Do you ever see amazing Pinterest crafts that moms do with their kids and wish it was easy and actually doable? I kept pinning these beautiful seed filled ornament ideas on Pinterest but just could not figure out the best way to do them. First of all, I have the worlds smallest kitchen at the moment (or so it feels). Since downsizing to a camper while we are building our home, I am more interested in less mess, than anything else when it comes to crafts that I can do with my littles.
Every craft thing I own is in storage and that even goes for cookie cutters and any molds I could possibly have. For around $3 (or was it $5?) in the Target Dollar Spot, I found a set of silicon baking molds. It was a cute little set of 5 shapes and 6 molds total, we got two of the round ones but the shapes didn't matter. I was still holding out for over 3 weeks trying to figure out how the craft in my head was actually going to manifest.
Eventually, after visiting several small town local hardware stores and asking questions about bird seeds and suet, I decided to give this idea a try and it turned out absolutely perfect with very little mess. A camping momma's dream and I'm sure any momma's dream who is looking for less mess in general. Seriously, those Pinterest ideas were not this simple.
So, here's the secret!
All you need to do is purchase these preformed all-season suet bricks from your local hardware store. If they sell bird feeders, they sell these. I found a bulk 8 pack and went right to the register with it, I was so excited and so was my littlest when she saw how excited I was.
Once we finished putting a few twinkle lights on our new outdoor tree we went inside to see if we could actually make these bird seed ornaments. I only needed one pot and a big spoon.
Here's all you need to do:
Dump your bird seed suet brick into your small pot and turn up the heat. I used a medium heat because I was a bit afraid to over cook the seeds and the melting point was just over 122 degrees F. It didn't take much to melt the first brick down and you just need to crush and crumble it up in the pot with the spoon.
Once melted, spoon fill half of each mold with your mixture. Use twine or ribbon of your choice to add to your ornament (as seen below). I used dollar store twine.
Once the twine or ribbon is in place, simply spoon in the mixture to fill the mold. My first batch required that I go ahead and start melting another brick to finish the job. The next batch I was a little more frugal and made 6 ornaments with one block.
I popped these full molds in the freezer until they were completely hard. Let's face it, those kids did not want to wait for them to harden at room temp. Freezing them was fast and they popped out of the molds nicely. Just check for hardness, ours took about 15 mins.
It depends on the size of your molds as to how many you will make. Each brick made 6 ornaments for us and I bought 8 bricks. We should be able to feed the birds for awhile.
I am telling you, this is easy and nearly mess free. I'm going to be honest, the hardest clean up was trying to wash the pot by hand. Lesson, let the left over suet harden and scrap out any extra suet before trying to scrub clean.
Our humble little outdoor tree is gracefully holding up the ornaments that are almost too heavy for its wispy branches. Next year, this little tree will be twice as high and much stronger. This is definitely a tradition that I can do year after year. Now, that I have mastered making these, it's much less stressful to let their little hands in on the action. We made a few batches and saved the rest for later.
Our littles really do want to fill the entire forest with these little treats.
Now, we just wait for the song birds to find them.
"Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?" - Matthew 6:26
If you try this craft, be sure to let us know and you can even send us a picture. Also, you can click on any image and save to Pinterest. Be blessed.