It’s great having a ‘Summer Baby’ because you’re guaranteed good weather for their birthdays.
That’s right, so when we were planning Caitlin’s second birthday at the start of May we figured it would be marvelous if we had some outside toys for her. Great idea. Except that it then turned out to be -34° with weather that wouldn’t have seemed out of place on one of Jupiter’s outer moons. So it took her a little longer than we expected. to get introduced to her Little Tikes Log Cabin.
Some might have caviled at this, stating that we could have put the thing up indoors. And here is the first and most important point of the new Log Cabin by Little Tikes. The dimensions on the box say 4’.8 by 4’, but if you’re anything like me, that might as well be written in Romalan. I’m not great with numbers and slightly worse with spatial awareness; so I just looked in the box. Easy when you know the tricks. In the box it looked huge, out of the box and upright it’s massive. And that’s fine with us because this was after all our first criteria. There are loads of cabins out there which look fun and have extra-fiddly thingummies but we wanted space. And the Little Tikes Log Cabin is the one of the biggest in the price-range.
So we delayed. Luckily only a couple of days until the temperature reached a balmy -21° but then it was all systems go. The second great thing about the cabin is the ease with which you can put it all up. We’ve never had a cabin/wendy-house before so -in their defense- they might all be really easy to construct. But we were still struck by the no-nonsense method of putting this together. The four walls slot together, the roof slots on and you have 8 screws with which to attach the roof to the walls in case there’s a big wind. And with Caitlin that’s always on the cards. Anyway, that’s it. You do need two people because it’s pretty solid but that’s about it.
When Caitlin set her eyes on her Little Tikes Log Cabin, she was dumbfounded. She even stopped singing the Bing Bong song for a few minutes so we knew she was discombobulated! Two days after her party she was still in ‘birthday-mode’ which meant that anything she saw was ‘Mine!’ and, by a happy coincidence, this was indeed hers. She immediately ran inside and checked out the extras. There is a phone in a wall-holder, a picture of a fire (this is a homestead after all) and a pop-up table. Other than that there are windows in each wall and a stable-door. Personally I wouldn’t have previously imagined that something as simple could be so endlessly diverting, and yet she and her brother Harry (3 ¾) played inside, outside, climbed through the windows, talked to their absent elder brother Tom on the phone, ate invisible food on the table and sometimes just sat on the floor for the whole of the morning. They occasionally wandered into the house to witter nonsensically about something or other, but other than that the cabin proved to be a magnet for them. And, it must be said, this continues to be the case. Every time Caitlin now walks through the French doors she reiterates her ownership with a subtle “Cakekin’s ‘ouse” and spends a great percentage of each day playing inside. Harry too.
Quite simply, it is fabulous. It’s a great addition to our outside space, which isn’t huge but now has enough distinct areas to distract our children long enough for us to pretend that we have some free time. It’s safe and just looks fun. Little Tikes have thought carefully about what you need for a toy that must of necessity stay outside and it’s genuinely solid, really quite heavy, weather-proof and has the minimum of things that might go rusty in the rain. Just the 8 screws in fact, and they are all encased in plastic inside the cabin. The solidity of the cabin is probably the reason for the price, which is quite high at around £320 or upwards . You can pick some similar ones up for less but this is the only one we’ve seen with the space and the solidity with which we felt comfortable. So, you get what you pay for in our opinion. I have to say, I never had one of these when I was younger -or even a desire for one – and so it came as a bit of surprise how fantastic both kids think it is. And what a pleasant surprise it was.
by Dave Fouracre aka Dave The Dad – Dad to Tom 6, Harry nearly 4 and Caitlin 2
You can Buy The Little Tikes Log Cabin Playhouse Here