When I needed a toy that would be easy to throw and safe to catch, I remembered that I still had some really ugly ties — ties that I actually wore when I was younger. I filled the end of one with dry split peas, decorated it as a friendly snake, and the first Tie Pal was born. Now it's one of my favorite ideas. And since the wives of fellow teachers are eager to donate their husbands' old, ugly ties, I always have plenty of material to work with! There's no wrong way to make a Tie Pal, so your kids are guaranteed success. Plus, you can make your husband get a new tie!
Games to Play:
Tie Pal Catch
Roll up the Tie Pal in your hands and toss it underhand to a friend about 20 feet from you. Toss it in a large arc so the tail can unwind and flow through the air. After you catch the Tie Pal, take 1 step back. See how far you can get from your friend and still catch it.
Flying Tie Wind-up
Fold the Tie Pal in half and grasp it around the center fold. Swing it in a circle, next to your side. Release the Tie Pal after 3 swings, just as it reaches shoulder height. The momentum will send the Tie Pal flying about 30 to 60 feet. Be sure to check first for trees and ceiling fans!
Arrange 6 empty pop bottles in a V. Step back about 20 feet and wind up the Tie Pal (see above), releasing it just above the ground so that it sails forward toward the pins. See how many you can knock down in 2 throws.
Place a hula hoop or a box in your yard or a park and stand back about 200 feet. See how many tosses it takes to get the tie into the hoop. Try adding a few obstacles to go around or through. With a few boxes or hoops, you can set up an entire tie golf course.
Make an opening in the seam of the tie 6 inches or so from the large end and pour the split peas down into the tip.
To keep the peas from shifting around, seal off the end of the tie with a line of glue (insert your gun into the opening you made) or sew across the width of the tie. Glue the seam back together, as well as any other openings that would allow the peas to escape.
Use hot glue, googly eyes, felt, and other materials to create a snake face.