Legos are a great learning tool but boy can things get nutty with all those pieces and parts! There are a million ways to store and organize legos but my biggest recommendation is to KEEP IT SIMPLE. The younger the child, the simpler the lego storage system should be. Older children should be involved with the "design" of the lego storage system. Here are a few ideas:
-Keep a dustpan with your legos to assist with pick up.
-For young children, designate a play area. Lego tables are great but if you don't have the room for one you can always use a mat that rolls up and is stored under a couch or bed or use a bed sheet (the latter makes pick up even easier because you just scoop up the entire sheet and pour the legos into a bin).
-Legos don't need to be sorted for young children, unless you have multiple sets that contain different sized legos that don't fit together (in which case they should be kept separately).
-Older children like to work on projects that may span over a few days. In this case, the project of the week can be kept out on the play area and its pieces can be contained in a tackle box. (Consider giving each child their own tackle box with their name on it.)
-Older children may like their legos sorted into categories. Some children like to sort their legos by color. Others may prefer categories like "just legos", "Pirates of the Caribbean", and "Toy Story" or "heads", "weapons", and "vehicles". Categories can be stored in clear plastic shoe bins (or larger bins, depending on the size of each category). Don't forget to have a bin or binder for manuals.
Photo organizing can be very time consuming. Consider storing them in photo boxes and arranging them by year, month & year, or event. (The easiest way to subdivide photos inside the box is to use a 3x5" index card turned on it's side, labeled, and slid between your categories.)
Even though there are no expiration dates, cosmetics have a shelf life. (I know, it's unfortunate.) Some products, such as mascara and liquid eyeliner, should be tossed after 3 months!!! Check out this article (and short movie) on the Good Housekeeping website for more information on cosmetic shelf lives, click here.
Elizabeth Bremer, CPO®