I almost got rid of Claire's water table last year. We don't usually take good care of it, I think we may have filled it up once last summer (if even that) and then flipped it upside down and then rain water filled the underside and leaves and bugs and crap and someone would've had to clean it and yeah. But last Thursday, Justin cleaned the water table. Ok, the underside is still kind of gross looking, but it's MUCH better than it was. Since the water table only came with three toys and I didn't want to bring out the real pool toys, I brought her LittlePeople Noah's Ark out for her, I need to find the rest of her animals and bring them out too.
On Friday, Justin surprised us when we got home with one of those little plastic pools for Claire. We have a toddler-sized inflatable pool, but we just wanted something small she could wash her feet off in if nothing else. We've had a plastic pool before too, it got all gross and nasty and then I threw it away. I think that was 2 years ago? On Friday, Claire was happy to sit in it and play with her Little People animals. She hasn't gotten in her little pool since Friday, not sure why not, but I'll ask her if she wants to get in the little pool and she'll say "Nooo".
I have discovered that I can read a book while Claire plays in the water table. I could probably do something a little more productive too - like weed a flowerbed in the back yard, or something. But I've mostly been reading ridiculous romance novels from the library. And I have to say, I LOVE that my house faces west, that means the backyard is in the shade in the evening. By 6pm, the patio is in the shade and even though it is warm outside, it is not terrible to sit in the shade while Claire's splashes around the water table.