Category Archives: Family

suet-bird-seed-wreath

DIY Bird Seed Wreath

DIY Bird Seed Wreath

When the weather turns frigid, all you want to do is stay inside. Instead of binge-watching another episode of the latest trending show on Netflix, get off of the couch and get the family involved in making a suet bird seed wreath to hang and enjoy outside of your Tri-State Home Improvement windows. (Courtesy of DIY Network)

What you’ll need:

  • 10-inch metal bundt pan
  • Pliers
  • Wooden spoon
  • Large pot
  • Cooking spray
  • Wire clothing hanger (remove any cardboard or paper)
  • 3 Two-inch strips of burlap, (~24 in.)
  • 3 Blocks of rendered plain suet (available at local bird feeding store)
  • 9 Cups of bird seed
  • ½ Cup smooth or chunky peanut butter
  • Dried mealworms (optional)
  • Dried fruits and berries (optional)
  • Raffia bow (optional)
  1. Spray bundt pan with cooking spray. Take wire hanger and, with the pliers, make into a circle. Set aside.
  2. Melt the three blocks of suet in your large pot on very low heat, stirring frequently. It’s important that it does not boil!
  3. After the suet is completely melted, add the peanut butter to the pot and mix until melted.
  4. Remove the suet from the stove and slowly stir in the bird seed (and optional mealworms).
  5. (Optional – add berries and dried fruit to the bottom of the bundt pan)
  6. Use a measuring cup to fill bundt pan halfway with suet mixture.
  7. After the bundt pan is half-way filled with suet, add the wire hanger around the center of the pan. Fill the bundt pan with the remaining suet until the pan is full.
  8. Carefully place the full bundt pan in a cold place (like your Tri-State garage!) overnight.
  9. Once the mixture is completely hardened, flip the bundt pan over and gently tap on the pan to remove your wreath.
  10. Braid the burlap together and tie it around your wreath.
  11. Place raffia bow around the burlap and hang your suet wreath from a hook, feeder pole, or tree for your feathered friends to enjoy!

Preparing for School

1It’s August, and that means school is coming! For some this is an exciting time of shopping for new school clothes and supplies, but for some students anticipating a new school year can be stressful. As we say good-bye to the last few days of summer, check out our list of three steps to help your kids get off on the right foot this school year.

 

Create a Routine 

One of the worst parts of going back to school is getting back into the routine, but it doesn’t have to be. A few weeks before school starts, start preparing your family for their new routine by changing bedtimes and wake up times. On the first day of school, your kids (and you) will all be happier if you’re used to getting up and moving at the right time, and have had a good night’s sleep!

Get Organized and Prepared

2Make a list of the items your kids are going to need to be successful this year and then head to the store! Teachers will often send lists with needed supplies, but if not, you can’t go wrong with several notebooks, pens and pencils and other typical school supplies.

Talk it Out

Help your child battle their first day of school butterflies by talking to them and determining what is making them anxious. Do they know where their classroom is? If not, see if you can take them by their school and find their classroom together. Are they nervous about making new friends? Talk to them and give them some tips and tricks for how they can start talking to their classmates. Talking things through can often help relieve any stress or anxiety that your student might be feeling.

 

If you take advantage of these tips, the first day of school is going to be a breeze! For great tips and tricks for getting ready for school to getting organizes and gardening, check out our Pinterest page!