When I was pregnant with our first child, my husband and I decided we needed to buy a house. It’s a classic story: Expectant parents often dream of lush lawns for their babies to crawl around on, soft carpet to tumble as they take their first steps, and big playrooms to stash all of the kid toys. We were lucky to tick off most of these boxes, and our family home accommodated us through the baby and toddler years nicely. Now that they are a little older, we decided we wanted to update our house, but still needed a kid-friendly design.
Spice Up Your Kitchen
Parents spend a lot of time in the kitchen making pancakes and continuous snacks all day long. Who knew kids could eat so much?!? You’ll want a kitchen that functions well and looks great, and, the good news is you can have it all.
Consider the kitchen island: it’s the hub of family chats with tea, breakfast buckwheat pancakes, and after-school cookie treats. If you have the space, add an island that is sturdy and sleek. You could try a butcher block countertop, which offers the convenience of being able to prepare food or a farmhouse look with big cabinets underneath. Add stools for easy seating.
One upgrade that is really worth the money is radiant floor heating. It is a relatively affordable option to add a touch of luxury to your mornings. Your family will love the toasty feeling of warm floors in those cold winter months.
If it’s time for a new countertop, quartz offers a sleek, modern look while being durable and tough. It won’t scratch or stain, an important detail for kid-friendly homes.
Organize Your Playroom
Many of us prize our playrooms. Kids have a lot of toys, and having a place to store them out of sight is invaluable. Playrooms are a gift to parents for one simple reason: you can close the door!
If you don’t have an extra room to designate as a playroom, try partitioning off a section of your living space or basement as a designated kid space. This way, the items are confined to one space as opposed to infiltrating your entire house. You can add easy upgrades to the area with organization. Wayfair has some fun ideas from toy chests to bookshelves that appeal to your need for organized chaos.
Make Your Bathroom a Sanctuary
Bathrooms are a busy place in family homes. Maybe you like to keep yours a sacred kid-free zone or maybe you’ve surrendered it to kid baths and flossing zones. Either way, the bathroom can still be a sanctuary.
If you have the space, think about upgrading your bathtub to freestanding tub like these. It can completely change the feel and look of your bathrum, instantly altering it from purely functional to impressively glam. You can fit at least two toddlers in there, making bath time more efficient.
Your shower offers another opportunity for modernizing. If you like the modern look, consider a glass shower. They are practical and sleek with clean lines, and they instantly add a modern look. My favorite are the totally frameless shower doors because they offer a floating look with no seams or caulking.
Spend Some Time Outside
One of the many joys of parenting is spending time exploring outside with your children. When thinking of ways to update your home, you may want to start on the outside. Driving up to your house and seeing an impressive and neat appearance can immediately calm you at your “home sweet home.” Having a lush lawn is nice for toddlers who need a forgiving surface for their many tumbles. Maybe you’ve been putting off lawn maintenance because you are so busy with the kids, but think of how nice it will be to take your children out to roam around.
Why not plant a vegetable garden? Not only can this add a practical touch to your life with the fresh herbs and vegetables, but it can also be a really fun project to do with the kids. If you are just starting out, try herbs that are easy to grow like mint and parsley. This might not be what you think of when you are looking for upgrades, but working on your landscaping can offer aesthetically pleasing touches to your home.
Lighten Up Your Living Space
How much time do you spend in your living or TV room? Think about family game nights and Sunday football games. You may entertain in this room, maybe even accommodating playdates or Mama’s Happy Hour. Regardless, you likely spend a lot of time in this space, so you will want to make it comfortable, personalized, and stylish.
One way to freshen up your space is to invest in more modern furniture. If you are like me, you love the look of cream and beige colored sofas and loveseats, but hesitate to risk the dangers of those perpetually dirty hands and ever present spills. A slipcover is a handy way to lighten up your dark furniture while allowing for easy cleaning. Cream colored sofas offer a simple and versatile canvas for your living room, creating opportunity to add pops of color with your children’s artwork and maybe some fresh flowers. I have found a lot of great advice regarding how to keep your furniture clean, and this site offers very practical tips.
If you just need a simple facelift refresh, consider painting your room. We recently painted our living rooms walls, changing them from a medium toned khaki to a light sailcloth. I can’t believe the difference. After years of wishing our room looked more fresh and modern, I am happy to report I have finally achieved this look. And all it took was a few days and a couple of coats of paint.
Another great color choice is always grey, especially if you have white baseboards. If you have some woodwork in your room, you might consider a greige: a color that sounds like what it is! Grey mixed with beige.
Upgrade Your Home with your Family in Mind
You’ll feel so refreshed after touching up a few areas of your home with these easy and family friendly ideas. Just because you have children, does not mean you have to give up on a stylish and modern home.
August 28, 2018