Baby-proofing the house has been a challenge. I’m sure everyone deals with this in their own way. When we first moved in we put things where it made sense. Then Alexander started crawling, and sitting up, and suddenly books and DVDs needed to move. The television needed to move. We ended up pulling a lot of stuff out of the living room but that wasn’t enough. He could get into the kitchen, dining room and down the hall and none of those areas were safe. The wood stove is in the dining room. So we barricaded the entrance to the dining room and kitchen with large plastic tubs that we could step over but it would keep him confined.

But that proved to be a pain. Particularly for Poppy as the jumping over the tubs aggravated her bad knee. Plus there has been plenty of stumbling and tripping. Not good.

We tried purchasing a gate that could span the wide entrance to the dining room but it arrived broken. We sent it back and the replacement came broken too. We gave up on that option and talked about building something ourselves. Then before we knew it Alexander wasn’t only crawling but standing up and cruising around. For awhile the barricades still held but he’s started using his strength to simply shove the tubs out of his way. Poppy helped, she showed him that they could be pushed by squeezing between them. So we had to move fast and get something up.

Gate Access Only

The new wood gate runs along the front of Kate’s table/desk area and then has a gate across the entrance. It’s easy to operate with one hand and can keep the dogs in the dining room and Alexander safe in the other room. Because it is past the front door it gave Alexander a new area, about 3′ x 6′ with a different floor to explore. He spent a lot of time last night playing in that new area. He also walked around the gate/barrier testing it for any weaknesses, trying to squeeze between the slats (too small), and generally checking to see if there was any way he could get through. It held against the baby onslaught!

The gate and barricade along the table is made from our old futon frame that we hauled along from the apartment because we figured that we’d find a use for it. We picked up the hinges, latch, nails and a spare board that I used to mount the hinges. Using the frame made it much easier to put up quickly. It’s functional at least. Another piece will be used to block off the hallway. Once I get the repainted kitchen cupboard doors up and secured then Alexander will be able to go into the kitchen too. I’m sure he’ll be excited.

Remove Kitchen Cupboard Doors

Urgency: High
Cost: $0 to remove, disposal?
Status: In progress, 8/15/2009

Description: The cupboard doors are not good. They had to go. It looks much better without them. Later on we’ll repaint the wood and eventually remodel, but for now it just needs to be opened up.

Tools Needed

Wheelbarrow (to haul to junk pile)

Parts Needed

None (for removal)
Paint (for cleaning up shelves)