a little beach made by my own two hands in our backyard…
Posted in child's play, handmade June 9th, 2014 by pia


Laly adores the beach. Well, mostly the sand, as she’s still “quite scaredy” of the rolling waves and vastness of the ocean. So I thought it’d be great to build her an all-natural sandpit in our backyard so she could play with sand anytime she likes. Of course I like to set myself some major challenges, and for this project I decided that I wanted to source most materials from our own backyard, and to build the whole pit for FREE. That’s right, not spend one single cent.

Inspired by the idea of living as freely as possible, I signed up to my local freecycle group and after only a few weeks of scanning the incoming offers, I found the sand and the shade cloth to cover the pit. I am loving being part of the freecycle community, it’s been a fantastic way to move things out of my home that are no longer in use, and bring in things that we want.


I dug a hole in a corner of the garden protected by trees for shade.  I found all the rocks outlining the sandpit under and around our house, and moved them all myself with the exception of a giant rock which I enlisted the help of Romain, who kept telling me over and over again “there is no way you can move that rock” and “this is impossible” – he was still saying this while we maneuvered it inch by inch to where I wanted to place it. Within minutes and only a little bit of sweat we had it in position. I couldn’t help myself: “umm, yeah, impossible, did you say?” Oh how I love seeing his dimpled smile appear despite his efforts to hide it. A great example of how nothing is impossible, no matter what anyone tells you! After a few weekends I had finished the sandpit,  just in time for Laly’s birthday party in February.


This sandpit is one of my proudest home projects, for three reasons: I built it myself from scratch,  I built it for free, it’s beautiful and earthy. Because of this, I get the greatest satisfaction just looking at it, and even more when I see Laly playing in it…




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  1. katiecrackernuts says

    It’s a treasure. I love Freecycle and LETS. The former I dip in and out of but unfortunately, the latter, required more time than I was able to give and I had to let my local LETS go – one of the many things I miss because of the daily work commute to and from the city. It’s hard to be bedded in community when you’re away from it so often.

    June 9th, 2014 | #

  2. Pink Ronnie says

    Love this so much, Pia
    Ronnie xo

    June 9th, 2014 | #

  3. pia says

    I’ve not known about LETS, I’ll look into it, thanks K x

    June 9th, 2014 | #

  4. Tracey says

    What a beautiful sandpit and the fact that you did it all for free is inspiring. Cannot wait to see the Freecycle website!

    June 9th, 2014 | #

  5. Steph @ this brown wren says

    Oh I’m so inspired! We are planning on selling our house soon and the little wooden sandpit we have is rather delapidated now and simply not big enough for two babies. We will most definately be building a little beach at our new home. Thanks so much for sharing. WIshing you a gorgeous week 🙂 xx

    June 10th, 2014 | #

  6. The Daydreamer says

    Dear Pia,
    I am always in awe when I stop by your creative corner: the sand pit is a beautiful, responsible idea and I can only imagine your joy at creating it and Laly’s at playing in it. Enjoy!

    June 16th, 2014 | #

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  8. Becka says

    So lovely- Lucky Laly!

    July 6th, 2014 | #

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