A New Home & A New Playroom

Materials and Toys for Toddlers and Preschoolers - a small playroom - An Everyday StoryIt’s nice to be back. We are all settled into our beautiful new home. This house brings me such joy. It feels like we were always meant to be here, that it was meant to be our home. There is a lot to be done; painting, weeding, replanting garden beds but despite all that I feel so comfortable and happy here.

It’s a small, cosy home. There isn’t any room for a large playroomor art space any more. I think we are making better use of space though; Jack (4yrs) and Sarah’s (2yrs) rooms are now a comfortable space for them to play and relax, with quiet toys and books.

It’s nice actually, their rooms are right next to ours and in the morning after cuddles with us they will wander back to one of their rooms and play. I just lay in bed and listen to their little stories and games. I really love having a smaller house.

A Playroom for Small SpacesSo the playroom. Well it’s more like a little space tacked onto the lounge room. It has a wall of shelves though as well as double-opening doors to the outside. A perfect, albeit small, playroom.

So here is what we have out at the moment. Jack is really interested in the human body at the moment, especially how the digestive system works and how our muscles work, so I have our skeleton “Skely” and organ torso “Organ Man” out along with some books on the human body.Materials in a small playroom from An Everyday Story

We have our blocks out of course. And Sarah is really interested in puzzles at the moment, so I have a few out for her.

Montessori and Reggio inspired small playroom setup from An Everyday Story Montessori language materials - moveable alphabet and sandpaper letters - An Everyday Story Wooden blocks - window blocks - An Everyday Story Small playroom setup from An Everyday Story

So, you see, compared to our other playroom, this one is small. But it is still a nice space and Jack and Sarah enjoy spending time in there. There isn’t room for somethings to be out, like the light panel and the piece of timber for the blocks, and so I just bring them out when Jack and Sarah want to play with them.

A small playroom but a nice playroom. There is more on the shelves than I would normally put out but we just don’t have the spare cupboard space anymore.

And what do you think of the green? Honestly, it was one of the first things we wanted to paint but I have been surprised at the number of people who’ve said they like it.

……….

Science Materials:
Skeleton ZartArtHuman Torso 4D VisionMagnifying Glasses Edu Science Binoculars gifted

Language Materials:
Spelling Puzzle Melissa & Doug, Sandpaper Letters & Moveable Alphabet Wood Puzzles, Alphabet Letter Shapes Handwriting Without Tears

Math Materials:
Numbers and Counters & Sandpaper Numbers Wood Puzzles, Fractions Puzzle Toyworld

Blocks:
Interlocking Wood Blocks Nova Natural Toys, Rolka Blocks, Window Blocks ZartArt,  Jenga Bricks K-mart (generic brand)

Puzzles:
Farm Puzzle & Zoo Puzzle bought locally, Pattern Boards Melissa & Doug, Shapes Puzzle Melissa & Doug

Other:
Marble Sound Tree Honeybee Toys, Arched Rainbow Blocks Little Sapling Toys, Ribbon Wands, Elves

37 comments on “A New Home & A New Playroom”

  1. Savannah

    I like the green, it makes me think of nature… Calm & peaceful.

    Lovely space as well, collecting ideas for a space for my children, we only have a small house too.

  2. Heather

    Green is a great color. I’ve learned that “nature’s colors” like blue, green and natural wood are great for children’s play spaces. They are more calming and less distracting when they are doing their most important work!

  3. Miriam Pepper

    In my house, I would paint over the green. I like neutral colours. But in your house, it looks fantastic. As others have said, it’s very calming and natural. Congratulations on your new home. It looks lovely. 🙂

    • Kate

      I like neutral tones too and since the whole lounge room is this colour I think it might be a bit too much. I’d like to paint it a more natural neutral stone colour. We’ll see 🙂

  4. racheous

    Love it all! Thank you so much for sharing. I’m too tired to comment properly but wanted to say how great it is to see your spaces coming together. I would LOVE to see more of your outdoor area after seeing the pic on instagram!

    • Kate

      The yard is really beautiful…well potentially beautiful. It’s quite overgrown at the moment and a lot of the trees have dropped their leaves. We are getting out there a bit though and enjoying plodding away at it. Hopefully come spring it will be beautiful and full of life.

