As my first year comes to a close, I’ve come to the conclusion that being a mom is 80% parenting and 20% figuring out what to do with all the stuff you don’t want any more. There’s eBay, yard sales, and charity just to name a few. But sometimes in a last desperate attempt, we throw it on someones doorstep, ring the bell, and run!
I enjoy a bag of new stuff just as much as the next person but sometimes I just don’t need the extra junk. And so I bag up the mess and pass it on to the next person. Next time you decide to clean out the closet or toybox, ask yourself some questions first.
Is it age appropriate? Please think before you toss. If you’re giving toys to a younger child, make sure the toys are safe. Check and double check the items for small parts that could be swallowed. Also, when giving away items of clothing, make sure the recipient would be able to wear them within the next few months. Don’t give a family with an infant older children’s clothes.
Is It in good condition? Don’t give someone broken or torn items. Inspect the clothing for tears or really bad stains. Some people may not mind it, but make sure they know what they’re getting instead of a bag of surprises. Examine the toys for any loose parts or defects. And please don’t throw all the random pieces of junk you find in the bottom of the toybox in the bag. No one wants misplaced dice or a lonely piece to your child’s long-gone Candyland game. If you don’t want it anymore, we don’t either.
Is it clean? This is a pet peeve of mine. But especially during the cooler months, make sure the items are clean. Wash all the clothes and wipe down any toys. Not only could this prevent the spread of germs, but also, no one wants to clean what they could only guess is chocolate milk out of the bed of a toy truck. It’s not that I don’t like your kid or think they have cooties, I just don’t want mine getting sick.
Would the child truely benefit from your gift? When giving away unused toys or clothes, are you giving to someone who actually NEEDS the new things or are you throwing them off on a parent who already has too much? Why not donate them to the less fortunate! There are tons of people and places who would love to have new pre-loved toys, especially this close to the holidays. Instead of tossing them, look in the phonebook or on the Internet for organizations that would take them. Most places have Salvation Army or Goodwill stores nearby. Or even local thrift stores or churches. Please don’t just throw things away or dump them on people that don’t want them just because you’re too lazy to find someone that does. You could make someone very happy.