We found some pine cones and brought them home, but they are much too sticky to craft with.
Thanks to the magic of the interwebs, we are going to try this:
Drying & Opening Pine Cones
* Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spread pine cones across it in a single layer. Place the pine cones in the oven for 30 minutes or until the cones are fully opened and the sap has melted. Do not leave the oven unsupervised during this time, be alert for smoke or fire.
* Remove from oven and let them rest for a couple days before cutting or using in crafts.
* This drying process will kill any bugs and melt the sap due to the heat. There will be a natural sheen or gloss from the melted sap.
Hope it works.