Children have a way of making everything feel magical and exciting. Follow your kids into your own backyard and you’ll feel as though you’ve never really seen it before. They’ll tell you that the flowers you’ve grown so used to you hardly even notice them anymore look like dancing monkeys. They’ll let you know that the ancient tree next to the shed reminds them of a grumpy old grandpa. Stimulate that imagination – let your backyard, your terrace or your balcony be their space for new discoveries. Teach them about plants, nature and the animals that inhabit your outside area.
No matter where you are or how small your garden or terrace area, there’s always room for a bird to stop by for a visit. If you want to make it stay a little longer, why not invite it to build a nest? Making or decorating a birdhouse is something every kid – and teen, and adult – can get into, and some pretty phenomenal results are guaranteed!
# DIY :The Soda Bottle Birdhouse
Yes, you’ve guessed it: This birdhouse is made using a 1-litre and a 2-litre soda bottles. The bottles should be straight – that is to say, they shouldn’t have the “sporty” hour-glass midriff.
– Remove the logo and glue by soaking it in hot water for a while. This will make the job a lot quicker and you will avoid any sticky residue. Learn from your kids – it’s all about the patience
– Use a Stanley knife to cut the 1-litre bottle around the point where the neck starts to widen, as shown in picture.
– Do the same with the 2-litre bottle.
– Now it’s time to make the bird’s front door. Measuring from the bottom of the smaller bottle, count three centimetres and cut out a rectangular “door”.
– Use the top part of the bigger bottle to fit it on top of the smaller one with the entrance
– In order to hang the bird cage you will need to create holes through which to fit a wire.
Your kids may not have been able to help much in the cutting department, but now there’s their chance to go all out – it’s painting time!
Fit the wires through the openings and decide on the ideal place to hang it.
Not only is this a fun project for you and your children to enjoy together, it can also be educational if you want it to be. Where’s the best place to hang a birdhouse? What do they like to eat? What should you be aware of when a bird lays its nest in the house? These are all interesting questions you can answer together.
# A Birdhouse Make-Over
If you already have a simple, pale birdhouse hanging on your balcony that seems to have been vacant for a while, maybe you should put a little effort into making the crib a little more attractive for our little winged squatter friends. Perhaps a fresh lick of paint? Some stickers and beads and flowers….pretty much anything goes! Your daughter may not be too thrilled about the idea of parting with her treasured stickers at first, but as soon as the first bird moves in it will be a great source of pride.
Here’s a simple birdhouse I pimped up using acrylic paint, stickers, old beads, the hook of an old earring and a silver marker.
Roxanne is a German/British Journalist/Author based in Spain who shares our passion for all things old and quirky.