Week 2 - Kids' Items {Net Zero Clutter Challenge 2016} | From Overwhelmed to Organized: Week 2 - Kids' Items {Net Zero Clutter Challenge 2016}

Monday, December 5, 2016

Week 2 - Kids' Items {Net Zero Clutter Challenge 2016}

Do you feel overwhelmed during the month of December with all the stuff that enters your home? It makes it hard to enjoy this festive time of year.

I've found that when I declutter throughout the month it really helps me feel less overwhelmed.  Will you join me in the Net Zero Decluttering Challenge this year?

This week I'm sharing tips for decluttering your kids' items!

Note: if you don't have kids, the tips below still apply... you can declutter your clothing, books, games, etc. as well as items related to your hobbies and activities.  If you have grown kids who still have some of their things in your home, you can gather their items together and give them back to them when you see them over the holidays. Or perhaps find a way to display a few of their sentimental items and then give them back as a gift that they can proudly display in their home rather than having it stored in your basement {check out the Decluttering Sentimental Items series for ideas!}.

Each week I'll share decluttering tips to help you declutter a different area of your home.  If you do that, you can end the month with the same number of items in your home (or maybe even less!) than what you started the month with!

This Week's Decluttering Focus

Kids stuff.  There's just so much of it. Ever feel like the volume of items in our homes increases exponentially when we have kids?

They grow quickly so there's a constant influx of clothing and shoes. Their abilities and interests change over time so there are always toys, books, games and activities they've outgrown or lost interest in.  They keep receiving gifts for birthdays and holidays, long after adults decide to stop giving gifts to each other. And don't even get me started on all the little toys and treats that enter our homes from loot bags, fast-food dinners, behaving at school, etc.

The flow of kids' items into our homes is constant. And if we don't want cluttered homes, we have to be very diligent in keeping the flow of items out just as constant!

The good news is, there's all that stuff they've outgrown or lost interest in that you can declutter :)

Here are a few tips:

  • Go through your kids' closets and dressers and let go of anything that is too small (or will be too small by the next season for off-season clothes). Also remove clothing that they never wear (everyone has their favourites that barely make it out of the laundry before being worn again so let go of some of the items that never make it out of their drawers).  Make room in those drawers and on those hangers for the new clothes that they will receive as gifts later this month. 
  • Go through your kids' toys, games, books and activities and declutter anything that they've outgrown or that hasn't been used for a long time. I recommend including your kids in this process (even though it may take longer).  It's the perfect time of year to do it because you can explain that since they will be receiving new things to play with later this month, they need to make room by giving away some of the things they don't play with any more.  That means something to kids and makes it easier to let go.  Also, if you have items that are in really good condition kids are more willing to let go if you explain that they can donate to them to charities that will give them to kids who may not receive as many gifts this year. {New toys can go to toy drives, gently used toys can be given to family shelters.}

You know most of the items entering your home this year are going to be for or related to your kids. So if you want to end the month at net zero clutter, taking some time to declutter your kids' items this week will really help!

Decluttering My Holiday Items (last week's focus)

When I wrote last week's post we hadn't quite finished decorating yet so I wasn't ready to share what I'd decluttered. But now that we've finished decorating the house I can share my progress. There actually wasn't very much to declutter this year because I was pretty brutal last year!

I did find a few things to declutter though (mostly items that were leftover after we decorated a tree for a family shelter last year plus a few things I came across as we emptied our bins).

  • 1 package of foam Christmas plates that have been in my bin for several years
  • 1 partially used roll of gold mesh 
  • 1 package of ornaments
  • 9 small ornaments
  • 1 Precious Moments figurine (Little Drummer Boy) *Note: the other Precious Moments item in the picture ended up on our tree :)
  • 2 blank cards

My daughter also went through her craft kids and decluttered:

  • 3 stocking kits
  • 1 jewelry kit
  • 1 bead kit

We just decorated our Christmas tree this weekend and it seems to get fuller and fuller every year with all the ornaments we accumulate.  We give our kids a new ornament each year and we all often receive ornaments as gifts so I have to stay on top of decluttering ornaments, both so that we can fit everything on our tree, and so we can store it back again after Christmas in our ornament storage container (affiliate link).

As we decorated I decluttered:

  • 13 ornaments
  • 1 set of ornaments
  • 2 sets of hooks

We may declutter some more Christmas decorations and tree ornaments after Christmas, but overall I think we're actually using almost everything we have, which is a first!

Decluttering Kids' Items and Other Decluttering

For this week's decluttering focus, I decluttered some kids' items from our gift bins. We buy gifts all year when we find things on sale, but we don't always have specific people in mind to give them to.  Every so often those bins need a good decluttering and since I was trying to see what I still need to buy for Christmas, I took a few minutes to let go of some gifts I know we won't give any more.  We've scaled back on exchanging gifts with several families over the last couple of years, and as my kids are getting older, they want to buy specific gifts when they are invited to their friends' parties. So we no longer need very many children's gifts on hand.  Here's what I was able to donate:

  • 5 books
  • 2 large sticker kits
  • 1 truck
  • 4 small sticker sheets/pads
  • 1 skirt
  • 1 tank top

I also decluttered these Halloween items when I put away our fall/Halloween decorations in preparation for decorating for Christmas:

  • 2 decorations
  • 1 jello mold
  • 1 craft kit
  • 1 McDonald's Happy Meal Halloween pail

And some random items:

  • 1 pair of sandals (my hubby's)
  • 1 pair of kids' gardening gloves
  • 5 of my shirts
  • 2 of my pants

I'm hoping to work with my kids this week to declutter a few more of their things, but they both did a pretty good job decluttering their toys and books this summer and we decluttered their outgrown clothing last month (several bags worth!) so there may not be much more to declutter right now.

My Progress in the #NetZeroClutter challenge

So far so good for my decluttering in the NetZeroClutter challenge!
Nothing new has entered our home yet this month and I've decluttered 64 items so far.   So that puts me at -64 items this week in the #NetZeroClutter challenge and -64 overall.  Off to a good start :)

What's Next For You?

Take some time this week to declutter your kids' items. Or anything you'd like to declutter!  Take some pictures and share your progress on social media using the hashtag #NetZeroClutter.  Let me know how you're doing in the challenge so I can cheer you on!

Sign up to receive my blog posts by email so you get each week's post in your email inbox.  You can unsubscribe after the challenge is over if you don't want to continue receiving my blog posts by email.

I'd also love for you to join our 365 Items in 365 Days Facebook group as you do this challenge!  You'll be able to share with others what you're decluttering and feel encouraged and inspired by everyone else who is also decluttering!

If you'd like more decluttering ideas, you can check out my Decluttering/Purging Tips & Ideas board on Pinterest.

So that's this week's post in the Net Zero Decluttering Challenge!  I'm enjoying doing this challenge again and I'm excited to have you join me.  I love hearing all the stories of how much more you're looking forward to the holidays because you're not as overwhelmed by all the stuff in your home!

How many kids' items did you declutter this week?  How many holiday items did you declutter last week?  What else have you been decluttering? How are your overall in / out numbers?

Happy organizing decluttering!

I link up at these great parties - Check them out!

Here are all the posts in this challenge in case you missed any or want to share some with your friends or family!