From day one, the Little Tikes Log Cabin offered both my children, Caitlin (2) and Harry (3), the opportunity to dip their toe into the imaginative world of adulthood. “Are you ready for preschool?” Harry shouts to Caitlin. “Hurry up, we’ll be late.” And so the game began. Breakfast was served on the little table. The windows were opened and closed, apparently to let the cat in and out, whilst the phone rang numerous times: Daddy; Nan and Pop even Santa! Then, Caitlin hands to the phone to me, “Nanny,“ she tells me, holding the phone to my ear…. By this time, the idea of being late for preschool had been completely forgotten! And so the game continued… at one point in the style of The Gingerbread Man, Harry as the gingerbread man, Caitlin, scarily, as the fox…. I might add that the house has also been ‘preschool’ on a number of occasions. And for a change I have been the one being told it is ‘tidy up time’ rather than the other way round!
Since arriving, the place of choice for lunch to be served is… the house. I smile in the knowledge that my vacuum will be getting a day off. Caitlin, however, has taken to taking hers out to the house, followed closely by Harry who has grabbed the dustpan and brush… In the distance I hear Harry moan “I wish you two would keep your food on your plates.” Do I really say that?
In short,The Little Tikes Log Cabin provides endless opportunities for imaginative play and its size, particularly its height, and, most importantly, its sturdiness means I can see it lasting and lasting. I also like the idea of the children being outside in the fresh air… and the fact that this house is genuinely one of the few situations where they have learnt to play together rather than in parallel. In their world, in the house, they tell a story together… Or at least Harry tells Caitlin what to do and she seems happy enough to do it!
I have read criticisms of the fact it has a stable door. I, however, see this as one of the benefits of the house. There are no scary moments where someone shuts the door when the shutters are closed and they find themselves in pitch black. Equally, it allows me to have a little non-evasive sneaky peek at what they are doing without interrupting their game.
If only I was their age again. Their world seems much more interesting!
Sarah Wenn (Mum to Harry, nearly 4 and Caitlin 2)