I’m often told “wow, you’re so brave for having white sofas with two toddlers!” or asked “how do you manage to keep decorations out, without your kids breaking everything?”
Today, I am going to share some helpful tips on how you can have the pretty things in your home (and keep them that way) all while having your kids play freely!
Light Colored Fabrics
SLIPCOVERS. Slipcovers are the single handily most essential thing when you want white furniture… but also have kids. Every couch we have are slipcovered, along with chairs, and duvet covers for the bedrooms. If you don’t have removable or washable cushion covers, scotch guarding your furniture is a great option as well! I like to keep in mind that accidents happen; which is to be expected from little ones– so try to buy the things that will be practical for your home, yet still in style as well!
Fun fact: one time, one of my girls drew with markers all over the couch in the middle of the night while everyone was asleep. Really loved that for me. (I hope you caught the sarcasm). But luckily, after washing with some soap and bleach, all was as good as new.
PROFESSIONAL CLEANING: Having your furniture professionally cleaned every few months can help the prolonging of your furniture! I sometimes use this spot cleaner for the body of my sofas in between cleanings!
BOUNDARIES: Something that has worked really well in our home, is setting food and drink boundaries. Our kitchen and living room are basically one big open space, so I have made it a point to remind my girls, from little on, that we only eat and drink (colored liquids) in the kitchen or dining area. They will occasionally have snacks while they’e hanging out on the couch, but since we make it a point to eat in the kitchen and sit together during meals, it definitely helps with possible stains on our sofas, pillows, or rugs.
CLEAN HANDS: My kids are OBSESSED with washing their hands. This wasn’t a big “thing” in my house (obviously, unless they had to after going to the bathroom or eating something messy) but man, do we go through some hand soap… I think they feel independent when they do…so I’m not mad at it. We also keep small packs of baby wipes around the house because again, accidents happen!
Toys, Toys, Toys
DESIGNATED SPACES: A couple years ago, I built my girls a designated playroom in our basement to house alllllllll the toys… and it was the best decision, ever. Playrooms or designated closets are great for keeping toys organized and clutter free. I am kind of a psycho when it comes to toy storage. Even keeping a small cute basket in the living area with a few toys helps prevent an explosion of toys all throughout the house.
Every 6 months, the girls and I go through their toys and separate what we actually play with and what we don’t! What they decide not to keep gets donated, so it’s a good way to filter out the clutter!
Arts & Crafts
A PARENTS LEAST FAVORITE ITEM- PLAYDOH/SLIME: Creativity is a top priority in our home, so I don’t mind playdoh… BUT SLIME???? LOL big nope. After I found a glob of hot pink slime stuck to my favorite throw blanket, I’m not too fond of playtime with that anymore.
Our dining table is made of reclaimed wood from an old Distillery floor so it has a lot of small holes and grooves. It is my absolute favorite piece of furniture that we have. It’s the place where we most often do arts and crafts! When we break out the play doh or paint, I like to put down a waterproof table cloth so that I don’t have to pick out tiny dried pieces of playdoh with tweezers or scraping off dried paint with a butter knife…(again with the sarcasm). The girls love to paint and draw, so we try to do that as often as we can! Having that waterproof table cloth has helped our table remain in good shape –or as well as a reclaimed wood table would look, anyway.
MAGIC ERASERS: A true staple in the Perri-Kron household. Sometimes, the girls will pull a fast one on me and take a marker to the wall for that nice added touch of custom art. I mean, I’d prefer not to scrub markers off the walls, But kids are kids! All of the paint on our walls were made in a satin sheen, so it’s very easy to scrub off. I’m not a huge fan of glossy sheen anyway, so I think satin is the perfect in-between of matte and gloss! Anything can be painted over, BUT if you’re lazy like me- magic erasers are the greatest thing since sliced bread!
When the girls were really small, of course they would take the decor off of the table or shelves. Any time that would happen, I would just take it, and put it back where it was. Sometimes I would have to do that like, 20 times a day. Eventually, they just lost interest and honestly never bothered touching the things sitting out anymore. I don’t think you should have to put away your decorations and leave your book cases bare just because you have a baby. Obviously, if it’s something that could harm your little one, put it up for a few months until you can trust them around whatever that may be, but just stay consistent about taking your decor out of their hands and putting it back. It really worked for me after a few times, the girls had no interest in my vases and faux plants. It can be a little frustrating having to do that over and over, but they are just little explorers and want to see what everything is about!
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You can absolutely have nice or aesthetically pleasing things while raising babies! Decorate your home in a way that makes you the happiest, decorate with pretty things, and don’t stress about the pen markings on the wall– it will wipe off!