Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Playing House with Pikachu

Tater was all fired up for a project this weekend. Saturday morning, right after his crazy-early basketball game, he got out our big books-o-crafts and flipped through them looking for a good idea.

After a number of false starts that required materials we do not have (note to self, get some wooden beads, and be on the lookout for berries in those retro plastic baskets)...he came up with a dollhouse made of tissue boxes.

Of course, no tissue boxes. But we did a quick scavenge, found some empty shoe boxes, and were ready to roll!

Sprout and Tater consulted on the appropriate layout (including a raised deck, which required some more advanced "engineering" than I was counting on). Then we broke out the big roll of packing tape and some scissors.

After lining up the "rooms" according to their plan, we figured out where to put doors and cut though both boxes to make gaps. Then we (I) liberally applied packing tape to hold everything together.

For the "deck" we used the lid of one of the boxes and made some cardboard supports under the suspended edge. And lots more tape.

After the shell of the house was together, it was time to decorate. Rugs were subcontracted to me. I made them with construction paper cut to different shapes (advanced ones like ovals and rectangles) and then colored them with rug-like designs using markers. I even did a fringe on one!

Tater mulled over some ideas for furniture (some of which required empty spools of thread - does anyone actually have those??) and finally settled on Lego.

I think this is one of the few times that the kids have built anything out of Lego (besides a tall tower one block wide) without explicit instructions. I feared they were totally ruined for free-form Lego-ing by their collection of Star Wars sets, but they really rose to the occasion.

They spent quite some time building things - bunk beds, a big screen TV, a big box for all the money (!), sofas, chairs, an airplane and boat. They even did some steps over the walls to the deck, which I thought were quite brilliant.
A helipad was added later to house all of the vehicles.

And then Pikachu and a small red bear moved in. It's hard to make them out, but they are down there hanging out in the bed together (right next to the big box-o-money).

I was pretty impressed that the kids basically came up with this on their own and worked on/played with it for hours on Saturday.

Maybe they are not completely TV/Wii addicted after all!

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