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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Re-Use that half-eaten apple!

At around $2.00 per pound, apples seem like a pretty good bargain. That is, until you consider the fact that an apple weighs around half a pound. That means that each apple you buy is around a dollar. I grew up in a place where you can buy a whole bushel of apples for around $15 (which makes them about 15 cents each), and I cringe every time I see one of my son's half-eaten apples laying around. To him, it's just a snack he didn't want. To me, it's money that I'm throwing away.

A simple answer to this would of course be to put the apples out of his reach. But we're trying to keep fruits and vegetables available to him at any time of day for him to snack on. That way, he feels like he has some choice about what he eats, and as he grows his snacking habits will trend toward healthier foods. We rarely buy chips, crackers, cookies or other typical snack foods, and his idea of a treat is a cup of flavored yogurt!

Since I don't want to take the apples away, I have to make peace with the fact that he may only eat half the apple. Thankfully, I have discovered a few things I can do with his half-eaten apples so that they at least don't go to waste.

This week I remembered a pine-cone bird feeder I had made as a young girl with my mom's help. I decided to apply the same technique to the apple. To make this project, you'll need a screwdriver, an apple (half-eaten works best since it holds the peanut butter & seeds in place), a washer or nut, a piece of yarn, peanut butter, and birdseed.

First, take the apple and use the screwdriver to drive a hole through the center from top to bottom.


Next, thread the yarn through the apple.


Take the yarn that comes out of the bottom of the apple and tie it around the nut or washer. Make sure it's knotted well.


If you've tied it properly, the apple should hang nicely, and the washer/nut will keep the yarn from pulling back through the apple.


Dry the apple well and then use peanut butter to coat the apple. It doesn't have to be perfect, you won't see the peanut butter when you're done and you just need enough to make the seeds stick.


Plunge the peanut-butter coated apple into the bird seed, making sure to cover all the sides. I like to have my son help me with this part. He loves to feed the birds, and this is a nice activity for children to help out with. It helps them to become environmentally-conscious and is a great way to get them out of the house or away from the TV.


When you're finished, the apple-bird-feeder should look something like this:

                                                                                 Source: Uploaded by user via Alicia on Pinterest

Hang it in a place where you or your children can see it easily. It may take the birds a little while to come to it if you've never put food out for them before, but be patient and they will find it eventually. You'll be amazed at how fast they swoop down on the next one you put out! This is a great time to take the kids outside for some fresh air and sunshine while you wait for the birds to find the feeder. Just make sure you keep plenty of distance between you and the "bird-feeder" at first, or your feathered friends may stay well away until you've gone back inside.

                                                                               Source: Uploaded by user via Alicia on Pinterest

So there you have it. A bird feeder made out of an apple. It may not save me any money at the grocery store, but it definitely makes me feel less wasteful!

5 comments:

  1. I love this idea! I am going to try it and see if it attracts birds! mysticmisha at hotmail dot com

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    Replies
    1. We ended up attracting a young squirrel too! My son was so excited haha.

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  2. What a great idea! I would love to try this, but we have to many cats, and I would feel like I was setting the poor little birds up, to get caught by them. Thanks for the wonderful idea! Molly Bussler

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