Mini hands make light work!

A toy tool box and toy pliers.

As there are five of us living in a two-bedroom house, it’s time to think about moving. As a result, we’ve been doing a lot of DIY lately. Fortunately, all of the big jobs have long since been done.

Since we moved in six years ago, we’ve had a new bathroom, kitchen, windows and a front door installed. We’ve therefore been concentrating on the small-but-important details. You know the ones. Those that fall into the ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’ category.

We’ve been finishing off painting where one coat wasn’t enough, sticking back wallpaper that tiny hands have prised from the walls and replacing coat hooks among a great many other things. Of course, getting all this done with kids around can be stressful. They love the novelty of tools being out and want to play with them.

The best approach seems to be to let them help – or at least let them think they’re helping. Like Kevin Spacey’s character in American Beauty requests, the job with the “least possible amount of responsibility” is a must!

Xander has something of a track record for breaking things – indeed, many of the DIY jobs are down to his previous misdemeanours. He has, however, been the keenest to help and I didn’t want to stop him. He has done so by holding things in place and passing us tools. I also let him ‘finish’ the paintwork in our bedroom once the roller was practically dry!

Another task on the list was to fix a drip between the plug hole and trap on the bath. I got underneath to find the precise location while Xander turned on the cold tap. I think he enjoyed this a little too much as I was still getting dripped on long after finding it! He was keen to help with the sealant too, but I wasn’t having any of that.

With autumn on the way, it’s also time to check that the central heating is in working order. Nobody wants to encounter radiator problems when the first cold snap sets in after all.

I got Amelie to help check whether ours sounded right with a toy hammer. A very scientific approach, I’m sure you’ll agree. They needed bleeding so that created another job. Dylan held a plastic tub in place to catch any escaping water while I did my bit with the key. Job done.

So, in one way or another, everyone has played a part. To alter an old proverb, mini hands make light work!

Do you let your kids help with DIY?

Disclosure: this is a collaborative post with Dyno.


  1. John Adams

    I do get the kids involved when I can. That said, it sometimes isn’t the best idea, for all the reasons you have outlined. Oh, and our house is one gigantic DIY project as well.

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