Friday, February 19, 2010

The playroom...

I finally found some pictures of before...eek.


This picture is from the day of the inspection, while it doesn't show the actual room very well...look into the backyard, we've done a lot!


This was in 2007 at Gator's 1st birthday - look at the ugly wall.

This picture is from 2008 right before Amelia was born. The rug was just a throw down rug and while I liked the design, I didn't like that it didn't cover the entire floor. It showed the cheap linoleum (sp?) that the previous people had put down. Also, the dogs for whatever reason took to digging at this rug leaving holes in it. I finally rolled it up shortly after Amelia was born and tossed it to the curb. We had nothing there for a long time and then recently put down the carpet ourselves...ok, I didn't do it but Joe, his Dad and my Dad did...fabulous job men!

Basically, the pictures show how ugly it was...and then in the end how unorganized it was. I really like the new layout and storage options. I had to search 2.75 years of photos to find three photos of the "playroom". All I have to say is that's why I'm glad we made it more user friendly...we obviously we're using the room! I had almost no pictures. All the ones I did find were in the living room with toys everywhere or upstairs.

The most important thing is making a playroom user friendly and a place where the kids (and you) want to play!

Here is what our playroom looks like now though...from the hallway looking into the playroom:


Yes, that is a couch blocking a fireplace. But really, the before pictures will show you that we had a baby gate in the fireplace from the day we moved in May 2007 until October 2009 when we finally rearranged things!

In the previous picture where you see the light...that's where I'm standing taking this picture:


Now I'm on the other side of the couch:


To set the picture in your imagination - where the storage unit filled with toys is was where the couch was before. The table & chairs and kitchen set have always pretty much been the same spot. Then we had a coffee table with a few baskets under it...lots of toys on top and lots of toys in the living room because we couldn't store it all in the playroom. Now, everything for the most part is in the playroom.

The storage unit is from Ikea...and the boxes that go inside it are also from Ikea. It wasn't expensive...and since I got one...Krystin, Melissa and Ellen have also bought it...and I'm not sure who else has one...but seriously, its awesome for toy storage! The bins hold so much...

We put a few of the bigger things on top. I think a puzzle rack is the best thing ever...I got ours on Amazon for Melissa and Doug puzzles. Then the abacus, cash register and magnatiles stay out as well. These are used a lot here.


Here is what some of the bins look like:


We try to have a box for everything. One box we have music stuff in, another shapes and blocks, doll stuff, baby stuff, dinosaurs and cars, etc.


But, like anything sometimes things get mixed up...especially when you say, "clean up the room and you can do/have (insert blank)"...that almost always means things get shoved into the box that looks the emptiest!

I think every playroom needs a kitchen.

And, inside it looks like this:


I get a lot of the play food from etsy or hyenacart. I love felt, crocheted and knitted stuff...but the knitted stuff I make myself!

A lot of the girls toys are from etsy too...if you saw those balls in the bin those are from 2 Little Peppers. They are a favorite here.

Some of our favorite other toys include Melissa and Doug's Fill and Spill Purse and Melissa and Doug's Wallet...they go perfect with the cash register.


The wallet was a gift for Gator for Christmas. She loved it. She actually would try and pay for things with her play money and loves her cards. Lately, Peanut has started playing with it a lot too because she loves pulling the cards, cash and coins out and putting them back. Its adorable.

We're still building our stash of toys and educational materials. I'm currently on the hunt for counting bears, Pegs and a skills board...I have been searching for almost 30 minutes for a link that I saw...only to realize, I don't think I saw a link...I think I saw it in a book on how to make your own. Perhaps I'll try and find it later and take a picture.

Oh...and we love art stuff...but we keep that in our kitchen pantry because when we do art we like to do it at the kitchen table...

Lastly, no playroom is complete without a Biscuit!


The poor dog just lets you pile toys on him...poke him...pull him...and he just sits there. Unfortunately, when something walks by or the wind blows he barks...but we can't have him be completely perfect, can we?

Wanted to also say, I try and shop Amazon for almost all our stuff. They have some great deals. We watch prices like you wouldn't imagine...the stuff there is big on changing prices. Our aquadoodle for the wall we managed to snag when they listed it for 9.95! What a steal!!!


Erika said...

wow, wow, wow!!! very inspiring!

this has inspired me to really work on making a great playroom when we move to our new house.

i never would have thought of putting the couch in front of the fireplace- but i am going to do that in the family room in our new house.

i love the bins- i am definitely going to be making an ikea run to get a system like that for us.

overall, fantastic work. the before/after photos say it all!!! i am super duper impressed!!!

mum2abby said...

A lot of people kind of look at it weird when they see the couch in front of the fireplace but really it works so well for us. We NEVER use the fireplace - not even once! And right in front it has bricks and nice to be covered.
The IKEA thing was maybe 100$ total, it was totally worth the $.
I can't wait to see what your stuff looks like in the new place!!! Are you all packed up yet??

Erika said...

oh my gosh, we're not packed up at ALL. it's a little overwhelming, but exciting, too. the new place is very old (1940s) and we have a lot of things to do to it to make it homey/liveable. The fireplace is awful- which is why I might put our couch there and then put some art over it!

did you paint over the wood paneling wall, or did you take down the panels? It looks great!

Oh, we have some similar fabric balls- love them! I actually want to order some more, so I will check out that seller. thanks for the tip!


mum2abby said...

We opted to just paint over the paneling because we didn't want to risk running into a larger project. The paint alone makes it look a million times better then before.
Our house was built in the 1970's by a military family who live in it for a few short years and rented it out for nearly 30! So, when we moved in the house needed a lot of love.
Its amazing what a few cans (ok like several cans) of paint can do. We've done a lot of it ourselves but hired people for countertops, patio, fence...
I'm sure you'll make the house look great and hopefully you'll be able to live in it longer then we'll live here! This house has a lot of potential and if this was our forever house we might have done a little more but we're military, we, we went with the best choices for the money!:)

NuthinLikeGatorMama said...

I really want the aquadoodle wall thing.. and the puzzles.

BUT i got my IKEA thing at the SAME time as you!! ;oP