Building the kids a Lego table

Two weeks ago, I wrote about my son’s love for building Lego sets. My daughter is just now getting interested in the Friends Lego sets. One day in July, Jase said he wanted a Lego table. If you look online at Amazon, they can range from $60 to over $200. And the problem with these tables is they take up a lot of room in my kids’ already toy-filled rooms.

So my husband suggested we build one ourselves. A quick look on Pintrest led me to this website with an easy to make, collapsible Lego table.

It seemed perfect for our needs. The kids would have a Lego table, and it could easily be stored when not in use. We ended up making two of them – one for each kid. We figured that would stop any arguing. Lexie’s is stored under her bed and Jase’s stored in his closet when they aren’t in our living room being played with.

The Joys of Boys blog does a good job of describing the building of this table, but I thought I would let you know a couple of things we experienced and changed.

CIMG1950First off, we bought the 34″ Lifetime folding table that she mentions at Wal-Mart for $34 each. The link provided in the blog goes to Amazon which shows the same table for $70 each.  She also mentions buying a Lego 4 building plate set from Amazon for her table. Since we didn’t particularly like the grey boards, and because it was cheaper, we bought 10″ x 10″ Lego Building Plates in both blue and green. To do 2 tables, we needed 18 of these plates (15 green and 3 blue) for a total of about $90. Total cost for the two tables was about $160.

We started building the tables as a surprise for the kids so that meant doing it after they went to bed. It took us about an hour to unwrap all the Lego plates, cut them, and then use the Liquid Nails to affix them to the table.

CIMG1951To ensure the plates would be in the proper place, we did mark the table with a Sharpie slightly under where they would go. We then applied the Liquid Nails to the tableCIMG1954 and put the plates on, securing them with Lego pieces to make sure they were properly positioned.

CIMG1956Later, we decided that it might have been better to put the Liquid Nails on the actual plates instead of the table because some of our corners were not affixed to the table. To remedy this problem with the corners, we used a toothpick and placed some Gorilla Glue under the corners.

CIMG1955We let the Liquid Nails dry overnight. We placed bottles of water and some 12 packs of soda on top of the table to make sure everything was pressed down and in place.

CIMG1957

 

 

The next morning the kids were surprised and happy to have their new Lego tables. We made them slightly different – putting the water as a river on Jase’s and at the end on Lexie’s, so we could tell them apart.  The kids have had a blast with them and while so far they have mainly stayed built and ready to use, I love the fact that they can be easily folded up and stored out of sight when needed.

My Love/Hate relationship with Lego toys

Many children play with Lego bricks or the Mega Bloks version and Jase is no different. I am not totally a fan of these little plastic pieces. I find them hard to get apart, and they never stay together during normal play. And don’t even get me started on how much it hurts to step on one of these little pieces.

But Jase loves them and has A LOT of them. I think it is great that he sits down and builds them. It is good hand/eye coordination and  he has to be able to follow the directions. He willingly saves up his money to buy new sets and as anyone who knows those sets, they are not cheap. Most of his sets are Lego City or Star Wars, but lately he has been buying some Halo Mega Bloks too.

CIMG1354He likes Legos so much that when his first-grade class was given the assignment of creating a shoe box float, his of course had to have Legos on it. He went with Star Wars and created a battle scene. We used velcro to attach the large piece to our shoe box. And yes, I even glued a piece to a chopstick, so he can have a ship flying over the battle.  It won best Star Wars float.

Of course as any parent of a kid who collects Lego sets, the main concern is what to do with all of them. I know some kids build them and leave them built but here at our house they end up falling apart as they are played with or even worse stepped on. So while some of them are in some sort of built stage, we ended up with a drawer full of pieces, not to mention all the ones I find on the floor – preferably not with my bare feet.

Keeping them in a tub or drawer however left you with no way to find a piece when you need it. I researched many different ways to organize the pieces – from expensive Lego brand holders to simple bins. We decided to use two drawers under Jase’s bed to store them, but they needed to be organized within the drawers.

IMG_1145Jase and I went to Target and found these organizers by Stanley in the hardware section. At $10 a piece this seemed an economical means of storing them. We bought 2 of them and then sorted the pieces. They fit nicely in his drawer, and we still had room to store the built (or partially built) sets.

So now when I find a Lego brick when sweeping (or more likely stepping on with my bare feet), I can put it where it belongs.  Now if I could only find an easy way to pull the tiny bricks apart when he asks for help…