  5. Eleanor @ Two of Everything

    It may be a smaller space but you’ve made it just as inviting as ever 🙂 I love your instruments – proper instruments are at the top of my wishlist! Lovely to have you back 🙂

    • Kate

      Thanks Eleanor 🙂 I’m almost back. Still got some unpacking to do. It takes time, doesn’t it? I wasn’t sure how we would go in the smaller space after having such a large playroom (and art space) but I really love having Jack and Sarah just there, so close to the heart of our home. Oh and they LOVE their instruments. Really they weren’t that expensive either. I bought them from a music store in their percussion section. Your littles will love them 🙂

  6. Mindy

    I love what you have done with the space! The green is not all that bad! If it’s not exactly how you imagined the space then I’d paint it eventually. But for now it seems nice! I love how you have arranged the shelves. What fun! Do we get a bedroom tour too? 🙂

    • Kate

      I think a bedroom tour might be on the cards soon 🙂 Jack’s room was a little tricky because it doesn’t have a robe and so we used the shelving from the old art area. I’m also thinking Sarah might be ready for a proper-sized bed. She’s on a floor bed at the moment.

  7. msagala1

    Your new space looks lovely!! I love living in a smaller house with little ones….so much easier to keep track of them!

    • Kate

      It really is, isn’t it? I didn’t realise how much our larger house really promoted segregation. Our lovely new smaller home keeps us all together. We are spending a lot more time together now. I love it.

  8. Dorothy

    I think the green looks great also. My only suggestion would be to remove the border by the ceiling. Other than that, I love the baskets that your children’s toys are stored in, you have inspired me and I have purchased many baskets in the recent weeks. I am opening a home daycare in the fall, here in Winnipeg, MB.

    • Kate

      Oh yes that wallpaper border is pretty horrid, isn’t it?! 🙂 I’m not sure how well it will come off without taking the paint off too though…

      Good luck with your home daycare. I hope you pop back and let me know how it all goes 🙂 Are you hoping to incorporate Reggio-inspired principles?

  9. Christy Aqualin

    The green shelves are a lively natural background for the toys. Like bringing mor of nature indoors. Smaller is better, I think! Enjoy your new home!

  10. Lina

    What a great space! I’m really intrigued by ‘the organ man’.. do you find you refer to it often? The Magic School Bus has all kinds of great books about the human body and digestion.. it’s been a topic we’ve talked about in our house as well.

    I probably would have considered the green too.. but I actually like it. What might be fun is to put pretty scrapbooking paper on the backs of the shelves (complimenting the green) and having fun with it!

    • Kate

      Oh yes that little ‘organ man’ is great. Jack loves him. It’s a little tricky to get the organs back in – you have to put them in order – but it is a good way to learn where each organ goes in the body. Jack likes to play with all the different organs, he talks about them, names them, and if we are talking about something in the body we’ll refer to him. He’s great 🙂

      We have a couple of Magic School Bus stories, only one on the body though and it is a little too advanced (it’s a chapter book). I really should get to the library again and see what they have there 🙂

  11. Jenni

    I just discovered your blog recently and have devoured it! Have been eagerly awaiting your return. I think you have made a lovely space (our iving room is much smaller and little play spaces are dotted around the house). I think the green is refreshing!

    • Kate

      Hi Jenni 🙂 Thank you so much. I’m hoping to be back to regular blogging again next week; almost finished unpacking 🙂 I’m really loving the smaller space too and am especially looking forward to warmer weather when we can open up those beautiful doors.

  12. katepickle

    I quite like the green.. and what a cool set of shelves!

    We have a small corner of our living room that is the ‘play area’ or at least where we store the toys etc we have out right now. Sometimes I wish we had a separate ‘play room’ but mostly I am glad to have everyone playing and working together.

    • Kate

      I loved our playroom and we spent a lot of time in there but it really was at the back of the house and so quite separate. I love having Jack and Sarah so close now in our smaller home. I am quite besotted with this place 🙂

  13. Kaly

    What a perfect set of shelves! So many different sizes, which creates perfect spaces for all the little things you have, no matter the shape!

