As it is International Mud Day on June 29th I thought it was a great opportunity to share with you Adam’s Mud Kitchen.
Over the Easter holidays, with Chris off work, I decided to create a Mud Kitchen in a corner of our back garden. I wanted the Mud Kitchen to be made as cheaply as possible and provide a space for Adam to develop open ended play activities. I was inspired by Muddy Faces and realised the Mud Kitchen could be made from recycled materials.
We first needed a mud area. Chris dug up the grass in the corner of our garden and the grass was taken to Nana and Grandad’s. We created a Mud Kitchen table by using 6 breeze blocks that had been left in the garden when we moved in and placed a plank of wood on top from Grandad’s wood shed. To store the Mud Kitchen utensils Chris screwed hooks along the fence which were a perfect height for Adam.
I bought the kitchen utensils in Tesco sale for 12p each and the fish chopping board, plates and camping saucepans all came from PoundLand. Adam fell in love with his Mud Kitchen straight away. Whenever he is in the garden he uses the Mud Kitchen for a variety of activities – even eating snack!
The only problem was that the table was so large that there wasnt much mud for Adam to play in. Cue a Mud Kitchen extension. This project was meant to be a half an hour job one hot morning. However, I wanted to investigate why one area of the garden (near the Mud Kitchen) appeared to keep sinking. With a little digging I unearthed and old cesspit that hadn’t been filled in correctly. Filling in the cesspit delayed our planned extension but at least we don’t have to worry about the dip in the garden now.
I placed old bricks along the edge of the Mud Kitchen to stop the sides from falling in. I used white paint to create road markings for Adam to play with his cars.
As it is now summertime the mud around the Mud Kitchen is usually very dry so I wanted a way that Adam could add water to the mud without the need of a hose pipe. I found a water container in PoundLand that is perfect for storing water and only releases a small amount of water at a time. Additional resources that have been added to the Mud Kitchen include plates which are stacked on two recycled plate storage device, Adam’s wheelbarrow, duck watering can and various tools from his sand pit and I also found a small camping stool which is a perfect height for Adam from PoundLand.
All that was needed was an ‘Adam’s Mud Kitchen’ sign. I looked around for a printed sign but as I wanted it to go across the fence they were all too expensive. I opted to make my own sign using Cuprinol Garden Shades paint. Drawing letters onto uneven fence panels was difficult and painting certainly isn’t my strong point but the sample pots of paint were cheaper than a printed sign. It is also great for Adam’s letter recognition.
The play possibilities are endless with our Mud Kitchen and I can imagine the fun we will have over the coming years.
Costings of the equipment bought especially for the Mud Kitchen:
Kitchen utensils – Total cost of kitchen equipment – £5.84
Other equipment – Water container £1,
Water container and small stool – £2
Cuprinol Garden Shades paint sample pots – £6 (but there is plenty left for other projects)
Total cost = £14.84
Adam was 2 years and 1 month old.