Game Storage Solutions

A Facebook reader asked if I’d ever posted on game storage solutions and I realized that I haven’t. I do have a few tricks of my own and have founds some neat suggestions online as well.

I find it easiest to keep our nicer and/or educational games on bookshelves in the room where I keep our schoolbooks. This allows me to have a bit more control over them. We keep basic games like Sorry, Battleship and Twister on bookshelves in our upstairs hallway, where the kids can easily grab them. I do try and monitor them to put them back when they’re done. There’s nothing less enjoyable than walking in to a room and finding it covered with a half-doze different game sets scattered across the floor. (Can you tell, I’ve been there, done that?)

Card games and smaller games are easy to corral in plastic dish tubs or baskets. I pick them up at the Dollar Store. Someday, I’m going to build floor-to-ceiling shelves in this room and have doors on half of them to hide the games and such. Until then, I might keep my eye open for something like this GORGEOUS game room hutch to  make over.

I also make use of baby wipe containers and pencil cases for things like tanagrams, dominoes, magnetic letters, etc. I once picked up a dozen or so pencil cases at Walmart at a back-to-school sale for a quarter each. They are wonderful because they stack neatly on top of one another.

Here’s a similar storage solution for card games. I love how she taped the cover to the front of the box. You can also use plastic soap boxes as shown here.

However, I REALLY like the idea of having Scrabble tiles, dominoes and even marbles on display in jars like the below photo from Apartment Therapy. I have a few of the old-fashioned  Ball canning jars that would look nice on a shelf. I’ve even seen imitation, old-style canning jars at the Dollar Store that would work well.

Photo Credit http://www.apartmenttherapy.com

I’ve always taken puzzles out of the cardboard boxes and put the pieces in a heavy duty, zip top freezer bag. I cut the cover of the box and place it on top. I would then keep all the puzzles in a large plastic bin. We’re now out of the kids’ puzzle stage, so I don’t have a picture to show you. You can see an example of how I did it here ,though. I do prefer spending a bit extra for the bags with the actual zipper top as it’s easier to make sure they’re closed all the way. Otherwise, you’re likely to have pieces spilling out into the bottom of your tub. Of course, that can make for a nice sorting activity in and of itself!

Here is a super cute and creative idea from The Pleated Poppy. She’s using the same type of cart you’ll see Eleanor Joyce make over in November’s upcoming Laundry Room Digest.  It’s adorable!  I love old wire baskets. Right now I’m using one under my coffee table to store extra books.

This game board storage idea from Infarrantly Creative has been all over Pinterest and for good reason. It’s great! The boards make great art and I love how the pieces are hung neatly on the back.

So what about you? Do you have any great game storage tips?

 

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DIY Frozen Hashbrowns

We often like to have breakfast for dinner, or at least enjoy hashbrowns as our form of potatoes with dinner. I used to stock up when I would  find frozen hashbrowns for under $1 a bag. Sadly, I don’t seem to be finding them anywhere near that price anymore. Thankfully, it’s not too hard to make them yourself and you can save a lot of money by doing so.

I grew up working in restaurants and the leftover baked potatoes from dinner were always shredded and refrigerated to make the next morning’s hashbrowns. You can do basically the same thing to make your own frozen hashbrowns.

Baked potatoes work well when grated with a large grater or diced into squares. Lay the potatoes onto a cookie sheet to freeze, then pour into bags. Feel free to add salt, pepper or even onions and peppers if you like.

You can also blanch whole potatoes (cook until potato is heated through, but not cooked) and then shred. Or you can shred, then dip the shredded potatoes into boiling water for a minute or two. Once shredded, dry thoroughly before laying on a tray to dry.

I was a little lazy tonight and used a no-cook method. I shredded potatoes quite small (since they’re not partially cooked) then rinsed them well under cold water to remove the excess starch that can cause browning.

I couldn’t hold the camera and rinse at the same time, but I lifted the potatoes and rinsed well under the water. Then I patted the potatoes dry with paper towels and spread out on cookie sheets to freeze.

Finally, I broke up the frozen potatoes and placed in a freezer bag.

Fast, cheap, easy. Works for me! To see more Works for Me Wednesday tips visit We Are That Family.

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Molly Saves in the Dining Room

It’s a feast of frugality!

Make your dining room a more appetizing space without spending a lot of dough!

$4.95


Transforming your dining room doesn’t have to gobble up your budget. In Molly’s Money-Saving Digest Molly Saves In the Dining Room, learn how you can make your dining space more functional as well as more beautiful-for less! A simple but lovely room can make any dinner seem more special. But the Digest doesn’t stop at the dining table. You’ll find plenty of other advice to help you get the most out of your money and your time.

  • Find out what you should do this month to keep your home well-maintained.
  • Learn how to make the perfect gravy—it’s not as hard as you think.
  • Try a versatile chicken dish that’s quick to prepare.
  • Explore the pros and cons of pet insurance.
  • Give your children a crash course in grocery budgeting.
  • Learn how to create a carafe and glass for your guest bedroom or bathroom.
  • Read about natural ways to combat under-eye circles.
  • Discover which book Molly recommends for a new perspective on weight loss.

