Play spaces for modern kids are nothing like they used to be, for better or worse we give our kids shit loads of plastic where once it was old milo cans to be used as stilts with a piece of old string.
Our backyards are smaller, safer and controlled.
We try and offer a range of things to stimulate young minds, allow brain development and co-ordination, to build healthy bodies and minds that will grow to be the amazing adults of the future.
Then, if your us, you build a beauty parlour in your own backyard.
The cubby house that was here when we arrived was ok. Pretty basic. Made with cheapo pine and some tin.
One spider web and the fearless Huey's were never seen there again.
Mr H decided it was used so little that he was going to rip it down, I convinced him to give it a lick of paint, to change the name from cubby to 'beauty parlour' and now in the warmer months or when other kids come to play it is a haven for them all.
I started by throwing out all the rubbish that used to be in it. Grabbed a plastic table cloth from spot light to use for the floor and emptied out ten years of old make up from the bathroom for them to use anyway they liked. The inside walls are painted white and pink with a few wall stickers thrown in.
A couple of chairs from the side of the road got a lick of red paint and a few items from the reject shop finished it off.
One wall was already a blackboard, we painted it again and it is often used as the 'price list' board.
Facepaint from the reject shop and lots of cheapie cotton buds have allowed for many many hours of fun in there now. It is messy, there is little beauty in the traditional sense (which was never the actual aim), there is counting of dollars (leaves) and interactive play between all ages. There is a fake hairdryer, brushes and hair clips for the hairdressers that visit and pretend hairdryers for the boys that prefer noisy options, though most end up with facepaint all over them and their nails freshly painted.
In true burby backyard style, it is bordered by the sand pit and the compost heap.
In the spring the blossoms from the neighbours fruit trees hang over the fence and make it a rather magical space to play.