Originally Posted by junomama
it doesn't seem like it hurts anything for him to just sit on top of the coffee table and play with his toys there.
Yeah, your ds can probably tell that you really don't mind. I think that your boundaries are the best boundaries. But I also agree with the PP who said not to cave -- clear the change with DH and tell lo "We've decided you may climb onto the coffee table and sit, but no standing or climbing bookcase. Also, climbing on coffee tables is only allowed at home."
Then, as another PP suggested, teach lo how to climb down feet first. We also used sign, and taught DS the different signs for no climb, climb, sit, stand, etc. These are still useful at 2.5 -- especially in public. The other thing I did was yell "Careful!" in a certain tone right before DS fell. This happened enough times when I couldn't reach him in time that soon when I said careful he stopped where he was, and re-evaluated the situation. Sometimes he would stop and climb down, other times he would resume climbing up! I respected his decisions and just stayed very close.
Only you can know what works best for your family!