Wow! Feeding the birds is this easy

Been cooped up far too long with the little ones?  Here comes another storm, so you’ll need some more activities.

 My mom always had some activity. We used to grow crystals, turn an egg into a rubber substance that would squish into a bottle   and one time we even made taffy  (only one time).  And that was before the Internet (way before) so imagine what trouble we could have caused….

Here’s an activity that provides hours of fun. You can make a simple pine cone bird feeder.

pinecone_blog

This black capped chicadee is just one of many birds that flock to a simple pinecone feeder. Children (and adults) can watch for hours.

Put a layer of newspaper on your table. This is a must, because it is messy.

Mix together suet (or vegetable shortening or cream cheese, soften in the microwave) with corn meal (a small box of corn muffin mix works, too) and bird seed. If your child is not allergic to peanut butter throw some of that in and the birds will go crazy. Older children can stir the mixture themselves.

Attach a piece of yarn or a pipe cleaner around the pine cone for a hanger. Now, here’s the fun part: Take a plastic spoon or knife and mush it into all the spaces in the pine cone.

When you’re finished hang it outside on a shrub or tree. We have a burning bush that has lots of little branches for the birds to perch while they eat away.

 

Birds love this. I hung one out on Saturday and the birds, including gorgeous cardinals, flocked to the pine cone in less than 15 minutes.

 

If you don’t have pine cones, you can just make the mixture and put it in a hallowed out orange half, some netting or cheesecloth. Or just crumble it and spread it on your deck.

Or you could occupy your children with taffy, but I wouldn’t recommend it…

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