What do we do with the toys as our children outgrow them? The first instinct is to get rid of them – donate, sell, pass on to friends/relatives, etc. But later, we often wish we had kept a specific toy, for nostalgia’s sake or for a young grandchild. As a grandmother, I have often thought of certain toys I wished I had saved for my grandchildren.
The challenge is deciding what is worth keeping – and whether or not we have the space to store it. These are the guidelines I wish I had used with my children’s toys:
· Toys that can be played with for many years are often worth keeping. Legos come to mind, but there are many others. Don’t you wish you had those original Lincoln Logs, Tinker Toys, etc.?
· Any toy that was particularly special to a child is always worth keeping. If it is a stuffed animal that the child took to bed every night, it may look like something worthy of the trash bin. But children remember these special toys and seeing them years later is sure to bring fond memories to mind.
· Toys that are likely to become “extinct” might be good ones to keep. In my case, the original Fisher Price “people,” houses, ferris wheel, garage, etc. were favorites of my children. But Fisher Price no longer makes those toys and I regret my decision to let them go. My grandchildren would have loved them!
· Toys that might be of value are worth considering, too, but in this day of mass production, the value is not likely to be that great. Dedicating valuable storage space to these toys might not be the best decision.
Of course, these decisions are very personal and there is no “right” answer. But as a grandmother, I would advise parents to consider very carefully what to do with these treasures of childhood and not just get rid of them without some thought.