Friday, January 06, 2012

storage wars.

Do you have kids? Do you? Do you have lots of microscopic pieces of plastic and wood all over the place? Because I do. Now that the wee one has his own toys out to play with, I feel like I'm staring at toys 99.9% of the time. T got his fair share of trucks and balls and books for Christmas, and he lugs them around and gnaws on them constantly, but they are everywhere, and S's basket isn't big enough for everything. Thus, M said to me the other day, "I think it's time we talk about a toy box."

Kill me.

My head was instantly filled with an image of a plastic toy box by Little Tikes that my brother's babysitter had when he was little. Then I started thinking about wooden toy boxes with heinous jungle scenes lovingly painted on them. Or large boxes meant to look like John Deere tractors. I wanted to cry.

Naturally, I got on the internet.
I was coocoo for Cocoa Puffs when I saw these, but M said no. He's right of course, it would take many of these baskets, and then there would be multiple baskets littering the family room.

He suggested a box with a lid so that we could shut the lid on the chaos, but, we're Ouisers, so the box needed safety hinges and it needed to be made of actual wood. Also, I had to be able to bear looking at it in my family room for the next several years. For a few hundred bucks, I could solve all of our problems. But I wasn't happy with the options. I just wasn't. I know that old adage about not having anything in your house that you don't find beautiful or useful, and all of the toy box options were useful. They were just not something I wanted to look at. At all. I had a couple of small anxiety attacks worrying about this. Then I'd laugh at myself for being so monumentally silly.
I decided on these. I think we'll be really happy. They are not hideous. When I started the search, I thought that some sort of chest would be great because we could repurpose it later. Blanket storage in the guest room or something. Then I realized that meant I was looking for two different things really. When I chose these, I knew I was choosing something to contain our children's toys. They might someday hold sports equipment in the garage or some random stuff in the garage, but I think, in this instance, I was making a simple choice based on our actual needs and that felt good.

How have you dealt with having children's toys in communal spaces?


Sarah Berry said...

When C was born we packed up our regular coffee table and replaced it with a leather storage ottoman (with safety hinges) and it's been amazing.

Everything can be out of sight and there were no worries about little heads cracking into table corners.

die Frau said...

We have storage cubbies like that from Pottery Barn. I know they'll come in wildly handy. I also like the idea of Sarah's ottoman!

D Baker said...

Hi S! We coughed up the dough for one of those real-wood safetyhinged toy boxes, we love it and it is sturdy enough to double as seating in our livingroom. (You are aware of our space challenges.) It works for us, and the girls sit on it together to watch out the window - it's cute. I like your cubbies though, and I am wondering if that might be a good repalcement for some cheap shelves that are currently in their bedroom.