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May 2, 2017

innovative kids and available space, nevermind off limits

 I feel it appropriate to share this post from August of 2015 as we consider another interior house project.  If nothing else, I assure you that these kids are innovative as they work to make whatever space they stumble upon their own . . .

January 2013.  Over 20 months ago.  Coach began fixing up the basement that long ago.  When one of the boys recently explained to a friend that Coach was 'finishing' the basement, Tank
corrected him, "Well, I wouldn't exactly call it 'finishing'."  With six active kids living under our roof, being without a basement is difficult.  We have officially surpassed the difficult stage.  Unbearable would be more appropriate.

It'll be great when it's done.  Until then . . . our belongings are mostly crammed into the garage and every open space in the rest of the house.  There are bins of toys in all four corners of the spacious dining room.  My walk in closet houses Pokey and Gumby, the giant Halloween costumes I created for Coach and I last fall.  All legos are gathered in another corner of my closet, and I shuffle around a huge box of dart guns and bow and arrows conveniently located in the center of the space that used to strictly hold my clothes.  Now I have the added ability to get dressed in the morning and come out armed and dangerous.

In lieu of the basement space, the kids' rooms began serving as a play area for their friends.  The dolls and their clothes litter the floor of the girls' room, which is typically layered with the clean laundry they haven't put away.  Coloring papers, markers, rubber bands to construct bracelets, and the occasional book clutter up whatever space remains in there.

The younger boys room is a sea of toys, books, and laundry that may or may not be clean.  Since it is a smaller room, the effect is more drastic.  It can be downright frightening.
Basketball hoop now is fittingly located in the basement, but Reg still prefers the higher ceilings of my room and occasionally relocates the hoop to my door until I blow a gasket.  Weird how my kids think I will suddenly accept defeat on these issues.

Reggie handles the whole situation by branching out.  Several months ago, he relocated the basketball hoop from the back of the big boys' bedroom door to MY bedroom door.  At first Laddie and Eddie objected until they realized that removing it from their door meant no more energy wasted chasing their pesky little brother out of their room each time he sneaked in to shoot hoops.

Complete with a realistic plexi glass backboard, the hoop allows Reg to play b-ball indoors and keep his skills sharp.  Just when I was nervous he might lose his edge over the long Chicago winter.  Creating a makeshift court in my room may have the added perk of polishing his game, but it has an additional side effect . . . any sense of order I strive for in my room has fallen victim to Reggie's favorite past time.

I frequently sort laundry on my bed.  I quickly separate articles of clean clothes into piles for each kid and stack them along one bare wall in my room.  While kids are supposed to claim their pile and deliver it back to their dresser, they typically locate the one item they were searching for and yank it out from the bottom of the pile.

I find laundry piles and a makeshift basketball court do not mix well.
Throw Reggie in the mix and piles that may have escaped toppled mode from impatient hands stand no chance of remaining intact now that Mr. Basketball and his pals attack the boards.  Yes, boards.  Plural.

I failed to mention that another hoop was gifted to one of the boys last Christmas.  I ditched it in my closet while I contemplated what to do with an additional b-ball net.  Silly me, I thought we had no place for a full court.  I guess Reggie is a visionary.  He recognized the possibilities in my room.  So he freed hoop #2 from its box and hooked it onto my closet door.  Full court press, anyone?

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