Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Toy swap

Moms Club is having a "toy swap" at our monthly meeting this Friday. I'm not really interested in giving away toys that Madelyn has outgrown because hopefully there will be another little infant/toddler in our family one day who can enjoy them later. Plus, high-quality items can actually make me money to buy new toys (or whatever) when I am ready to get rid of them. I guess I'm too selfish or too poor (both) to give away the good stuff.

I finally found a few minutes today to clean up the clutter that had been relentlessly building around my house, and since 82% of the misplaced items belonged in the toy cabinets, I decided I'd take a quick look and see if there were a few things we really didn't need anymore and wouldn't ever miss.

The truth is, we don't have a large number of toys. Most of them can fit into these two lovely cabinets in our family room.
I also put some of the larger items such as a set of large wooden blocks and the IKEA tunnel in the upper cabinet, where the flatscreen TV that we don't own would otherwise go. There is a play kitchen in the dining room, and in Madelyn's room we have a full bookcase (full of books) and way too many stuffed animals (all contained in a hanging organizer and baskets when not sharing Madelyn's bed or being toted in a purse). That's about it! So we don't have an overabundance of toys, and as you can see, I like to keep them organized.

So I didn't have much to select from, but I found a few items I was happy to clear out of the bins. I just hope I can sneak them onto the swap table without drawing attention to my connection with them, because I'm a little bit embarrassed about the lame selection.
Out of the handful of books I quickly grabbed, one's pages are detached from the hardcover binding, and another needs lift-the-flap repair. The rest are in less-than-stellar condition as well. The entire middle row of toys came from fast food meals with the grandparents. I happened upon the pink hippo on a Monday morning walk in a box marked "FREE" at the end of a driveway in my neighborhood and let Madelyn play with it in the stroller. Is a PEZ dispenser really considered a toy? Madelyn "borrowed" Spiderman from her cousin, and I noticed an identical one among my sister's items at the consignment sale, so I'm hoping she's cool with me donating it (I'll check first). The globe "stress ball" is a promotional item with some company logo on it we must have picked up at a fair or something.

Pretty pathetic, huh. Listen, Madelyn enjoyed each of these items for a short while, but I don't want them anymore. Maybe someone else's child will enjoy one for a time before they too decide to pass it along. And any toys that aren't chosen at the swap will be compiled into a box for kids to play with at the monthly meetings. So I imagine any contribution will be appreciated.

Of course, we were supposed to have a costume exchange at last month's meeting and only one person brought a costume, so maybe I'll luck out and the toy swap won't even happen. Then these silly toys can just be donated to charity where no one will know who shamefully brought them.


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