Wednesday, May 26, 2010

the windless kite

My kids want to fly their kites on the quietest of days. Not the faintest hint of wind, hardly even a breeze. It doesn't matter how many times I explain that the kite needs the thrust of the wind to overcome gravity and lift off, they insist on dragging them out and tangling up the string into knots that I'll spend the rest of the summer untangling. So when all the neighborhood kids were at my house asking to play with the kites the other day, I pulled out a brilliant idea.


I gathered several plastic grocery bags from my recycling stash and grabbed some string. Tying the handles together with one end of the string, I made a loop on the other end for their little hands to hold on to. "Run!" I urged them. Run they did, and behind them flew their puffy white sacks like miniature Walmart blimps in the spring sky. You can't ask for better cheap thrills than that.



With the slightest forward motion, the force of the air through the billowing bags creates enough thrust to lift them instantly, even without a steady wind. We tied them behind bikes and scooters and let them fly themselves. Try it. It's quick and easy (and free) fun. Plus you're saving a few sea turtles by keeping your plastic bags out of the oceans. You'll be the greenest (and least tangled-in-a-mess-of-kite-string) mom on the block.

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11 Comments

11 Responses to “the windless kite”

Cat J B said...

Oh my, that is inspired! I'm going to have to add that to my arsenal.

Margo said...

I have been using the plastic bag kite for years... It never gets old.. Too fun!!

kimberly said...

This made me laugh...it is so great! ;)

Micha said...

I love the simplicity of this. I think kids enjoy those things so much more than the big crazy toys anyway.

My daughter will really enjoy this. I think I'll let her color them with sharpies first and make them "fancy."

Atticelf said...

LOL, that's great!

pollydove said...

Oh my gosh, what a truly genious idea! The photo of all the kids cracked me up! :)

Trimble said...

Trying this tomorrow!

Hillary (Mrs. Einstein) said...

What an absolutely brilliant idea! I'm definitely using it this weekend. Assuming the weather holds. :)

Kendra Goodrich said...

Great idea! I'm definitely going to have to try this one with my little guy!

Scented Sweetpeas said...

Fab! If you have any little plastic bags they make fab parachutes for dolls :-)

Laura said...

These pictures are priceless. Ha!

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