Do you want to stop saying “NO” to your child(ren)? Have you thought how easy your life will be if you could just have like 10 minutes without sitting right next to your baby or toddler? Well if the answer is “YES” then this blog is for you. Here you will find my tips on how to make your life easier and your baby or toddler happier by creating a “YES space” – safe and joyful play area that your child will love.
Creating “YES space” for your baby or toddle will benefit you both. You will become calmer and have more time for yourself and your tasks. Also, the safe space will help and allow your child to:
- move freely, which will help him to understand and explore the world by touching, smelling, listening, and seeing;
- develop independence and independent playing abilities;
- make own chooses what and how to do it;
- has pure experience without interruptions;
- follow his inner senses for physical development.
It is easy to create a safe play area for your child, and it can be even cheap. First, you need to decide where you will create a baby or toddle place. You can choose any room in the house. If your child has an own room you can prepare the space in it. Please have in mind that you can’t leave your baby or toddler alone without any supervision.
If you don’t have enough space in the house or you can’t invest in a baby monitor or a camera to keep an eye to the child(ren), make the safe play space in the room that you spend most of your time. That way, while you are doing your tasks you can still have a look at the baby or the toddler, who is playing in his/her “YES space”
For my child’s “YES space”, I chose the living room. Our home has a bedroom and a living room, which is together with the kitchen box. As a staying home mom who loves home-prepared food I spend a lot of time in the kitchen. There wasn’t free available space in the living room so we decided to remove the sofa and use that corner for the child’s play space.
Once you have chosen the place the fun begins. You need to prepare the room and make it safe by taking care of everything that can be harmful to your child(ren).
First, you should think about how big will be the “YES space”, the whole room, or a part of it. You may need to buy a baby gate either for the door of the room or to use one as a play space gate. If there are stairs in the room don’t forget to baby proof them.
In case you want to let your baby move freely between the rooms choose an appropriated baby proof decision for the stairs and doors. There are different types of door stoppers that prevent injuries with the fingers for example.
To make your play space safe, you should:
- take care of the electrical outlets – you can either cover it with outlet plugs or hide them behind any furniture;
- take care of the cords – use a cord covers to prevent chewing on them or pulling them out;
- secure the furniture to the wall – have in mind that children are climbing that’s why I recommend securing all possible furniture. At some point, your child will start moving all around not only in the safe space.
- lock all the cabinets that your child is not allowed to check – we have an aquarium in our living room which cabinet we decided to lock;
- use child-sized furniture – this will help the child to feel safe;
- secure or remove everything that is hanging – take care of the curtains and blinds and their cords;
- secure the hanging pictures and mirrors – choose an acrylic mirror for the area;
- remove all unnecessary items – decorations, souvenirs, etc.;
- make sure there isn’t anything small! – babies and toddler discover the world through their senses which include taste so they put almost everything in their mouth;
- remove any plants – they may be hazardous and it is sure that the child will try how they taste;
- make sure the toys in the safe space are appropriate for individual play and in a good and safe condition.
Make sure that the space is safe for your baby or toddler. Try to get their view. Lay on the floor and look around. You may notice something that you missed to baby proof.
Care of the YES space
The “YES space” should be clean and comfortable. I recommend you to make the play space no shoe area in order to keep it clean. Make sure to clean the space oft enough so there isn’t too much dust. The cleaning products that you use should be child-friendly.
I think that carpets are not a good decision for the floor of the play space. Not all carpets are hypoallergenic. For the floor, you can use soft puzzles they are easy to clean and keep warm.
The best light for the play space is the natural one. Make sure the place is bright enough with good temperature and a good climate. You don’t want your child to get sick because of the inner house flows while the windows are open.
Keep in mind that you will have to make some changes in the “YES space” according to your child’s needs. At some points you will get some large materials or furniture and others will be removed. The important is to keep the area interesting and comfortable for your child(ren).
Hope this blog was helpful for you. Is there something that we missed? Do you have any comments or suggestions? Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.