I've been asking that question or some variation on it for years now.
"What do you do with your kids' Legos?!!"
"How do you keep all those tiny, colored bricks from contaminating the entire house?"
"What about those fancy/expensive lego kits, you know where you build a police station or Anakin's Star Wars jet fighter? Once built do you leave them set up to play with? What about younger siblings breaking them? If you take them apart, do you store the lego pieces for that set separately or just throw all the legos in with all the others for free and creative building?"
You see, my questions were plentiful! I polled many people and found out that most people I know say they also want Lego help or are not "Lego people" or just build the sets one time and then mix all the pieces into a big bin/bucket after it's broken.
I tried out for a while saving the sets before they got broken and the pieces scattered and kept them in ziploc bags along with the instructions. The problem was they never got rebuilt and my boys just dreamed of different lego sets they wanted.
I tried leaving the cool sets set up to play with, but we had to keep them on a high shelf to avoid the youngest child breaking them. This led to them only collecting dust on the high shelf and the shelf becoming overcrowded.
I began lobbying my boys and my husband (who is also apparently not too old to be really into Legos) to just keep 2 or 3 sets up and then break them all down and mix all the pieces together to be played with creatively building anything their minds could dream up.
They would only go for this idea on the condition that the Legos be sorted in some way so that they could follow the directions and pick out the needed pieces to build some of their beloved sets if they so desired.
Sorted. Well, now we are speaking the same language!
This is what we came up with over the Christmas break:
An organized Lego storage solution, complete with a top for lego play/display!
Thank you Ikea! That is the Trofast line of furniture. I know I've seen the idea to glue Lego building plates to the top, but for now my guys are enjoying the versatility of just the tabletop.
The top is too cluttered looking for me, so let's just focus on the bins organized by color. That's where I tell my eyes to look when I walk into the playroom and then no matter the chaos in the house I can tell myself, "See, there is SOME ORDER in this home!"
You have no idea how long the sorting took my husband!
Really I was kind of bemoaning all the time and energy we spent on Legos of all things. But today my oldest son had a playdate and seeing two 9 year old boys happily playing there at our new lego station for an hour rather than with some technology devise made it seem worth it!
And the instruction manuals?
With clear pocket inserts!
My new favorite past time? Picking one color and building something entirely out of that color! I wish I'd taken a picture of my cool, modern all blue house before I let the kids break it apart!
Linking up with New Nostalgia Anti-Procrastination Tuesday and Works for Me Wednesday