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Holiday Bird Houses

Holiday Bird Houses

Make these for Grandma, Mom, or anyone who loves birds!

By FamilyTime

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When kids have a hand in making a gift, it's more appreciated than ever. These bird houses, which can be simple or more complicated, are great gifts for nearly anyone on your list. Best of all, they are fun to decorate.

How to Begin
Small, plain wood bird houses are easy to find at large craft stores. They don't cost much and come in a few different styles. If you or your mom or dad is good at building, you could even make them at home with a few wood-working tools.

Decide if the bird house will be used outdoors or will be decorative and kept inside. If the former, buy good-quality craft paint and plan to decorate it with items that can withstand the weather.

If you hope to attract birds, don't decorate it with too much finery. Birds like to nest in simple, unobtrusive structures that don't stand out. This means no bright colors or shiny decorations.

If the bird house will be ornamental, meant to grace a mantle or holiday table, the sky is the limit. It's fun to buy small wreaths, glittery paint, and small forest creatures to decorate the houses.

Let's Decorate!
Find a good work surface and cover it with plastic or newspapers. The kitchen table or a long counter works well. Set out the paints and brushes first.

Paint the bird houses carefully. If you plan to trim them in a different color, use a small brush that will allow you to keep straight lines. If you mess up a little, remember it's just a bird house!

You could paint the house to resemble a barn, or your family's own house. How about recreating Grandma's house? Or a country cottage, farmhouse, or city brownstone?

Let the paint dry completely. This means leaving the bird houses, undisturbed, for at least 24 hours. The paint may feel dry before then, but don't take a chance.

Use craft glue to affix sparkles, grasses, small decorations and other ornaments. Hold the decorations against the house before you glue -- you don't want to make a mistake.

A small wreath glued around the bird house door is adorable, or you could insert brown grasses in it that tuft out of the door. Consider a little "snow" on the roof or a Santa near the chimney.

Have fun painting and decorating the bird houses. The only thing that is more fun is giving them as gifts!

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