Never say never say never say never

“My house will never look like a daycare. Ugh. I just don’t understand why people can’t keep their kids toys out of the living room. And what the hell is with all the gates? It’s called watching your kid. Geez.”

Do you want to smack the person who said that? I totally do, and it was me, probably a little more than a year ago. Man, my naivety was funny and obnoxious.

The toys have taken over nearly every room, although I will say that I do my very best to keep them put up in an orderly fashion. I don’t know why. It’s really a futile effort, but at least at this point I have some control over the level of chaos…uh… after Kendall goes to bed. Yes, from about 8 p.m. to 7 a.m. every day my house at least looks like a very well maintained day care.  All bets are off the other 13 hours of the day.

I remember, when we moved in last summer, the visions I had for the front room. It would be a “study” of sorts. We would have the office in there, perhaps an upright piano at some point, some nice furniture. It would be a wonderful room for entertaining adult guests. I could set up a mini-bar in there and serve cocktails on vintage trays. <<< What the ever living fuck was I thinking??

No. That room (formerly “the room we know not what to do with”) has slowly transformed into a multi-colored, plastic toy filled (oh God, don’t even get me started on what I used to say about plastic toys), markers-on-the-windows-for-fun room. And you know what? I DON’T CARE.  I don’t. I love it. I want to pad the entire room and make it entirely baby/toddler/monkey proof.  If I could put a bounce house up there I would. There is no mini-bar (although I still think that would kick some ass), no vintage trays, and there sure as hell is not anything of value (like a piano) other than the piece of shit PC that is locked away behind a brand spanking new baby gate (which I may have to hook up to an electric fence at some point).

I just had this aha moment a few months back. Why was I trying to make my house look like a kid doesn’t live here? He does. He very much lives here. Why should I have to hide that? No, I wouldn’t anymore. I wouldn’t stress about finding leather ottomans that would discreetly hold all the plastic toys I could shove into it. I wouldn’t scour the internet looking for “formal” furniture that I could also keep stain free. I would embrace our new life with a child through my decorating. I was inspired by magazines like Ikea and Pottery Barn Kids. I came up with a new concept for the front room. It includes an art easel and a bean bag chair and framed scribbles on the wall.

My budget doesn’t allow me to run out and purchase all of these things at once, but we did start with a very key element yesterday. A GIANT gate that I love so much I could lick it. It separates the front room from the rest of the house, so I can keep him in or out of it and don’t have to spend my days worrying if he’s climbed atop the office desk again.  And, yes, it’s the first thing you see when you walk in my front door. I will show it off with pride. I will tell guests, “See our new gate! Isn’t it awesome?!” And unless they have children they will probably think “Ugh, that’s an eyesore,” but I won’t care. I will pet it and love it and call it George.

Kendall is 17 moths old. <<NO, no. That’s a lie. He’s only 16 months old.

  • kat - ‘never say never’ is the ONE piece of parenting advice i give out freely!

    great post.ReplyCancel

  • MegGary - What kat said. Best advise to give or recieve.

    Mrs.D, as always, you entertaine.ReplyCancel

  • MegGary - entertain – the “e” oyReplyCancel

  • Brooke - Haha. I want to see George. Is he as fun as Kendall?ReplyCancel

  • Mandy - I think you SHOULD lick it.ReplyCancel

  • shannon - FYI- Ikea has an easel for $14.99! one side is dry erase and one side is a chalkboard, and it has a stick you can put a roll of paper on too. we snatched it up for a christmas present for Noah.ReplyCancel

  • Upstatemomof3 - I love it!! We had a daycare for awhile and ya know what? I think now that it is gone my house has MORE stuff everywhere. Okay that is a lie but it is true sometimes you just have to embrace the life of a family with a kid and go for it. :)ReplyCancel

  • Mama in the City - Before our baby came home we were so adamant that we would never ever get one of those ugly primary color exersaucer things that take up much of our apartment living room. It turns out that we did and it was a huge lifesaver.ReplyCancel

  • Gena - I too have had this realization. It involved selling all the furniture in our front room and leaving it completely open and riddled with toys sans seating. It’s the first thing you see when you walk in too and I don’t give a rat’s ass when people stroll in and trip on the Little People Dump Truck in the entry! lol I keep telling myself that this is temporary and someday I will not have a house littered with future garage sale clearance items. Some. Damn. Day!ReplyCancel

  • Would Supernanny approve of a disco ball? | BABY RABIES - [...] climbing up on the spinny office chair for the 50th time in one day last week (this was pre big amazing gate called George), I decided it was the perfect time to try out timeout. I warned him three times that if he climbed [...]ReplyCancel

  • Jessica - LOL at lick it! I know what you mean about the gates! Our little guy isn’t even here yet, but I have warmed up the idea of gates with my little escape-artist of a dog. It looks like we have an army of two year olds parading around with a gate at every turn. Good thing I’ve learned to appreciate it!

    I think it’s great to have a kid-friendly house when you have kids. It’s not realistic to try to do things any other way.ReplyCancel

  • Turning our formal room into a playroom | Baby Rabies - [...] how I told you all about my vision for a space where my primate toddler would be able to roam free, happy amongst his multicolored [...]ReplyCancel

  • pimapen - Haha. I want to see George. Is he as fun as Kendall?ReplyCancel

  • Fight Toy Clutter And Win | Baby Rabies - [...] impossible to make your house look like children don’t live there when children, in fact, do. I learned to embrace that by the time Kendall was a toddler, and never looked back. I’m not going to spend my energy fighting to keep toys completely [...]ReplyCancel

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