it meant I was a good mom. I was giving the kids anything they wanted. 

I didn’t realize that I was setting up my household for a constant struggle of disorganization and frustration. I am one of those moms who wished she was a planner, but it is not a strength of mine. I am actively working on it. 

Time for spring cleaning was a phrase heard in my household throughout the year. There could be snow in the yard or Fourth of July fireworks; and I would drop the dreaded words. It always happened when I was weary of seeing the overflowing plastic bins spilling out of the bedroom closet. Even the books annoyed me because they didn’t have a place of their own, and I love books. 

Did I think Rubbermaid was my rescue? Yes, it was one of my brilliant solutions, or so I thought. 

The kids couldn’t even find their favorite Hot Wheel or superhero figurine because it was buried in one of the boxes. I tried color coding the boxes or choosing clear options but that didn’t prove helpful. (I don’t even want to tell you my “idea” when we went on a Build-A-Bear binge.) I wasn’t helpful either, pouring out the contents of the multiple boxes and trying to force kids to part with a jumbled floor of toys. Some of the toys they didn’t even remember receiving. 

I started wondering how many toys kids really need. Then it dawned on me, quality is better than quantity, even when it comes to children’s possessions.

Why am I “spilling” my frustrations out to you? It’s embarrassing but I want to share with other parents that kids do not need infinite toys. Kids need items that bring them joy and spark creativity. The toy they choose for trips, like Woody in the original Toy Story, the toy they read to, and the toy they sleep with at night.

If you are a slightly disorganized momma as I am, you might find yourself digging through multiple spice jars, junk drawers, or craft items. If you have ever experienced these same situations, then you know what your kids feel like when they just want to play Batman Legos or have Barbie drive her pink car. 

I am here to challenge you that much like the quality of your friends is better than the quantity, the same applies to your kids’ toys. I discovered trying to buy my sons’ happiness was not the answer, and I don’t want any parent to go through the same experience. 

The world of social media can sometimes show unlimited materialism as the victorious path for kids’ needs, but I say to you now, blaze your own trail and keep your kids’ baggage light. To help you stay organized and practice simplicity in toy ownership, I want to share 3 tried and true tips that can help you in your toy storage needs:

  1. Invest in storage solutions: Consider purchasing storage solutions like bins, baskets, shelves, and toy chests to keep the toys less played with organized and easily accessible.
  2. Implement a toy rotation system: If you find that your child has too many toys to keep organized, consider implementing a toy rotation system between the often used and often unused toys. This involves rotating toys in and out of storage every few weeks or months to keep playtime fresh and exciting while reducing clutter.
  3. Every 3 to 6 months donate toys: If you find that your child hasn’t asked for a stored toy in quite sometime, it might be time to donate those toys to other less-fortunate families. Doing this small but simple act will help alleviate your toy bins from being overly stuffed.

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