Monday, December 28, 2015

A Basement Gym for the Boys


I come up with the ideas and he implements goes absolute nuts with them . 
That's how it usually goes and so it did with our gift for the boys this year.

My husband is an over the top sort of guy so my little idea for some gym equipment for Christmas to make our dungeon cellar a bit more usable became something a little bit...more.  Because that's how he does.  The last year or so these boys have been getting more and more insane active.  When the weather got cooler and the wrestling matches and running contests and furniture bouncing reached a peak (and repeatedly woke the baby), I decided we ALL needed somewhere for them to get out that energy that wasn't in our relatively small downstairs living space.  My thoughts were to get a mini trampoline, a climbing rope, a swing or bar with mats, a chin up bar and the punching bag my husband had from when he was a boy.  Nice and simple and a good outlet for all that testosterone flowing through our home.  I gave him the idea, bought a few of the items and asked him to figure out how to arrange it all down there.

Soooo, he did this:


I. KNOW.
It's like a real gym in our tiny and what I thought unusable cellar.  Maybe I can even call it a basement now.
The boys FLIPPED when they saw it. 


And guys...wait for it...almost everything he used for building came from scraps we had and pallets he had picked up free.  That makes my frugal heart so happy.  Leftover wood from house projects, pieces of old dropcloth, leftover paint, even the hinges and hardware he used was all stuff we had. He did have to pick up some extra 2x4s and rope.


They've been playing down there a ton the last few days.  The next morning John Paul said that when he woke up he couldn't remember if it was all a dream and that it didn't feel like it was really real.  I can definitely hear them from upstairs which is good and for the most part it's been all happy noises. So far, at least.


This past year we got the basement a little less dungeony by cleaning the walls, painting the floor and drying it all out with the dehumidifier.  And now we have this home built playspace that I never thought was possible but from what I've been able to tell so far will be SO well used.

Trap door!

The rope bridge is David's favorite.

People pay top dollar to workout in a gym with the exposed pipe ceilings and industrial decor.  We get it free ;) 

Tow line

The peg board cross is John Paul's favorite.  It's modeled off the one from American Ninja Warrior as are the ball grippy things (apparently the official name is cannonball alley) to the left.  Those are old bocce balls from the garage that were never once used for actual bocce.

Luke says the trampoline is his favorite.  I got this one (fyi, it was $60 when I bought it).  Only the littler ones are allowed on since the ceilings are so low!  A few weeks after I had already bought it David who has SO much energy declared one evening after being told (again) to stop jumping on the furniture "but but but...I just need to BOUNCE!"  So now I have a place when a boy needs to bounce :)

It makes a great Booper cage.

Getting his workout in.  He knows how it's done.

He flips every which way like a little monkey.

Trapeze bar I got here and the mats are these (free shipping at the time).  This is Michael's favorite.  (P.S.  Who knew gym mats were so expensive?  Nearly impossible and probably gross anyway to find used.  I tried.)  These were the best price but they are really thick and will last hopefully a long time.  We have some free weights that we picked up from the side of the road (!) in the corner.  I'm thinking as they get older the boys may want to use this are for weightlifting and such, too?


These boys are so crazy blessed to have a papa who goes nuts like this for them.  I have no doubt that the year they got the basement gym will be one of those awesome memories from childhood that stays with them forever.  And maaaybe it's a gift that will preserve a little bit of my sanity, too ;)  





23 comments:

  1. Definitely one THE BEST DIY gifts I have ever seen!!! You and Brian are geniuses and your boys are so fortunate!! Great job, guys!

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  2. This is amazing! I might suggest a small punching bag you can attached to the floor, my soon loves ours and so good for getting out energy in the winter =)

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    1. There actually is one hiding in there! It's the red thing peeking from behind the support beam. Brian had it when he was young and we got it from my mother-in-law last time we visited figuring the boys would like it at some point! It just stands on a base, though. I'm envisioning that it might prove useful when they're in fight mode ;)

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  3. Your husband is awesome. When my boys were little we had a Little Tykes climber/slide in the family room. They would have LOVED that basement.

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  4. This is totally amazing. And it actually seems FINISHED??!! Projects so rarely seem to reach completion at our house! :)

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    1. I'm allergic to unfinished projects. Tics, sweats, inability to breathe, the whole gamut ;)

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  5. Such a wonderful place now! You are awesome; your husband is awesome! And your little boys are growing up so handsome and wonderfully too!

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  6. You two are just amazing! What fun!! I'm still in love with your previous costumes--and seeing them continue to get used. What a gift and what a grace. God bless you all and may the boys THRIVE in the bounty of your great love for them!

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  7. That is AWESOME!!! My boys would just love to have a space like that! So neat!!

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  8. Wow! Too cool! Be sure to Pinterest this post : )

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  9. This is amazing - good dreaming up, Mary and good construction, Brian!

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  10. This is awesome! I want one for myself. I'd be sure to share with my boys. 😉 They're actually drooling over this set-up. Well done!

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  11. Wowowowowow. You guys were meant to have lots of boys :) How about a nice trip up to (near) Cape Cod and Brian can build us one too?!?!?!?

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  12. That gym is AWESOME!! You guys are amazing!! Your boys are sure to remember this gift for a lifetime! I know my boys would absolutely love to hang out at your place. ;-) God bless & Merry Christmas!

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  13. It looks like a lot of fun but FYI, girls love this stuff too! They would have a blast! Cool idea!

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    1. No doubt! But we've been blessed with all boys, hence it being for the boys ;)

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  14. Your upside down boy on the rings says it all!!! What a blast! One of the top ten greatest boy gifts of all time!! Genius!

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  15. Amazing, absolutely amazing! Brian has outdone himself this time!! Yes a memory your boys will always remember. And as they grown big boy equipment will work too and they'll already be in a great habit to 'work out'.

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  16. OK, Can I just move my family up to where you all are and move us in with you? It'd be like a neverending sleepover with friends? Maybe? Not weird, right? SO AMAZING! Can't wait to show Troy!

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  17. Wow! Great job! My four boys are loving the pictures and wishing...! :) Enjoy!

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