We haven’t ventured down to the basement very much on the blog. There is a reason, let me explain. This level contains our family room, laundry room, and storage space. Last year I shared some before pictures of one section of the family room and how we transformed it into an inviting space for kids.
Since then that one particular section of the basement has become our guest space.
Today I thought we could look at another section of the family room. I’ve never really shared it on the blog up until this point because it has never been finished in my mind.
I knew this corner of the family room had potential to be darling. What used to be random closets under a stairwell was turned into a little play house. You’ve seen those cute kid spaces on the internet, right? I’ve been dreaming of having my own…I mean, my kids having their own. For the past two years I’ve wanted to put shingles on the outside of the play house…and then I was going to show it to you.
Instead I tried flower stickers.
You can see how well those held up.
The window use to have a cute tension rod and curtain in it. It doubled as a window/puppet show, cool right?!? Yeah, then I replaced the rod three times before deciding that it wasn’t meant to be because the kids kept grabbing it as a sword and breaking it every time…I finally gave up.
The wall had to be cut into to secure the railing better because apparently no railing is safe with five children present.
I guess I’ve dreamed of making this play house adorable only to realize that adorable kid spaces don’t always go hand in hand when kids are present. The house does however, make me want to be four feet tall again. The light adds some charm that the kids haven’t been able to destroy. There is even a switch on the inside of the play house to turn the light off and on.
So why haven’t I shingled it yet?
Why haven’t I shared about this play house on the blog yet?
Maybe my kids weren’t as excited about the play house as I had first anticipated. Maybe it felt odd to create a great play space to wow you on blogland and then pretend that my kids loved it just as much as I did. Either way I’ve never gotten around to putting the shingles up.
Would I ever?
And then I realized why the answer is, yes.
It is because of this…
It was called the “grandchild suite.”
My dad built it. He is brilliant. He took a crawl space in my brothers’ old room and remodeled it into the grandchild suite. You had to be less than four feet tall to fully enjoy it and it was filled with toys from our childhood.
And it sat empty.
Until one day there was a grandchild to play in it.
We prayed for this wee one and God answered our prayers.
There was also another reason why this space seemed so special. It communicated one important thing: Children are welcome here.
My parents were always opening up their home to others and if you were a child you knew exactly where to go in their house to have a good time.
Maybe I’ve been a little disappointed that my kids are getting bigger and someday they will “outgrow” the playhouse…maybe even before I get to finish the outside with shingles! Our toy selection has also been getting smaller these days because we’ve found it much easier to not have quite so many toys out in the basement.
But I always want our house to say “children are welcome here.” I scooted the toy shelf inside of the play house to see what it might look like some day when the sum amount of our toys are stored in there. It has some baby toys, some toddler toys, some big kids toys.
Whether this play house is present or not, I hope that there is always a place in our home for children that says, “you are welcome here.”
Next on my to-do list, shingling the play house…
What are some things that you have seen that say kids are welcome here?