Thursday, February 21, 2013

DIY Bird Feeders

Since winter always means slim pickings for wild birds, I thought it would be nice if the boys made a bird feeder to help the little hungry guys out. It's an easy and fun project. The best part is, the boys can watch the birds appreciate their efforts and they can learn a little about the joy of helping others. :)

You will need:

Empty milk carton, washed and dried
Bird seed


The first fun part of this project is going out and getting a stick!

As you can see, Archer had a lot of fun looking for the stick!
Next, have your little ones paint the milk carton. Mine were too inpatient to wait for me to cover the carton with white paper first. Covering it with paper first makes the paint job look better, but, it does make it less weather resistant. (Once the first rainfall comes, the paper will fall off, but the carton itself will be fine.)

Cut a small hole in the side of the carton and shove the stick in there. Cut a small exit hole on the other side of the carton and shove the stick through that. Make sure the hole you cut is smaller than the stick. This way the stick will be secure and won't fall out. Cut two small holes on the top and the carton and loop a length of ribbon through. Tie a secure knot.

Cut small holes next to the stick. Don't cut them too big or the seed will fall out!!

Stick a funnel into the spout of the carton and pour birdseed in. If you'e having the kids help with this part, please do this on a hard surface; do not do this on a rug or carpet. No matter how careful you are, some seeds will fall on the floor.

A lot of birdseed fell in our case!!!

Hang your bird feeder outside and wait for the animals to come!!

Okay, so this is not a bird, but, a hungry woodland creature is a hungry woodland creature. :)

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

DIY Scratch Off Valentines

In a couple of weeks, Archer will be at his first Valentine's Day party, thrown by his preschool; and of course, no Valentine's Day party would be complete without Valentine's Day cards. No surprise here, Archer selected a box of Angry Birds Valentine's to hand out to his classmates.

I thought, however, it might be nice if Archer made a card for his teacher. To make it a little different, we hid Archer's message to her behind a scratch off.

To make your own scratch off, you'll need:

liquid dish washing soap

Yup, that's it - 2 things. It's a pretty simple and fun idea, and I'm pretty you have at least one of things items on hand. :)

Mix two parts paint with one part soap. Gently mix, if you mix too hard, your paint will be full of air bubbles.

Archer's Valentine with his message to Ms Miller.
Paint over the desired area. You will need to give it two or three coats.

I made a tester as well.

After painting over the message a couple times, it became clear that the paint Archer chose was not opaque enough. Learn from my mistake, don't try to paint over black marker with neon green!!

So, I painted over the green with silver paint, which wasn't a bad thing. It looks more like traditional scratch off cards.

Archer's message is successfully covered!!
I covered the test message with silver paint as well. Once it dried, we scratched it worked!!

Obviously, this scratch off paint can be applied to more than just Valentine's Day cards. Use it for birthday cards, party invites, save the date cards, etc!!