Our dining rooms are about much more than just eating. In these rooms, we not only nurture our bodies, but also our relationships. As we share a meal, we share our daily experiences, our thoughts, and our feelings. Fussy furniture and deluxe details are not required. A simple, casual space that can serve many functions—eating, playing board games, gathering for worship and devotions, hobbies—will make your dining room a place for family as well as food. This month’s Digest gives you the ingredients to create such a space in your home.

  • Go online for creative ideas for storage, decorating, and the coming holidays.
  • Follow Eleanor Joyce as she works to transform her dining space frugally and fast.
  • Consider a philosophy of true hospitality and how to foster it in your dining space.
  • Learn how to accommodate guests with food allergies.
  • Get tips on creating inexpensive tablescapes that look like a million bucks.
  • Be inspired to feed your family spiritually at the dining table.

Take a closer look at all the impressive features you’ll find in this month’s Digest:

  • This ’n’ That: Are you thinking of getting a new best friend? October is Adopt a Shelter Dog month. And here’s some sweet news: It’s also Cookie Month. Need to get your home ready for winter? Our to-do list will help.
  • Begin With the Basics: Good gravy! It’s not difficult when you know the basics. We take you step by step through the process and discuss your ingredient options.
  • Forms, Printables, & Links: The Internet has lots of good ideas for storage and décor in the dining room. Find inspiration for beautiful but inexpensive centerpieces, as well as printable place cards and other holiday helps.
  • Décor & More: Eleanor Joyce tells us how she discovered the meaning of the word “deadline” when she decided to redo her dining room in time for a graduation party. In just a week, she was able to do a whirlwind transformation, devoting more elbow grease than money to the project.
  • Meal of the Month: KerryAnn Foster serves up a versatile chicken meal that’s perfect for busy fall days. This quick dish can be easily changed to prevent boredom. Afterward, surprise your family with an easy and inexpensive pie that stars a favorite pair: peanut butter and chocolate.
  • Molly Saves! In the Dining Room: Create a welcoming dining room that meets your family’s needs and matches your taste, not someone else’s. Practicing patience along with frugality and creativity can help you get the furnishings and accessories you want at the right price.
  • Pet Care for Pennies: Do you need to purchase pet insurance? Sometimes, just one illness is enough to wreck a family’s budget, but buying insurance may be unnecessary. Dr. Tiffany Rule weighs the cost and potential benefits of pet insurance.
  • Tightwad Training Camp: This month, your children can learn about food costs, how to make a meal plan to fit a budget, and how to find the best bargains at the grocery store.
  • Something Old, Something New: Sharon White explains how you can turn two plain glass jars into a carafe and drinking glass for overnight guests. Just that small, thoughtful touch can make your guests feel more welcome.
  • Here’s to Your Health: With the prevalence of food intolerances and allergies today, it’s important to check with your dinner guests before you plan the meal. Our tips and advice on how to accommodate common food issues will help.
  • You’re a Natural Beauty: The holidays are a time of food, fun, and family, but they can also be a source of stress and tiredness, which may bring under-eye puffiness and dark circles. Molly offers up some natural remedies.
  • Molly Recommends: Do you struggle with your weight? Molly recommends a book that doesn’t give the typical weight-loss advice. Instead, the author shares her own journey from relying on food to relying on God.
  • Change One Thing This Month: The thrift store is a great place to look for dining room bargains. Need furnishings? Linens? Dishes? Molly shares tips and stories of some of her own thrift store finds.
  • Inspiration! Make your dining table a place that nurtures the soul as well as the body. Our Inspiration! column tells you how.
  • Directory of Links: For those of you who print and bind your Digests, you’ll have easy access to all of the fantastic links worth saving in the back of this issue. It makes your Digest easier to use!

See why homemakers love Molly’s Digest—see what’s inside!

See a sample here.

Every month, Molly has a wealth of information and support to share in one easy-to-read, handy resource! Discover for yourself all of the exciting and imaginative ideas Molly has to offer and wants to share with you—ideas that could save you big money and needless headaches!

You’ll glean some of the best inexpensive ideas and projects for everyday living that you can find, and be inspired to be self-confident, creative, and resourceful too.

Molly makes it fun and easier to be frugal! Think about it—with so much to learn and save, if you apply just one money-saving idea, you’ll recoup the cost of this E-Book right away!

Project Manager: Toni Riggs
Contributing Writers: Dena Wood, Eleanor Joyce, Sharon White, Patricia Hunter, Toni Riggs, Tiffany J. Rule, DVM, KerryAnn Foster
Publication: 2011
Pages: 60
File Size: 5.3 MB

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Every month, Molly has a wealth of information and support to share in one easy-to-read, handy resource! Discover for yourself all of the exciting and imaginative ideas Molly has to offer—ideas that could save you big money and needless headaches!
You’ll glean some of the best inexpensive ideas and projects for everyday living that you can find and be inspired to be self-confident, creative, and resourceful too.

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