Gourd Pets

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On the heels of our Fall Friends, Travis wanted to decorate more little creatures to celebrate autumn. This time we turned gourds into patio “pets”, thanks to this cute suggestion from Barefoot Books‘ Kids Garden set.

We don’t have our own garden, so didn’t actually harvest our gourds, meaning we could skip the steps of cleaning them and leaving them to dry out for a few weeks (!). A quaint stop to purchase gourds at a farmstand did the trick instead. Still, because I knew he would love it, I told Travis we needed to clean the gourds before we could decorate them.

Add a little dish detergent to warm water and give your gourds a nice soapy scrub, then dry.

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From there, I simply placed a big pile of craft supplies in front of Travis and let his imagination take over. The older he gets, the more I love providing minimal direction and seeing what he’ll do.

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He was most into painting the gourds, and loved the way the brush worked on the different textures, i.e. our bumpy ones versus our smooth ones.

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There was also some fantastic color mixing going on; I loved the hues he made to go on our white gourd.

Because we were making them into pets, I asked Travis if the gourds had names. He quickly responded that they did, including Ranger and Radar. Several of the gourds then received glue and feathers, making them seem like fantastical birds.

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Googly eyes were the finishing touch before we set them aside to dry. Feel free to add other crafty items as well, such as ribbon, markers, or glitter.

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Once the paint and glue dry, find a spot for your “pets” in a garden or patio.

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Now enjoy them all season!

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