    And, I’m a sucker for all things green, so I happen to love the color! I like what Christy Aqualin said, about it being like bringing a little bit of nature in. Love it!

    Welcome to your new home/new space!

    • Kate

      Thanks Kaly 🙂 Everyone loving the green is starting to make me think it’s not all that bad. It was one our ‘absolute must-do as soon as possible’ list but now I think it might be growing on me… 😉

  14. athomewithaliAli

    Fabulous set of shelves and you have such wonderful blocks. I would love to get my hands on one of those human figures.

  15. Bek @ Justfordaisy

    Beauitful space. We too have a small home and I love it. Not only is it less to clean but it means that our family is always close to one another, and I think with children of this age that suits us just fine! 🙂 You’ve done a great job utilising the space that you’ve got! I don’t mind the green but as I mentioned before I’d paint some of the backs or put scrapbook paper in just to add a little ‘something’ to the room! 🙂 Love all the toys/resources and thanks for linking up where they are from. x

  16. Jode

    I love the fun of setting up new spaces and you have done such a lovely job! Very envious of all that shelving and i like the green…i too think it is quite calming. I bet the children are enjoying their new space.

  17. lydia purple

    I like the green, but i understand you want to paint over it. Maybe you could leave the lower shelves green and paint the upper shelves an off-white or something else you like… this way it will also give you sort of an optical structure and the whole wall of open materials may not look so overwhelming anymore. I think the green is calm, but the whole wall of green as is plus the many materials are a bit overwhelming. But that’s only my feel as an minimalist…. i don’t know if thats tha case in real life for you.

    • Kate

      I agree Lydia, while it is growing on me it is a little overwhelming. We are hoping to convert some wasted space in the entry to a cupboard to store some of the materials. That way we can have much less out. I’d also like to replace the shelving with a more uniform set and a space in the middle for a built-in desk…. all in good time my husband tells me. But yes, I agree with you….even though every new day we spend here the green grows on me a little more…

  18. Jackie@My Little Bookcase

    Kate,
    I’ve visited this post so many times- but this is the first time I’ve been on my computer to comment.

    The space is so inspiring. And I looked at your instagram photos with envy too. Like I’ve said on Instagram- I love the green- it really works

    Our family room gets so chaotic. I purposely didn’t plan a playroom when we extended our house and I do love that we are all together in the same space- but sometimes the ‘mess’ gets to me. So, I’m really taking lessons from the way you organise your play materials.

    We went to Camberwell Market (an secondhand market in Melb) this morning. I actually went to get crates for a writing station I am setting up for Cammy, but I spotted lots of baskets. Hubby would only let me spend so much, so baskets are on the top of my list for our next visit.

    I would love to know how your kids interact with the space, and how much free accessibility they have to the materials? Do you have ‘rules’ in place that encourage the kids to return materials to the shelves before getting new materials to explore.

    • Kate

      Thanks Jackie. There is a lot more out than I would like but we just don’t have the storage space to put them anywhere else at the moment. We thought we did a pretty good job of down-sizing when we moved but still storage is tight! Hopefully in a year or so we’ll have made some renos and we’ll have a little more storage.

      I would LOVE some crates…hmmm wonder where I could put them… 🙂 They are so beautiful, aren’t they?

      We definitely have rules for the space. Materials have to be treated with respect (still working on Sarah not stepping on things), they can have whatever they want out so long as the materials are all a part of the same game – so Jack can have blocks and cars and people out, but if he gets a puzzle out then he has to put the other stuff away.

      Lots of encouragement and reminders to ‘tidy their area’ has meant that they are pretty good (mostly but not always) at tidying away when I’m there. When I’m not….well that’s a whole other story 🙂

  19. Christie-Childhood 101

    What a wonderful wall of shelves, the green is very calming and inviting and your resources are always displayed so beautifully. I love the fact that the doors are right there too, perfect for inside-outside play time. This is the first house where we have had the luxury of a playroom so I certainly understand the integrated living/play space dilemma 🙂

  20. loripickert

    congratulations on your move! love your new space! 😀

    love the green — it’s a great non-white neutral background that still lets the materials and the kids’ work stand out. <3

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