As a Mom, I strongly encourage my kids to be creative on their own terms. When they come to me and tell me they are bored, I steer them towards our basement. Over the years, I have gathered more craft supplies than I would like to admit. At one point, most of the cabinets in my kitchen were bursting with all of the craft supplies I had so when I remodeled my kitchen last summer, I knew I had to find the craft supplies a new home.
I decided to re-purpose a storage rack in my basement and place all of my craft materials on the lower shelves so they were within my children’s reach. Now, whenever they are feeling creative, they can help themselves and draw, paint or build their very own special creations. I find that leaving them to their “own devices” is a wonderful thing. My children surprise me every time they help themselves to the craft rack.
A few weeks ago, my daughter disappeared into the basement and emerged grasping an egg carton, some glue and a spool of twine. She announced that she was going to make a homemade bird feeder for the backyard birds. As I sat down with her, I let her take the lead and explain to me how she wanted to make it. It was a fun and simple way to be creative together and make a special project for our feathered friends.
It is important to let you all know that this easy bird feeder craft was not made to last. It came from my daughter’s imagination and I wasn’t about to explain to her that the cardboard would get soggy as soon as it rained. Or, that the actual structure wouldn’t hold up once one of the squirrels tried to sit on it. Instead, I focused on how proud she was with her creation and enjoyed watching her face beam with pride every time she looked out the window. We watched the birds eating from the recycled bird feeders for days until a big, fat ‘ole squirrel dive bombed it and broke it. When I asked my daughter if she was sad that it broke, she just smiled at me and said she her next one would be squirrel proof.
RECYCLED BIRD FEEDERS
- Egg carton
- Elmer’s glue
- Bird seed
Step 1: Separate the top of the egg carton from the bottom. Using a scissor, carefully poke two holes through the outer two “cones” of the egg carton. Thread the twine through the cones and tie in a knot underneath the bottom of the bottom tray.
Step 2: Now apply a thick coating of glue and place the bottom of the egg tray into the top and press firmly together. Then, using a stapler, staple the living daylights out of the egg carton to keep it together. (This is a craft made by a 6-year-old. She likes to be thorough!)
Step 3: Hang from a nearby tree and fill with birdseed. Wait for the birds to come.