Thursday, November 10, 2011

Bumblebee and the Rest of the House

I often feel like my little Bumblebee gets neglected.  Link and I tend to do school activities while he is sleeping.  I've not been brave enough to allow him in the school room.  Part of it is that I'm not at a point where I trust Link to use the materials in the room appropriately without my supervision.  And, more than likely, if I were to try bringing Bumblebee to the school room, my attention would be primarily focused on keeping him from messing in things that aren't appropriate.  I'm just not ready!

BUT, he sort of is :)  He is at least ready to start drawing with us.  Today I finally brought him down to the basement and moved the little table out of the school room.  He had a ton of fun!  However, he was finished quickly and since this part of the house isn't baby-proof yet, we had to return upstairs.  I am really not sure at what point I should start bringing him into the school room.  I don't want to hold him back, but I also don't want for him to spend the entire time getting into things and taking so much of my attention that Link is left hanging....

Poor child also stays in his PJs most of the day :)

I want to talk about how the rest of the house is set up for the boys.  We essentially have three floors.  Upstairs we have two bedrooms, one for the boys and one for guests.  The boys' room is huge!  I think you could put six kids in there if they wouldn't drive each other crazy :)  The main floor has the kitchen, dining room, a small living room and the master bedroom.  In the basement we have what will one day be the family room (when we get some furniture) and the school room.

The boys' room is mainly Bumblebee's territory.  I have toys in here that are for both boys, but some of Link's toys wouldn't be safe in here, so they are in the guest room. (There aren't many, mainly some legos that are not Duplo)
This is our reading chair.  Books in the basket are board books only.
Paper paged books are on the dresser.

There is a little activity center in the corner.

And the play table in the middle, against the wall.
I try to keep vehicles under the table, or in the closet :)

I also try, unsuccessfully, to keep Bumblebee off of the table.

He can reach just fine, I don't know why he likes it up there so much.
Then across the room, in the middle is Bumblebee's toy shelf.  To each side of the shelf is a closet for each boy.  I will not be taking pictures of those!  Try as I might, they stay a mess.

I have found that Bumblebee is much more content in his room when he has just a few toys out.  I also found that storing them in the closet meant they rarely got switched out.  Having them out where I can see them helps me to rotate them when I see that something isn't getting used much.

Honestly, Link doesn't have a whole lot of toys out right now.  In his closet I have some boxes on the floor for sorting toys.  He has one for his fireman gear, one for tools and one for vehicles.  These are all okay if Bumblebee gets into them, it just helps keep the room from being too full of clutter.  He used to have a ton of Duplo Legos, but they weren't getting a lot of use, so I put them all away.

I try to keep most of the boys' toys in their room.  However, they usually want to be on the same floor as me, so this doesn't happen.  In an effort (mostly failed) to keep the toys out of the living room, dining room and kitchen, I have designated an area in the master bedroom for them to have some toys.

Again, these are mainly for Bumblebee.
We bought the boys some massive construction equipment, which is parked to the right of all of this.  Its too messy to take a picture of.  There are also a few things for cooking and some tools.  That area is mainly for Link.  The boys play in our bedroom in the mornings, while I cook, clean, and do other uninteresting things on the main floor.

Link used to play in the basement by himself, but has since developed a little bit of separation anxiety, or something....  I don't know what you call it, but he has to be on the same floor as me and has to know where I am at all times.  Anyways, we have some shelves in the basement where I put his books and a few toys so that we could play down there and have access to his books during Bumblebee's nap.

You've seen the school room - its kinda narrow, a little crowded, and has no natural light.  Since we don't have furniture in the "family room" it seems like a natural place to do school work.  There is great natural light and plenty of space.  You may have noticed above that both tables are out there now.  I am still trying to figure out how to best use this space.  I don't want the shelves out in the family room and it is just next door... so I'm hoping that he'll be able to flow from one activity to the next since he has to take them back to the shelves when he is finished.  Moving the table out will also give me some more space for shelves, since for some reason I seem to be running low.  Does it make sense to have the shelves in one room and the table in the next room?  Will Link be less likely to choose works if he is not surrounded by them? I guess we'll see!

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