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Old 02-14-2009, 12:38 PM   #12
LilyGrace
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,851
Re: Playdate advice!!

I know you want your house to be playdate friendly mama.

Your children are very good about putting things away, right? But what if you look at the room from a guest's point of view? Is it easy to clean, easy to remember what goes where? If it's not already, make sure it is. Put little pictures or labels on bins and cubbies.

Second, I think the organized activity is a great idea! When I have littles here I put out a few interesting things on the coffee table to ease them into play - and keep them away from the things they shouldn't be in! It ranges from paints, to blocks, to chalk...just something small to occupy the child for a bit.

I don't see anything wrong with minimizing the room before playdates. Kids will always entertain themselves, no matter what. Keep a few open-ended play toys and put away the single use ones that will bore them after a few minutes (and be forgotten in the middle of the floor).

And don't hesitate to set a timer at the end asking for a few minutes cooperation in cleaning up. Sometimes mamas are unsure about the protocol in others' houses, so it's fine to enforce the house policy. (and if anything, it'll help weed out the families that probably shouldn't be invited back if they're reluctant to have their children help)
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