If you have been following my blog for any matter of months, you have probably picked up on the fact that my child tends to obsess over things. When he was a teeny tiny baby, he loved this little turquoise owl that Lauren got him. It hung on the handle of his carrier and he’d stare at it like it was his BFF.
Around 9 month, he developed a love for ducks. His collection of rubber ducks is pretty darn impressive. He held on to his duck obsession for a long time. In fact, we were able to use that as his 2nd birthday party theme. Every now and then, he’ll still get them out to play with or have conversations with.
We’ve now moved on to the train obsession. He plays with his trains ALL DAY. And when he’s not playing with his trains, he makes other objects into trains or train tracks. I don’t mind it, I love seeing his imagination at play. But when he shows interest in other things, I like to explore that with him. Because I think we all know that there is a vast world out there that doesn’t always involved trains.
Lately Jansen has shown an interest in mail. He loves to watch the mailman walk by. He loves to yell at Rookie for tearing the mail. He knows where the post office is and loves to talk about the mailboxes in there. I’d seen little mailboxes on Pinterest and I thought they were cute. I thought that would be a fun thing to have in his big boy room, but then I changed my mind. We had several big boxes in our house from recent diapers.com and soap.com purchases, so I figured I’d put those to use and make a big blue post office box.
Sorry that image is pretty terrible. I only use my phone to take pictures.
I basically browsed Pinterest to see what other people did, and then I created my own. I was able to build it during Jansen’s nap time on Friday, so it couldn’t have taken me more than about 2 hours. I wasn’t very focused on beauty, so you can see a lot of tape, shipping labels, and rough edges. He doesn’t care. He thinks its the bee’s knees.
The basic instructions are above, and I think you can pretty much figure it out based on the photo. But here are some tips:
I said “remove all unnecessary flaps” because I didn’t know how to word it in a way that wouldn’t fill up the entire instruction box. Basically I turned the box on the side and removed the part that was going to be the top of the mailbox. I also removed two of the flaps from the bottom. I suppose you could cut the entire bottom off as well, but I thought it would make the box a bit sturdier, so I only cut two of the flaps off. I used those for handles and triangles.
I used a completely different box for the curved top. That was probably the hardest part. Turn it upside down and use your hand to help curve it. You basically have to break the corrugated cardboard so it curves, but doesn’t crease. Play with it for a while and be patient. I used the pinky side edge of my hand to kind of karate chop it.
Once I had the curved part perfect and taped onto the top of the box, I laid it down and put it on top of another piece of cardboard. I traced the curve onto the cardboard to get the right size.
I wasn’t really fancy with the tape. I just taped it together using clear packing tape and didn’t really think much about making it pretty. It worked. He’s two and a half.
I know that post office boxes don’t have little cubbies on the side, but I thought it would be a good addition. Every time I’m in the room without Jansen, I gather his mail and put it in the cubby. He walks in and gets so excited that he has stuff to mail! Then he’ll bend down and open the bottom door, take it out, refill the cubby, and mail it all again. Over and over.
I thought the mailbox was cool on Friday but on Saturday I decided it HAD to be blue. I went to Hobby Lobby and got two cans of spray paint. I was concerned about it after the first coat. It looked like trash and I was sad that I had ruined it! But I went over it again and again and it turned out great!!
I hope you like it. Although it doesn’t really matter if you do or don’t, what matters is that Jansen does. I’m pleased as punch that he likes it as much as I thought he would.