🧸 A TOY library?!
My kids played a lot of the day by themselves today, alhamdulillah.
Engaged, at the dining table, whilst I decluttered as we move house.
And it was all thanks to our toy library.
🤔 “What’s a toy library?” I hear you ask.
👍🏽 Good question, my friend...
A toy library is just a place where you put some selected toys, out of sight and away.
They ‘live there’ for a while and then a month (or several!), later, you take them out, and TA-DAH: cue the excitement, intrigue, interest when the toys re-emerge again...
They’re received with excitement…simply because they were unavailable for a while.
✈️ It’s like flight mode on a phone…
🧸...but for toys.
I don’t have a perfect system (you know how we do around here by now, right?!)
🧺 I do have a basket, though...
A long while back, I noticed that the kids’ IKEA cashier and their K-nex wasn’t getting much playtime love…
🧺 So I scooped ‘em up, stuck ‘em in the basket and put them into the closet.
Truth be told, I forgot about them (yup!), and today, I found them in the closet…
As I was decluttering the bedside drawers, I delivered the toy library goods to the living room...
My children began playing with the K-nex and the cashier for a long stretch of time, alhamdulillah.
The fact that the toys were away meant that they were received with intrigue - and they added novelty into playtime…given a new lease of life simply because they’d been away.
My kids were focused…building with the k-nex and hitting the cashier numbers, alhamdulillah.
So I got to declutter with my bluetooth earphones in one ear, with my audiobook playing.
▶️ Wanna make your own toy library?
Here’s what to do/some things to keep in mind 👇🏽
1️⃣ Consider keeping it simple.
2️⃣ Choose a basket or a box. Something to keep the toys contained.
3️⃣ Have a look around…anything that hasn’t been getting some play airtime?
Anything that could do with being put away for a while so that when it re-emerges, it introduces novelty and playtime again, without us having bought a new toy? (Ker-ching!)
4️⃣ Put your basket of toys away - away from little hands ….My toy library is kept in a high spot in the closet. (Also, I personally only put a few toys at a time but rock on if more works for you).
5️⃣ Bring it out again after a while and watch the toys get some airtime!
6️⃣ Watch the kids enjoy their playtime and, you, my lovely, can use the time however you please - or join them if you both please :-)
🤗 You. are. welcome, Mama!
And that is a toy library! ❤️
And remember as you parent, that it's not practice makes perfect, it's practice makes progress. You've got this ❤
[Written Feb 2021]
PS: If you would like more support with life at home with younger kids (11 and under), check out Peace At Home With Littles - my self-study online course. Go to bit.ly/peacewithlittles to find out more ❤
Photo Credit: Jerry Wang.