$27 Sand and Water Play Area

There’s not really much to this, but I thought I’d share the idea in case someone was as anxious to find something to do with their kids this week as I have been!

$27 Sand and Water Play Area

We have a screened-in porch at the back of our house, right out the dining room door. It’s a popular place for the kids to run and play (I like it because I can let Tommy and Teddy out without much supervision) and it’s a nice shaded place to sit when the sun is as hot as it’s been this month. Recently it’s even been hot enough that the kids didn’t really want to go out, and I remembered something I used to do in Japan. You see, our Japanese kitchen sink was huge but didn’t have a plug in it, so I bought a big plastic basin to wash dishes in. I used to let the boys take the basin out to the porch and fill it with water, where they would splash and play “sink or float” with their toys, and sail paper boats, and be happy.

Sigh. It seems like not that long ago that I was worrying about Max and Charlie going out without supervision, doesn’t it?

Anyway, since we don’t have access to a beach or even a nearby sandbox here, I decided to add that to the equation. I bought a large, sturdy, shallow bucket to hold the sand (about $10), two smaller buckets to hold the water ($5 each, so $10 together), and three .5 cu ft bags of sand at just over $3 apiece ($10). However, when I poured the sand out of the bags, it really fluffed up and we didn’t have room to add the third bag.

Tada! Sand and water play!

They're still cute.

Please note the setup can be moved around to allow access from multiple sides. (I do have four kids, after all.) You could pull the sand away from the wall and have four kids there, and two kids at each water bucket, actually. Best of all, our porch (which is on the second story) is just over some bare dirt, so who cares if water or sand spills down there?

They still like the boats, too.

And they can still sail paper boats and be happy.

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