fireplace treatments

We live in an apartment that has a fireplace, but doesn't work & was just hazardous to our son.
Once he started crawling around we had to do something to keep him out of it.

We ended up coming up with something fun, but as I was searching I found some great decorative ideas. This one is hard to see, but I love the fireplace in the dinning room for one. Two, the long, smaller sized logs give it a different, creative look, rather than just normal logs.

Any decorative fillers, like candles or anything to give it different heights & dimensions would look great.
This one is just boring old logs, but everything else looks beautiful!
I love this one. My friend did this with her fireplace, and we almost did it to ours. This is an easy, inexpensive filler. And you really don't need to fill the logs all the way into the back of the fireplace. You could use something like a card board box and do shorter logs in the front.

I love what my friend did in their apartment. They painted the bricks around the fireplace white & have a flat screen TV on the wall above. The coolest part is the logs are actually a door to where they keep their electronics like dvd player & everything else.

Here's what we came up with for ours.
I have to say, the husband came up with the main idea, but after looking at several toys we combined all our ideas and threw it into one.

This is what it looked like from the back, what was inside the fireplace.

Ta da! Here is the front.
We decided that we wanted ours to be more of a kid-friendly toy, rather than just a decorative piece, since we're only in this apartment temporarily.
Balls go in & out through the tubes, there is a mirror behind the monkey's face, the monkey's belly & the alligator's mouth are a bean bag toss, with the extra blocks (you can get a pack of 50 at Walmart for $10.00!) they go in the square holes and fall out the door below & of course the blocks spin around.
Kids love it, and it's great for all different ages.

These are just a few fun ideas!

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