First Sign Of Spring

Up here in these parts -- in the North that is -- come March
we're on the lookout for robins.
Because when robins arrive,
usually Spring is chasing its tail feathers.

And when our little family sees our first robin,
it's time.

Oh you know the time.

Time to make our robin's nest treats.
{ A shout out to Alice who passed along this amazingly simple
yet fun idea a decade ago. We've been doing it since Maddie was little 
and the kids STILL get excited about it. }

 { The robin above is not my image -- found it on the world wide web. I spent 10 minutes searching for past pictures of robins of mine and couldn't find any. So then I went outside and looked for a real robin and couldn't find one because, well, 
I think she saw my camera and was a bit shy.
So I resorted to borrowing an image off the web. Thanks to www.allaboutbirds.org }

As an aside,
tradition is quite powerful, yes?

SO much so that the kids tell me OFTEN 
that last year we did NOT make the robin's nests.
SHAME ON ME.
And I guess it scarred them for life.
And perhaps, when they are pushing me around
the Botanic Gardens when I am 97 and unable to motor myself around,
they will still casually bring it up, that back in 2013 I failed them as a mother. 
Don't break tradition folks. 
Learn from my mistake.

And while we're at it, remind me to never make that mistake again.


So here's how you make a robin's nest.
Easy.
4 ingredients.
10 minutes max.
Very happy kids.
Unless they burn themselves on the piping hot chocolate.
Don't laugh. It's not pretty.

Now the good news is, 
you might not have seen your first robin yet this Spring
so you might still be able to start this tradition.

Please excuse the lousy photos that follow.
I just couldn't get my act together so this is what we got. 
Deal with it. Pretend I'm not a professional photographer.
Please.

Here's what you need:
1 package of blue eggs of some sort (go raid the Easter aisle at Target)

And then go over to the baking aisle and find two types of chips. 
Apparently, we do not like butterscotch chips anymore. 
And by we, I mean Maddie.
We do, however, like peanut butter chips.

And then fancy yourself one bag of chocolate chips.

And then one can/bag of chow mein noodles.
Meanwhile, have one of the kids fight with the wax paper roll to 
lay out some wax paper on the counter.
And then make a note to self to just do it yourself next year.
Because it never ends well.
It rips.
It curls up and frustrates the crap out of little ones.
They cut themselves on the little perforated knife thingy.
So again, just learn from me.
Do the wax paper bit yourself.

So then, find your stove and turn it on.
Put a pot on it and dump the two bags of chips in said pot.
Turn it up to eleven. 
{Or on high if you didn't get that movie quote.}

Once the chips are melted throw in the chow mein noodles and coat those well.

And then, pull the magic pot off the stove and grab two tablespoons
and if the kids are old enough, have them plop down the nests on the wax paper.
And then, somewhat quickly, find the blue eggs and push those into the nests.



And YOU will be a hero.
Guaranteed.
Because they really do look like a little robin's nest, don't they?

QUICK.
Run to the store.
Start a tradition.
Make some memories.

Double-dog-dare.

And in case you're wondering, 
Mr. Clean would NOT approve of this recipe.
But my guess is, he'd approve of the tradition behind the recipe.
He's groovy like that.
Or so I've made him out to be in my mind.

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