While the girls have certainly had their share of fun in their upstairs kitchen, I've learned something along the way. My little kids want to be in the same room with the rest of the family. When the big kids and I are doing homeschool, the little ones want to play all around us. This is what I love about Guidecraft's Hideaway Country Kitchen! I can set it up in the living room for hours of fun then fold it up and hide it away in our closet under the stairs until next time.
You can see from these pictures just how cute the Guidecraft Hideaway Country kitchen is. The little clock has movable hands and our 8 yr old daughter (not shown) loves making it tell the exact time.
Our little future chef is showing you in the picture above how much storage there is underneath for food and pots and pans. And of course, I love that the food doesn't have to be strewn about the floor.
When you're ready to fold the kitchen up, lift the cook surface up and flip up the metal bars that normally lock the cabinet in place.
After you flip up the lock bars, you can lift the bottom piece up and the cabinet easily collapses inward.
The Guidecraft Hideaway Country Kitchen is designed to be stored flat on the floor, for instance underneath a bed. Our little ones want to play in the living room with us, not in their bedrooms, so I store it upright in our closet. In order to do this I use a piece of tape on each side to secure the countertop to the back of the cabinet. I've stored it this way multiple times (with fresh pieces of tape each time) and have not had any problems with the countertop falling or with sticky tape being difficult to remove. This has worked great for me, making it super convenient to move the kitchen from the closet to living room and back again each time.
I absolutely LOVE our Guidecraft Hideaway Country Kitchen and my 8, 5, and almost 3 year olds have played with it a TON. My genius husband, whom I mentioned before, put it together without problem, but did say that the screw casings (or whatever they're called) could be easily stripped and that if you don't know what you're doing (like me) this could be a problem. He also didn't think it was well-made enough (particle board) to cost $200, but I do think you have to consider convenience as well as craftsmanship. The point of the kitchen is to be transportable, not heavy and bulky. Our kids have played with it lots over the last month and we haven't seen any signs of wear and tear. I did lose the bolt that is supposed to go in to keep things together when in the "play position". The bolt comes out to fold the kitchen up and I lost it the first time I did that. I should have taped it to the kitchen since our junk drawers are black holes. This is a problem with me, though, not the kitchen. The kitchen has held up fine without the bolt. It's probably a safety feature to insure that the kids can't fold the kitchen up on themselves. Luckily, my kids aren't interested in folding it up, but only in playing with it.
The Guidecraft Hideaway Country Kitchen is available from Guidecraft for $200. It is recommended for ages 3+.
If you have little ones that like to be in the same room as you when you're cooking or teaching school, then I HIGHLY recommend this kitchen. The convenience and portability make it worth the $200 in my book. And if you've ever been in the middle of doing school with your big kids only to realize that you haven't seen your little one in a while and then walked in on a scene like this...
|Somebody got into lipstick.|
|Somebody got into pasta.|
Please check out the other TOS reviews of the Guidecraft Hideaway Country Kitchen.
Disclaimer: I received a free Guidecraft Hideaway Country Kitchen to write this review. All the opinions expressed in this post are my own.