Saturday, December 19, 2009

Happy Toy Culling to You!

Today was the annual Culling of the Toys at the Flamingo household. Between hand-me-down toys from other families, yard sale toys that were deals too good to pass up, gifts from grandparents, toys we let the kids talk us into while we're in Target "just to get milk" and lest we forget, those quality fast-food toys, the toy situation in our house blossoms out of control once a year. It gets so bad that the kids can't even really play with the toys anymore because there are so many toys piled in so many bins around the house that they cannot find what they want nor want what they find. So they end up going under the house and finding something new to play with:

So the week before Christmas I try to cull the toys. Here are the rules:

1. If it came with a meal, it goes.

2. If it is broken, it goes.

3. If it has missing pieces that by the end of the culling process we have not located, it goes.

4. If it inexplicably reminds of the night we were all throwing up, it goes.

5. If it has been chewed by Chance (may he rest in peace with all the shoes he can chew in heaven), it goes.

6. If it makes a noise I can't stand, it goes.

7. If it smells like soured chocolate milk, it goes.

So here are the two bags of culled toys on their way to the dump:

And here is the new improved play room:

There are no toys whatsoever in any bins in the TV room, front room or laundry room/breakfast nook. In fact I emptied no less than 8 bins of toys today and either tossed the toys or put them in their rightful place. Isn't it lovely and peaceful? Just ignore that box up there overflowing with scrapbooking supplies I never use. It hasn't moved in three years, so it can wait until next year to have a thorough culling.

And don't pull down the red bin on the top over there on the left. It's full to the brim with random Lego pieces, all belonging to different Lego sets, the construction directions lost forever. Too expensive to throw away, but pretty much completely useless to us. And it would be downright cruel to give them to someone whose kid would drive himself insane trying to figure out if all the maroon pieces made a temple from an Indiana Jones movie or a speeder from a Star Wars movie.

But the playroom is now ready for Christmas. Time to wrap all those new toys I have hidden in the closet.