I’ve put together the ultimate sandbox travel kit and I’m super excited to share it with you, especially since it only cost me $3!
If your kids are anything like mine they love to play in the sand. Castles, moats, digging for treasure, and construction sites are some of our favorites.
The weak link in sand play never seems to be the kids’ imaginations, but rather the equipment.
The large multipacks of sand toys that come with a pail, shovel, truck, and various sand molds are definitely eye catching – both on the store shelf and when you’re picking up the broken pieces from the sandbox after the second use.
They just don’t last – and if you’ve ever tried to dig in semi wet sand with those puny shovels you know how frustrating it can be when they bend in half.
The Sandbox All-Star
The all-star of this kit comes from the dollar spot at Target. Just after Valentine’s Day when the Easter decorations arrive they have a three pack of garden tools for $3. It includes two different shovels and a rake – all kid sized and brightly colored.
The best part is the blades are made of metal and the handles are wood, much more durable than the typical plastic ones – we’re going on three years of use and they still function amazingly!
The pails that come in the multipacks work decently for awhile. The problem I’ve found is that by the time you fill them full with sand the handles are not capable of lifting the entire bucket without popping off. Instead of traditional buckets I’ve switched to using old yogurt containers for sand play.
Why re-use yogurt containers instead of buying purpose built sand pails:
- They’re free if you’re reusing them
- They come with a lid
- When they break you won’t be upset about having to replace them; and unless they are stepped on they last a surprisingly long time
- They nest within each other so packing them up is very compact
- It’s simple to have 3-4 in your kit so there are plenty of containers to share around
- Their size – even the smallest of kids on the playground seem capable of picking them up full
I feel that a storage bag of some sort is essential to keep the kit together and the residual sand contained within my car.
I’ve been using an old drawstring bag I made in 6th grade home economics. If I were to lose this bag I’d use one of the drawstring backpacks you often get as freebies from information booths. They’re the perfect size to store your nested containers with the shovels tucked inside and maybe a ball or toy truck too!
Perfect to keep in your car
Put these three pieces together and keep it in the trunk of your car – you’ll thank me the next time you’re at the sandbox watching everyone else’s shovels snap in half.
Plus, I challenge you to find a better shovel, sized for kids, that only costs $1!
Grab’em while they last!
The downfall? These tools only show up once a year around March – so when you see’em, grab’em!