Crafty- Bird Houses

Often the kids and I get crafty.  We make stuff in various mediums.  Some times its paint, some times its yarn, some times its pasta noodles.  This time it was milk cartons.  

We have a store bought bird feeder in our back yard that gets a lot of action and making some new bird feeders/houses was something we were all excited about so we could have more birds feeding from our yard.  We love watching the variety of birds fluttering in and out from our patio.  So, in a nutshell, perfect craft!  And super easy for all ages.

What we used:
milk/juice cardboard cartons (one for each person)
exacto blade
acrylic paint
brushes (we used foam and regular fine tipped/water color brushes)
sand paper
paint tray/paper plate
sequins, jewels, any other decorations you may want
popsicle sticks

Step one was to sand the outside of the cartons to rough it up for the paint.  Because of the coating on the carton painting straight on wouldn't allow the paint to adhere very well.  So go ahead and rough it up nice and good, all four sides and the peaked top including the indented sides.
Step 2 we cut out a little opening as well as creating a slit for the popsicle stick perch.  We all did this in different ways.  Some of us created a single opening, one of us decided we needed three openings!  To each their own, right?  To create the openings we first drew the shape we wanted on the carton with a sharpie and cut it out with an exacto blade.  If you trust your child with the blade that's up to you, my kids are 4, 8 and 10 and I decided to cut the opening for all of them as they were a bit freaked out by doing it themselves.

Using the exact we made a tiny slit under the opening and inserted a popsicle stick.  You don't want the slit to big, because you want the stick to be fitted in nice and snug.  Once inserted rub a bit of glue where the carton and stick meet.

Before painting you can make a hole through the crease of the peaked top.  Make sure the hole goes through one end and through the other.  This is where you'll run your string so you can create a little loop to hang it up.

Once the perch is glued in place you can paint and decorate. Let the kids go nuts. Paint! Sparkles! Anything they want.  Go for it!  They can even paint the perch if they want. 

When the paint is dry, thread your string through, length is up to you, tie the ends into a know so its nice and secure. Fill it with some birdseed and you are good to go!

And there you have it!  Our bird feeders/houses have been getting a lot of action.  We've seen tiny finch like birds, robins, stellars jay and more.  The kids get much more excited seeing the birds feed from their own feeder and its definitely been a colorful addition to our backyard.


Sartorial Thursday: Casual Date Nights

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Field Trip: Fox Hollow Farm

About 45-minutes East of Seattle is the beautiful town of Issaquah and Fox Hollow Farms. The family headed out to the farm on Sunday for some quality outdoor, fun family time.  On this Sunday the farm was not crowded at all, the day was warm, albeit muggy, but clear and perfect for the outdoors.  The farm is located off a busy highway but once on the property you don't even notice.  There is a small parking lot, which is free and admission into the farm is $10 and covers most of the activities on the farm except pony rides.  Once in we headed straight for the amazing creek tucked right near the entrance to the farm.  The creek was clear and kids were loving it.  Much of the creek is pretty shallow but there are some pockets of deeper areas that are great for floating in.  We packed  the kids pool noodles and floatie and they had a great time walking up the creek and allowing the current to let them float/push down.  Scattered around the creek were numerous picnic tables and nearby were pony rides and lots of roosters roaming about.
The petting zoo is pretty amazing.  It's a large penned in area with geese, piglets, a giant pig, a lot of bunnies in all shapes and sizes, some goats and an amazingly soft sheep.  My older son fell in love so hard with the piglets and is now begging for one of his own!  

There are some great little tucked away gardens, a large penned area with more pigs, cows and roosters, and a basket ball court should you feel inclined to shoot some hoops.  One of the rest areas has some fantastic patio furniture to lounge around about, have some lunch or grab a snowcone.  


Sartorial Thursday: Fancy

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List 018 by seattlemom featuring black velvet pumps

A couple times a year I do have the occasion to get fancy.  More times then not my idea of fancy is still keeping it me.  I usually do black, silver, nude/peach, gold or a combination of the above.  This look is very much me and I really, really want that skirt!


Kid time: Me & The Boys

I want to preface this post by saying my older son, Big Red, is not unhappy.  He purposefully doesn't smile, shuts his eyes or makes faces in photos in hopes that I won't take photos of him.  So ignore his frowns he had a good time.

My daughter is in half day summer camp this week.  So, it's just me and the boys.  When its's just us we have more choices on how to spend our day.  We can take our time at a museum, and actually read the placards without being rushed.  We can see a movie, play video games together without interruption.  It's a rare moment and I really enjoy it.  The boys look forward to it as well.

We are only on Day-2 of this week and we are having a great time.  

I thought the boys would enjoy a day downtown, the market and waterfront.  After dropping D off at 845am this morning the boys and I left the car at Seattle Center and caught the monorail to Westlake.  They were so excited to catch the monorail, its been over a year since they've rode it last and it was just so exciting for them.  The quick two minute ride let us out at Westlake where we popped over to the Westlake park to let the the boys climb on the structure for awhile before starting our day.
We strolled down to the Market and checked out the goods.  We were so early that many of the vendors were still setting up their booth. The boys watched the fish guys, were on the hunt for the many pigs around the market, got grossed out at the gum wall, ate some yummy giant doughnuts while ferry watching, gawked at the crazy line at the original Starbucks, watched cheese making at Beechers and we also headed to the Seattle Aquarium.

We had a great time at the aquarium and didn't have to chase after the little girl.  The boys saw all they wanted to see and relaxed in the sun at the outdoor harbor seal exhibit and when we were done we took our time heading back up towards Westlake.

It was such a beautiful day and I enjoyed spending my morning with my two boys!