Toy organization. More specifically… LEGO STORAGE!
One of the questions I’m most frequently asked is how do I store all the Legos without losing my mind? As the mom of an almost-seven year old with a passion for Legos (and an almost-four-year-old who wants to imitate everything his big brother does), it’s a reasonable question. This summer, the big guy sold off his considerable collection of Skylanders on eBay to buy Metalbeard’s Sea Cow – all 2,741 pieces of it – and we assembled it within a week. I may or may not have INVENTED profanity in the process, but we did it! Because I also have a little guy with emerging verbal skills (i.e., he sticks everything in his mouth) in the house, loose Legos are a major choking hazard and simply not an option. So here are a few things I did to preserve my sanity:
1. A Lego table!
I took an arts and crafts table and gorilla-glued six blue and green Lego plates to the top, then duct-taped the border. The drawer underneath rolls easily and we dump extra pieces in there. It used to live in our sun room but it was moved up to the older boy’s room when the Sea Cow arrived. I have concluded that I don’t have time for the super-organized, color-coded Pinteresty Lego organization system, so dumping is our next best option for quick clean up.
2. The Lego head!
The big yellow head is genius in its design – you dump Legos in the top, shake and they sift through by size. This is good for smaller pieces and disassembled vehicles.
3. Food containers
I rarely throw away a plastic container anymore without washing it and setting it aside, thinking “Jack will want this for Legos.” And sure enough, when we are out the door to Grandma’s house and he asks “Can I bring some Legos?” the answer is yes, whatever fits in that cream cheese container. Ziploc bags hold extra pieces from special kits. Old baby food containers are re-purposed as sorting cups and Trader Joe’s cookie containers are big enough to hold several armies of Lego men. Talenti gelato containers are fabulous, with their screw tops, and even the dog’s Beneful tubs are put to use.
4. High shelves
The 960-piece spaceship he just got for Christmas was assembled in an afternoon and he plays with it, then returns it to the International Space Station (the top of his bookshelf). We are contemplating gluing that one.
I think it’s no coincidence that Lego and Ikea come from the same region. Ikea has a ton of storage solutions for practically nothing! I just bought a $10 three-drawer cart that will hold thousands of Legos and fits neatly between my son’s dresser and bookshelf. This has proven particularly useful for the Minecraft sets (warning, they are REALLY SMALL and the teeny tiny boxes actually do house 500+ pieces!)
So there are a few ideas to save your soles. NO ONE wants to step on a Lego in the middle of the night, it’s the scourge of the boymom!