Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Outside play kitchen

Here are some pictures of our outdoor play kitchen. Built in about 30 minutes total. I used a piece of shelf (just a flat board) that we busted out of a cabinet in our kitchen a while back. It was just hanging out in the garage wood pile begging to be repurposed. I propped one end on the ledge of the fence and screwed down in, and the other end rests on a log.
The chiminea (which we pretend is our oven for cooking food) came from a neighbor's trash. It is perfect for Q's play area.

I put a few screws, nails and cuphooks in the fence to hold items. On the shelf we have things such as salsa-lids (plates), silverware, a piece of broken pot for digging, a cake pan, and a funnel made from cutting the bottom off a coke bottle. Great for funneling sand, dirt, water, or sawdust.

This area was made with a tire filled with sawdust and some tree stumps. You can see the "cupcake pan" where my little chef was baking up a batch of sawdust cupcakes.

I am not a big fan of plastic-ey outdoor toys. I don't like my backyard looking cluttery, with toys strewn all over, so confining Q's play area to the little kitchen area is a simple way to keep her work together. Of course we wander all over the yard during play, but keep her work in the small kitchen when time to clean up. I also feel like these simple, natural materials really lend themselves to pretend/imaginary play. I have witnessed this every time we're outside together! She also gets great exercise climbing on her logs, walking on her balance beam, and running around from place to place.
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