Just discovered something fun.
Now, as a rule, we try not to throw anything away. If it can be used, or fixed, or used for something else, I keep it. This often leads to...piles.
But anyway, one thing I generally just toss (when the boys aren't looking--Gibbie, like me and my father before me, will take anything he deems useful right out of the trash) is markers without caps. We have an abundance of markers, and once the cap is gone, even if we may find the cap a few hours or days later, the marker is a goner. It was a pet peeve of mine as a kid, going through the marker box, looking for a good marker of a certain color, and keeping finding dried-up markers, or mashed tips. I remember coloring layers on layers, trying to get a good look, from a dry marker that just didn't have the juice anymore. It occurred to me years later, that I might as well just throw away a dry marker as soon as I find it, as no one will ever want to color with it, and there is really no fixing it.
Well, this morning I found one good use for a dry marker! When watercoloring, as the child's interest in painting begins to wane, hand her a dried-up, capless marker! The moisture on her paper wicks pigment out of the-otherwise infuriating marker. Depending on how wet the paper is, it may also bleed in cool patterns. Fun is had by all.
Now throw away the marker.
**Okay, read the great ideas in the comments!**