Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sprout's 'new' playground

Something I've been trying to do more lately is to buy used, rather than new. Not only does this save money, but it's greener too. Selling off old toys or clothes keeps them in circulation & out of the landfill. I also love how things you buy off Craigslist have a bit of a history. For example: Sprout's newest toy originally lived in North Vancouver before being sold on Craigslist & carted to Richmond tied to the roof of a Honda CRV. Two different families of children climbed all over it & slid down its slide over the past few years. Here's where we picked up the story.

The planets align...

$60! I couldn't resist...
Saturday I woke up & perused the results on my Android phone's Craigslist app. Someone was selling a Little Tikes cube! I love these things, but the company's stopped making them, so they're not easy to find. I responded immediately, noting that the ad had already been up an hour & hoping I'd get a response. A few hours later, I heard back by email--I was the first reply of many. So after getting the address I looked for a Modo truck to book. Ding! The nearest one was available at 5pm! Booked it, arranged for my bestie Kirsten to come along & help with the heavy lifting (okay, light lifting--the thing is hollow plastic), then we drove out to Steveston to pick it up.

Not enough time in the day

Oli agreed to stay home with the under two set--Sprout & K's son Aiden--so Kirsten & I had a baby-free outing. I decided to make the trip worth it & added a visit to Ikea in there too. Perhaps for the first time ever, I only came home with food (Oliver's list of things he missed out on getting when we got through too late to get them last time) & no furniture at all. We got home at 8:30 & & started scrubbing the slightly dirt-encrusted cube, which involved a lot of trying to convince the babies not to play in the bucket of water or suck on the cleaning rags or scrub brushes--ew! The light faded, then we had to rely on waving our arms to trigger the various security lights in the neighbourhood, but still we had no luck putting the cube together. The thing is only six pieces--how hard could it be, right? Well, we gave up when it was getting past bedtime for babies, leaving the pieces all over the lawn.

The interwebz to the rescue!

Before going to bed, I went to the Little Tikes website & found the instructions for the cube, which I now know is called the 'Classic Activity Gym'. They're a single page--not really that complicated--but if you get one piece backward or put them together in the wrong order, you're screwed.

A soggy but happy ending

Having memorized the instructions, this morning I was all ready to put the thing together... but it was raining. I thought I'd try waiting it out, as it seemed like a fairly light shower. Then it started to rain more heavily. Sigh. This is Vancouver, after all. If you don't go outside when it rains, you don't go outside much. So we all got into our rain gear (I finally got to wear my new leopard print gumboots!) & went into the back yard.

After much hammering & a few muttered expletives, the cube was built: four sides, platform, slide & all. Sprout was thrilled & went inside immediately. He's still too little to understand that you can climb up the sides to get to the platform, so we added a milk crate in there for him to climb up. Since it was still pouring & his muddy buddy was soaked too, he went down the slide like greased lighting. He's going to get a lot of fun out of this thing.

Photographic evidence:


  1. That look on his face can only be described as gleeful.

  2. do you still have this? i would be glad to make buy it if you’d like to sell it again


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