Selecting a Playhouse for Your Kids

Kids get bored so easily these days.  Back in the day, you had to be creative and find entertainment in the littlest things.  You had to get outside and plan a busy, busy day of exploring, hide and seek, tag and anything else that involved using your imagination.

Now, kids have access to too much entertainment where they never want to leave the house.  Their attention span is dramatically severed with smart phones, television, and computers.  What ever happened to good old-fashion play?  I for one have decided to boycott digital play and vote to bring back the creativity and make-believe talents that children use to have.  Now parents, who’s with me?

Playhouses

Living in a suburban neighborhood, I don’t have a large front lawn or backyard.  So finding a play area for my kid is very limiting.  I needed to find a good play area before Nickelodeon starts raising my child.  So I looked online, and found some great playhouses to keep my sweetie entertained while mommy is writing on the computer.  I never had one growing up.  But I do remember a friend or two that had indoor/outdoor playhouses, and we had the best of times.  So I decided to do more research.

Benefits

What I like about playhouses is that it’s like a home away from home.  You get a colorful and private area where a kid can be a kid.  Not having to worry about making a mess or being too loud.  Your child can have a VIP area where the imagination can simply run wild.  I find that playhouses allow kids to be even more independent and gives them a free space to practice being grownups.  It’s so funny how kids have different interpretations of what adults do.  They don’t quite understand, but mimicking us gives them a laugh.  Which makes me think that things we often do seem silly to a child.  Nothing wrong with that.  It just makes me chuckle sometimes.

Location, Location, Location

The first thing to do before buying a playhouse is determining the location.  Will the playhouse be indoors or outdoors?  For parents with limited lot space, I would say an indoor playhouse would be your best bet.  To be safe, find an open area away from walkways.  Keep the playhouse away from sharp objects, electrical cords, heaters, vents, the kitchen area and especially from the top of the stairs.  Under the stairs, in the middle of the living room, or in your kids room are good places to put a playhouse.

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If you are interested in an outdoor playhouse, than look for an open area that is within plain view.  Try to place the playhouse away from bushes, flower beds or forest areas to help keep your child away from snakes, bees or animals.  Consider placing the playhouse in the shade so your child can play without getting overheated by the harsh sun.  Think about whether it will need a cover from the rain.  Outdoor playhouses are usually constructed to withstand weather elements, but always take maintenance into consideration, like if it is in an area that can be flooded.

Types of Playhouses

Tent playhouses are wonderful for indoor and outdoor play, and can be easily folded up, making it easy to transport.  You can take it traveling or bring it to a fun, outdoor picnic.  It’s a great first-time playhouse and the least expensive.

Fabric playhouses are easy to assemble/disassemble, and have a good variety of different structures, such as a mini-house, cottage, theater, etc.  Very safe against accidents or injuries, and can fit 2-3 kids.

Plastic playhouses are also light weight and tend to have an even better variety of different structures.  Great for outdoors to withstand the rain, easy to clean, easy to assemble/disassemble, and the rounded edges make it very safe to play in.  They often come with creative toys like a phone, make-believe kitchen or ironing board, maybe a small picnic table, and a little door.

Wooden playhouses are indeed the most realistic and stylish.  Mostly made for outdoor play, they can vary from a quaint house for two, to a large, life-like playhouse that can fit 5 or more kids.  There have endless possibilities of unique and beautiful structures, like a treehouse-type playhouses, castle, large home, and even a replica of your very own house.  They can come with different rooms and often have the option to be fully furnished with children’s furniture.  You can find one that has two-stories, equipped with everything a child wants to help replicate an adult home.  Wooden playhouses are definitely a long-term investment of endless play times and make-believe sessions.

Parent’s can have an innovative way to entertain their kids, free up adult time, and teach their children to practice how to be a grown up, the fun way.  It will be the last time your kids will come up to you and say, “Mommy, I’m bored,” for a very long time.  Your kids will be too busy in their fun new playhouse reenacting adult situations they don’t quite understand, or just plain having fun.

Chantal Maddocks

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