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Leave as much open space in the room as possible. Kids often mistake the house for a playground. They tumble, wrestle, roll and bounce without regard to your antique console table or the 100-year-old vase passed down from your great-great grandmother. If they have a space of their own to do as they wish, your furniture in other parts of the house will stand a chance at longevity.
Once children hit preschool age, they transform into a baby Picasso and produce artwork at the speed of lighting. Instead of storing their masterpieces in a folder, display the art in their room. Change out pictures as you see fit to keep the gallery updated.