View Full Version : Keeping my home nice...

15-07-2014, 10:55 AM
Hi all

Just starting up as a childminder and cannot wait to start!

Just a little worried about the impact all the toys/activities will have on our home, my partner wants the house to stay looking like our house.

How do you store toys in an aesthetically pleasing way? any photos? ideas?

Thank you!

15-07-2014, 11:18 AM
Unless you have lots of storage boxes or another room to hide things in, your home won't totally look like 'yours'. Your partner needs to be 100% with you on this as it is his home as well and CM will impact on you all in lots of ways. Not just with toys. Hope you find a solution :)

15-07-2014, 11:18 AM
I had Billy Bookcases from Ikea in my sitting room and only used the bottom 3 shelves for cm and they were hidden in the evening and at the weekend by the sofa. The high chair also folds and went behind the sofa. Sorry no pics because I have had an extension and now have a playroom I can shut the door on. Choose storage boxes that fit in with your home.

Have a cork board or plastic pocket display with your Reg Cert and Ofsted poster (that is all you have to display) that you can take down in the evenings and at weekends. Don't have loads of posters up everywhere. Blu tack removable ones to doors and windows.

Have a small shed in the garden for the overflow so you can put things away and rotate toys.

15-07-2014, 11:24 AM
I have an ikea shelving unit which houses the majority of my childminding resources but I also have a large brick built shed for further storage and outdoor play.


15-07-2014, 12:15 PM
Gosh mrsb79 thats a very neat compact storage area.!. I'M AFRAID THE TRUTH IS CHILDMINDING TAKES OVER YOUR HOME :(

15-07-2014, 12:30 PM
Gosh mrsb79 thats a very neat compact storage area.!. I'M AFRAID THE TRUTH IS CHILDMINDING TAKES OVER YOUR HOME :(

Lol! And that's the truth!
I have far more toys now than when my own were little and the playroom is full. The dining room is slowly being colonised too ;-) don't mention the utility room and as for the garden ... !!!

15-07-2014, 12:47 PM
Gosh mrsb79 thats a very neat compact storage area.!. I'M AFRAID THE TRUTH IS CHILDMINDING TAKES OVER YOUR HOME :(
I had just tidied up for lunch time wouldn't dare show you inside the boxes as the squids have muddled all the toys up yet again!!! I'm quite happy with my little set up and when I have time off I just remove the boxes store them out in the shed and pop my lovely breakable items that are basically out of sight for 50 weeks of the year proudly displayed on my unit. Hubby grumbles now and then about the toys or the money I spend on new resources but it's worth it. X

15-07-2014, 12:51 PM
My Dh and I are retired...I childmind friends LO's on 3 days because I love being with small children and found a gaping hole in my life once I retired after working with them since I was 18 -they needed childcare, plus the little bit of money I earn will pay for holidays - if I ever make a profit!
So I started off with a 'pop up' business for three days and 'doesn't look like toys storage' to hide them away when we play our retiree life....I can now say this is almost an impossibility...and we both don't mind some being in view either as we know this is how we pay for those extras we came to expect when we were earning...of course we can make it all disappear when we have visitors via a loft ladder mainly. I am telling you this because in the early days you think you can just work from home but keep tidying things away to get your 'home' back, but in reality, once you are into it it becomes a way of life and nobody really cares that every nook and cranny has a craft resource stored there! The benefits of being in your own home doing a worthwhile job you love for payment out weigh the odd reminder of your profession when you are relaxing after work.

16-07-2014, 11:52 PM
I have a playroom, so I just shut the door.

Then I usually have to open it again about 10 minutes later because I didn't notice the dog asleep on the sofa and he objects to being shut in for the evening/weekend!

17-07-2014, 06:30 AM
I laughed out loud at the the thought of 'keeping the house nice'.
Im sure there are childminders out there who are more organised and really do keep their home looking like a showhouse , whilst having every resource to hand but magically invisible until required. I started off this way. Was very conscious that dh didn't want to come home from work to what resembled part home part nursery part bombsite!!
Over the following 5 years its become less of an issue, he is fully onboard with me childminding and whilst it would be lovely to have the perfect house without scuffmarks down the hall from the buggy , if it wasn't for what I earn childminding we might not have the house at all!!

17-07-2014, 07:06 AM
I think my house will be 'nicer' (tidier & cleaner) when I am minding! I'm in the process of sorting out everything and finding a proper home for it all. We have a small house with not a lot of storage (no hallway and the cupboard under the stairs is in the kitchen and used a pantry, radiators in silly places etc).

Oh well back to realigning our stuff to space ratio. :)

18-07-2014, 07:32 AM




HmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmMMMMMMMMMMMMMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.. ..........................

:idea: Got it !!!!!! :idea:

Find yourself a new partner.


20-07-2014, 02:23 PM
Yeah best of luck with that!

Unless you have a big house with enough room it will eventually take over the place.

We have one room dedicate to childminding, and the house is scattered with posters and potties in the bathroom etc...

Drives me nuts but the money is good and the wife happy so I keep my head down.

The other idea ia buy you husband a motorbike and leti him tinker with it it will take him mind off all the screaming kids! Lol

20-07-2014, 08:40 PM
It does take over a bit like others say, only thing I can add is that over the years that Ive been minding Ive reduced the amount of resources quite dramatically. Getting rid of lots of plastic commercial type toys and using more open ended resources such as junk modelling, natural materials etc.

