Monthly Archives: July 2013

  • Proper storage can protect your stuffed animals

    If you’ve ever had to put away your stuffed animals, for any reason, you know how difficult it can be, both for sentimental reasons and for matters pertaining to practicality. When it’s time to shelve stuffed animals, find a solution that works for you and for the longevity of the stuffed animals. Here’s how to get it done:

    Figure out how you want to store your stuffed animals. You may find that you want to display the collection, without having to put them away all together. Try using shelves or freestanding cases to display the stuffed animals that mean the most to you. If they are something that is not played with often, they will get dusty and musty. To protect them, try using a glass-front shelving system that can protect them while still allowing them to be seen.

    Perhaps you don’t mind not seeing the stuffed animals but still want them protected while in storage. You can purchase an easy to open box that will allow you or your child easy access to the stuffed animals without having to cut open brown cardboard boxes or large trash bags (which can be confused for garbage if not properly labeled). If the plastic toy bin is going to be kept inside a bedroom, be sure it’s not too tall or heavy so that it doesn’t injure someone if it tips over.

    Sometimes people choose to store stuffies in mesh bags such as the ones used for laundry. These are great for keeping stuffed animals off the floor and can be hooked on the back of a door or strung up from corner to corner in a room allowing for easy access. If they are not being kept in an attic, basement or other storage area, small stuffed animals can fit nicely into hanging shoe organizers. They peek out of pockets and can be a fun way for little ones to view and access their plush friends.

    Another fun option is to string stuffies from a clothesline in a child’s room. By attaching lighter stuffed animals with clothespins, they can be taken down and put back up with relative ease. This method really helps keep floors tidy.

    For long-term storage, consider keeping stuffed animals in plastic storage bins with locking or snapping lids. They can be found in a range of sizes and shapes and multiple bins can be stacked. Again, make sure if they are stacked that little ones cannot climb or tip them.

    By wrapping each stuffed animal in acid-free tissue paper or acid-free boxes, you can preserve the life of the stuffed animals when they are not on display or in use. To prevent matted fur, try using more than one box to put the stuffed animals in. They should spring back to life and be ready for play or decoration when the time is right again!

  • Yesterday’s friends: Why seniors love stuffed animals

    The very idea of a stuffed animal connotes something that is soft, cuddly and comforting. For the very young, these animals provide a level of security that can only be matched by a loving human counterpart. But what about senior citizens and those in elder care who may have lost the people in their lives who provided that same level of comfort and security? Can stuffed animals fill the void that a loving human once occupied?

    We know a lot about the healing and comforting powers of stuffed animals. Which is why millions of people across the world buy them for, give them as gifts, or donate them, to the elderly and to those who can truly benefit from them.

    More and more senior citizens are entering senior living facilities and nursing homes throughout the country. Many of them have lost spouses or loved ones. Some of them have no family to speak of, while others do not have routine family and friend visitors. Life can be lonely and challenging. When the elderly begin to feel that they have lost everything they once had, it can be very difficult to lift spirits.

    That’s why stuffed animals for seniors are so important. These plush creatures are fully capable of putting smiles back on seniors’ faces, providing comfort, and allowing for endless hugging and nurturing. Stuffed animals remind the elderly of their own youth, or their children and grandchildren. Both elderly men and women can remember a time when they were younger and had a few stuffed animals or dolls that provided hours of entertainment. They remember buying or making them for their own children and watching them learn and grow with their own stuffies and dolls.

    If you’ve ever been inside a nursing home you’ve probably heard the wailing of a elderly person who is not necessarily void of attention – they get medical attention and routine care - but often lack the physical presence of someone or something comforting. For those who live in skilled nursing facilities or require personal assistance, often times a stuffed animal becomes a source of entertainment or serve as something familiar within the room or at bedside. A stuffed animal or doll with a cuddly face and body can truly give people a feeling of comfort. Just one squeeze of a stuffy and all your troubles seem to melt away.

    For those who may have a hoard of gently used stuffed animals that they would like to unload, consider donating them to a senior living facility or nursing home. There are surely plenty of senior residents who would love to snuggle with them, talk to them, comfort and be comforted by them. Giving a second life to a stuffed animal while brightening the day of an elderly person is truly a remarkable gift.

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