Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Monday made: Bowled over by bottles

We used to have this program in primary school where we could pay a certain amount every month, and receive a packet of milk everyday.  There were two "milkmaids" that were appointed for every class, and they would collect the milk before recess and distribute it to their classmates.  Thursdays were terrible, since we would get banana-flavoured milk (which tasted nothing like bananas or milk), while Fridays were looked forward to, since we would get Vitagen instead of milk.  After slurping down the probiotic drink, we would usually rinse out the bottles and reuse them for various purposes.  They'll be used as containers for stationery, or for holding water for rinsing our brushes during art class.  I also used them to catch and hold tadpoles captured from the drains in the school field.  (I remember I tried bringing them back once as I wanted to give them to my dad when he was sick and in hospital.  My horrified mum made me leave them in the drain outside the school, and we left, me in tears, and the tadpoles still in the Vitagen bottle.)

So anyway, before I get sidetracked further, we've been drinking Vitagen these days, and giving Junior J small sips of the drink since I thought probiotics might be good for him (for those mothers going "tsk" at this, do be assured that we give him the reduced sugar version, and only a bit each time!).  And I've started hoarding those bottles again (much to the hubby's annoyance!)...

... and ended up using them to make toy bowling pins for the little boy.  I've seen those plastic bowling sets being sold at the market, but I've always refrained from buying them since they tend to be poorly made and have sharp bits where the plastic seams are.  I thought those bottles might do as bowling pins, and tested them out with a toy ball... however, it turned out that they are pretty stable and hard to knock down.  BUT!  If you were to stack them up like a pyramid, they'll come tumbling down with a satisfying crash!

So inspired by the classic red stripes on white patterns on the bowling pins, I decorated the bottles using plain white paper, while adding red stripes in varying patterns.  I used a red pen to draw the thin lines, and cut strips of red from construction paper and pasted them on for the thicker lines (you can use wrapping paper too!).

And there you have it... red stripey bowling pins, all ready for a game!

The boy had fun trying to stack them at first...

... and was amused when I showed him how to throw the ball to knock them down!

 He hasn't quite gotten the hang of it yet though!  (It's pretty hard actually!)

Some tips if you want to try this:
1. Use a ball-point pen, and avoid markers and any inks that may smudge.  After all, kids tend to get grimy fingers and you don't want sweaty palms ruining the pins after one game!
2. Stick your decorations onto your base paper first before pasting the paper onto the bottle.  Double-sided tape would probably adhere better than normal glue.  I was lazy, and used glue tape!
3. You can add numbers to the bottles and get your child to line/stack them up by number first before knocking them down!

How do you reuse your Vitagen/Yakult bottles?

Come play at the Childhood 101 We Play link up!


  1. You definitely have great ideas to recycle used items and use them creatively to entertain the young one too:)

  2. Super cute idea! Kids always seem to prefer "recycled" toys over new store-bought one anyway.

  3. Looks fun and easy!

  4. Great idea. My favorite recycable is the paper tube in gift wrap and paper towels. My nephew can always think of a million different things to use this for.

  5. That's a great way to reuse the bottles. Bowling is a fun game for kids. Maybe he can push the ball across the floor so he has better aim?

  6. Hey, I gave you a blog award today! Check it out!

  7. Great idea, kids love knocking things down :)

  8. Thanks everyone! :)

    Planet Pink: Thanks very much for the award! I'm honoured... :)

    CatWay: I'll try your suggestion on pushing the ball... Thanks!

    Joyce: Paper tubes are great! :) I've been saving loads of them, but have yet to use them for now. Any ideas?

  9. You know, of all the things we put in the re-use box instead of the recycle bin, I never think to reuse the plastic ddrink bottles we buy when out and a certain young lady screams at me that she is thirsty. I will have to remember to start putting them aside as she loved bowling when I took her last year. Thanks for the reminder! :)

  10. Amandab: No worries... Plastic bottles are great for play!



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