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Aging parents and the stuff their kids don’t want

Aging parents and the stuff their kids don’t want

A recent article in the New York Times about aging parents with an abundance of stuff resonated because Resourceful PDX has thoughtful consumption at its core. It offers tools and ideas for reducing waste, and specifically, how to act and where to find resources. 

The article explains that the volume of unwanted keepsakes and family heirlooms is poised to grow — along with the number of conversations about what to do with them – because of our aging population.

Resourceful PDX is about making simple changes to help you save money, support your community, conserve natural resources and enjoy more time with friends and family.

There are many online groups and local organizations that offer Portland-area residents simple ways to move useful materials through the community and into the hands of others who need them. Here are just a few:

·         Buy Nothing Project

·         Freecycle

·         Nextdoor

·         Paying it Forward Store

·         PDX Free Store

·         Rooster

Check out the Curbsider Blog for more options for sharing your unwanted or unneeded household goods.

Also, Metro has compiled a helpful list of charitable organizations to contact for pick up or drop off of your usable items. These range from local organization like Free Geek and The ARC of Multnomah County to national organizations like Goodwill and Salvation Army.

Read a previous Resourceful PDX post about Community Warehouse, your local furniture bank. Items that are needed the most include linens, kitchen and household goods and furniture. The Estate Store at Community Warehouse offers collectibles and antiques for purchase to help further furnish homes for local families and will gladly accept your donations.

Unusable bulky items
After sorting out all of your reusable items and finding them new homes, your garbage and recycling company can remove large, unusable items for an extra charge. Call your company a week in advance and they will give you a cost estimate. For a reasonable charge, they will pick up appliances, furniture and other big items. For curbside pickup, set bulky items at your curb on the day your garbage and recycling company has agreed to pick them up. 

Large items abandoned in your neighborhood? Contact the Metro Regional Illegal Dumping (RID) Patrol or call 503-234-3000.

 

Reclaim your free time with summer guides from New Dream

Reclaim your free time with summer guides from New Dream

Start summer with family guides that highlight more of what matters.

New Dream has launched two new family guides to help you reclaim your free time.

The weekend guide, 5 Simple Steps to Reclaiming Your Weekend, and the summer guide, The Family Guide to a Mostly Screen-Free Summer.

The guides can be downloaded from New Dream and provide tips to help you plan and protect your valuable free time.

5 Simple Steps to Reclaiming Your Weekend

Ever get to Sunday night and find yourself feeling even more stressed and exhausted than you did mid-week?

In this guide, New Dream provides simple steps to help you avoid defaulting to screens when you find yourself with a short burst of free time.   

Get practical ideas to help you unplug, recharge and connect!

The Family Guide to a Mostly Screen-Free Summer

Concerned about screen-time taking over your free time? 

So is New Dream. That's why they created this step-by-step, sanity-saving resource, chock full of ideas to reclaim your summer. 

Start planning your mostly screen-free summer today. 

PDX Toy Library offers your family the benefits of sharing

PDX Toy Library offers your family the benefits of sharing

Alicia Polacok, from Resourceful PDX partner Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, kicked off the New Year with a visit to the PDX Toy Library where she talked with founder Cat Davila about this labor of love.

PDX Toy Library is an all-volunteer community-based nonprofit organization that recognizes play as an integral part of a child’s development. High quality toys and equipment are available for borrowing to assist with the physical and educational development of children ages birth to 8.

Cat sees the library as a way to build community too, by hosting and participating in many family events that bring people together to learn, collaborate and socialize. Borrowing from the Toy Library is a great opportunity for children to explore ideas about ownership, responsibility to others, and the benefits of sharing.

She was aware of the tool and kitchen libraries in Portland, and this idea really synthesized a lot of her passions and just felt like is was exactly the thing to do, even without experience in the nonprofit or library sectors.

The idea struck me one afternoon as I was playing games with my 2 year old daughter, and wishing I could trade all of ours for some new ones somewhere. It suddenly seemed impossible that there wasn’t already something like this in Portland.

I spent a lot of time learning about Toy Libraries in other parts of the world and crafting our model of service, and learning how to form a nonprofit, and searching for a space for the library. And now it is real! I’m very pleased with what we’re able to offer now, and excited to see what the future brings.
— founder Cat Davila

How does it work?

Membership is open to the public and active members use the toys and space. While most members are currently families, Cat's own work background is in Early Childhood Education, so she would like to see more teachers and caregivers utilize the library. Volunteers are integral in the library, which is currently open three times a week for a few hours. Cat has hosted events in the space and plans to shift the focus for more game and play time when the library is open.

The collection continually grows with donations accepted and cataloged frequently. Members check out different toys and games each week, up to three different toys or games each time you visit.

Currently the fee structure offers three month memberships for $30 or six months for $50. Gift certificates are available if you’re looking for an alternative idea for a birthday or holiday celebration.

Why join a toy library?

It saves money: Toys cost a lot so joining the Toy Library is likely to be less per year than you may spend on new items.

It saves space: Toys take up a lot of space and storage so the Toy Library allows you and your kids to use things when you really want them and provides a way to get them out of your house the rest of the time.

It allows for toy test drives: Toys engage kids at different times and at different levels. Checking things out from the Toy Library gives you a good idea of what engages children the most. And since kids grow fast, it means having developmentally appropriate toys available to test.

Bonus: Keep things fresh (and give your kids something “new”) by checking out different items every couple of weeks! Browse the toy catalog online to see if borrowing toys may work for you and your family.

Where is it?

PDX Toy Library is located in the Sunnyside Community House (formerly Sunnyside Methodist Church) at 3520 SE Yamhill St.

All Portland residents are welcome to join!