During their visit, Amber (my sister) wanted to help out with the baby's room. I gave her options of 3 different projects in varying degrees of difficulty. She decided that the hardest project was up her alley. So while I played with the girls, she went to work stripping the varnish off or the baby changing table she donated to us. (I'm guessing she regretted ever offering to give us that changer - ha!).
The project itself wasn't that bad, but she had a time constraint of a day and a half to get it completed. Because the changing table is so big & heavy, it wasn't possible to take it downstairs/outside to sand off the finish. Instead, she used a chemical stripper that worked very well, but was very potent (which is why she chose this project to do, so that I could have the changing table I wanted but couldn't do myself). I felt bad that I just got to play with her kids all day while she worked, but I'm guessing she didn't mind to much. She worked up until the time they had to leave and was able to get the varnish off of everything!
(Amber was smiling at this point because she hadn't begun yet. She had to paint the chemical on, let it set a little bit, then she had to take a scraper and scrape all the varnish off. It came off pretty easy in some parts, but some areas required a little more arm strength and several coats of the chemical.)
We did manage to pack our time with more than just dolls and varnish stripping. We fulfilled the little girls' wish of school shopping as well as playing a couple different board games - Clue & Life. We all played Life together (Steve opted out - haha). Clue on the other hand was just me and the girls while Amber worked. While playing Clue, I thought I had it all figured out, made my prediction which ended up being wrong! Both girls had lied to me about not having evidence that they definitely had. Haha, oh well. It's just a game right?
And last but not least, one day we pulled out the slip'n'slide! Every year, it gets used at least once (we're actually on our 2nd slip'n'slide) and it usually ends up with someone breaking the rules of play and sitting out while the others play. However, this time, all 3 girls played on it together correctly! I was impressed by their imagination when they went from just sliding on it, to pretending they were in a surfing competition. While they played, I worked on trimming some bushes while Amber continued to strip the finish on the drawers & doors.
(Amber still working on stripping the finish - haha!)
(The girls all playing together on the slip'n'slide. I thought it was too cold outside to play on it, but they loved it. Although, little Gabbie got cold after about 20 minutes and sat and watched mommy work while huddled under a towel.)
(Racing on the slip'n'slide! This slide was definitely worth the extra $10 for 2 lanes & "boogie boards". Our first slip'n'slide was just a single lane and lasted us 2 years in TN. I didn't take care of it well and decided it wasn't worth taking in the move. So we upgraded to this beauty last summer. Well worth it!)
We had a great time and look forward to their next visit! And a big THANK YOU to Amber for all her hard work. She left the dresser in a raw state, leaving me to paint it all white. You know I love to paint and didn't mind the task left before me :).