My MSN home page held a great treat the other day...some very clever ideas from a website called Real Simple. That really piqued my interest as a Galleria Gal. One of the primary ideas behind the Galleria, since we love collectibles, is to re-use, re-purpose, and recreate...to find new usefulness for older items. To our grandparents this was a way of life...things simply weren't thrown away...they were adapted if possible. It's a good habit; we based the Galleria's whole theme on using treasures from the past.
This great website covers a wide range of ideas...the category touted on MSN was "new uses for old things". A lot of the ideas were children-oriented but so-o-o useable and practical!
Use a pair of dice and make finishing dinner a game: decide how many more bites of dinner your child has to eat before being excused. Let your child roll so he’s the one controlling his fate. You'll end up with a more peas-ful family meal. (My child psychology-oriented mother would have loved that one!!)
Use plastic Easter eggs year-round (and save on resealable bags) by filling them with snacks like crackers or Cheerios.
Use glow-in-the-dark stars to create a well-lit path your child/grandchild can follow from his room to the bathroom. Line up stars near the baseboard and make sure they get plenty of light during the day. You'll get fewer bumps or cries in the night. (This would be ideal for grandchildren who would not be as familiar with the route at grandma's!)
Pour a little paint into an empty baby food jar. Simplify paint touch-ups by pouring a few ounces of each new wall paint into a jar for when those times it’s needed to cover the inevitable nail holes and scuffs. (This makes so much sense I wish I had thought of it first!)
Use a binder clip to keep a windowblind cord out of reach of little hands (or paws). Just gather the cord up at a safe level and clasp. (This will disappoint your cats of course!)
Whip up a dog toy from three old towels. Cut an inch wide strip from a short end of two of the towels. Use one strip to tie the three towels firmly together at one end. Tightly braid them, then tie the other end with the second strip. (Nuff said! Although with our two German Shepherds I'll bet the toy would have a short life span!)
Use a ketchup bottle as pancake batter dispenser. Portion pancake batter with precision without the usual mess of transferring batter from the bowl. Squeeze out baby-size or plate-size rounds, or add Mickey Mouse ears to a batch of silver dollars. (I don't do the MM ears anymore, but this one makes sense any time!)
The web address is http://www.realsimple.com/. I thought it was a great find...I hope you'll mark it and drop in occasionally too!
Keep watching...some new items coming soon to the Galleria!