For the birds

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This is the time of year when we need to start gathering some fresh ideas to keep the kids occupied.  So, as I sat outside the other day, I happened to notice the wonderful sounds of the springtime birds and thought it might be fun to find some interesting ideas for easy bird feeders that you can do with the kids this spring and summer.

As you saw in the segment, many of the ideas are simple uses of birdseed and fruit, or empty plastic containers cut to welcome our feathered friends.  But the one that you might want to try is making the concoction that I’ll call the birdseed biscuit.

I found a couple of options for these, tried them all and selected the two best versions.  The difference is in the number of ingredients needed and the look and sturdiness of the dried “biscuits.”  So, before you dive in, take a look and decide which option suits you best.

Seed Biscuit #1

These need only 3 ingredients – water, a packet of gelatin powder and bird seed.

And, that’s why I first tried this version – simple!

I liked everything about these – they were easy to make and resulted in pretty birdseed colored biscuits.  The only drawback for these is that when dry, they are a bit more fragile.  So, these are wonderful for adults or older kids – that can be a bit more careful.  Also, you need to bring the water to a simmer on the stove to dissolve the gelatin.  So, with little ones, you may not want to involve the stove.

Here's how:

1 cup birdseed
¼ cup water
1 small envelope of unflavored gelatin
Bring water to a simmer, add gelatin and stir to dissolve.  Allow to cool for a couple of minutes, add the birdseed and mix.  Place cookie cutters on a cookie sheet covered with wax paper.  Fill with the seed mixture, use a pencil or chopstick to make a small hole, and let dry overnight or 4-5 hours.

Seed Biscuit #2

Here’s another option.  This one results in really sturdy biscuits so it would be perfect for smaller children who will be less careful when handling them after they are dry.  Plus they require no stove, so they’d be great to make if you don’t want to or don’t have a stove around.  The only drawback is that you need more ingredients and when dry, they have a white look to them because of the flour added in.  But these are study and easy to make.

¾ cup flour
½ cup water
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
3 tbsp. corn syrup
4 cups birdseed

Mix flour, water, gelatin, and corn syrup.  Add birdseed and stir.  Then mold the same way with cookie cutters and let dry overnight or 4 to 5 hours.

These are really fun to make and even more fun to use.  Remember to hang them on a branch that is near another branch so the birdies have a place to land to enjoy their snack.

What fun!

Live and Learn.