Eventually, almost everything outgrows its usefulness. Either it wears out, becomes unnecessary or even goes out of fashion. This is especially true with children's playthings. Always growing up too quickly, kids outgrow their toys with alarming frequency. While some things just get thrown out, some parents are able to resell items or, in the case of Backyardchickens.com user Hen_House_Rocks, the old toys can even be upcycled and repurposed.
This adorable Playskool playhouse spent years as the site of fun times for children from several families.
Eventually, though, it became too small for the kids of the house and Hen_House_Rocks was on the verge of throwing it out when she had a brilliant idea.
For years, she'd wanted to raise a few chicken in her backyard, but had never had the money for the building materials to make a coop. The disused toy house, however, seemed like the perfect solution.
She grabbed a few salvaged materials she'd already collected, a roll of hardware cloth and her staple gun and began covering the windows. Afterwards, her husband added a nest box that could open from the outside.
Next, a few vent covers were added near the roof in several places.
She did this so there would still be ventilation when the windows were covered with plastic for extra insulation during the cold winter.
A base slightly bigger than the playhouse was next on the list, built using scrap wood and hardware cloth.
The playhouse was then placed on top of the base and screwed into place. A chicken ladder made the vertical space accessible for the resident hens.
Next door, she built a run to give the hens a little extra space.
Using plastic roofing sheets, she added a slanted roof to the run since rain and snow are common in the area throughout the year.
Finally, a few old tree branches were strung up at different heights to add extra places for the hens to roost.
All in all, this old kid's toy might have seen better days, but it works incredibly well for the brood of hens that call it home!