How to…make a cup and ball game from a milk bottle

Last Monday was the last day of our half term. The nursery have two assessment days for the next year’s intake so they give the boys another couple of days extra half term while the staff are kept busy. Unfortunately, I had to go back to work on Tuesday, so I was very eager to make the most of my last day at home with Little Chap, especially as we needed a rest from our hectic half term to date.

The morning passed uneventfully with a quick trip to the shoe shop, who confirmed (thankfully!) that Little Chap’s feet haven’t grown out of his school shoes just yet! After lunch, I let Little Chap watch his new favourite DVD, the Lion King. He dropped his naps a few months before nursery school started but still flags occasionally and has been known to be reluctant about napping and too exuberant about the “quiet time” I offer up as an alternative.

The instructions

After watching the film, I was just about to break into a cold sweat of guilt for not having cookies to bake or some other charming, memorable experience planned when, luckily, I remembered the milk bottle game I was sent a few weeks earlier by Nampak, a company who have developed Infini bottles, environmentally friendly, and described as ‘better by design’. It is a next-generation, eco-friendly milk bottle that doesn’t compromise strength for lightness. No more tears over spilled milk. It was one of the more random PR offers I have received but I was intrigued and on Monday, their half term game came in handy to fill a quiet moment.

A Useful Storage Tub

Little Chap waited patiently for me to cut up the bottle with my sharp scissors. Once it was in two pieces, he eagerly set about decorating the top (lidded) half of the bottle with a variety of materials, all generously supplied with the bottle. First some farm animal stickers (which he used to decorate the inside of the bottle) and then he happily began squirting the glitter glue pens all over the handle half while I anxiously fretted and fussed held my breath in case he got any all over himself/my table/me.

Once he was done, we set it on the radiator to dry it off asap as he was eager to play with it (the bottle didn’t melt!) so Little Chap happily set about sticking lots more of the stickers over the remaining bottom half of the bottle, which he then proceeded to play with, filling his “treasure chest” with a stash of plastic pirate loot.

Ta Da! Little Chap’s Cup & Ball Game

Eventually, on Tuesday, when I returned from work, we deemed the glitter dry enough to touch (he’d been piling it high, rather than spreading it thin, LOL! He’ll learn…) Little Chap, having seen me demonstrate on Monday, before any glitter glue or stickers were applied, didn’t need further instruction to figure out that if he popped the piece of string with the ball attached, through the milk bottle neck and screwed on the lid, that hey presto! we had a cup and ball game “Like the one Archie made, Mummy!” referring to an episode of Balamory where, sure enough, Archie makes the same game from a yoghurt pot!

He found the string a little long (easy enough to shorten) but was very chuffed when he finally managed to catch the ball. Sadly, we didn’t have long to play with it before bath time – it was the night before school started again. He carefully stashed it in the toy box though, to be retained for future use.

An Afternoon Well Spent

In all, this was a great game to try and make with a little one – it was quick enough (just watch the application:drying time of the glitter glue!) and simple enough for Little Chap to feel he’d made it himself with little or no help from me.

Disclosure:  Nampak sent us this game, including the milk bottle. No payment was received. All views and comments are my own. Follow their journey on Twitter @infinibottle

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