Saturday, January 2, 2010

hidden in plain sight.

Originally uploaded by Laura Hartrich
A few days ago, before the bitter cold set in, we spent some time playing in the snow. First priority, as always, was to have a snowball fight. After that, I got the boys to help me make this snow structure. Not a snowman. A birdfeeder. We hung oranges and apples on sticks and stuck them in the tower. We buried a bowl in the top and filled it to overflowing with birdseed. We had fun and were proud of our little gift for the birds, but so far they haven't discovered our generosity. A rabbit did hop around the base and eat up all the fruit we had scattered there. Probably the same rabbit I tried so hard to keep out of our garden this summer. "Wait, so earlier she kept putting up fences to keep me away from food. Now she's just scattering it on the ground for me. I don't get it." That rabbit must be so confused.

This little bird-feeding snow activity was inspired by another favorite Christmas gift, a book called I Love Dirt. The book itself is cute as a button (it has rounded corners, for crying out loud), and it's chock full of great content. It's all about getting kids engaged and involved in the outside world. One of my goals this year is to get outside more with the boys, even in "inclement" weather. I think this little book will inspire me to get away from this damn computer and get out there!

As for this snowy bird feeder, I don't know where we went wrong. Can birds smell? I thought they might sniff out the food we left for them. I also wondered if maybe we built it too far away from any trees for them to spot it. Oh well, at the very least, this will melt and the birds will peck the birdseed out of our grass in the spring. The boys loved making this, and kept yelling, "Merry Christmas, birds!" at the top of their lungs as we worked. I consider it a successful project, even if the only creature to benefit from our benevolence was one exiled garden rabbit.

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