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Home » Green parenting

For a love of playhouses

Submitted by on Tuesday, 30 October 2012 Loading Add to favourites  2 Comments

I recently wrote about toys that provide ‘open play’ value.

This is a principle we try to apply to many aspects of life because, when you think about it, choosing ‘open ended’ items is a greener way of living.

Clothes is a simple example. I’m building a capsule wardrobe and make it a rule that if I buy anything new (even a charity shop bargain) it must go with a minimum of three other items in my wardrobe.

Likewise electronic gadgets; smart phones are fantastic because you get not only the phone, but you can text, take photographs, use a GPS and send emails – so it’s one piece of equipment instead of about five.

As well as her trampoline, Little Miss Green has always been one for making dens and houses. The possibilities for these are endless, especially where we live, but I appreciate it’s not always easy to build dens if you’re in the middle of a city.

We were fortune enough to come across the perfect playhouse a few years ago. Our local kindergarten asked us to dismantle their old one because it was falling down. They knew we had a wood burner and it was left to us to dismantle so we could burn it.

Mr Green, however, had other ideas!

He bought each piece of wood home carefully and set about repairing the playhouse. Yes it was a little worse for wear, but with some TLC, a few replaced panels and a new roof, it served Little Miss Green and her friends for many years. This year she decided she could give it up and it’s been converted into a hen house – how’s that for inspiring reuse!

I don’t know what it is about playhouses but they never seem to lose their charm. As an adult with a full sized house to take care of, I still love the idea of my own little Wendy House in the garden…Take a look at these wooden playhouses. Made from sustainably sourced wood, these playhouses are bright and unique rather than simple miniature brown sheds that you get a lot of the time.

I adore some of the attention to detail such as the shutters around the windows, balconies and window boxes.

Over the years I’ve witnessed how great playhouses are for simulating imaginative play in children; it brings a whole new meaning to ‘mummies and daddies’ and one day the house is a veterinary surgery, another day it’s a classroom, a shop, a museum, a stable block…

This particular brand are hassle free too, so if you find flat pack furniture daunting you don’t need to worry! They come as an easy-fit package so you don’t have to piece every tiny bit together yourself, and unlike a lot of playhouses they come already painted so you don’t have to do that yourself, either.

As a child I never had a playhouse, so perhaps that is where the charm is for me. But I sure used to be handy with a few boxes and would always be making my own dens and houses!

What about you – did you have a playhouse as a child? Do YOUR children enjoy using one?

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