Monday, April 30, 2012

The Accumulation and Storage of Things Outgrown

Seasons changing always mean a massive clothing migration, which means in the Spring and Fall we have every kind of clothing out and everywhere, from swimsuits and bucket hats to mittens and sweaters, and everything in between. Doesn't help that it was 30 degrees in March and snowed this past weekend. 

The thing about kids is, they are always growing. Always. They grow out of clothing, and you get them some more, and they grow out of those too.

Will the insanity never end??

Alongside the outgrowing and seasonal migration of clothes, we have the Accumulation and Storage of Things Outgrown. The boxes and baskets in the kids' closets, collecting things that you swear just fit them last week! Heaven forbid it's a favourite item, that you go to put on them and discover is at least 3" too short but, now that it's on, good luck getting it off.

And somehow these boxes and baskets are always overflowing with things outgrown. I empty them (okay only about once a year but still... I do it), and I turn around and they're full again. Poof! Magic clothes!

Then there are The Bins. Huge, plastic bins stuffed with more Things Outgrown, occupying nearly all the shelves in our basement, as well as some of our garage. Heaven help me if I ever need to go looking for something in one of The Bins. *shudder*

The issue is that I really don't have a good system in place to organize, label, and store these things. I'd like to think that someday I'll sell some of the really good stuff, but the thought of going through all those bins to pull out, photograph, list, price and categorize all the items is enough to stop me from doing it. (Also the possibility that we might have another child... hence we're hanging onto *everything*, just in case.)

As of right now I have bins 'sorted' (I use that term loosely) by size and gender. Size being the wearable size of the clothing, not necessarily what's on the label (so something that fit the boy at age 2 would go in the 2T bin). Then there are the boxes of shoes and boots - many of which should probably just be donated or tossed but got boxed up and put on a shelf forevermore. I'm filled with a sense of dread anytime I have to go put a box of outgrown clothes away in the basement, because I'll have to actually look at the bins and acknowledge the huge task that awaits, someday in the not-too-distant future: the reorganizing of the Things Outgrown.

When I get to it, I will organize things by gender: boy, girl, and neutral. I'll be more brutal when it comes to deciding what to keep, and I'll sort things by season. I'll purge. I'll store bins on the shelves in order of age. I'll keep a small bin in the kids' rooms for the next size up (at least for The Girl, for any hand-me-downs that can be worn from her brother).

When I get to it... Or maybe I can just call some professional service to come and do this?