Is it time to buy a plastic playhouse to get the children to keep themselves busy outside?

Summer is fast approaching and it's time to try and get the kids outside playing rather than in the house under our feet.  Right, next problem.  I've sent them outside and within 10 minutes their back at the door claiming they're bored.

So, maybe it's time to offer them a few more imaginative toys to play with out in the garden?  For imaginative play you can't really beat a playhouse.  In selecting the right playhouse there is immediately one fairly major choice - plastic versus wooden playhouses.

My preference is actually the plastic playhouse.  Okay so it isn't perhaps the best for the environment but I think they have more to offer.  With all manner of little features as well as a huge range of garish, and luckily not so garish, colours to choose from you aren't short of options.  They also come in various sizes so there is almost certainly one to fit even the smallest piece of land outside your house - assuming you aren't in a 10th story apartment!

It isn't just the range of plastic playhouses that has evolved.  The features have also had a bit of a revamp in recent times. Things are getting a little more high tech.

One great example is the Sweetheart Playhouse from Step 2.  With working shutters and a skylight it's never gloomy and includes an electronic cordless phone.

Another great plastic playhouse is the Step 2 Gather and Grill Playhouse with electronic doorbell sounds and a built in outside grill area.

There is no reason why a plastic playhouse bought today wont keep more than one generation of your family happily entertained in the garden for many hours over many years.

From what I've seen the build quality of the modern plastic playhouse is also of a pretty high standard.  Playhouses that have spent many years outdoors at play-centres and nursery schools still perform well showing little sign of abuse.

Ok, so there is no guarantee the weather will hold up and it may rain constantly for weeks, but I have known of children still being desperate to get outside and into the playhouse the minute the sun pokes through the clouds.  I would therefore suggest that as outdoor toys go the plastic playhouse is right up there as a pretty good investment.  There is even a chance that whilst they are busy playing in it you may be able to get a little time to yourself, even if it's just to put the next load of washing on.

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