Transformed Power Wheels – Barbie to Jurassic Park Jeep

Part of the fun in raising Zoey is making things that delight her; I want to create fun, educational toys for her that are made with love and will be loved! I loved dinosaurs as a child and quite honestly I still do! I see that interest piquing in Zoey too and of course I’m going to encourage it!

I was always fascinated by power wheels as a child and envious of any of my friends who owned one! When my parents found this one at a thrift store, I jumped at the chance to get one for Zoey, but it needed a little work! As you can see it started out as Barbie themed, and while I loved Barbies too this was the opportunity to try something new!

Let’s create a Jurassic Park themed power wheels! Please feel free to use this information to breathe new life into an old toy and, if you have any new tips, please feel free to share!

  1. Using a screwdriver, dismantle the toy as much as possible without breaking anything. If a piece is not coming off and you’re worried it will break if you force it, don’t force it, and don’t worry! Painter’s tape and paper are your friends!
  2. Remove any old stickers and completely wash/clean the plastic toy and it’s pieces, then allow to dry.
  3. Wipe the toy down with rubbing alcohol to prepare the surfaces before painting, then allow to dry.
  4. Spread flattened cardboard (or something similar) in a well ventilated space to protect the floor.
  5. Paint the removed items first, taking care not to pile the paint on too thickly, instead try misting it on and applying multiple layers.
  6. Tape and paper the wheels surrounding the hubcaps, then paint the hubcaps red in layers.
  7. Once you’re satisfied with the hubcaps, and they are fully dried, you can cover each whole wheel with a disposable bag.
  8. Flip the car over and paint the undercarriage first with whichever color you choose.
  9. Once you’re satisfied with the undercarriage and it is fully dried, you can flip the car back over and place it on the cardboard directly or place it on a couple of sawhorses.
  10. Tape up anything you do not want painted, i.e. the pedal and shifter.
  11. Paint the base layers first (where any surrounding paint can be covered with top layers) and allow to dry completely. This may take a few layers so be patient and wait for each coat to dry a bit before painting another. I started with the red of the dashboard/windshield piece, then the gray of the front bumper.
  12. Using painter’s tape, bags and/or paper, cover the painted items that cannot be removed once they are completely dried. I covered the dashboard/windshield piece, but left the steering wheel exposed. I also covered the front bumper.
  13. Once these layers are covered, paint the next layer up and allow to dry completely. This may take a few layers so be patient and wait for each coat to dry a bit before painting another. For me, this was painting the steering wheel gray.
  14. Using painter’s tape, bags and/or paper, cover everything painted that cannot be removed. In addition to the previously covered items, I also covered the steering wheel with a disposable bag after it was completely dry.
  15. Once everything is covered, paint the body of the toy and allow it to dry completely. This may take a few layers so be patient and wait for each coat to dry a bit before painting another.
  16. Gently remove all of the coverings and reassemble the Power Wheels Ride On Jeep.
  17. Carefully peel and stick the Jurassic Park Jeep Wrangler decals to your Jeep.
  18. Let’s go find some Dinosaurs!

Tabletop Game – Let’s Play Blokus!

Tabletop Game Blokus by Mattel GamesI’m always on the look out for a fun, entertaining way to pass the time like a good tabletop game! Blokus was introduced to us by my husband’s parents and we enjoyed playing it so much we purchased it straightaway!

Tabletop Game Blokus by Mattel GamesBlokus is a two to four player strategy game that can be played with reckless abandon, or the studied care one would reserve for Chess or Checkers.

Players each choose a color and a corner, then decide who goes first; turns proceed clockwise around the board. To begin, each player must use their first turn to lay down a piece that covers their base corner’s square. Play then continues with each player placing one piece each turn that must touch the corner of one of their colored pieces, but only the corners! Full sides of the same color may not touch one another.

Tabletop Game Blokus by Mattel GamesWhen a player reaches a point where they cannot place another piece, they are done. The game ends when no player can place anymore pieces. Once the game ends the players count the number of squares in their unplayed pieces, the player with the lowest number of squares left, wins!

Tabletop Game Blokus by Mattel GamesMy only complaint is based on the packaging or storage. The version we purchased has no storage for the 84 colored pieces which is surprising and disappointing. I use four sandwich bags, one for each color to store them. This cuts down on the amount of time spent sifting through the pieces before starting each game!

Tabletop Game Blokus by Mattel GamesIf you’re looking for a fun, fresh take on a timeless strategy game that feels like a spiritual successor to Checkers and/or Chess, check out Blokus!