One way I like to keep them busy, is with craft and diy projects. And I keep expenses as low as possible by using items I have on hand.
Some of the best loved projects we do are for the birds including bird feeders and birdhouses. You can make tons of crafty items for your little feathered friends out of scrap wood, large plastic bottle and containers and even terra cotta pots.
My favorite birdhouses are ones made from scrap wood. My husband and I have made lots of them. Some were so decorative we even sold them at craft shows and to a floral shop. Lately we’ve just made them for personal enjoyment. They aren’t as easy to make with the kids since a lot of power tools are involved to cut out the wood but if you pre-cut everything then you can let the kids put the pieces together and decorate them.
You can find various scrap wood birdhouse styles and directions in Heidi Boyd’s book Craftcycle . And in EcoCraft by Susan Wasinger, you can find a fun birdhouse made with salvaged wood and license plates.
If you would like some helpful videos check out Care2 for some DIY birdhouse making videos.
Looking for something easier for the kids? How about bird bungalows made from plastic laundry soap bottles? The Big Green Book of Recycled Crafts has you covered.
Bird feeders are another easy and fun project. They can be made from bottles, cans or just about anything that will hold seed and offer space to store the birdseed. But don’t forget to offer the bird a place to perch while nibbling on the food.
A fun idea that is really easy to make is a terra cotta pot bird bath. You just need to stack a couple of terra cotta pots together upside down, then add a large terra cotta saucer on top for the bath.
Here’s an example I found at Lilacs and Roses.
You can leave the bird bath plain or let the kids decorate the pots anyway they wish with paint. Just be sure to use weather proof paint and a protective seal so the rain doesn’t wash away their artwork.
Here’s another pretty example of a painted birdbath. You can get the complete tutorial at DotComWoman.com
These are just a few examples of the crafty bird projects you can make that are both eco and bird friendly and kid friendly too.
Hope these ideas help rev up your imagination for a fun and crafty summer.