A few weeks ago I took Lilly to a children’s museum near my parents’ house that has an elaborate water activity center for toddlers. Sprayers, waterfalls, scoops and watermills kept her entertained for nearly an hour.It was immediately determined that we needed to replicate the setup at home as best we could. At first, I considered purchasing a prefab water activity table. There are plenty on the market ranging in price from $25 to nearly $100. Some have elaboate sprinklers built in and all sorts of accessories. Very cool but the sturdy ones were pricey and they all took up so much room.
We only have a one car garage and our basement is partially finished so storage space is precious. I cringed at the idea of buying yet another hulking, garish plastic toy to step over.
So then I mulled a DIY option. There are plenty of Pinterest suggestions for building custom tables and boxes. Again that seemed a bit too permanent (and complicated).
Finally I decided on the simplest solution of all: I placed a shallow plastic storage container between two patio chairs, positioning the chair seats to act like table legs at each end of the box. Then I filled the storage tub half full of water and added some small cups, a silicone funnel, a water mill and a few other sand toys I found at the Dollar Store.
The result: a VERY happy, highly entertained toddler. She’ll literally stand here splashing happily for over 30 min or longer. Sometimes I play along, other times I can weed the flower beds nearby or take a phone call (always while fully supervising of course).
When we’re done playing I dump the water, dry the toys and toss them in the box and seal it with the lid. It slides easily into a small spot in our crawl space until next time.
Best five bucks I’ve spent so far this summer!