Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Liam's Awesome Birthday Present

Yesterday was Liam's 7th birthday.  Wow.  Let me just sit here for a moment with that.  Ok.  Still.  Wow.

Gift giving occasions are getting harder and harder with him.  After seven years of giving gifts to a child who has never developmentally progressed beyond 4 to 6 months, we've pretty much gone though everything he might like at the toy store.

Because I am maxed out on stuffed animals and we have EVERY Disney/Pixar movie every produced, it is time to take things into my own hands.

When the boys were babies I found one of these Sesame Street Infant Gyms at a yard sale for 50 cents.

 Matty loved it to death.  No, really he did.  As he got bigger he tore that sucker A-P-A-R-T.  I was sad when I finally couldn't fix it with hot glue and duct tape.

So, I thought about getting Liam a new gym.  Now, I don't really care that I have to shop for my 7 year old in the infant department, but all of the baby gyms were just that...for babies.  Liam is not a baby.  He's a big boy and I decided that a pastel Winnie-the-Pooh baby gym is not okay.

I thought about it and thought about it and figured it out and bought all the pieces and then brought them back because they were all wrong.  (I was making it WAY too difficult).

I started with a length of 1" PVC.  This was about $5.00.

I decided I wanted the gym to be two feet tall and two feet across.  So I cut three pieces of PVC at that length and four pieces for the feet at about twelve inches each.   I used a hack saw and it cut pretty easily and also messily.  I would suggest doing this outside next time.

I attached these O rings to the top bar.  They were $1.00. To do it, pound a nail in with the heel of a boot.  When that doesn't work, heat up the nail with a lighter to try to get it in easier.  Then burn your stupid self.  After that go get the drill and make four small starter holes.  It's amazing how easy they go in after that.

Then I used two 90 degree elbows (sold right across from the PVC at Home Depot.  I WISH someone had told ME that-duh) to attach my three-two foot sections.

I attached the legs with a T thingy.  What are those called?  Hooker onners, attatchers?  Whatever.  All of these "whatever they are calleds" came to about $5.00.

Well I thought I had more pictures to show how I hooked them all together.  But you probably get the idea.  I guess I got too excited.  Anyway.  After I put it together, I covered it with decorative flaming duct tape ($4.00).  NO PASTELS.

I hooked some clips ($4.00 for all four) and with a jump rope from the Dollar Store and a few toys (yes that is a cat jingle ball-he likes jingly things-don't judge :o)  (Toys=$5.00)  We can switch the toys out when he gets bored or I get tired of hearing the jingly ball.

Here it is!  Awesome.

So for less than $20.00 and about an hour's worth of my time, I'm pretty happy with it.  Now let's see how long it takes his brother to destroy it.  Put me in for twenty bucks on less than a month.


Edited to add:  It took him less than 15 minutes.  No worries, some glue and we're back in business.  I think Matty has a career as a product tester though.


  1. That. Is. Awesome.

    And yes. 15 minutes? You may have found him a career.