We tend to forget that happiness doesn't come as a result of getting something we don't have,
but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.”
1. With older kids, I have them work alongside me. I go through all their clothes and things with them asking, "Do you want this still?" "Do you need this for school anymore?" "Does
this fit you?" "Will you ever wear this?" I will make a hand-me-down pile, and then a garbage pile and a donate pile.
know I must ask first, just in case. I bring them in the next day or so, one at a time, and we go through
things together...lots of questions, trying on clothes, asking if they like things, if they fit, if they will ever
be worn*. I ask them to help me organize things, so they can learn, and also so they know how refreshing
an organized room is vs. a messy one...they need to see that before and after process.
3. All my kids have special places to keep things. They each have a large "treasure box" (that white suitcase type container above) where they keep mementos...a good place to throw that special rock, or some little object they love. These are left down and easily accessible. If they have a larger collection of something, (Pokemon cards, stuffed animals) I put those things in some type of container.
I also have a large plastic container for each child called a "scrapbook box". These contain everything from first shoes, to special drawings, baby blankets, old journals, that type of thing. These are up in a closet and not very accessible...but they will often request that special things are put in their boxes.
4. On hand-me-downs: I have four boys, but there is a 14 year span between youngest and oldest....SO I
keep some things, others I know it won't last. I have piles of khakis, blazers, dress shoes, uniforms,
sports stuff, dress shirts, ties, and belts...all things that won't go out of style. Some things can make it to
the next in line, some just end up looking too junky. I keep everything in a separate container or drawer,
in my middle son's closets, which are roomy. I have a sports drawer, a shoe container, a uniform
container, and a seperate section for the dress things. When they were all younger (babies and toddlers), I had the big plastic containers labeled and stacked in the basement according to size, but I would go through these with a fine-toothed comb and really think if the item looked nice enough to pass down, or was just too worn or stained or out of style.
*While I am with the kid's sorting through and organizing their closets, I keep a notebook with me, so I
can jot down who needs what for spring/summer. Do they have dress shoes that fit? In need of a couple
fresh t-shirts or a new pair of shorts or swim trunks? This way I know what to keep my eye out for or
what to get for birthdays with no excess.