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*Note: This post is not intended to be in condemnation of the playroom. On the contrary, it is to simply demonstrate strategies for raising children without a playroom. We've now raised our children in two locations, and have encountered a playroom-less home to be a rarity. When seeking ideas and strategies for managing the children's day without such a resource, I've found very few. Therefore, I hope the following will be helpful for anyone in a similar position. These are ideas that I have sought out, implemented, and have worked well for our family.
For the first two years of our parenting journey, we lived in a small townhome. The two bedroom, tightly-configured space didn't leave any options for a play area. This home, however, provided inspiration to find alternatives for toy storage and play. For instance, we kept all toys in a hall closet upstairs. (It was previously a linen closet, but after some shifting of items to other locations of our home it provided a perfect space to store toys!). We would select a few toys to bring downstairs and stored them in a large basket that fit within our entertainment unit. Periodically, I would rotate the toys available in that basket. The children came to know this system as the only means for toys and play, and were perfectly content! When we would visit places with playrooms abounding with toy options, it was evident that they were intrigued but highly overwhelmed. (And, honestly, the sheer volume of mess overwhelmed me!). It can be difficult to fully explore an individual toy, learn to take proper care of the item or space, and be calm and content in such an environment. This, at least, has been our experience.
|The toy closet|
Each child has a wooden crate in their bedroom. The crate houses just a few of their favorite toys or some of the more gender-specific toys. They are welcome to play with those items anytime they are in their bedrooms but not sleeping. The limited quantity allows the clean-up to be quick and manageable for little ones.
|Annelise's crate in her bedroom|
|Bins in the school room|
|Play yard in the living room|
|The dirt pit!|
|Activities and toy storage in the shed|
*Note: I apologize if the formatting of this post is off. Our computer is still struggling to function properly. :(