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House with a garden

(16 Posts)
Orangeflower7 Thu 25-Aug-11 13:47:39

How important is it to you to have a garden with children? We have two little boys (2 and 6) and live in a flat with no garden (well a shared garden but seperate and more ornamental really)

I was just wondering as we might be going to try to move because of it. The thing is we are in a very good location for other things (in town centre, close to parks, swimming pool etc) which is good for me as I don't drive.

Anyway sometimes I think I get this idea that life would be so much easier if we had an outside space as I take the boys out a lot, but then I'm not so sure. Do you feel you can stay home much more with a garden? Or am I being idealistic about it? (have this notion of having cup of tea (indoors) watching them play (from the kitchen window)...

Tee2072 Thu 25-Aug-11 13:59:00

I don't have a garden as I also live in a city centre flat. Some days I wish I had one for throwing my son out the back door, so to speak (he's 26 months) and other times I know I will miss our location if we move.

We are looking to move, but more to save on rent, although a garden would be nice, I guess.

redgecko Thu 25-Aug-11 14:48:11

I also live in a city centre flat with a 26 month old. It's fine. We spend lots of time going to the nearby park. But we're moving soon to a house with a garden. The clincher was a summer holiday at my parents' place, which has a large garden. DS had an absolute ball and wore himself out running around. I will miss our current location, but to be honest this is outweighed by the fact that DS will appreciate the extra outdoor space more and more as he gets older. I also expect to be able to turf DS out into the garden and keep a vague eye on him whilst sipping cups of tea in the kitchen smile . We will be moving further away from good parks, swimming pool etc, but will just catch buses as needs be.

NedSchneebly Thu 25-Aug-11 15:09:23

We moved to a house with a bigger garden when DS was just 2, and we all love it. DS (now nearly 4) can potter in and out, games in the garden can last 2 minutes or 2 hours, with no issues about getting back from park/ communal garden. Can easily get some other toy from house if needed. DS can play football and run about- needs lots of exercise!

We also line dry washing, have 2 dogs, grow our own soft fruit and veggies, and dh has greenhouse, have BBQs and parties in garden etc.

We definitely don't regret moving to cheaper, more rural location, for more outdoor space.

NedSchneebly Thu 25-Aug-11 15:10:39

Sorry, orange, just noticed you don't drive. Rural bit might be more of an issue for you blush

ditavonteesed Thu 25-Aug-11 15:15:54

I used to live in a flat ith a communal garden which we couldnt really use without us all going out and locking the flat up, we moved to our house 3 yeasr ago when dds were 18mnths and 4, I wouldnt change it for the world, they play in the garden, I have my desk facing out and watch them while mning, they have a trampoline, we have chickens, dogs and cats. it has totally changed our lives. but thinking logically we would have been fine in the flat now as the girls would be able to go out on their own now but in the intrim it has probably saved my sanity. however our flat wa further out so I had to walk a lot to get anywhere and now we are in the middle of things.
And as ned says washing lines, they are the best thing ever.

MrsPlesWearsAFez Thu 25-Aug-11 15:21:32

We moved at the start of the year from a house with a garden that was a nightmare commute into town, to a flat with a shared garden.

On the lovely summer days I did miss being able to send dd into the garden for the afternoon. What I don't miss is all the extra work of lawn mowing, gardening etc.

On balance, as dd is starting school next month (and therefore will be out during daytime hours most days), I value our larger indoor living space (house + garden meant less sq m in the living areas) and easy access to amenities (also don't drive) over the convenience of the garden. We now use the local park.

Orangeflower7 Thu 25-Aug-11 21:05:10

Hi thanks for taking time to reply, it's interesting to hear about your different situations and it seems it's not just as simple as having the garden but also about the ages of children and other factors like commute/being in the middle of things or alternatively a rural location.

We just got back from camping and although the weather hasn't been great it was good having the field for the boys to run around in and even a trip to wash up being an adventure with bikes trikes brought along.

I can totally see that you mean with it being a lifesaver during a certain stage though for example with my 6 year old it's so much easier getting out and about now whereas with the two year old there is the fuss going too and from places.

Unfortunately all the houses round here have little gardens often steep or with steps which friends have said are actually a pain as require constant supervision so we're maybe better off without! (unless move right out)

I have appreciated being all on one level with a toddler and baby especially, having no stairs has been good. Have sometimes thought maybe it would be ideal with small ones having a bungalow with a large safe garden attached...ideally by the sea, well can dream wink

So, I wonder if the garden bit is of major benefit during say ages 2 to 5 and thereafter not so much? I wonder as the childrenget older they might benefot more from all the other stuff nearby (like the great park with skate park attached, cinema, theatre...) hmm a tricky one...

ronx Thu 25-Aug-11 21:20:08

I love my garden and wouldn't swap it for the world. My children are 3.5 and 1 and I cannot bear the thought of having to lug bikes, scooters etc to the local park whenever we fancied some fresh air.

cat64 Thu 25-Aug-11 21:35:18

Message withdrawn

Sirzy Thu 25-Aug-11 21:57:26

Personally I wouldnt be without a garden.

DS (21 months) has spent the afternoon having a picnic, painting outside, running around in an out of the hose pipe in just his nappy. It is great to just be able to open the back door and have a safe area for him to play.

pictish Thu 25-Aug-11 22:00:50

We moved from a central Edinburgh flat, to a wee town just outside Edinburgh for a house with a garden.
I can see pros and cons to both, but overall the garden wins over. We have a lovely garden.

ripstheirthroatoutliveupstairs Fri 26-Aug-11 07:35:10

Me and DD recently moved into our house with a reasonable sized garden. We did have one in Antwerp but it was minute.
She is having the time of her life, there are three apple trees which she is sizing up for a tree house hmm not going to happen or a zip rope from the bathroom window.
I am able to dry the washing on the line, the newly acquired cats tear around it and I love it.

HeiferLump Fri 26-Aug-11 07:46:53

I love our garden! Having the back door open all day with DC running in and out, watching DS pottering around with a watering can and growing sunflowers, washing on the line, paddling pool, snowmen, running games, riding bikes, water pistols, picnics, playing in the tent and of course sitting in the evening sun with a drink at the end of the day. We appreciate it so much more now we have children.

Octaviapink Fri 26-Aug-11 07:51:08

I couldn't imagine not having the outside space for the children. It's not just that they love being outdoors (the doors are open all the time except in really bad or cold weather) it's that if they're misbehaving or grumpy, going out in the garden nearly always 'fixes' them! Children seem to respond incredibly well to fresh air - especially boys.

ChippyMinton Fri 26-Aug-11 07:51:38

We have the best of both worlds, I think. Near schools, shops and transport links, but quite suburban so we have a big garden. It was invaluable with pre-schoolers, but even better now as they are older, as we have room for a trampoline or a pool, a climbing frame/swing, space to play cricket or football. I can get on with stuff, whilst the DC have friends round or play together. When the weather's good, they are hardly indoors.

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