Good luck x

20-07-2014, 09:46 PM
I'm fortunate that I really like toys and educational resources and don't find them offensive. I prefer them tidied up not piled up in a heap - but once sorted I like the look of them. I buy some vintage toys I enjoyed when my kids were little - I use natural wood and wicker as storage baskets and shelves and generally feel proud to call it all my home as well as my work! I agree partner and children need to be on board .

20-07-2014, 10:16 PM
Takes over a bit....just takes over really. Car seats, travel cots, toys, books, etc, not to mention where do I store the extra food, snacks etc. h and the various prams n buggys, ride on toys, dolls.

You have to get used to living in a combination of your home (as you once knew it), toys r us, mothercare, and a bit of a tip at times.


20-07-2014, 10:31 PM
I want to buy the sign that says... Excuse the mess , the children are making memories ....

21-07-2014, 08:45 AM
Recently, the problem seems to be solving itself.

All the toy storage boxes are becoming hidden by an ever-deepening layer of loom bands. :p

21-07-2014, 10:11 AM
veryone works indifferent ways but nearly every room in my house has evidence of childminding. Most is in my dining room and the boxescan be tidied away when needed.

My friend has a playroom and closes The door. Another has just finished and she always had a tidy house. The children that came to me when she closed said they were bored. She had been selling resources for 5 months and had nothing for the
children in the summer holiday. When parents cameto see me they commented on the resources that the children could access. There was only one toy box at the other childminding,s

21-07-2014, 11:31 AM
It does help to have a dry shed and plastic boxes to store things in. I am lucky to have a cellar I have to drive where I am (rural, busy road, no footpath) as I need to store car seats I have one big stage 1, 3 x 5 point backed boosters, 3 x backed boosters, 3x booster cushions & a backwards baby seat. A double buggy and 3 single buggies (my lovely one, the one that fits in the car:rolleyes: and one for the beach/snow).

Luckily my husband and family are supportive and cope with the extra toys and equipment - my youngest is 10 now

21-07-2014, 02:09 PM
If you have your own kids then you will have toys around anyway. At the moment you wouldn't know that my house was also used for childminding but my DD is nearly 6 and on the verge of outgrowing early years equipment - she is wanting a proper desk now and soon won't need the little plastic tables that we have around at the moment, for example. I should imagine that it will start annoying me (and hubby) in a couple of years or so. Any extra equipment that I have (high chairs, travel cots, toddler toys etc) are stored away in various cupboards or under beds and so are not exactly in view - until you open my wardrobe...

I don't have anything related to childminding up on my walls - official documents are kept in my files which are open on the appropriate pages on the dining room table. Ofsted were fine with that.

21-07-2014, 03:29 PM
My DD is 3 so loads of toys everywhere! As I said earlier in this thread I'm in the process of sorting everything out, re-arranging furniture etc to make the little space we have work for childminding. While I'm happy for DD to play on a floor that could have done with a vacuum yesterday, it is not something I would be happy for minded children in my care to do, so by making our home my workplace as well I'm hoping although there will be lots of resources about the place they will all have a home and the house will be cleaner.

Love the idea of having a folder out rather than stuff on the wall.

21-07-2014, 03:40 PM
I bought a load of these: BUMERANG Trouser hanger - IKEA (http://www.ikea.com/gb/en/catalog/products/80078938/)

Great for hanging certificate from hall wall light when chmding....also for hanging childrens pics or a poster from draw/ door knobs, easy to put away at end of day. - I have a knob inside my downstairs cupboard where I pop them out of the way.

22-07-2014, 09:18 PM
Okay I will talk you through my house...

Porch...2 small signs, no smoking, no mobiles

downstairs utility/toilet....1 small wash your hands poster and toilet seat/step



Kitchen ...nothing

conservatory...tons of arty stuff, posters, coat hooks, displayed art....leading into

Playroom....EVERYTHING!!!!!! highchairs, tables, changing station, individual nappy toiletry baskets, loads of shelves with toys books and resources

Garden... wooden park...blackboard...windmills...one corner with playhouse and toy carpark storage area

when im not working and conservatory door is shut you wouldn't really know I was a minder, I don't want to see it, would prefer not to look out my kitchen window and see toys but im too lazy to move them every night though I will when I have 2 weeks off, my own kids are 6, 9, 12 and 14

I have also slowly taken over the garage and shed with buggys and big toys too but when doors are shut I cannot see.

I have lost my back room to playroom which is a big sacrifice for family of 6 so that is why I refuse to have toys in my lounge, even my kids toys

23-07-2014, 07:50 AM
My goal is to have a playroom eventually.
However I started like you with just a cupboard in my living room to contain it but slowly slowly my living room has burst into a semi play room! I have now given up and letting it become what ever it's going to become. I do however have little ones of my own so it doesn't really bother me or my husband. But childminding does I fact take up a lot of your home. And of you always plan to hide it away then you need a considerable amount of storage. Ikea are by far the best at storage ideas and solutions. Google images of ' playroom inside living room' or 'toy storage living room' that can give you some ideas. X

Chatterbox Childcare
23-07-2014, 08:34 AM
Good luck - the busier you get, the more you need, the less space you have

I have a playroom now and close the door but for 20 years I didn't and at the end of each day I tidied everything away because my DH didn't want a mess. It is longer hours for me but it kept the peace.