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Well, it’s happened.  It’s the week before Halloween, and the requests are rolling in…

Well-meaning, kind-hearted relatives: “What should I get the girls for Christmas?”
ME: “Is it rude if I say rent money?”
WMKHRs: “Hahaha.  No, seriously, what do they want?”
ME: “Is it rude if I say no clothes, no toys, no books?”
WMKHRs: —-silence—-

So basically, I’m rude.  I’m a Grinch.  And it’s not even Halloween yet!!!

But I have my Grinchy reasons.  I have MANY Grinchy reasons.

First, my kids want for absolutely nothing.  I feel like I’m pretty low on the overall “Americans are over-consumers” scale.  And still, our play room is freaking ridiculous.  Second, I hate cleaning up toys.  I hate telling my kids to clean up toys.  I hate helping them clean up toys.  I hate that toys exist to be cleaned up.  Third, must everything be pink?  or make noise?  or require a thousand little pieces?

So I don’t have any ideas whatsoever for Christmas.  But while I was assessing my Grinchy toy-hate, I discovered several toys that will be disappearing from my home forever.  These toys are so annoying, that I don’t even think I can consign them, for the love and sanity of my fellow unsuspecting mothers.  Behold:


Fisher-Price Dora the Explorer Tunes Microphone
So loud, so unintelligible. VAMANOS!


Melissa & Doug Farm Sound Puzzle
So the sound factor. It’s not really reserved for puzzle-play-time. Sit down on the couch? MOO! Turn off the light? MOOOOO! Get a bowl of ice cream? MOOOOooooooo! Fan.Tas.Tic.


RoseArt 24 Count Childrens Non-Toxic Crayons
Any crayons that are not Crayola brand. THEY KNOW. My girls are 3 and 4 and they already know which crayons are crap. I swear I didn’t tell them, they JUST KNOW.


Memory Game: Sesame Street
All of the memory cards for the five memory games we own are in a zip-loc bag. Together. Memory is now virtually impossible in our home.

When I’ve had enough, I usually end up digging through the piles with a big black garbage bag.  If it’s not broken or gross, I drop it off at daycare.  Otherwise, I trash it.  Not the most environmentally responsible method, which is bad, but I just don’t have the patience to sort it or fix it.

So what are your methods for purging the toy room? What’s your kid begging for this (very very early) holiday season?  Am I really a Grinch?

Image Credit: Reusable Art 

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Also a transplant to New Jersey and Mercer County, Merritt McGlynn is walking a tightrope between career woman and devoted mother: hanging on for dear life with her dishpan hands. Merritt is a mom to two of the most adorable children in Jersey: a darling and spunky 4-year-old and a certifiably insane but heart-melting almost-3-year-old. Married to the always-working "Coach", Merritt tries to maintain some appearance of a work-life balance, and often finds that the scales are usually tipped in one direction or the other - but she’s still trying! In her spare time, if she ever gets any, Merritt would like to read books, travel with her husband, drink margaritas on the deck, and one day, if she’s really lucky, enjoy a phone conversation without interruptions. For now, she’ll settle for 20 minutes of an Audrey Hepburn movie and a diet coke.

10 COMMENTS

  1. No advice for trashing the toys, I keep threatening a garage sale but that sounds like too much work. My kids want everything they see on tv. The litte misses favorite line is “I get that for MY birfday?” But we are big on suggesting experiences for the kids. Last year it was tennis camp for the big guy and a Laurie Berkner concert for both from grandma and their aunt. I think combo gifts are perfectly acceptable.

    • I keep thinking about a garage sale, too. But then thinking about going through everything, organizing, pricing, holding the sale itself – ugh. I am way too lazy. High on my experience lists this year are the Radio City Show and maybe a Philly Zoo day. We did the Fresh Beat Band concert for Little C’s birthday last year and it was a BIG hit. I think once they’re in school and they’ll need “summer camp” weeks – that might work – good idea!

  2. I’ve started asking for memberships/tickets to places like the children’s museum, zoo, hershey park. Also $ towards activities (dance, sports etc) or $ towards a family trip maybe a weekend at great wolfe lodge (the kids love it, however I could pass).

    • Love the Zoo membership idea – we didn’g go at all this year, and I think the kids missed it. And I’m with you – the Great Wolfe Lodge thing is totally not for me.

  3. I secretly throw toys out and hide others (e.g. the annoying dirt devil vacuum). She did bust me throwing something away (I think it was a doll), but seemed ok with it. The experiences idea is a good one. Grammy contributed to get bday trip to a kids theme park.

  4. A few weeks ago I was invited into The. Most. Fantastic. Club. Ever. It’s a “secret” group on Facebook put together as an online yard sale for our area. 650 buyers and sellers tapped into a virtual yardsale that really works, WITH MINIMAL EFFORT! I’ve already sold toys, car seat bases, ginormous baby things like a swing and jumper, clothes and nursing supplies, and it was as easy as photographing and describing the stuff I want to sell, and meeting buyers in my work lobby to exchange my crap for their money. 🙂

    But I also admit to the occasional trash-it-all tirade that inevitably results in tears when my oldest discovers the toys in the trash or finds a piece of a toy I threw out weeks ago and asks where the toy is.

    Since family is local for us, we suggest Christmas presents they can keep at their houses to entertain the boys. You want to buy gobs of toys? No problem – the kids would love to play with all that new stuff at YOUR house!

  5. I got that Dora microphone for Charlie. What? You don’t like it? It was a HUGE hit! Wonder what I’ll buy to replace it…

    • Oh we LOVE that microphone. So much so, that I can sing all of the songs in Spanish and English better than the girls can. Not like it’s a competition or anything… BUT I WIN.

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