It is extremely easy to get caught up in buying your baby and later, toddler, all of these things because you want them to learn and be curious about the world. It is much harder to actually stick to it. I think we’re pretty minimalist in terms of our baby/toddler clutter and thus far, this is what Baby Bun owns to play with:
HOMEMADE TOYS (easily recycled in a bin when ruined)
- Cardboard house made out of cardboard
- Flash cards for letters and numbers
- Baby socks that no longer fit his feet (he wears them on his hands as mittens)
- Cardboard boxes (jewellery boxes, old tupperware boxes, packaging, anything he can use as a container)
- 1 metal box (came free with a watch)
- Map for the wall (I loved this stuff as a kid)
- Box of crayons
- Mini play kitchen
- Mini pots & pans
- Mini plates & cutlery
- Mini sliceable fruits & vegetables
- 3 toy trucks (one is a secret one I keep hidden in my purse ONLY to pull out in desperation when he is being grumpy)
- 12 board books – planning on keeping only 5 after he outgrows them, such as the Goodnight Moon classic
- Bouncy rubber animal to ride
HOUSEHOLD GADGETS (easily repurposed)
- [Old] iPad & iPod – No wifi connection, only games that teach language on them
- 4 wool dryer balls – I use them in the dryer but he likes to kick them around
CLOTHES (for going out)
We of course run out of clothes once in a while if I don’t do laundry on the regular or if he gets them dirty all the time, but I just do a load and he has clothes for the week again (or longer).
- 2 pairs of shorts
- 2 short t-shirts
- 3 long-sleeved shirts
- 4 pairs of pants
- 2 sweaters
- 1 jacket
- 1 pair of shoes – he has outgrown 2 of them so far, this is the third pair
- 1 pair of boots – unused thus far and seems like a waste of money
CLOTHES (for the home)
- 6 t-shirts
- 3 pairs of long pants
- 1 pair of shorts
- 3 onesies (he still fits into them and wants to wear them because he’s a baby)
- 1 pair of footed leggings
That is all we own, and I think it is a lot because I always have to walk around picking all of this stuff up and off and floor… but then I go over to other kids’ houses for a visit or playdate, and I realize just how minimalist we are.
They have closets FULL of clothes and toys, their closets are stuffed full with lots of clothing and they have multiple pairs of shoes that have to constantly be replaced each time their feet grow.
It is kind of surprising to me how much they have, and even if it was bought cheaply for a buck or two, it is visually arresting for me. I walk in to a landmine full of plastic toys.
Even Baby Bun is overwhelmed.
He only picks out ONE toy and plays with it until he is comfortable enough to play with another.
My whole mission is not to be some crazy minimalist parent who won’t buy their kids ANYTHING or give them anything just to keep a house clean, but to make sure he has toys he actually enjoys and plays with.