Yogurt, Word Choice, and NOT Following Instructions

The other day, I succumbed to advertising and bought a pack of yogurt for the promise of “Eat yogurt and then grow your own garden in the cup. Seeds included!”

Being a former marketing person I should have known better, but I digress… 

My five-year-old twins opened up their cups of yogurt, ate it like they hadn’t seen food in days, and then the begging began.


And now, I will share with you how NOT to write directions on how to plant seeds in yogurt cups. (Keep in mind I’ve got bouncing kids at my feet while I’m trying to decipher this bunch of crazy)

1. Remove the seed card attached to the Dan-o-nino cups.

Check. Not so hard to figure out not to feed my kids the plastic package with the seeds inside.

2. Give your child a delicious Dan-o-nino cup and then wash the cup.

Two issues here…

First, is the cup delicious? Silly me, I thought it would be the yogurt, but apparently not since there’s no mention of it.

Second, are they implying I give my kids the cup and then snatch it back, soap and water in hand?

3. Take the seed card out of the foil wrapper and soak the seed card in water for 2-4 hours.

Wow, so you’ve got the kid standing there with their delicious (and clean) cup and then you make them wait? Might have wanted to make this STEP ONE!

On a related note, you’ll be happy to hear that I read ahead and had this handled before we began.

4. Place the piece with seeds into an empty Dan-o-nino cup filled almost to the top with soil. Make sure the seeds are facing up! Then cover the seed card with about a quarter-inch of soil.

Wow, where do I begin with this one?

Let’s start with the empty cup filled with soil. Which is it? Empty? Or filled with soil?

Now onto the card facing up. I’m not a gardener, but I do know my way around a flowerbed. So, I’m looking at this soggy piece of cardboard and there is no indication of which way the seeds would like to face. I’m baffled, so I proceed to squeeze the card. Still no clue, but of course I don’t tell my kids this. I rip the card in half and they dutifully add it to their dirt-filled cups and cover it with soil.

Step five is actually understandable. It concerns sun and water amounts, and states that in one to two weeks we’ll see sprouts.

(I’ll let you know how the seed growth turned out. I’m guessing it’s going to be like the Sea Monkeys you could send away for back in the day. Anyone ever have any luck with those?)

So, now I’ll wrap this post back around to writing. In summary…check your work because word choice is essential!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on these instructions and any funny word choice moments you’ve come across.