Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Magdelyn vs. The Pinterest Water Blob

Today I have a "guest post" for you from my good friend Magdelyn. I loved how she wrote this up and knew you all would enjoy it as well.

Magdelyn vs. The Pinterest Water Blob

Oh Pinterest, why do you taunt me so? Why do you make it look perfectly manageable to make a 4 course meal and set up a kids birthday party with horse drawn carriage and re-purpose paint chips into chandeliers and making a ball gown in an afternoon? If you too fall into the Pinterest trap and think you can do all these things, don't be fooled! Every once  in a blue moon, like as often as my resolve to give up soda actually lasts, my attempts at recreating Pinterest finds works;  95 % of the time it doesn't. The following is one such attempt. This is a true account of the events, reader discretion advised.

This has been a blistering summer. Probably because I was 9 months preggo for half of it and had a baby attached to my chest nursing for the rest, but it has felt unmerciful this year. And the monsoon, that usually is my favorite time of year, has kind of stunk. So I have tried to find lots of water activities. Enter the Pinterest water blob. The original idea I saw seemed simple. You buy a big sheet of plastic sheeting( BIG! like 10 feet by 25 feet) fold it in half, seal up the edges and fill with water. You end up with this giant water bed/ water blob thing that the kids can jump and play on. I thought, "Self, that looks like cake. You can make that in an hour and it will entertain the hooligans for hours. Win win". So I ran myself down to the hardware store and bought some plastic sheeting and duct tape already giving myself mental high fives for being the coolest mom ever.

The first Pinterest pin I saw duct taped the edges together. I am not exactly the most coordinated person and knew that I would just end up with a hot mess ball of folded over tape if I attempted that. Then I saw this link that said to make a leak proof blob you could use an iron. AHA! I can iron, I'm not a complete idiot. Plus then we can reuse it. Sold. So I sit down during nap time with my folded in half sheeting and my iron and ironing board laid flat on the floor. I looked at the PLASTIC sheeting and realized plastic and irons don't mix. I looked up the pin again and it said you sandwich the plastic between parchment paper. Parchment paper?? I should have read the instructions better, I don't have that hanging around my house. The only people who do are serious bakers and Martha Stewart. So what do I have? Wax paper. Luckily I only tried to iron a small corner with the wax paper before I quickly remembered wax melts.....seriously I have new baby brain damage.

The whole time, my daughter was sitting on the couch above me peppering me with questions and trying my already frayed patience. So I told her we might have to do it another day and she became distraught.  Hmm... time to McGyver something here. Aha! Paper Towels. So I fold the paper towel in half and put the plastic inside the paper towel sandwich and it works! Eureka! The original directions said to mark a line on the paper and only iron up to that. C'mon, like I am going to be that precise or perfect about something. So our ironed section looks like a drunk sorority sister did it, but at least its working and sealing together. The only problem I had was the paper towels started getting worn after a couple times so I went through A lot of paper towels

exhibit A, only half way done with the thing
Again, my daughter is pelting me with questions. "Is the darn iron working now mom? Why are you doing that mom? How much longer mom?" Right as I was doing the last corner she distracted me and the iron went up on the plastic and melted it a little. SERIOUSLY?? I have spent nearly 2 hours ironing the dang thing and the last corner gets messed up? So I move the paper and iron up and try ironing above it. It works but my paper towel is worn through and when I move it the iron gets it again. 5 minutes later and a few mutterings so the kids didn't here my choice words ("what did you say mommy I can't hear you?")  and I finally have a seal across with no holes.

a hot mess, please note the paper towel ironed to the bottom
So we take it outside and start filling it. Of course my boy has woken up by now and they get super excited and roll all over it while it's still filling. Yes! Success! I McGyvered it and it is awesome. Who needs fancy parchment paper?
"you're the best mom ever"
Shortly after this, I realize that there are puddles collecting on the sides. Hmm.. Isn't the beauty of this project that the water stays in the blob and nobody actually gets wet? I go to inspect and realize there are tiny little pinprick holes by my seals. The only thing I can figure is I moved the paper towel too soon and the plastic got warped and my kids crazy jumping tore it. So I spend the next 20 minutes scrambling around like a fat kid chasing a donut truck duct taping all the little holes. I finally got most of the holes and stopped worrying and watched the kiddos enjoying it instead.
"can we sleep here tonight mom?"

The funniest part was when my parents came over that night and my daughter was so excited to show them the "awesomest thing ever mom made". My dad saw the duct tape and asked what happened. She informed him that "the darn iron didn't darn iron it well enough and it got some darn holes".

I obviously didn't patch all the holes because, much to the kid's dismay, when they went out the next morning to play some more this is what greeted them.
completely flat with duct tape patches
All that heartache and it only lasted one day. I'm glad they loved it so much, but next time I'll fight the allure of the "easiness" of Pinterest and just buy a darn slip n slide...


  1. Ha ha ha, I love the way this is written. I am sorry for the problems with the pin.

    I wonder if the parchment paper does more than act like a barrier for the iron? Maybe that's why the little holes?

  2. Just wet this down and you have a slip and slide!

  3. hey thought i'd add my two cents if anybody was thinking of figuring out how to do this.
    Im an art student and in my 3d design class my professor had us make inflatable houses with plastic sheeting and the idea is very similar. The key is foil and a hair straightener. The foil conducts heat well and acts as a barrier while the hair straightener helps you control the seams better, it applies heat from both sides and it doesnt tear like the excess movement of an iron would. :)

  4. Great catch with the flat iron.! I am not so sure about the foil, it may develop sharp edges and cut the plastic. I wonder if you can buy the foil they use in resturants. You know when they lay a piece down in the dinner take out tray to soak up the grease and keep it from melting the container? They are flat an kind of like the paper towels in size and would be able to be folded. I bet they would hold up great. Ive seen this done and I have not found anyone that has had 3 days out of it. Helpful hints. If you have an old tarp lay that down under it to keep the dried out grass, twigs and those prickly balls from popping holes in it. Also once they have played on it, move it to a different spot so you don't have a dead patch of grass.( Waterslide/ jumpy house still has yard scars.) It will grow back, but no one likes a large yellow spot., What would be super cool is if it could be made with very large bubble wrap! And as far as pinterest goes. Everyone wants to be a Martha Stuart, but reality is there is only one Martha Stuart, who can make anything look like a walk in the park.


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