One plastic poker chip, one puzzle piece, two rocks, one dog-chewed Ping-Pong ball, one plastic railroad track, one pink princess lid and an inflatable something pink…all in the trash by 8:30 am. I’m tossing out bits and pieces of toys like this every day. I’m already overwhelmed with toys and here comes Christmas when Target throws up in my house all over again.
I will take some ownership of the problem. I do buy my kids toys fairly often, rewards for good behavior; and the many toy bribes, “just sit still a little longer and you can pick out anything you want…. please don’t yell, stop hitting your sister, sit down in the cart….don’t you want that toy???”
And what about birthdays? For my son’s third birthday party I said, “No gifts please.” But a few gifts is nice….right? It doesn’t quite feel like a birthday with out a few presents but how do you get a few gifts without being overwhelmed with gifts? How do you find something between zero and nausea?
Last year, my kids were crazed and over-stimulated for an entire month after Christmas. They screamed and threw toys and ran around like maniacs until half the toys were broken and the rest I gather up and tried unsuccessfully to hide them in the closet.
I do want to be kind and respectful to the gift-givers. They are my friends and family who are well meaning and loving. I don’t want to offend anyone who contributed last year when my two-year-old girl received nine Barbies for Christmas. Nine!!! Do you know what a two-year-old does with Baribies? Undresses them, looses the shoes and the clothes. In the first day, they were striped down. I redressed them, they were de-clothed again the same day. They have been naked ever since. I personally don’t like to see nude Barbies scattered around the house, so I boxed them all up and hid them in the closet. The kids continually found them and nude little ladies were dancing all over the house again. One morning, I was unloading the kids for school and a naked Barbie slid out of the vehicle and sprawled in the school parking lot, making me feel more like a pervert than a Christian mom. I mean, Barbies have well-defined breasts, not just a lumpy center like de-clothed baby dolls. After than morning, I instituted the rule, “No Barbies are allowed out of the bedroom without clothes on!” Of course, all the clothes have been lost or chewed up by the dog, so at this point a mini-nudist colony resides in my daughter’s room. One day soon, I’ll get up the courage to relocate this bunch out of my house forever.