As a mom of twin 3-year olds, I get just how much stuff kids can accumulate in a very short period of time. Even if you have the best intentions as a new parent, like I did, things quickly escalate and the next thing you know, there’s a full train set and 200 Lego pieces making a cozy home right in your (MY) living room! So today I want to share with you 5 tips for clutter-free living with kids, which can absolutely apply regardless of how many offspring you have!
Disclosure: I have participated in a paid partnership with Daniels. Opinions in this post are my own.
1. Hiding kids toys
Have I said already that kids have a lot of stuff? Because man, THEY HAVE A LOT OF STUFF! Namely, toys! In our home we don’t have a dedicated playroom for the boys, so our living room has to be a space that we can both comfortably unwind in, as well as a space for the kids to build, play, read, etc. One piece of furniture that has made a HUGE difference for us is a train/blocks table that doubles as a coffee table. This means we can just add the top of the table whenever we have guests, and gives us an extra space to hide the messes! We also like to keep a lot of baskets around the house, and even added some recently under our chairs so that the kids can easily pull out their favourite blanket or superhero costume.
The goal here is to make storage pretty AND functional. This way you feel like you get to have a calm space and it’s easy for everyone to put things away!
2. Creating a mudroom
As the boys get ready to start school in the Fall, I’m already seeing a pattern of jackets, gloves, boots, and hats strewn across the floor of our entryway. The best thing I have done for us and them to control this mess is to make smart storage that they can reach (and some that they can’t). We created a mudroom of sorts in a small entryway by adding a hall tree with hooks. I then added some smaller hooks on the side for the boys to reach their own jackets and bags. Up high, however, we have a shelf that holds a few basket’s they can’t reach, so we can keep our things out of the way but within easy access for adults at the same time. A few simple hooks and baskets can save a ton of headache!
Since Daniels has so many family-friendly amenities and are situated in community-focused neighbourhoods, having a space your kids can easily get ready to go outside is so handy!
3. Storing kids cups, plates, and snacks
Here’s a theme to what I’m saying: store things purposely within reach. The boys know exactly where to go to get to their plates and cups, and that drawer in out kitchen cabinet is low, so that they can access it when they’re ‘helping’ us put away dishes or when it’s time to eat.
Truth: this drawer has a child-lock on it. There would never be snacks for more than 6 seconds in this drawer if they had full access to it all the time, but it’s great to be able to open it up with them, have them select what they want, and move on. Kids love to feel in control, right?
4. Creating a playroom in a den
Yes, I already said that we don’t have a dedicated playroom in our house, but we do have this sort of awkward space between our laundry room and kitchen and family room, so for a while, I had that as the kids play area. This would be a great opportunity for a small den area, and having all of the toys in one space makes clean-up super easy, and Daniels happens to have lots of units that include a den!
I used a storage shelf with 2 different sized bins to store their things and had their play kitchen in that space as well. Since dens are usually pretty open, it’s a great option to have your kids play there and makes it easy to check on them while cooking dinner, trying to get a bite to eat, or getting in a few sips of hot coffee (good luck!).
5. Making shared bedrooms work
Our boys have shared a space since, well, since they were conceived! They shared a womb, so they can share a room now, too! We recently updated a shared bedroom for them, and here are a few reasons it works so well:
- we kept their beds small, but not too small. Having twin sized beds means they can grow into these, whereas toddler sized beds would only last a couple of years before needing to be updated.
- they share a dresser. This may be trickier if your kids are different ages, but even then, one side of the dresser is for the kid whose bed is on the left, and the other for the right. Keep it simple.
- the bedroom is not a place to play, it’s a place to sleep. This means we don’t keep toys in their room. It’s just always been like that. They have a few books in there, and stuffed animals are allowed, but we don’t store toys in their bedroom. Doing this means storage can be super intentional in this space and we feel like we can store everything they need here, even their extra bedding!
I’m sure there are even more things I could think of, but I wanted to stick to these 5 things because I think some of these are things that can be done easily over a weekend, and they make such a massive impact on how you feel in your own home!
If you have any other tips, let me know in the comments! It’s great when we can help one another out!