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does your house get TRASHED at playdates? - Page 2

post #21 of 25

Yes, it totally does and it drives me crazy.  I've had very few playdates here over the years because of that.  But I feel guilty about bein so uptight.  But it's just easier to go to the park or whatever where I'm not left sorting 12 million and one tiny pieces back into seperate boxes.

 

I've actually started putting most of the toys away (read: hiding them in the closet) when we have people over.  Like puzzles, potato heads, things that have lots of pieces.  I leave out the dolls and balls and dress up stuff -- things that just get crammed into a bin and don't require hours of micro-sorting. :)


I don't like anyone helping me put it away either -- they don't know where it goes and it would drive me crazy.

post #22 of 25

I got so sick of this.  I'm kind of suprised because NO ONE ever offers to help me clean it up.  And seriously no one invites us over, I think because my kids have more toys here I always make good lunch and snacks fro everyone and they don't have to clean LOL!  I have ONE good friend and we swap. 

 

I have a play room downstairs.  It used to be the crafts room/toy storage, and my room upstairs was the play room but i just can't keep a handle on it them.  The kids each have their special things in their bedrooms, and a tall bookshelf they keep organized.  They really don't use their rooms for "play" though, more like storing/arranging because I really do think they value their things.  When friends come over, we DO NOT play in bedrooms.  I am incredibly strict about this.  Both my kids have been in tears over  broken things, etc.  DS has a huge collection of legos which he displays and the swipe of a hand one time and they are gone.  It happened with his lego agent command center and it was sad.  He literally cried half an hour in front of people and I don't blame him.  Someone broke my DD's special umbrella that was in her room....so we just don't go there. 

 

So, downstairs in our play room we have one wall of deep bookshelves floor to ceiling.  We keep all the toys, games, puzzles, joint craft supplies, etc.  there is a table in there, a wall of white boards.  In the living room we having the same wall floor to ceiling of bookshelves and each kid has one tall unit for their school stuff (we homeschool) and all the toys that can fit in them.  The rest go in the play room.  I just flat out stand right in the middle of it, and whip out my emergency bribe if it is getting out of hand.  I save the snack time to this.  "Ok, clean up, then we have the cookies," or whatever.  Kids love it here, and I love having them but I just will not be disrespected and some of them honestly have NO order at home.  I think they like it here because they have some structure.  I love them all, and teach them to play together and clean up their work.  I told one 5 year old I love you and I love that you play here but these are our nice things, and I would like you to use them wiht respect and leave them the same way and place you found them.  He actually pouted for a while, but he came back to our house to play and is much better. 

 

What drives me nuts is the kids who live in houses that are totally a disaster ( I know a few) actually come here and think it's fun to arrange, stay after to help tidy.  Two kids I know, one girl is 8 so totally knowing better here.....TRASHES mine and my mom's house within minutes, and her mom has the most emaculate house I know. 

 

post #23 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by 425lisamarie View Post


What drives me nuts is the kids who live in houses that are totally a disaster ( I know a few) actually come here and think it's fun to arrange, stay after to help tidy.  Two kids I know, one girl is 8 so totally knowing better here.....TRASHES mine and my mom's house within minutes, and her mom has the most emaculate house I know. 

 


It sounds as though in both cases, the children need a bit of the opposite of what they are used to.

 

The ones who live in messy houses crave order.

 

And on the other hand it is possible that the girl whose house is immaculate, feels very repressed at home and unable to make any mess at all....I know parents like that who are extremely controlling when it comes to letting kids make a bit of mess or express themselves, so she is using the opportunity to free up a bit somewhere that she feels safe from being told not to. It is most likely a compliment to you that she feels safe to make a mess at your house. Although I can understand your frustration if she is trashing your house! 

post #24 of 25


Quote:

Originally Posted by UrbanSimplicity View Post

as far as requesting help cleaning up ( and the constant modeling), i seem to get a lot of laughter and running away, anyone have any advice for that? :)



Just keep asking and firmly let your own children know that they need to help.  They will get better as they get older.

 

I'm nutty about my house being clean, but I still have lots of playdates because I enjoy the company.  I have found that one or two other children is all I can tolerate.  Small playdates keep me sane.

 

I put all the small stuff waaaay up high and bring down dress-up clothes, stuffed animals, things that are easily thrown in a bin at the end of the playdate...because you are right, little children just love to dump things out.   I have three children so most of our toys are unbreakable at this stage of the game (the fragile ones were broken long ago).

 

When the weather is nice, we play outside.  Meet at parks and such.  Another option is to look around for a public gym -- the high school, or your local YMCA or elementary school, or even universities.  Often their basketball gyms or tennis courts are open to the public.  Take a bag of balls, meet your friends at that gym with coffee and let the kids run themselves silly.

post #25 of 25

 

Quote:
 

one issue, particularly on our friday playdate, is that my friend and i want to visit with each other as opposed to facilitate kids activities (which we pretty much do all week long, ya know?)  we want to chat in the kitchen, while the kids (2 2yo's and 2 4yo's) play in the next room.

 

Quote:
 

 

 

Sorry, I can't figure out how the quote function works! But I think this is a key part of your problem. And I totally get what you're saying as my preference would be the same but I find it's just not possible to expect kids that young to entertain themselves in an acceptable fashion without a lot of supervision and direction. I have 4 boys under 5 myself and when it's just us, I can cook or do laundry and so forth without them trashing the house but when we have a playdate, I need to be a lot more hands-on. And when we go to someone else's house, I wouldn't dream of being in the kitchen drinking coffee while my kids were left to their own devices in another room, even though everyone always tells me they're impeccably well behaved.

 

The way I see it, you really have to think of your friend's kids as your guests too and just as you wouldn't invite a friend over and then neglect to entertain her with something to eat and drink, a place to sit, some conversation etc..., you have to make an equal effort to host the children and that really does mean interacting with them and either directing their play or at least directly supervising it. Hanging out with your kids and their friends also means they get to see you and your friend interacting on your playdate IYKWIM? And that's a great way to model good host and good guest behavior.

 

And FWIW, I definitely set limits on activities and toys and I definitely get all children involved to help pick up. I often fix things up myself later, but I think it's important that they make an initial effort.


Edited by minta - 11/22/10 at 12:46am
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