Thursday, October 3, 2013

Easy Play Fort for Kids

Baby E Playing in the Fort
What kid doesn't love a good fort? I still remember vast chunks of my own childhood spend playing in one! Winters in Latvia were pretty long and the fold-out couch in our living room became a favorite play space with my girlfriends. Now that I'm a little more grown up [ahem], I love making forts with my kids. We usually use a large blanket, but it gets warm in it pretty fast. So when we came up with this idea thanks to a simple spring clamp, the kids absolutely loved it.

Baby T and Baby E in Their 'Playhouse'
They can play in their fort for hours! Sometimes I play with them, but most times this gives them free playtime and me - some time to wash dishes in peace, throw in a load of laundry, cook dinner, or tidy up the house. Trust me, this is a much, much better alternative to sticking them in front of the TV. We do not have a television in our living room and decided this room is best used for living and playing.  

These Cheap Clamps Make It Easy
Here is our little trick for making a fort in ten seconds flat. I ordered these Cheaplights Spring Clamps for photo sessions at V & A Photography. Of course whenever I open any package, the kids are always right there stalking me and curious to know what arrived at our doorstep. I wasn't surprised that the moment they saw these they wanted to play with them. Baby T wanted all six of them for himself! Moments later a light bulb lights up in my head and I go grab a sheet. We set up three kitchen chairs and clamped the sheet at three points to the chairs and voila! A really quick set up fort. The clamps are not toys of course, keep that in mind. Also, little kids can't really open them, you need a lot of strength.

If you have your own backyard, you could use these clamps in the summer to attach sheets to a tree without any harm and make an even better and bigger fort for outdoor play. These spring clamps are so versatile, for just $7 you've got hours of fun play for kids and a useful household tool for holding things together when needed!

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