Tuesday, April 11, 2006

"Every small child loves a sandbox"

Children's Rooms...

We are still in the throes of planning our yard. The landscape designer we are working with (Yes, we splurged here. We are doing so much else our selves and just didn't feel as confident when it came to plantings. We want this to work!!)has a great plan drawn up but I am still "sitting on the fence" so to speak about what to do for a kids' area. I think this is a very important component of our space. Living in this mild climate, the girls like to be outside as much as I let them and I want them to have a "destination" when they go out the back door.

I have been pouring over old Sunset publications. We have found them to be a very valuable resource for the remodel of our 1955 home. This one, lent by a very cool and in the know when it comes to all things mcm neighbor, has some great ideas

every small child

with a future

I love the images from these books. I also love the commentary. On describing a bathroom for a child with access to the backyard they write: "Bathroom door opens directly to out-of-doors, so children can wash up in bathroom before entering rest of house..."Buffer-zone" bathroom of this sort can save many a scolding."

And who wouldn't want a playroom like this

Anyway, I digress... As for our yard. We will likely go with something like this

sandbox divide

,incorporating a trellis of vines over the sandbox I think (beans, Italian squash...)and beyond this our planter beds.

I also have been bit by the idea of a desert tortoise. Anyone familiar with them as pets? The big bug so badly wants a pet - besides the fish - and I was thinking this (non-shedding vegetarian heat lover) may be a good option? What do you think...? Oh - now to design its enclosure!


this single spark said...

I have nothing useful to say about having a tortoise as a pet, but since I thought it was an interesting idea, I did a little web search. Found this site which could be helpful:

My brother-in-law has two turtles. Not quite the same, but maybe similar? They aren't very interactive, though they do know who different people are. If I come in the room, they dive to the bottom of their aquarium. If my sister comes in, they don't panic at all. I think they are even glad to see her, as she often brings them flies and other treats.

Just wondering how satisfying a tortoise would be as a pet for a little girl? I honestly have no idea what they are like, personality-wise. Can you play with them? Are they friendly? Do they bite?

What about the fact that they live so long? They could outlive your children, if you get a baby.

They seem like really cool animals, but lots to consider before getting one.

luckybeans said...

We have several old tortoises who trundle about in our garden, putting in the occasional appearance for a bit of apple. They are the lowest maintenance pet ever. Sometimes we forget they are there! They don't have their own enclosure or anything, simply roam freely. And we don't really feed them, but let them help themselves from the compost pile. The tortoises are not at all aggressive (they have that shell to hide in), and quite funny. The girls like painting designs on their shells with nail polish.

Tracy said...

thanks c - lots to think about. i have been told that they can be quite friendly to those they know - espcially if you receive one as a baby. (the director of the girls school has had one for 17 yrs.) we have considered the life-span issue. and figure that we can pass it on to our grandkids ;) yup - lots to think about.

luckybeans - they sound like fun. the girls would love painting their shells!!