Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Waste or Want #11: Backyard Swing Set

Description: A playground set for your very own yard! There are so many types - some with slides, some without, some with rock walls, and some with little clubhouses attached - though most ALL of them have swings. :) Some are made of wood and some are plastic or metal.

Cost: Anywhere from a couple of hundred dollars to a thousand or more (depending on the size, quality, and type)

One one hand: It would be so nice to have a swing set in the backyard - hours of free entertainment! Send the kids out there and let them play. Plus, it's a great place for play-dates in the convenience of your own backyard - invite your mom friends over and watch the kids play while you chat.

On the other hand: There are parks EVERYWHERE - there is probably a park less than a 5 minute walk from your house, so do you really NEED one? Also - they can be dangerous. When there is a swing set in the backyard, mom doesn't always watch the kids play and injuries can be the result. In addition to this, with lots of time on their hands and a playground set they use all the time, children can come up with some pretty ingenious ways to play on their own swing set - again, resulting in injuries.

Now, cast your vote! Is it waste or want? Don't forget to tell us why, and if you have one - what type is it and do you like it?


Lisa said...

I view these as a luxury, not really a need. I say IF you can afford one, you have the space and you want one then go for it.

You definitely don't need one to entertain kids. But, they certainly can be fun!

Laura said...

I would certainly count this as a want, not a need, but I do think it's nice to have something out there for entertainment purposes.

We have a playhouse (it was on the property when we bought our house) and a playhouse-sized Fisher Price castle that has a slide. It's nice to have those out there because they do keep my kids entertained for a long time. I like to know they can play there and are then less liking to resort to picking flowers, ripping up grass, throwing rocks, etc. I like to channel their imaginations in less destructive paths if I can help it. :)

I don't think I'd go for a whole big swing set, though. Like was said, I don't watch them as closely when I know they are securely contained in my fenced backyard. I don't want to worry as much about them climbing or swinging too high. I also like that we can still go to the park or school playground and it's a fun family adventure. It's nice to have somewhere to go that's a few steps above what we have at home but is still an easy, free trip.

Rebecca said...

Waste. Although I think my husband would love to have one and my in-laws are already talking about building us one once we have a yard to put one don't be too surprised if we do own one someday. :)

I say waste because I think they have too much liability (and same thing goes with trampolines and pools). If a child comes over to your house and plays on your swingset (or trampoline or pool) YOU can be held liable for any injuries that happen even if you didn't even know they were on your property. How scary is that? I think swingsets are way fun but I think the cons outweigh the pros in owning one. And besides, I love making trips to the park and don't mind that I have to walk a bit to get to one.

Tannie Datwyler said...

Want for me. My husband and I talked about it and we decided it would be fun to have one, but we are NOT doing a pool, and most likely will not do a trampoline, so this is one thing fun we'd like to have... but first we have to get a house. :)

Becca brings up a really good point about liability though. I'll have to think on that a bit, but I'm not too worried about it for some reason.

Also - I LOVE going to the park, but sometimes I just can't do it - especially with a baby. Sometimes it would just be easier to send the kids into the back for somewhere fun to play instead of having to load up into the car or strollers.

Heather said...

Want and Have! Now Waste or Want isn't about "needs" right? This is definitely NOT a need. But, it is absolutely wonderful to have. We moved into a house with a wooden swing set included 5 years ago. I have loved it! I don't watch my kids every second, but I try to keep a pretty good eye on them and more often than not, I am outside with them. (I also grew up with a swing set and am well aware of the possibilities for accidents. But, the same thing happens with bikes and I love those, too.)

I guess I'm of the opinion (irresponsible though it may seem) that it's just plain fun and sometimes I need that break for my kids to be able to entertain themselves while being active at the same time. That's not saying I encourage crazy behavior. But the swing set is a wonderful diversion on days when I can't go anywhere because a baby is sleeping inside, dinner is cooking in the oven, or I don't have a car.

Megan said...

Want! We have an older metal swing set that was given to us for free when my brother upgraded their swing set. I love that I can send my son out to the fenced backyard to play. It's not always feasible for us to get to a park and are closet park is actually quite a walk away so its really nice to have a swing set in our backyard.

Ruby in the Rough said...

Want! And I want the one in the picture!

Anything kids do can be dangerous. We can't shield them from everything harmful. These things provide a lot of fun, and I hope we get one before my kids get too old!!

Seth Danks said...

You have an effect on is totally appreciative and full of interest. playground for kids

Swingsets For Outside said...


amprio macdoff said...

I don't think that having swing sets in the backyard can harm kids. Instead of harming, it can help kids for playing with lots of fun.


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