No matter how many times you try to sneak out into the kitchen for five minutes of peace and quiet or just to grab yourself a snack you don’t have to share, you’ll soon hear the tip-taps of tiny feet following you. Soon enough your children will really want to get involved in kitchen activities; washing the dishes, cooking and baking. Although you’ll just want ten minutes to get it all done quickly, your little helpers will have other ideas. With that said, it’s important for the kitchen to be family friendly when you have young children around. Here’s some tips on how to do it.

Seating Area

The simple fact is, children tend to create less mess if they’re sat down in one spot. If they’re free to run around, the mess becomes a trail and your children are often under your feet while you’re trying to get important chores done. Having a seating area in the kitchen means you have a designated spot where your children can sit, play and help you with certain activities. It could be the family dining table, or it could be a breakfast bar with secure high chairs. That way, you have areas that are multi-functional. They’re a play area by day and space for serving food by night.

Get Rid of the Ghosts

Are you constantly walking into your kitchen to find drawers and cupboards wide open? Of course, it couldn’t have been your little darlings searching for snacks. It must have been the ghosts that live in the attic or the fairies in the garden. If a cupboard is within reaching level, you can bet your last penny that the kids will try and open it. The solution is a simple one. Invest in a big packet of child guards and fit them to all of your cupboard drawers and doors. The problem is, you may have to spend some time figuring them out for yourself; some of them are so good that adults can’t open the cupboards either.

Consider Your Counter Tops

Children have a tendency to spill things. Sometimes they make a mess unintentionally, sometimes they make a mess for the pure fun of it. The point is, if your children are able to reach or are sat at your kitchen counter tops, you can be sure you’ll have everything, from spilt milk to crayon marks as stains. The more durable and easy to clean your countertops are, the easier your life will be. So, say goodbye to your dream of marble countertops because they’re tough to keep in good condition. However, materials like Corian or engineered quartz could be exactly what you need.



Go-to Activities

When the kids want to be in the kitchen with you, it’s a good idea to have some activities ready and waiting to keep them occupied while you get on with things. This website has an array of kitchen sinks, some with divided sides so you can do the dishes in one side and your child can do them in the other side. If your children can’t reach the sink, you could put a dish bowl on the floor and let them wash some plastic cups and plates while you get on. Having a linoleum floor will make it easier to clean up any spills. You could also give them plastic cookie cutters and playdough to make their own cookies while you cook.

Display Their Creations

One of the best ways to brighten up your kitchen is to display your children’s artwork. Hang up a board in the center of the kitchen wall and pin their creations to it. Not only is it a great way to add some color into an otherwise dull looking room, but it’s a great way to encourage your children to be creative in the kitchen. If they think you’re proud of their work, they’ll want to concentrate on making more, which gives you the time to get on with what you need to do.


Menu Board

Are you tired of your children complaining about what they want to eat for dinner? One could be happy with the choice, while the other sits at the table crying. It isn’t easy to please everyone, but no mother has the time to cook several different meals every evening. Having a menu board in the kitchen could help ease the problem. Before dinner time gets close, ask your children to help you choose the menu and make compromises, then write it down on the . Perhaps one will get the main course they want and the other can choose desert. If they’re more involved in the decision making and preparation of the meal, they’re more likely to sit down and eat it peacefully.

Visible Storage

How many times have you gone grocery shopping just to buy something you already have at home? There’s never the time to look through the cupboards and log everything you’ve got stored before setting out on your shopping trip. But, if you have clear storage cupboards that allow you to take a glimpse as you’re on your way out, you’re far less likely to buy things you don’t need, which means you’ll save more money each week. It also prevents the question, where’s the …..? from happening ten thousand times a day.


Helping Stool

No matter how long you try and put it off, your little one is going to want to get his hands dirty sooner or later. It’s also a great bonding session for you and your child. So, if you’re making cookies or cakes at home and your child wants to get stuck in with you, a helping stool will ensure he’s at the right height. Make sure your child doesn’t have to lean over or stretch to reach anything so he remains safe while standing on the stool. Staying next to him or behind him while he works will mean you can quickly balance him if he falls.

Secure Baby Gate

There are times when it’s just not safe for children to be in the kitchen. Perhaps you’ll need to open hot oven doors or you’re washing the floor and don’t want your children to slip. Having a baby gate will ensure you have a way of keeping your children out of danger, even if they don’t like it. But, having a baby gate doesn’t mean your kitchen can’t be attractive. There are many baby gates that can fit in perfectly with the decor of a kitchen, and some that even hide away under kitchen counters when they’re not in use.

High Shelving

If it’s within reach, your children will get their hands on it. The problem is, there are many items that belong in a kitchen that are unsafe for children. Cleaning products, pet products, certain foods and drinks, to name but a few. Having high shelving will be invaluable while you have young children around. Even with child guards on cupboards, there are some things that are too much of a risk to keep at ground level. So, take all of the products that are unsafe for your children and store them high up out of reach.

Homework Nook

Children as young as five bring homework home these days, so it’s a good idea to get them started as early as possible. The kitchen is a great place for homework to get done. A quick drink and snack to refuel and they can get to work under your watchful eye. They can also ask you questions without you having to break your stride and enter a separate room to help.

The kitchen can certainly be the heart of the home, if you’re willing to make it so.



Via #InspireLSHome  

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