Thinking (and playing) outside the box

By Jayson Jacoby / The Baker City Herald

A Different Sort Of Playhouse

By Lisa Britton

For the Baker City Herald

With just a few simple items - cardboard boxes and spray paint - Brenda Goshorn and her daughter, Heather, have created a playhouse to delight any youngster.

Now she just has to wait until her granddaughters come to visit.

"It makes me anxious for them to get here," Brenda said.

When her newest granddaughter was born in Washington, Brenda and Heather went to visit. While there, Heather built a quick box house with her 2-year-old niece.

After returning home, Brenda got a new washer - and with it a very sturdy cardboard box.

"We worked on it for two or three days," Brenda said. "She (Heather) worked inside and I worked on the outside."

The playhouse is made of three separate boxes - a big one that stands about 4 feet tall has the door, and then a smaller box makes a tunnel to a middle-sized box.

The Goshorns cut windows into the big boxes, then spray-painted them brown. Using acrylic paint, Brenda painted grass and flowers around the bottom and shutters at the end edge of the windows.

Contact paper and wall stickers in a jungle theme - all purchased from The Dollar Tree - provide a cheery, light interior.

On the top, they cut the flaps to make a peaked roof, then glued on strips of cardboard made to look like shingles with brown textured spray paint.

A chimney - painted red with white lines for bricks - finishes the top.

Brenda's granddaughters haven't seen it yet, but she's told them about it over Skype, a program that allows real-time, face-to-face conversation over the computer.

"We said 'do you want to see inside?' and she said 'peas?'" she says of her 18-month-old granddaughter.

As for the tendency of cardboard to tear or crumple, Brenda's not worried.

"It's just a cardboard box. You can do another one bigger and better," she said.

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The Baker City Herald
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