So this was my genius idea for 2007 . . . let Beren set up a toystore to sell all his "outgrown, damaged, and too much hassle to keep any longer" toys to make room for the new installment of Christmas loot. But wait, there's more! Not only would he get to set up and run the store (an activity I knew he would love) but we would pay him real cash money for the toys AND he could use the money he makes from selling his toys to buy Christmas presents for us. Win, win, win! This might not work with every child, but Beren is just the right age and temperament for this sort of scheme. He was awesome during the weeding out process. We must have jettisoned 2/3 of his stuff. He had one wobbly moment regarding an oversized, plastic VW Beetle, but I was happy to relent in light of the gargantuan pile of puzzles, stuffed animals, and happy meal toys that we had already exiled. It was so funny to hear him argue for and against certain toys. He's pretty logical for a four year old and had pretty good reasons for hanging onto the things he did retain. Even when I disagreed in some particular, I respected his position. For example, he felt we needed two toy cash registers because it cut down on fighting when friends came over and wanted to play store.