It can seem like an endless trail of toys, crayons, and crumbs follow your kids around. Trying to keep the house tidy and uncluttered can feel like a losing battle. They bring home so much artwork, rocks, shells, collectables, presents... they just keep finding more STUFF to bring into your house.
You go to the home of that childless friend you have - you know the one - with their pale coloured fabric couch, expensive rugs, trendy expensive designer furniture and not a things out of place, and it's difficult to even comprehend living in a space like that.
There are however things that you can do to encourage a little more free space and less stuff underfoot in your home, even with the little cherubs doing their best to sabotage your efforts.
Clear out toys/equipment
Sorting through toys, and donating any that don't get used, that the kids have outgrown, or that don't work is step 1. Next, look through those big bulky items that are seasonal (such as boogie boards or ski gear) and put these in storage out of the way. You can check out our self storage space sizes here for this.
Start a rotation
So much of the time there are things that get forgotten, never played with, or picked up for 30 seconds and put back down again. Divide toys into 5 (or more) big boxes, and rotate toys weekly. This way not only is there limited stuff for them to spread through the house, but they will learn to get creative and use their imagination to find new ways to play with the toys they have out.
If you find you have more than a few boxes, you can put some in self storage and do a drop off/pick up every month or two to rotate them.
You might be amazed how tidy a kid can keep their room if they are proud of the space that is theirs. Letting your kids choose a theme or decorate their room themselves just might be enough to get them keeping things in their place. Just make sure you have the right furniture that makes it easy for little hands to pack things away, otherwise everything may end up back on the floor within hours.
Everything has a home
When the whole family knows where to put things back, it makes it much easier to keep the house uncluttered. This might mean putting some of your own stuff into storage, so that just the most used and most important or loved belongings are within easy reach. Nothing worse than having to dig around to find something hidden away, or not being able to find it at all!