Rolling back the stairgates

For about 5 months now we've had a stair gate across the living room doorway, to keep the girls from crawling out into the hall, stairs, kitchen etc,.

On the rare occasion they got out (when we'd left the gate open) they'd head straight for the untidy pile of shoes and start chewing on the laces. Or mess with any of the other junk accumulated in the hall.

As the living room is only about 3 x 5 metres and the girls can now crawl quite far & fast ... and Amelia is now getting pretty good on her feet too ... we thought it was time to give them a bit more space. So we've expanded their domain to include the hall but not the stairs or the kitchen.

Moving the gate from living to the kitchen was easy but the stairs proved a challenge as none of the shop bought ones would easily cope with the height and shape of the handrail fitted in this Victorian house. So a couple of weeks of dithering and I've added a post to wrap around the handrail, fixed (hopefully) sturdily into the wall so that there's a suitable flat surface to mount the gate on.

The final challenge was the junk - shoes now in a sturdy cupboard thing and everything else put away (an achievement in itself).

The reward? So far the girls have spent several hours shrieking up and down the hall; going to opposite ends then turning, giggling at each other and racing back to the middle, touching heads and then to the opposite ends again ! Well worth the effort.

The next room to expand to would be the kitchen but that would be pretty much impossible to make kiddie-safe, so it'll be the conservatory which is ever more used as a junk room.