It is a good thing that there were no childminded children attending this weekend, because ……   5 comments

……… they would have a lot of questions to ask Penny !


Following on from my decision to reorganise the play space here at Penny’s Place (and if you have not read about it yet – you can do so by clicking on the link Why is the Sofa in the garden Penny?  , this weekend (2nd &3rd August) I decided to reorganised the storage in the garage.


Over the months since the last reorganisation things had become rather untidy –  actually being truthful it had become a mess – and dangerous. This was due to two facts

1) I simply have too much ‘stuff’

2) I simply do not have time to put things away properly and tidily – I am always in a rush, always multi tasking or rushing off to meetings and so on. Not really that good as excuses – but it is the truth. (I can hear Mr.Penny’s Place saying ‘Yep its true – stuff all over the place’, always rushing around multitasking).

However as well as needing to have a major reorganisation to ensure the storage was safe, and to enable easy access to things and to save time looking for things that were not in their ‘proper place’ or were at the bottom of one of my famous piles – I actually had another three reasons for spending just about all weekend sorting and reorganising.

1) I needed to make room in the garage for our foster child’s bike, and fishing stuff, and wellies and walking boots and so on.

2) I needed to find a home for the triple pushchair that I had brought in a sale – and that ever since has been propped up in front of the freezer in the garage – and so needed moving every time anyone  wanted to get something out of the freezer (and it is heavy and bulky so difficulty to move)

3) I wanted to put more of my resources into the drawer units like the ones in the reorganised play space. so that rotation of resources / responding to children’s requests / meeting development needs – would simply be a case of swapping the drawers from the middle room bases, with drawers from the garage bases, Simply really – and easy.


I can almost hear readers asking – but what about those questions the children  would have been asking – had they attended Penny’s Place this weekend

I have not forgotten – coming to them now

The first question they would ask would be ……..

……. ‘Penny, WHO made that MESS?

Take a look at the photo’s and you will see what I mean – because to start the process – EVERYTHING had to come out of garage – well no, that is not true, as some stuff had to stay on the shelves as there simply was not room to get it all out at the same time!











Yes you are right – you can hardly see the lovely environment created in the first part of this reorganisation as stuff is piled everywhere – and worse it overflowed into the kitchen!


And through the open garage door you can see how much stuff is still on the shelves.

I am sure some of you are now thinking Mr.Penny’s Place is a saint (or maybe knows  after almost 38 years of marriage, that is no point in saying anything) to put up with me and all the stuff I have.


The children’s second question would have been ‘Where shall we play?’ Luckily I did not have to answer that one – but if I had it would have been ‘outside’ as ‘inside’ was completely unsafe

And of course the children would have wanted to / prefer to explore all the things piled everywhere – some of which have not been available for some time.

The next question would have been ‘Penny, who is going to tidy up ?’


Well following my own guidance ……. of course, I did as I had made the mess


And by 5 o’clock on Sunday 3rd August the garage looked like this
























So a good job done? All organised here at Penny’s Place?



The spare room looks like this – somewhere in there is a set of bunk beds!












And Penny’s bedroom looks this – boxes and boxes of paperwork, activities, and so on



Oh well – as the children would say ‘Who made that mess?’

It seems yet more reorganisation is needed – this time of boxes and paperwork – but that will have to wait for another day.

In the meantime downstairs is organised and working really well.  The new layout with the option to easily change the drawers in the base units – is,  if I say so myself – one of my better ideas – and so after years of reflecting and making changes – I am now very happy with the play environment and the accessibility to resources.


That is until further reflection, changes to children and their needs brings about another change – and that is how it should be – constant reflection and appropriate changes as needed  (but between you and me – I hope it will be a while before another change is needed, because to be honest – it is shattering doing such a major reorganisation!)



5 responses to “It is a good thing that there were no childminded children attending this weekend, because ……

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  1. Is the sofa still in the garden? I’m sure you needed it to collapse on at the weekend!!! I thought I had a lot of stuff but I have nothing compared to you Penny! Mind you I have spent quite a bit in the Little Trading Companies Sale in the last week, my quest to replace a lot of my plastic stuff with wooden so some things will be moving out during my 2 week holiday!

    • Afraid the sofa had to go Brita – my suggestion to Mr.Penny’s Place about where it could live in the garden was met with a justifiable comment about all the little creatures in the garden being grateful for a new home! So it has gone.

      Yes I do have a lot of stuff – and as you will know I have recently invested in a lot of natural resources, and restocking since re registering in 2010. Luckily I am now fairly happy with the amount and variety of resources that I have and so apart from bits and pieces here and there I will not need much more (but don’t tell Mr.Penny’s Place as I might find a ‘bargain’here and there!

      Good luck with your own resource moving exercise.

  2. I heard that!

    Mr Penny's Place
  3. Oh Penny I love your blog. Mr Penny’s place sounds like my long suffering husband Mr Your Child Matters Childminding Service! Our lives are so similar my daughter Miss Your Child Matters Childminding Service also known as Super star has helped me complete a similar makeover on our playroom this weekend we could do with your stamina because we still have the living room and the extension to tackle! All part of the reflection process. As I have a fortnights holiday coming up I am sure I will come back with new purchases and a head buzzing with new ideas. Hopefully my weary body will be rested enough to put them all into action and all the resources will find a new place and everything in its place until the cycle occurs again. Thank you for writing such a wonderful blog that we all relate to. It always keeps me smiling. Makes my day and keeps us all in the job we love despite the adversity. You should definitely write a book one for childminders everywhere and I can see a series of books for the children. Adventures at Pennys Place and of course the magic garden sofa not forgetting Penny’s Aladin cave also known as the garage and I bet there’s a Pennys place handbag that resembles Mary Poppins.:-)

    • Thank you – and maybe you should write about your adventures

      Funny you should mention my handbag – as I have just brought myself a lovely new bag that does resemble a Mary Poppins type bag 🙂

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