1. Examine Your Home
2. Sort Books
Books from my oldest child’s room are moved to the middle child’s bedroom, and then to the youngest child’s room. Once all three children are no longer reading the books, I place treasured books in each child’s keepsake box. I save a few books for my own keepsake box…I love a good children’s book.
- Books — board books, beginning readers, short chapter books, nonfiction books — are sorted in to piles…consignment stores, Swap.com, and donation.
- I take books to my favorite local consignment store. I usually call ahead for an appointment. I bring in my 25 or 50 highest quality items. Consignment stores will only accept books or other items in very good condition.
- Books are also shipped to Swap.com. Swap.com takes a photo of each item, posts the photo, and handles the sale. Once an item sells, Swap.com deposits the money minus a small handling fee in your PayPal account. I also send children’s clothes, maternity clothes, children’s shoes, DVDs, CDs, computer games, toys, and games to Swap.com.
- I sell books and more on local Facebook online yard sale groups.
- I give books to friends and relatives with young children.
- Anything not consigned or sold is donated. I drop off donated items at a local Goodwill store. I also have regularly scheduled pickups from Purple Heart and American Veterans.
I follow the “Out of sight out of mind” philosophy. Toys are moved from the playroom to the basement storage room. If the kids ask for the toy, they can bring it out of storage. If not, the toy can be consigned or donated.
- I have a knack for knowing what pieces go with which toy playsets. I’ll hunt high and low to find the white sheep that goes with the Little People Farm. No toy is unaccounted for!
- Once the sets are assembled and bagged, I schedule an appointment with my local consignment store or send toys, computer games, DVDs, and board games to Swap.com.
- Computer games can be traded in to GameStop.com for store credit. There’s also a MovieStop.com for trading in DVDs, although I have traded any movies yet.
- For more tips on decluttering toys, visit this post or this post or even this post. I may not have a spotless home but I know a thing or two about organization!
A few years ago, we were drowning in clothing. Drowning! Every closet was overflowing. There were bags and boxes of outgrown clothes on every surface. Even though the task seemed insurmountable, I set about sorting all the clothes.
- I wash all clothing.
- I check for stains, tears, and wear and tear.
- I sort clothes by gender and size.
- I assemble sets of clothing…pajama top with matching pajama pants, rain coat with matching rain boots, dress with coordinating cardigan.
- For more tips on consigning and selling kids’ clothing, visit this post.
A funny thing happened when I purged and decluttered all the books, toys, DVDs, and clothing. Once the piles, boxes, and clutter was reduced, I could finally see the furniture in each room. You have no idea how much stuff a room can hold until you remove a lot of the stuff. Reminds me of Hoarders. My house is no where near a Hoarders-level of clutter, but the piles and stacks were considerable. Once you have removed clutter and stuff from your home, you should:
- Buy plastic storage bins. Over the years, I have used storage tubs to hold toys, games, DVDs, and more. Take it from me you can never have too many storage tubs. I re-purposed many of these storage tubs for storing Christmas decorations, keepsake books and treasured items, and clothing.
- Buy cardboard storage boxes. You know the boxes that printer paper is shipped in? You can buy these boxes from your local office supply store or save the printer paper boxes. I store bills, tax returns, and school papers in these boxes.
- Buy bookshelves. I purchased about 8 bookshelves for very little money from a local Facebook yard sale group. I put 6 in my garage and two in my storage room. I stacked the plastic storage tubs on the bookshelves.
- Remove chairs, tables, and other pieces of furniture that you are not using. I tend to pile items on ANY available surface. Without miscellaneous chairs and tables, I have no other choice but to sort and find a home for books, toys, papers, and other items.
Disclosure: I was not compensated to write this post. This post contains amazon affiliate links.