Zeryk and I have been slowly making adjustments to our lifestyle over the past few months and transitioning into better ways of living. Eating better, spending less, and working on talking to one another about our feelings instead of bottling it up.Yesterday, we went out to run some errands and while we were out, we talked about the kind of life we want for our children. We were both very honest with one another and both came to the realization that we have over spoiled our little ones. Now, before some say "oh there's no way you can spoil a child too much!".. let me just explain.
Being told I could never have children and then later having the blessing of them, it was very easy to become accustomed to giving in to their every desire and request. I wanted them to know how much I love them but somewhere in the mix of that - I forgot that love doesn't come from material things. It became such a habit that I couldn't even take Zeryk to work any longer without Zophie saying to me "get me a surprise, ok??" Which is cute the first few times, but for her to grow to become expectant of "surprises".. well, the surprise factor kind of dwindles down.
So after our discussion, we headed over to Target to grab 4 staple toys that we knew the babies would absolutely love. We made sure to pick brands that we knew would last and wouldn't break easily. We settled on a wooden train set that comes apart into building blocks, and two wooden toolbox sets that have pieces to hammer in, screw in and build - all by Melissa & Doug. Last, we settled on the Piccolo carousel bell toy from B. Toys. There is one more playset by B. Toys we plan to get them which is a large cube that sits in the middle of the floor and has numerous puzzles and hands-on activities for the kids to learn/play with.
When we returned home, we went into their room and packed up both tubs of toys that they typically dump everywhere. The first tub was our donate bin and the second bin is toys we know they play with from time to time. The only toys left in their room are the big play houses with a couple of Little People figurines for Zophie, trucks for Zayne, stuffed animals and their new toys. The "keep" bin is packed away and if they don't ask for anything from it for the next two weeks, that will be donated as well.
The next task is to do a "keep one, toss one" on their ever-growing pile of stuffed animals. This morning they have been playing together quietly for the past 2 hours without incident.. which is completely unheard of for them. Typically, they are fighting over which toys they want to play with (even though they literally hand hundreds). They would walk into their room, dump both bins of toys and then become frustrated with the mess, which would turn into arguing, cranky all out fits and toys being thrown from one end of the house to the other.
By taking away everything and bringing them back to basics, I want them to learn to share, explore and most of all - be grateful for what they're given.