Back Home Again in Indiana
I have a vague recollection of my mom sending my sisters and me upstairs to clean out the toy box, and instead of actually going through the toys, we just emptied it out and sat inside it for awhile. This is really the only memory I have of cleaning out our toys. I know we did because we didn’t grow up with mountains of toys, I just don’t remember it. And after what I did last Monday, I’m starting to suspect the lack of memories is because we didn’t clean out our toys; our mom did when we weren’t home.
The toy explosion begins as soon as you announce another human is about to inhabit your house, and it doesn’t end until ever from what I understand. Unless you want your house to forever look like a Toys R Us outlet, you periodically need to clean out the toys which, as anyone with a tiny human will tell you, is much easier said than done. There is no faster way to rekindle your child’s interest in a toy than to act like you’re going to get rid of it. Boogs hasn’t played with rattles in at least 2 years, but if I even glance at a rattle, he’s yelling “MINE!” and telling me all about how it’s his favorite toy. I’ve heard of people who have their kids clean out their toys and donate them on their half birthday, and while I love that idea, I also know my child freaks out about having to return a library book. And so, like every standout mother around the world, I waited until he was at school to clean out his toys.
I didn’t actually get rid of anything because I’m not an idiot (it’s all in a tub in the garage), but I did get it pared down to where I can now put the lid on the toybox if I feel so inclined, and Boogser hasn’t even noticed. Not once has he asked where his train is or where his hammers are. I haven’t heard the blocks or Baby Einstein guitar mentioned a single time. I’m sure as soon as I think it’s safe and drop it off at Goodwill he’ll start demanding his neck pillow, and I’m sure some day he’ll figure out that nothing is safe when Mommy’s home alone, but for now I’m relishing the fact that my house no longer looks like a toy factory exploded and no one’s even commented on it.