Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Stuffed animals and how to control them...

Yesterday was tax day here. Tax day means something entirely different to us now that we are business owners. Oh, the good old tax days of yore, when we were employees and someone else's pain in the tax. Well, we have done our civic duty folks. Go forth government and build ye roads, schools and bridges! Whatever. I like to imagine that our bank account is drained for useful reasons. It soothes.

"In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes."
Ben Franklin. True, Ben. You speak true. Right?

Oh wait, I know another certainty, at least if you have children... Stuffed Animals. You know, those somewhat creepy, non-blinking creatures that seem to multiply when you don't look? Those dust mite covered, dubiously constructed, money sucking, anthropomorphic space invaders? Ask me how I really feel, huh? But the kids tend to frown on my desire to donate, toss and set them on fire - so they remain. (Oh, and I feel the need to point out that I do not mean handmade lovies and softies. No, no, no. Those are a delightful art, and I love them.)

And I do like the usual big-box-store-bought variety of stuffed animal a tiny bit more than I like taxes. And our relationship used to be worse. It improved once I found a way to contain the masses. See, we have a few:

Here my dog is keeping the animals in line I believe.

What's up here, other than it is way past lunch time and my kids are still in their pjs? (Hey, it is tax day. We ate chocolate too. Whatever works.) Oh, the animals are voting for their next president. My kids are the official vote talliers it appears.

Webby, the otter, held an election speech that I happened to catch. His stance was something along the lines of, "If I become president, nobody will have to pay taxes and everyone will be rich!" Okay, caught my interest. I asked how things like roads will get built. Webby (voiced by my son) said that the government will do it. One would think that maybe he didn't have an accurate grasp on politics. However when I asked where the government will get money from. He said the people. Ahhh, campaign promises dashed... so taxes then, Webby? Sounds like Webby is a career politician and that my son might know more about the reality of politics after all.

I am happy to report that Webby didn't win. Clover puppy did. I think the populace was going for the luck angle. I don't blame them. While I am not overly superstitious, I wouldn't mind some luck on tax day.

Now that is a voter turnout. However, many animals did not choose to exercise their right to vote on this day and stayed home. Where is home? Let me show you! This little animal containment idea has been a life changer.

This is how we organize stuffed animals: Pantry racks!

The kind that screw to the back of a door. They were about $13 each at Home Depot, which isn't super cheap, but after using them for months have proven well worth their expense. We just threw a few up on a wall and it is shocking how many of the little dust catchers can roost there. I've hesitated to share this tip before as doing so keeps me honest about how many stuffed animals live in my home. It is ridiculous. I know. They breed you know, when we aren't looking. The scamps.

But the kids do play with them constantly, and often save their money to buy them on their own. So I needed to find a way that I could tolerate them existing in our space. For a long time they lived in collapsible laundry bins, which was less than ideal for many reasons. This on the wall method has saved both my sanity and the existence of the animals themselves. Because I was so ready for them to go.

Here is where the idea started. My daughter's little room. Her space is very limited, so we had to think of ways to put a lot in without making it feel too cluttered. This picture shows how nicely the pantry rack keeps the animals against the wall. And I love how sturdy they are. I had purchased the green plant holders at the top of the picture on super clearance as the original stuffed animal holders for her room. They look cute but they don't hold enough and the kids can't access them very easily.

You can see I still have to finish her tree wall murals. My ongoing projects of late are all about finishing wall murals. I'm starting to question why I begin them in the first place! But much like I pay taxes, I grudgingly persist. It is just part of the process. I will finish the trees with scrapbook paper leaves that I plan to mod podge to the wall like I did in my room with our fake headboard. Which I never actually blogged about when it was done. Wow, what a slacker blogger I've been lately! I'll get to it. But that means I need to make my bed. So yeah. Later.

And my daughter wants fairies among the trees made from photoshopped pictures like she did here, and I did here. (Scroll down past the scary pictures of the kid in the cage to the fairy invite.) So yeah, we'll see if this ever gets done.

The tree that floats in air!

Actually, I was working on painting the trees when I took these photos. I am happy to report that the painting part is almost complete. Bring on the leaves and the photoshop fairies! Maybe I'll actually blog about it when I finish this time. 

Well, I am happy to report that today is the day after tax day and we all survived! Woohoo! Happy NOT tax day, everyone! Go ye forth and corral your stuffed animals!


val said...

I love the pantry racks. We've had huge stuffed animal problems for years.

I love the political commentary too, made me laugh out loud.

Taxes are paid. It's over. Onward. love you Candy, V

Hoola Tallulah said...

This is such a hilarious post, first read of the day and it really cheered my morning blues, I am adding you to the blogroll Miss so I don't forget to come back for more! Btw, I feel the soft toy and tax pain, I'm with you! The tree murals are awesome and your kids are clearly destined for great things. Happy days!

candyn said...

Love you too, V! xo

Thanks for the blogroll add, Hoola Tallulah! Your blog has been on my google reader for ages now. I always enjoy your posts. :0)