This instructable will detail the brutally easy construction of an I-Spy bottle that you can make in 10 minutes without tools, put on a table, and enthrall kids for, well not an hour, but about 15-45 minutes per head. You might as well make one because it's extremely cheap and easy, and it's cheaper and more fun than an I-Spy book or game.
-A transparent water bottle (the older cylindrical ones work better than the new "eco" ones.)
-enough oats to fill a water bottle
-about 6 to 8 little trinkets (to or three bigger ones, and two or three smaller ones
-a word processor or type writer
-transparent or translucent tape
Step 1: Gather Trinkets
Everyone has them. Look at your work bench, your basement, your spare parts drawer. Wherever. Just remember it has to go in the top of the water bottle. I ended up with stuff like a hair barrette, a Philips bit, a die, polly pocket stuff, a marble, a rock, a paperclip, and a crayon tip.
Step 2: Type the List and Name
This is probably the easiest part. Go to Microsoft Word or whatever and type something like: "I-Spy Bottle" in about size 16 font. Then write up your items list in about size 10 font. The pictures show what it should look like typed up, and on the bottle.
Step 3: Take the Label Off of the Bottle
This is pretty self-explanatory. Take the label off of the bottle. If it is one of the new labels that leave the white things, (see picture below) just run them under hot water for a minute and most of it will come off. It doesn't need to be perfect.
Step 4: Start Filling the Bottle
Now, fill up the bottle with about one inch of oatmeal at a time. (I made a scoop and funnel out of old water bottles also, these helped a ton, but are too easy to make an instructable out of/have been made into an instructable. Please take notice.) At every inch or so, put one or two of your trinkets in the bottle. Repeat this step until all of your trinkets are in the bottle. (Don't fill your bottle too high, otherwise it can't be shaken, and the oats will never move around to reveal your trinkets.)
Step 5: Seal Bottle
Once it is all filled up, take about 1.5 ft of tape and just start wrapping it around the cap. This is to prevent kids from accidentally spilling oats everywhere. Once that tape is wrapped, tape the top twice with normal sized pieces of tape. Now take another 8 in. of tape and wrap it around the bottom of the cap so the tape is somewhat sealed to the bottle itself. In short, just tape it as much as possible with the strongest tape you have.
Step 6: Tape on Labels
Cut out the Labels and tape them over the part of the original label that you couldn't get off. Remember; the more tape, the better. It is well shown in the pictures below.
Step 7: Clean Up
You inevitably spilled some oats in the process of making this. Clean up and don't make mom/wife angry.
Step 8: Start Spying
You or someone else start looking for the things in the bottle. Happy spying!