The reality: As soon as I pulled out a couple boxes, Lael insisted on playing in them. She then screamed when I started reshaping the boxes to make the building.
The result: After throwing out 90 percent of my original design, I hastily built the fort you see in the picture.
The aftermath: The kids love the fort anyhow, constantly running in and out with a doll or race car. The funniest moments come when they knock the whole thing over from the inside.
Following years: I plan to build more elaborate forts with the kids, teaching them principles of structure and form as well as art by having them color inside and out. I took these pictures before the kids took crayons to the boxes.
Eventually: I want to build a tree house with the kids.