In our house we have to make a conscious effort to keep plenty of space as collections of toys and projects continue to grow.
We regularly go through collections and decide together what should go. The children have been very good at grasping the idea they have plenty and the toys they don't play with could be loved and treasured by a child who has less than they do, as we often send ours to a local group for vulnerable young mothers. They also understand that if they make room, Santa will know that they could use a 'new' toy at Christmas! I like to think it is the first reason they use as motivation but I am realistic and think they are probably very much swayed by the latter reason!
The easiest way to keep on top of decluttering is to find a route for each item to be reused. When something is too good to be disposed of, which rightly stops me wanting to just bin it but would end up hanging around instead, we direct it down one of the following routes:
- Toys go to children's spaces such as local toddler groups
- Books go to libraries.
- And Freegle is our route for everything else to go into re-use. Furniture, tools and other equipment, clothes, boxes, half tins of paint anything you do not have use for anymore might be welcomed by someone else looking for just that. Someone's junk is someone else's treasure, as they say!
There are other groups, like Freecycle, which have pretty much the same principle as Freegle. These groups also enable you to receive goods, from someone's spare batteries or light bulbs to sideboards, dining sets, carpets and curtains. As long as you offer your own items on there for others, there is a chance you can make use of someone else's offers. You could decorate a whole room with someone else's half tins of paint for colourful contrasting walls - this looks very effective, especially in a shared children's room as we have done in one of our bedrooms. I have even seen a full kitchen offered on Freegle! If you were patient, you could probably do up a great deal of your whole house through reuse sites!