Parenting is filled with surprises. Even before bringing the baby home from the hospital, new parents often marvel at the unexpected amount of gifts, supplies, and toys required for such a tiny person. Luckily, there are a variety of simple and inexpensive storage facilities in NYC and around the country to cater to new families. To prepare for the new arrival, here are six helpful storage tips:
Start by corralling odds and ends from your earlier years. Clear shelves of trophies, souvenir shot glasses, art projects, and anything else you've held onto over the years that does little more than attract dust. These items, while they may hold sentimental value, are not typically useful parenting tools. They are also likely to be destroyed when your bouncing baby reaches toddler age. The best solution is to pack these away for the time being and replace them with non-breakable picture frames, baby books and organizational tools. It’s recommended to create an area near the door to keep items commonly required for the diaper bag. Speaking of entryways, add a second closet rod to the coat closet in order to maximize space. It helps conserve space as children's outerwear fits perfectly on the shorter rod.
If you're like me, you received clothes and toys for children age 0-24 months at baby showers. It makes no sense to fold or hang clothes that won't be used for 2 years. Instead, purchase plastic storage tubs and mark them according to what size clothes and age-appropriate toys are inside the box. More space in drawers means less time rummaging to find what you need. Find a convenient storage facility and store outfits in plastic bags with lavender to repel moths and prevent damage from moisture.
New parents should also consider storing tall, lightweight furniture, like floor lamps, plant stands and bookshelves. These will be the first ones to fall when your child starts crawling. Also remove kitchen, office or laundry storage carts with wheels. Large indoor flower pots, generally kept on the floor, should also be removed from the living quarters. Many household plants are toxic to children, and who needs the additional mess that comes with sweeping up spilled potting soil thanks to a curious toddler?
If you haven't already, you will soon recognize the luxury of parking the car inside the garage. Nobody enjoys struggling with a baby seat in the middle of a downpour. It only makes sense to clean out the garage sooner than later. If you don't have a basement or attic, the obvious solution is to find self storage facility to house your holiday decorations, keepsakes, gym equipment, hobby gear and other occasional items. Pack items to protect them from the elements or spring for climate control units. Some of the most commonly damaged items found in storage facilities without climate control, include photographs, leather, clothing, paintings, wood, electronic equipment and plastics. As the child grows, you will find that the need for extra storage space or storage facilities only increases. While they may initially seem pricey, renting storage facilities is typically much cheaper than buying a larger home.
The clutter from toys, supplies and personal possessions will quickly multiply when adding a new family member to the household. When you are not traveling, utilize hidden storage space by packing seasonal clothing and other items in suitcases. Even collect stocking stuffers in suitcases to prep for the holidays. When used properly, heavy duty luggage can help protect valuable possessions or timeless baby memorabilia besides just taking up space.
Corral that gigantic stack of receiving blankets in an extra diaper hanger. They will be easier to grab than if they're stored inside of the drawer. Plus, drawer space is usually limited in most households. To increase tabletop area, add small shelves for books, picture frames, small lamps and stuffed animals. Maximize closet space with a closet system with sliding metal baskets to hold baby shoes and toys.
Growing families need a lot of room, so plan your storage solutions beyond your current needs. Creating storage space now will save you hassle a few years from now.