And no, I’m not talking about what you find in the diapers; I’m talking all of that baby “equipment”, clothing, shoes, snowsuits, toys. It’s amazing what accumulates over the years.
At first, most of us keep it for the next baby. Clothes are carefully packed away “in case we have another [insert gender here].” Somehow we find space in the basement, garage or attic for all of the bouncy seats, Jolly Jumpers, high chairs, cribs, change tables, exersaucers, diaper bags, diaper pails and so on and so on, unless of course you’re brave enough to have another one while you’re still in the midst of all of that stuff to begin with (I’ve done it once and man, that was crazy!)
After you’ve had two, or three, or sometimes four or more, you start madly planning a day without tripping over an Exersaucer every time you try to sit down in your living room. A day without a smelly diaper pail (because I’m sorry, no matter how often you change those suckers, they still stink). A day when you can walk through a doorway without being hit in the face with a Jolly Jumper. A day when you won’t have piles of Rubbermaid totes full of outgrown clothing.
So what do you do with all of it?
In many cases, you pass it along to a friend, family member or friend of a friend who is having a baby. Sometimes it gets donated. There are countless used kids’ equipment/clothing stores. There are online trading sites.
Lately I’ve been faced with this dilemma. We are most definitely done having kids. After four of them, we have boxes and boxes and boxes of clothes. We have two bouncy seats. We have an infant seat. We have a playpen, at one point had two cribs. There are bottles, sippy cups, toys, a “Playdeebug”, a Jolly Jumper… it’s Kid Central in our house right now.
Over time I’ve gotten rid of a few things, but there is still a LOT. I’d like to be altruistic and give it all away, but we could really use some extra cash after all of the money we’ve put out for this stuff over the years. I thought using Craigslist and Kijiji would be the answer, but it’s been hit or miss, to say the least. My one experience with a consignment store last year was NOT a positive one.
Finally I decided on the age-old solution: a yard sale. I spent days combing the house, organizing clothes by size and gender, thinking of ways to display them, looking for other items that we could get rid of, all leading up to what I hoped would be the Great Day of Kid Crap Disposal.
Yeah, not so much. Bleh. Here’s approximately how the day went.
We were up at 6am, in order to shower and dress and get the kids up, dressed and fed. While the kids were eating breakfast, we started taking things outside. By 7:15, despite the fact that our signs and ads all said we were starting at 9am, people arrived. Can I just say right now that “yard salers”, those who spend their weekends combing sales for the ultimate “find” can be incredibly RUDE? One of the women who showed up over 90 minutes early had the gall to tell my husband that we’d never sell anything if we didn’t get our things out on display. Um, maybe if you had shown up when we were READY the things would have been out!
Eventually we dragged the playpen outside with a bunch of toys for the baby, and despite my fears that he would simply stand there and scream at being penned in, he actually enjoyed watching all of the people and the cars go by.
People came, people looked, people left. I seriously was starting to get a complex. Eventually things picked up a bit, but I was really surprised at the things that were purchased when so much of the other stuff was barely looked at.
And in the end, almost none of the Kid Crap went. I still have boxes and boxes of clothes. An infant seat. Two bouncy seats.
I sent some of it to Goodwill. I was shocked to find that I couldn’t give them a bouncy seat because it was a “safety item”. Nor a stroller. So those came home.
I’ve decided to take some of the better clothes to a used kids’ store and take my chances. I’ll probably donate the rest, money or no. Hopefully I’ll get some good Karma out of it, anyway. I’ll keep lowering prices on the rest and put it back on Kijiji and Craigslist.
One of these days it’ll all be gone. Of course, by then they’ll have outgrown a whole new set of Kid Crap.
Yep, I’m doomed.