Toys, Toys, & More Toys!

The Christmas season is a time that everyone enjoys. For some it's the decorating, for others it's the smell of baked goods that permeates throughout the house. This year was our daughter, Violeta's first Christmas (not to mention her first trip to NY), which is special in itself for many reasons.

Not only were we caught up in all the holiday hoopla, but we were also introducing Violeta to many friends and family for the first time. Needless to say there were people coming and going 24 hours a day! Although we told everyone prior to our trip that Violeta didn't need anything for Christmas, we anticipated that people would go overboard anyway. Good thing we brought the extra bag with us to carry back the many toys we received. But now the question is: What do we do with all these toys?!? We don't live in a house in the suburbs with a playroom. Finding creative ways to save and maximize space are a priority when you live in an apartment with a baby. Here are two ideas that work well:

1) TOY SWAP: I learned about this idea from a friend here in Madrid, and I think it's a smart one. If you're lucky enough to have a friend, or group of friends with children the same age as yours, share the toys among each other. Choose the amount of time you want to exchange the toys for, and when the time is up, you switch again. Make sure to include a few big toys as well as small toys. Not only does this help save space, but it allows your child to play with a multitude of things without having to spend all the money. 

2) "RECYCLE": It goes without mention that if you live in a small space you should invest in some plastic bins, preferably the kinds that you can store under a bed. Who wants to step all over baby toys, not to mention mess up the house? We've purchased two types of plastic bins; one that fits under the bed, and a slightly larger one that we have in the corner of our living room. We store all our toys in those and only keep about 4 out at a time. After about 2 weeks or so, we put those toys away and take out another 4. What is the reason behind this? Again, we don't have room for all these things cluttering up the house. Also it keeps the baby interested in the toys. When she gets bored with what she has, it's like she's getting a whole new set of things. You could repeat this cycle over and over again, as long as the toys are age appropriate. 

Your kids can enjoy themselves without taking over your whole house. Remember, it's your space too! Have fun!

~Nicole & Violeta


  1. Great first post Nicole. I miss V already!! Wooo hooo 2012!!!!

  2. such great suggestions. we just have a toy swap here, too!

    thanks for coming to the blog-a-thon, nicey! so nice to see you

    k. @ rikrak

  3. Thank you so much! We are just getting started after our first year - I have definitely been inspired by the community you have created :) Thanks for reading!



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