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Play dates for DC in a hectic house?

(7 Posts)
NotMyMonkey Thu 19-Nov-15 12:42:10

I have 4dc, eldest is 6 and has been invited on his first ever play date.

He has a really nice group of friends and recently play dates seem to becoming a fairly regular thing between them, which is great except... My house is bloody chaos!

How do you manage to have playdates at your house?

A few of his friends are only children/have one sibling so I imagine their home lives are somewhat calmer than ours. I don't think they'll be used to the noise/fighting/squabbling and everything else that goes along with larger families?

I am keen for him to have friends over but I don't want to scare them off!

Any experience and tips very much appreciated, thank you.

Greengagesandham Thu 19-Nov-15 13:00:49

I think a lot of children just accept and join in, we've had a couple of friends round who have had to learn to wait their turn, or wait for something they have asked for.

I'm quite firm on table manners as I cannot stand it when meal times turn into a fracas, I also bought a bench seat so we can get more people round the table and occasionally use paper plates if there is another large(ish) family round.

Summer time is easy (if you can rely on the weather) we have a large out door table and seem to have collected a huge collection of out door chairs.

imip Thu 19-Nov-15 22:55:01

I have 4dds 9-3, one with ASD and play dates can be very difficult. I do find myself very thinly spread when we have them. My preference is to meet up with other parents and loads of kids and do an activity. This is what I will usually do in good weather.

However, what helps us is to invite a sibling group over (eg, families with 2dds that fit around the ages of my 4.

Generally, other dcs are bewildered by the chaos and noise of my dcs, esp. Only children. But they seem to cope well and, importantly, want to come back!

imip Thu 19-Nov-15 22:57:31

Sorry, also keep initial playmates short until you feel comfortable with them. I think organising an activity is easier than free play, and if they do free play instead of the activity, then that's fine (we would typically do Hama beads).

Keep them feed and I factoring in TV watching at the end to keep everyone calm if tempers become frayed.

Pigeonpost Thu 19-Nov-15 23:18:16

I only have 3 DC but I find that play dates actually make my life easier as all 3 of mine (7, 4 and 2) gravitate towards the visiting child and play nicely together. At worst the 2yo doesn't join in or smashes up their games but still easier than all 3 griping at me after school. Tea is just one more plate of whatever my 3 are eating. Its picking my own kids up from play dates elsewhere that I struggle with. The other two sort of go nuts when they get to the friend's house and I end up having to drag them all out from under a bed or something!!

Pigeonpost Thu 19-Nov-15 23:19:22

Oh and I've never done an activity. Just left them to it.

5madthings Thu 19-Nov-15 23:23:44

I have five, am preg with no 6.

I find its fine, wr often have extras round and as our house is busy it doesn't make much difference.

Another way to do it is to swop, so ds4 and dd for example are frirnds with two brothers, so Ds4 will go their house and play with yhe brother he is friends with and the other sibling will come to us.

Or I arrange play dates on a day when one of mine is at a frirnds. But tbh I am happy to have extras and though sone kids can be a bit bewildered by our large family I find they tend to be fine and actually enjoy it.

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