Our Family Unit



Who doesn’t want to pretend they are King for a day?  While perusing SouleMama’s book The Creative Family a while back (the idea for Kade’s Art Book came from the same book) , she talked about developing a creative and imaginative spirit in her kids.  One of the ways she suggested doing this was by playing dress-up and letting kids perform, be it on stage (a.k.a the coffee table), local amphitheater (a.k.a. backyard) or in their bedroom.  That got me thinking about my childhood…my mom always seemed to have a well stocked costume trunk.  There were jewels and wigs and uniforms and dresses from the 40′s, even an old leopard loin cloth type thing.  (I remember one time my brother dressed as Tarzan, I was Jane, and we made my best friend dress up as Jane’s dad – it was either that or a gorilla – we thought we were being nice!) I decided this was definitely something I wanted my kids to remember so for the last 8 months or so, I’ve been searching thrift stores, costume shops, garage sales and my mom’s old costume trunk for some fun props.  I even raided Kyle’s and my closet for old clothes I could modify into something fun (such as his royal robe above).

I also needed a trunk.  And after complaining to my mom that I couldn’t find anything reasonable at the local flea market, she reminded me that they still had the old toy chest my siblings and I used to use.  So last Thanksgiving, my parents brought it out and I finally got around to refinishing it.  Let’s just say as kids, we weren’t exactly delicate in our play.  It had some pretty heavy duty dings and scratches, but my favorite part was that the bottom was lined with a newspaper from 1983.

I sanded it down and then restained it.  Then Kyle graciously defted it for me, as inhaling the fumes while pregnant is a no-no.

I found the perfect wall decal on Etsy and modified it just a bit so it wouldn’t be too girly.

At first, I was going to paint the inside, but then my sister reminded me that we used to line old trunks with fabric and maybe that would be better for preventing splinters in tiny fingers and snags in lacy frills.  So I found some fun fabric used spray adhesive to attach it.

Now it was time for the fun – filling it with all the goodies, just in time for Birthday #2.  He can now be a doctor, construction worker, baseball player, pirate, cowboy, fireman, soldier and more.  There’s even a few things in there for baby sister when she’s ready to play along.


  • Comment by Jacob — June 15, 2010 @ 1:14 PM

    My toy chest!! My childhood is being shipped to California one piece at a time just because I don’t have any kids!

  • Comment by Megan — June 15, 2010 @ 6:46 PM

    you’re a step ahead of me bro – you’ve got a spouse. Although I am glad that my fabric reminder worked out even if it did take away part of your childhood memories (i only remember a large green and black trunk… not this one at all)

  • Comment by student scholarships — June 20, 2010 @ 6:38 AM

    nice post. thanks.

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