Saturday, May 9, 2015

A Playful Playground

A few posts ago I mentioned having been very productive over my Spring vacation.  My big personal project dates back to December, when my city felled several large trees near our home.  It was my birthday. It was sleeting off and on. So, naturally, I borrowed a chain saw and worked with my family to haul home my treasures.

I am sure I looked ridiculous rolling two enormous hollow logs down the sidewalk, but I had a vision, and it involved tunnels. Unfortunately, that vision had to wait all winter for the ground to thaw to come to fruition. 

A little playground!
It was a serendipitous day, the Friday of my April vacation.  My kids and I had no plans for the day, a local tree company had a truck around corner full of wood chips they were willing to drop off right then when I called, and the ground was warm. 

Balance beam
 So, with lots of shoveling, cutting, raking, and around seventy wheelbarrows full of wood chips, I created a playground for my kids.

Steps, tunnels, and teeter-totter
Being a person who loves color, I couldn't help but add other touches that made the playground a little more fun aesthetically.

Bumblebee v. ladybug tic-tac-toe

Using wood carving tools, I removed enough space from this log internally to store all of the game pieces, plus a few extra.  The bugs are little pieces of painted driftwood.  There are two little seats for the players, and the game is in the shade of a large lilac.

Instant flower planter
Adding garden compost + soil to a couple hollow log slices made instant planters for flowers.

Teeter-totter physics
My son spent quite a while the first day checking to see where he could stand perfectly in balance with varying numbers of bricks. Because for this boy, life is a science experiment waiting to happen.

Isn't that little yellow slide sort of, well, ugly bright compared to the rest of the space? The kids love it, so to integrate it a little better I added lots more color.

Painted teeter totter + painted steps + a little colorful birdhouse really brightened things up.  

And just today, I finally put in some flowers.

So there it is, one of the loveliest products of my time off. 
Arguably, however, the loveliest product of all is seeing the kids playing on it. 
(They are currently working on figuring out how to bike over the teeter-totter.  Wish me luck.)

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