There is something wonderful about a child growing up. You get to watch them learn new things, accomplish new things, reach new heights…it’s amazing.
You know what else is amazing? How QUICKLY it happens. One day they’re a baby, and the next they’re going to kindergarten. It’s fast. Really fast. A little too fast.
Don’t worry-this isn’t another blog post about “being in the moment” or “embracing your children” (I’m all about that but we know, we know). This is about what to do with all those clothes they leave behind when they grow so flippin’ quickly!
GIVE THEM AWAY.
Now, I know this won’t be news to anyone. But when I tell you I think we’ve spent a total of $10 on new clothes for my daughter who is now two and a half, I’m not at all exaggerating. Plus to say she’ll be well outfitted until she is at the LEAST four is, well, also true. Not only does she have two older brothers who have given her clothes…mostly the baby stuff, but I have wonderful friends who give me the clothes that no longer fit their daughters.
Talk about giving spirit! My Mom knows a woman who gives me her daughter’s clothes, and I don’t even KNOW her. My daughter has worn the likes of juicy couture and burberry…all by the age of one. THAT IS CRAZY. And trust me-I’m an Old Navy/Joe Fresh kinda girl…but I’m not going to say no to an ADORABLE New York designer something-or-other. BECAUSE IT’S CUTE. And because I’m going to give it away.
That is what happens when you pass stuff on. It’s a win-win. It makes you feel good, you’re doing something excellent for the environment, and you’re helping someone out! Wait, so would that be a win-win-win?
Up until the age of four, children don’t really wear out their clothes because they’re too busy growing out of them. No joke. Just this past year my five year old started wearing through the knees on his jeans…JUST THIS YEAR! My four year old is still reaping the benefits of the shirts. It’s AWESOME. One day he won’t think it’s awesome, but it SO is. Poor middle child…second hand clothes FOR LIFE. At least my oldest wears groovy digs.
I have a friend who lives in a different city. She lives five hours away. And the most amazing thing is we both have boxes in our basements, ready with clothes for the next time we see each other. Or our parents see each other. It’s great! I give her all of our wearable boy clothes and she gives me all of her girl clothes. I have to say, every time we exchange boxes, it’s like Christmas…for adults…of used stuff. Is it wrong that I get this excited about it? Because I seriously do.
I promise I’m not a hoarder. In fact, I’m quite the opposite. Every other week, we go through all the clothes we have and if they don’t fit well, or a change of season is upon us, BOOM-out you go clothes, on to the next person. Why hold on to them? GIVE. GIVE. GIVE. It’s freeing.
Once my daughter has grown out of these clothes or the seasons don’t quite match up, we have another box that we put them in for a cute military couple that is having their first baby-a girl. This girl is going to be snazzy for years! And she’s not even born yet!
First time parents: I understand. You want the new clothes, the new blankets. You want everything to match and maybe be of a certain quality? Don’t worry. That gets old REALLY FAST (see what I did there?). So accept the gently used stuff with a big smile and store it away until all the butterflies of being a parent have worn off and then you can put your baby into these clothes. You’ll be happy you did.
Watching your children grow up can be a little bit heartbreaking. I’ve started to miss the baby days (No, Mom and Dad, I DON’T want another baby)…I miss the dependency, the snuggle time, wrapping them up like the little potato they are and singing to them while you rock to sleep. So the least I can do to make myself feel better about my children growing up is give another little person the chance to snuggle and play in the clothes my kids had, it’s only fair.
So…moral of the story? Give it all away. You’ll be so happy you did.