Growing Piles Of Ownership: How To Contain Stuff Your Kids Amass
As an adult, you generally stop buying things for yourself and start buying things for your kids. Eventually, you realize that your kids have too much stuff. How do you handle this situation now? Their closets and storage spaces in their rooms are overflowing, and your attic and basement cannot contain the prized possessions of a decade or more either. Here is how to begin to contain the stuff your kids own and have amassed just by being kids.
Stop Buying Physical Stuff
Yes, this seems easier said than done, because you are a parent who wants to buy your children presents on birthdays and seasonal holidays just to see your children's faces light up. However, there are lots of other things you can give your kids that will not take up space in their rooms, but please them all the same (e.g., tickets to a concert, a staycation or vacation to a location of their choice, etc.). When you stop buying physical stuff and give them more memory-related gifts, you have less stuff to store.
Rent a Self Storage Unit
Okay, now that you have committed to not buying any more stuff, you can focus on storing the stuff your kids already have. Weed out things that are really important to them and/or you, but your children have not used or played with in a long time. Those items you can pack in boxes or plastic storage totes and set aside for the storage unit. Everything else you can decide to either leave in their rooms, or give away.
Once you have found and rented a self storage unit, you can load up the family car (or rent a moving truck or van) and take the totes and boxes to the unit. You are expected to keep the unit tidy, which is why everything should be boxed up, and nothing should be liquid, food, or explosive. Store all of your children's best mementos in the unit. Doing so will help you clear a lot of stuff out of their rooms, and out of your home. Less clutter and less mess is always great, and a storage unit is the perfect solution for this particular problem.
Give or Keep Is the New Choice
If friends or relatives give your kids more stuff, tell the kids that they have to choose between keeping the new items, giving older items away, and/or putting items in storage. It helps keep things from stacking up and building up again. It also teaches your kids that it is okay to let go.