9.16.2008

HOW TO BUILD YOUR OWN WATER TABLE FOR $14


I was recently at a friend's house and fell in love with her water table. I was psyched to go home and buy one until I saw the price - $309! Ouch! Or $70 for the cheap ones! Since I have an unofficial policy of only buying used toys for my children, I figured that we would just have to do an El Cheapo version. Plus, the concept of the table isn't exactly rocket science.

Erik and I went to Home Depot and purchased wood ($9) and a black plastic concrete mixing tub ($5).




Meet our $14 version of the $309 table -

Not bad, eh? I actually think ours is better than the $309 real one because the tub can be removed for easy cleaning. If the tub breaks, I'll just go buy another one for $5. Erik also drilled a hole in the wood as a drain. I'll paint it after we move. Isn't my husband the best?

The funniest part about this whole experience is that while Erik was building it outside, I was inside packing. He had taken the stereo outside and was blasting the soundtrack to Mamma Mia! I wonder what the neighbors thought of this man outside building a little table, listening to Meryl Streep at full volume.

Charlie and I thought it was strange -



And then we had a good laugh about it -

It was a good day.

34 comments:

  1. Way to go Eric, that table was impressive (not sure about blasting the Mama Mia though:). Charlie is such a doll, he is growing up so quickly! Glad you had a good day, those are nice every once in a while! Good luck with the move.

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  2. Does Erik want to come to my house and build one too? I bet I have a bigger stereo that he can blast the music with. Tempting isn't it??

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  3. Wow I'm impressed (with Erik). That one even looks more sturdy than the expensive one (and they do break, from personal experience) Erik could make a few more... one for rice, sand etc

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  4. You could build those and sell them on craigslist.

    Very cute idea! I love that George can build us stuff as well!

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  5. Wow!! That's a great Christmas present for all of your nephews!!! I can't believe how good it looks! Does Luke like it? Charlie is soooooooo Cute! Are his eyes green?(Caitlin)

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  6. Oh my gosh, this is so weird....I was just talking about this last night with RIch's step mom (we live with them right now). My kids love to play in the sink and so she mentioned something about one of these, not knowing that they sell them. I love this idea and I'm so excited you have the instructions here on your blog! Thanks! Go EriK, what a great hub/dad!!!
    And Charlie is just soooo adorable!!!!

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  8. I have wanted one of these for the longest time. I wish that Erik would make me one! He could sell them for $30 plus shipping to make tons of profit. It sure beats the $70 or $300+

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  9. Oh that Charlie is sooo cute. You do sound really happy in this post.

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  10. Just like Mr. Rogers had! I always thought that was so cool. We used to just fill up the sink and play, but your version is ingenious (the low cost is part of that ingeniousness).

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  11. Great idea! I think we'll have to borrow it :)

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  12. My siblings and I loved water tables growing up. And, making ridiculously expensive things by hand always seems a better option to me too. By the way, your little Charlie is precious.

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  13. I LOVE those pictures of Char. I can call him Char, right?

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  14. I loved the water/sensory tables when I worked in the preschool! I will have to have Spencer make Ryan one when he is older. Some fun things we put in the table included rice, adding dish soap to the water (so when the kids played it made bubbles and cleaned the toys), beans, shaving cream, and my favorite, cornstarch with just a little water. Some of it gets messy but Luke seems like the kind of kid that would love that stuff!

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  15. Those are some cute pictures of Charlie. I will have to show Troy this post and have him build us a similar table. Don't you love being married to an engineer?

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  16. I'm so proud of my son! He takes after his dad...it's so nice to be married to a handy man!
    Way to go, Erik!

    Hans and I laughed and laughed at Charlies' pictures...so cute!

    Wyatt is here with me...he wants to play with Luke and his water table! Hey Erik...you want to make a few more and I'll buy them from you for Christmas?????

    Love you,
    gramma lassen

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  17. What it must be like to have a handy man as a husband? Let me just imagine for a second. Ok gotta go dig trenches for our sprinklers while my husband sits on the couch. Baby Charlie is just toooooo cute. I love all those faces.

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  18. Ha! That baby of yours is adorable. And I don't say that about just any baby.

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  19. What a great idea! It's so fun to see the newest addition to your family!

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  20. Oh that Charlie is sooo dang cute. I would totally buy a water table if Erik goes into business.

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  21. That table is awesome!!! I can't believe how much they charge sometimes for toys. It is crazy! And I just have to say... Charlie is sooooo CUTE!

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  22. I would like to buy one of these from Erik, too, for an Xmas gift for another cute little boy I know too...

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  23. uh oh- looks like mom just maxed out her Christmas budget! lol

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  24. Holy cow, i love it! Bella loves to play in the dirt and sand in our backyard and the only time she gets to play in water--which she LOVES is in the tub or in the pool....she'll love this! YAY! GO ERIK!!! Hey and that charlie is a stud! :) Good job cristin!

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  25. I just found your site through a google search. I can't wait to make this water table--I don't want to spend the money either and I do think yours looks great! I'm adding this link to my blog at http://notionsandthreads.blogspot.com/
    Thanks for the great idea!

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  26. One more thing--do you happen to know the dimensions? I'm sure I'd mis-measure and the tub wouldn't fit!
    Thanks again.

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  27. Your Charlie made me laugh out loud!
    Melanie@Bella~Mella

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  28. That's such a great idea!
    The pics are fabulous ;-)

    Being married to a handy man is such a blessing!

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  29. This is a GREAT idea! Thanks. I have 3 year old twin boys, and a new water table simply isn't in the budget. Thanks again!

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  30. Oh I forgot to add...Charlie is absolutely adorable!

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  31. Do you have a tutorial? Great idea!!!
    Amy
    Duckguru4u@yahoo.com

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  32. If you built those and added a little bridge of a 2x6 that fits snugly lengthwise across the basin you have a kyoto style knife sharpening bench which you could sell online to japanese knife enthusiasts

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