Yes, I’m in the same situation as a lot of you, scouring Amazon and every other online outlet for a sled, only to find them all sold out. Oh—except for the $199 models. Believe me, though I was tempted, I wasn’t bouncing for a $200 piece of plastic. But I promised my grandson, Gabey, that I’d take him sledding when he came to visit.

What’s a “never-say-no-to-grandkid” grandma supposed to do? I searched my memory bank for what it was that I did when my kids were young. And it came to me: Make the damn sled.

As a mother of four and a grandma of eight, I’ve seen every single DIY sled out there and then some. Some I’ve made myself, and others I’ve witnessed neighbors or other kids on the sledding hill using. And believe me, I don’t take credit for a lot of these ideas. The ingenuity of a parent who’s looked around all afternoon at every store for a sled knows no bounds.

Boogie board
Ok so it’s made for the water. Believe me it does a fine job slipping down a snowy slope

Outdoor cushions
As long as they’re made of a waterproof fabric, throw a couple in the trunk and slide away. (They do get filthy, though so make sure they’re soap and water friendly)

Yup. Just a piece of whatever shipping box is laying around the garage will do. If you don’t mind the embarrassment of your kids looking more shabby than chic, it works pretty well.

Cardboard and garbage bag
Slightly more serviceable than the cardboard, which, once it gets too wet can be a little slow going, a piece of cardboard wrapped in a heavy duty trash bad and sealed up with duct tape is a perfect sled

Baking sheet
The bigger, the better. And if you don’t have one on the house somewhere, not owning a sled is the least of yours problems. You oughta be ashamed of yourself.

Storage container lid
Yeah, those big Rubbermaid plastic storage boxes everyone keeps in the basement or garage comes with its own handy dandy lid. Which of course is a handy dandy makeshift sled. And it’s fast!!!

Baby tub
Blow up an inflatable baby tub and a small child can hop in and slide, protected by the sides of the tub. To be extra safe, affix a leash or rope to the tub, as was done for Dennis’ beautiful granddaughter Adeline, in the picture above, so you can be in control.

Shower curtain
I’ve never done this one, but I've watched as the neighborhood kids fly by us at insane speeds on their basic colorful shower curtain. Not sure how mom felt about having to remove it from the shower!

Pool float
Your plain old, trusty-dusty blow you pool float doubles as one of the fastest moving sled on the mountain.

Garbage can lid
Who has one anymore now that most of us use our town’s provided waste containers. Nevertheless, the lid of a plastic garbage can makes an amazing sled in a pinch.

Laundry basket
Another idea for a bit of extra protection for the littlest hill warriors. Again, tie some kind of rope or leash to it so you can pull the kid down the hill. Or let them wiz down small hills knowing that the sides afford a little bit of extra protection and balance.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi's own.

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