My readers remind me frequently that thinking outside the box can offer fun and creative solutions. I love how Beverly solved her problem -- a bathroom with no room for towel racks.
Hanging towels, not coats: Our new home's bathroom had no towel racks, and there wasn't a good place to mount them, either. I bought an inexpensive, metal, 6-foot coat and hat rack, then spray-painted it white. Now our towels have a place to hang, and it looks great.
-- Beverly, Colorado
Bath time meets beach time: When my kids were young, I purchased two beach towels for each of them to use at bath time. They loved the size, and two towels apiece worked well. While one was in use, the second was cleaned and stacked in the linen closet.
-- Karen, Virginia
Wrap up the cheese: We are cheese lovers, and I buy it in bulk. Often, the cheese starts to get moldy before we use it all. I started wrapping the cheese in wax paper and placing it in a zip-type baggie. Now, it stays fresh without any mold.
-- Charlotte, Massachusetts
Year-round sandbox: For a year-round sandbox, buy two different-size plastic kiddie pools. Put sand in the smaller pool. Flip the larger pool over to cover the samller one. We did this last summer, and the sandbox sat outside all winter, covered in snow. When we took the cover off in the spring, the sand was fine, and our daughter was able to play right away.
-- Beverly, New York
Shake the seeds out: When
-- Yolanda, Ohio
Cake decorating with shapes: My favorite way to quickly decorate a frosted cake is to take a cookie cutter, place it on top of the frosting and pour sprinkles inside the cookie cutter. When I lift the cutter off, I have a perfectly sprinkled design.
-- Nancy, Illinois
Ice chest odors: In the summer, I use my ice chest a lot. Sometimes it starts to smell. When I'm not using it, I place a bowl of charcoal inside and close the lid. The next morning, I remove the charcoal and clean the ice chest with warm soapy water. No more smells.
-- Claudette, Minnesota
Tarps for work and play: I use the big poly tarps, the ones available at home-improvement stores, for collecting yard trimmings. The tarps are large enough to hold the clippings, and the debris slides off easily into a yard bag. I also use these as a "slip-and-slide" for my kids. We anchor the corners of the tarp with tent pegs and turn on the garden hose with a sprayer. Lots of fun.
-- Mike, South Carolina
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