Every kid loves a funny pancake. But when the tots start craving artistic expression under the maple syrup, they don’t whine for the cutesy flowers and butterflies pushed by overpriced cookware catalogs. And doing three-circle Mickey Mouse heads gets boring. Nope, what they want—depending on their obsession of the moment—is the outré stuff, like diggers and spiders and penguins in tiaras. And that’s a tall order first thing in the morning, with nothing but a batter-dripping wooden spoon at your disposal.

Enter your breakfast hero, Dave Spencer, over at the nifty how-to site Instructables. Using a Ziploc bag, Spencer fashions what is essentially an instant pastry bag by snipping off one corner. The pancake batter goes in, and as depicted in handy step-by-step photos, every crazy shape your kids can imagine is just a squiggle away.

One savvy commenter even suggests making the batter right in the bag—especially easy if you’re using a mix. Others suggest a judicious drop of food coloring to make red hearts for Valentine’s Day or green shamrocks for St. Patrick’s Day. Writes another, “[Y]ou know, i haven’t really eaten breakfast yet, and i think i might be able to pull off a pancake Jesus…I’ll get back to you.”

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