Sand and Water table

Today folks I bring you the DIY Sand Table. We’ve had this old sandbox gathering mold and looked disgusting from just collecting rainwater and everything else. Personally, I hate everything SAND. I feel it gets everywhere and is just impossible to clean. I find it very messy. BUT, kids love it. Of course, they do! We’ve been telling them not to play with this old thing but, they kept sneak playing with it causing more mess. Not to mention, I didn’t think it was safe to play with the nasty old sand. Kids, they never listen! So, what did WE do? We promised them if they stopped playing with this disgusting sandbox we’ll build them a nice sand and water table. Folks…we had a compromise! They listened and we decided to build. We were all happy 😀 (read – I was happy).

Old sandbox with cracked/taped lid. I will spare you from how disgusting it is inside.

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Thus began the research for the plan – how to build a sand and water table. There are tons of online DIY posts on it. I did the research, talked with M as to what he was envisioning…cuz, honestly, I’ve never played with one. Finally, we both decided on Ana White’s Sand and Water Table. She’s a genius if you are not familiar with her DIY work. We just followed her plan.

The only thing we did different was we used 2×4 wood instead of the 1×3 she used. Mainly because that’s what we had. We did buy some more 2×4 as we ran out but, it was cheap. It was a pretty inexpensive table to make. I had some Sherwin William exterior paint left over that I used on the frame.

I bought two 40 quart clear bins ($7 each marked down) instead of 28-quart bins (as shown in the original plan) from Home Depot. I got the bigger bins at a marked down price because they ran out of lids for all the 28 quart bins. Can you believe that? Who buys all the lids and leaves the bins? Anyhow, they could not find me any lids for the smaller bins so, the associate apologized and said he can give me the 40 quart bins for the price of 28 quart. While it was a great deal we had to think about it cuz we had already planned out the table. Thankfully, M had not cut the wood and he adjusted the plan to the bigger bins. M also build a towel holder for the kids to use, if needed (this was my idea). We also added one 2×4 middle support beam to go under the bins as the bins are a bit larger and we wanted it to be extra secure as water and sand does get heavy.

So, here she is….Now, we just need some water and disgusting sand. We will be using the lids to close the bins when not in use. Yes, they do snap on the bins while on the table.

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From drab to fab…Outdoor planter bench

I recently finished upcycling my old planter bench. I had bought this maybe couple years ago? It had been sitting outside in the sun, snow, ice storm…what have you, without being taken care of. Last couple years, we’ve had some rough winter storms and this poor bench had started to look awful and gross. Then came the decision whether to chuck it or restore it (as you can see in the picture below)? There was some wood cracking going on as well. I told M that I’ll try to restore it and see how it goes. Thus, began the upcycling of this sorry looking bench.

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I cleaned and sanded down the bench as much as I could without causing further damage. I also used some wood glue to fill in the cracks and made sure it wouldn’t break down during my restoration process. I’ve never used wood glue before so the process was messy for me. Sanded it again after the glue dried to smooth the surface. Let it sit overnight. I had some leftover paint but, I was thinking of giving it a two tone effect. I wanted it to “pop” as it was going to sit between bunch of green trees. I decided to go with a blue/yellow theme mainly cuz of the sun pic in there. I already had blue paint so I just needed some yellow paint. I got a small sample can of outdoor yellow paint from Home depot which cost me like $3? M took the bench apart for me to paint. I used 1 coat of all-purpose white primer. Then, I did couple of coats of paint using a foam brush (cuz they are cheap and I can just throw them away). Finally, I finished it off with the Rustoleum clear coat in glossy finish to seal the paint and protect it from harsh weather. I love that stuff.

Here’s the bench in all it’s glory. I think it came out pretty good (relatively speaking). For fun, I decided to paint the eyes and noses of the creatures in black except the sun, for which, I used orange :D. Why not? It took me little over a week (I think) from start to finish. The only reason it took me so long is that it is my hobby and I only get little time during weekdays to dedicate to stuff like this.

Now, I just need some pretty plants…maybe, jasmine or mini roses? Or Magnolia? What do you think?

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