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Reader Tip: Top 10 Toys For The Minimalist Family

How to be a minimalist and still let your kids have toys. This is a great list of intentional toys that promote creativity and can be used over and over again!

Hannah emailed the following tip:

I used get so frustrated with my children’s toy mess… until I got very intentional about what toys we kept in our home. Then everything changed!

The reality is, when my kids have less toys, they play with what they have more, they make less messes, there’s less to clean up, they get more creative, they spend more time outside, they play with each other more, they’re more content, and they have more space to play with those toys you keep.

It’s seems counterintuitive but just try it and see for yourself.

My top 10 boy and girl toy recommendations are as follows.

1. A couple dolls with clothes for changing
2. A nice sturdy wooden dollhouse
3. Stuffed animals
4. Wooden blocks
5. Train tracks
6. Legos
7. Cars
8. Books
9. Art Supplies
10. Dressup clothes

I picked these toys based on quality, open-ended options for play, and the fact that both girls and boys can play with all of them.

Keep it simple, give them time to get outside and don’t clutter up their play space or room with too many toys.

Adopt a minimalist philosophy with toys (and really everything in your home) and your kids will flourish. Plus, it will be SO much easier to manage and tidy up — for you and your kids!

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  • This is great. We also try to limit the toys in our home. My oldest is only 19 months, so it’s a bit of a learning curve, but the “old school” toys are still the best!

  • Rachel says:

    Great list! If I could add an extra item, I would include balls of any type – especially a medium/large sized bouncy ball for siblings.

  • Laura says:

    I totally agree! My kids are all older now, but I can see how I overstimulated them. Sometimes their rooms were so overwhelming to them and me. I finally narrowed down their choices until it was manageable. It always surprised me when people came over and thought our situation was spartan.

    My goal wasn’t being a minimalist; it was to enjoy life more by not picking up all the time and arguing about picking up. We thinned out their toys by quietly removing everything that wasn’t picked up. Soon we had a couple of laundry baskets full of their favorite things. I alternated the baskets every week. This kept the toys from becoming boring.

    Until the 1970s or so, your list is what most kids had available to them. If you look back at old TV shows or old family pictures, you won’t see the excess that we have today. They had time to daydream, bake, read and talk to other people. Becoming bored caused them to get creative.

    I am still working on parring down my own life. I know life would be less stressful if there was less stuff around. Things are gradually moving in that direction. It is a gift to give kids an unencumbered life.

  • Stephanie says:

    When my kids were under age five ,I asked all family members to not purchase any toys that involved batteries!!!

    This helped to eliminate big clunky junky loud toys!

    • Hannah J says:

      I am the battery removing queen! If they really like a car or something that has batteries I remove them. I just hate the constant repeat of pressing the same button.

      On another note, we have outside toys and inside toys to keep the dirt out. I have 4 boys who love to play in the dirt, so some toys just stay outside(in a bin in the garage) so that way we don’t bring dirt/mud in the house. That helps a lot 🙂

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