In the interests of simplifying our household, I thought I’d start with pet supplies. I did my best to gather up all the cat toys I could find. I can’t claim to have gathered up all the cat toys, because I try to do that periodically so I can vacuum. I’m coming to realize that it might actually be impossible to gather up every cat toy in the house. I suspect our oldest cat has some amazing spot wherein she stashes her favorite toys. What happens is that I think I’ve gathered them all up, and then Maggie comes trotting up with a toy in her mouth, which she drops at my feet. Then she sits there grinning smugly at me as if to say, “Haha, stupid monkey can’t find my interdimensional storage cave.”
So I gathered up all the toys I could find (thought obviously not all the toys, because that’s apparently impossible). I counted them out of curiosity, and to my shame, there were 131 toys. Really. There were two mountains of cat toys.
We have three cats. That comes out to, what, 43 toys per cat? And that’s just the ones I could find. How obscene is that? Now, granted, I have been accumulating cat toys for the past 15 years, when I got my first cat. I just hadn’t realized that I am, in fact, a cat toy hoarder. Please don’t call A&E on me. I’ve taken the first steps necessary to address my problem.
The first sort of the toys was into two piles: too raggedy to keep, and still in good condition. Too Raggedy To Keep went into a trash bag. Then I sorted again. If they were toys that were still played with, they went into one pile, and if they didn’t play with them, they went into a pile to donate. Then I went through the “keep” pile one more time and eliminated duplicates. After cleaning everything in the donate pile, I’ll drop it off at a local shelter along with some handmade kitty blankets. Kitties waiting for forever homes need blankies and toys far more than my cats need to have 40 some-odd toys apiece.
I cleaned everything that was staying, then I put it in either a huge jar, or a Ziploc baggie, along with some catnip to marinate the toys. I limited myself to 50 toys to keep. Yes, I realize that’s still a crazy amount of cat toys. Close to 17 toys per cat, but it’s a start. Oh, who am I kidding? That means 49 toys for Maggie, 1 for Oswald, and none for Jayne. Cats have no concept of sharing.
Reader, I will also admit to something else. I kept one of the raggedy toys. It’s the very first toy I got for my very first (much loved) cat, who passed away nearly two years ago. I just can’t let it go, yet. Maybe next year, but not yet.
ps. After all this, I found this toy on the bed, right next to Maggie. See what I mean? Also, I know we have two eyeball shaped cat toys somewhere, but I cannot find them. No doubt I’ll wake up tomorrow with them on the bed.