Summer means reinventing the same old, same old into hours of new-to-you play. Take your trusty pool noodle, for example. It travels with you from pool to beach, to backyard and back. But did you know it also makes a great hobbyhorse or bubble blower? Read on for more ideas on how to transform this dollar store classic into your tot’s favorite new toy.

photo: Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails 

1. Launch Pom-Poms
Go the distance with a pool noodle shooter. Get the need-to-know details to make your own from Jaime over at Frogs Snails and Puppy Dog Tails. Then, set up a target shooting range in the backyard for hours of outdoor play. Take aim!

photo: Skip to My Lou

2. Blow Bubbles
Whether you upcycle your own star or flower-shaped noodles or buy them pre-cut from the craft store, your kidlet will love blowing bubbles through them. And the best part? That you can make wands for the whole neighborhood. Skip to My Lou is where you’ll find out how to make this cute summer supply.

photo: mama papa bubba

3. Make a Marble Run
The race is on down this simple marble run dreamed up by Jen over at Mama Papa Bubba. Set it up on a sunny day and kick back while your little ones play, play, play. Psst…cars race well on this track too.

photo: Casual Claire

4. Assemble a Water Wall
After sprinkler dashes and plenty of time wading in the kiddie pool, your mini-me can change it up but still keep cool on a sunny day playing at her pool noodle water wall. We love the idea of mounting one on a moveable pegboard like Claire from Casual Claire does. But, if you don’t have pegboard on hand a fence works just as well. Splash away, all!

photo: Ever Never Again

5. Shoot Some Hoops
Indoors or out, these quick-to-assemble basketball hoops are just the right size for your sidekick to practice lay-ups and three-pointers, or to play a quick game of H-O-R-S-E with a sibling. Ever Never Again is where you’ll get the tips you need to set them up at your place. She shoots, she scores!

photo: Molly Moon Crafts

6. Ride a Hobbyhorse
Giddy-up, little pardner! Saddle up this cute hobbyhorse for hours of outdoor imaginative play. Find out how to make one yourself at Molly Moon Crafts. Trust us, it’s easier than you think! Hi ho, away!

 photo: Mommy’s Block Party

7. Run Through the Sprinkler
Turn your pool noodle into the best kiddie pool accessory in town, by converting it into an overhead sprinkler. Ondria at Mommy’s Block Party can walk you through the process. It’s like a trip to the splash pad, without leaving the house. Sounds like the perfect summer pace to us!

What’s your favorite way to reuse pool noodles? Have you tried any of these? Tell us about it in a comment.

— Allison Sutcliffe