Thursday, August 28, 2014

5 DIY Toy Storage Ideas


My son tries, sometimes, to keep his play room from looking like something exploded in there :) I admit that I usually look in and just don't know where to begin. I put it off. We tell him he can't get out another toy without putting the last one away. We do the "turn on some music and clean it up in 10 minutes thing." We go into frenzy mode when I can't take it anymore, and my son chooses which toys will be donated.

What does your kid's play area look like? Is there a way to control the clutter? Even if cleaning up afterwards means there is still an unsightly mess?!

Well guess what? Apparently there is!!
 I was ecstatic when I received this guest post!! These ideas are easy to put into use, fairly inexpensive, and so much cuter than a hulking toy box. (You know the toy box that kids fall into just searching for that tiny toy that's at the very bottom?! Or better yet can't find it, but know it's in there and must empty the entire contents, and then produce the smallest, most bizarre, missing toy part, that was indeed in there. Then, of course, there's the mess on the floor which now has to be cleaned up. Who's going to do that?!)

Uh, yeah, obviously we are in need of some toy storage ideas and so on to the post :)
I received no monetary or product compensation for this post....just some good ideas and a blog post :)
Terri


Free up space and avoid clutter in kids’ rooms by increasing the amount of toy storage available. More storage allows kids to be better organized with their personal belongings and creates a more functional area for them to play and grow. Avoid toy takeover and reclaim space with these innovative do-it-yourself (DIY) storage ideas.



Mounted Boxes 

 Make use of vertical space by mounting wooden boxes to the walls. This storage solution is ideal for kids’ bedrooms lacking floor area. Opt for light-weight boxes and attach using hooks or wall mounts. Choose bright colors and fun designs to complement the current décor of the room. Before mounting, consider installing wall boxes at the appropriate height to suit the children’s reaches.

Floor Baskets 

Add baskets to the bedroom floor for a simple and quick solution to store all kinds of toys. Opt for light-weight, child-friendly styles without pointed edges. Alternatively, choose portable styles with handles and wheels. For an affordable and fun DIY option, cover plastic laundry baskets with durable printed fabric and secure at the bottom of the baskets using a staple gun.

Vintage Crates 

Soda crates with bottle dividers are ideal for sorting smaller toys such as building blocks, figurines and puzzle pieces. Find vintage crates at flea markets or purchase from a home décor retailer. Personalize by painting, adding decals or labels. Finish by fastening swivel wheels on the bottom to make them portable and easy to roll under the bed when playtime is done.

Bucket Ottoman 

Create an ottoman seat using a galvanized bucket, MDF board, fabric and foam. Sit the bucket on the MDF and trace a 1-inch outline around the rim to create a circular seat shape. Cut out the shape using a jigsaw, then use as a template to cut the foam. Stick the foam and MDF together using a spray adhesive and upholster with a durable, printed fabric. Pull the fabric taut over the foam side then fasten on the flip side using a staple gun. The ottoman doubles up as toy storage and seating for kids.

Hanging Bathroom Baskets 

Keep kids’ bathtub toys organized using kitchen-style hanging baskets. This is another great use of the vertical space in an area with limited storage. Choose a three-tiered basket in order to maximize the amount of storage available. Suspend from the ceiling using an eye-hook and screw anchors. Hanging baskets also double as storage for kids’ bathroom products such as bubble bath and loofahs.


If containing kids clutter is too challenging, consider a complete toy overhaul. Alternatively, look for a new home with a dedicated rumpus room just for kids or larger bedrooms for enhanced playing space.
(Author: Emily Creswick of Zillow)


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Zucchini Bites


My friend was using the toaster oven at work to make this tasty and healthy snack, so I tried some out at home to use up a big hunk of zucchini before it went to waste.

We've had a stellar zucchini crop from our garden this year! I've had plenty to share, made stuffed zucchini, zucchini bread, sauteed as a side for dinner, and am going to try some zucchini lasagna. These little zucchini bites bake (or broil) up fast with less mess and grease than the fried version.

Ingredients:


  • Zucchini, sliced 1/4 to 1/2" thick
  • Olive oil or olive oil spray
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese, finely grated (I combined Mozzarella and Parmesan)
  • Garlic salt
  • Pepper
  • Parsley
  • Marinara or salsa for dipping, optional

Putting It Together:

  1. Lightly grease a pan (or foil lined pan for easy clean up) with olive oil.
  2. Arrange zucchini slices on pan.
  3. Drizzle zucchini slices with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic salt and pepper.
  4. Sprinkle on cheese and top with parsley.
  5. Bake at 400 degrees for about 12 minutes or broil on high for 5 minutes (just long enough for the cheese to get wonderfully browned and bubbly.) 
  6. Serve with a side of marinara or salsa for dipping if desired :)
Mine was a giant zucchini, so I cut the slices into quarters
 and cut out the seedy center.

Ready for the oven after lightly sprinkled with cheese.....YUM!!
Mr. Dramatic showing you just how good it is,
 and that he can eat it in one bite ;)

What are your favorite fresh produce recipes? Any zucchini favorites?

Thanks for stopping by,
Terri

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