When you’re a parent, you’re always thinking about the here and now. It’s about what you’re going to prepare for the next mealtime, whether you’ve done enough washing to see you through the week, what you can do to keep yourselves entertained for the day, and so on and so forth. You don’t necessarily sit down and think “hmm, I wonder what’s going to happen to our patio slabs 5 months from now” – that would just be ridiculous. It’s not relevant, it doesn’t have any impact on what you’re currently doing, and your children couldn’t care less about what happens to your patio slabs. And why would they? They’re kids. They’ve got more important stuff to worry about!
However, this is where stuff starts to get complicated. Let’s take it theoretical and assume that these patio slabs haven’t been cleaned since the moment they were laid. They’ve had years of weather upon them, rain and sun and snow and hail, and have formed a thin slippery surface upon them. Fast forward five months and you take a walk outside, only to slide right over on top of them. It’s something that could have been prevented if the thought had been there to clean them, but it’s just not something that jumps out. Children take up enough of our time when we’re on the inside of the house!
With that in mind, there are a few jobs which probably need doing a bit more often than they are around the home. That, or doing once and never having to be bothered with again apart from the odd check up. Sound good? Read on…
The best thing that you can do, especially if you live in a cooler climate, is prevent frozen pipes. The last thing you want to happen when you’ve got kids is for the water to suddenly stop working one winter day. It means no baths/showers, no teeth brushing, no drinks out of tap – and quite a lot more, until you get the problem sorted. It’s no good standing over them with a kettle and pouring water and waiting for them to heat up again. Prevent the problem with a pipe heat tape and you won’t have to bother with them again.
Slabs and Paving Stones
Ok, so the whole patio thing really was theoretical, but it doesn’t mean that it can’t happen to one of us one day. Go over any paving that you’ve got outside your home with a powerful hose and a hard-bristled brush to remove any build up which could trip you up later. If you have noticed that any are cracked or sticking up away from the alignment of the others, get this fixed as soon as you can to avoid a potential trip.
Always, always check your fences to make sure that nothing can get in and, more importantly, nothing can get out. This is especially important for those kids that get caught up in exploring and may not even realising that they’re going over the safety boundary.