My family loves to play board games: Monopoly, Uno, Scrabble, Candy Land, Pictionary… you name it, we play it. The problem is, all of the games seem to love playing with each other, too.
Open up the Monopoly set and you’re guaranteed to find a short bank. That’s because half of the money is probably stuffed into the Candy Land box – or in a tub full of legos.
If you, too, are finding that disorganization is derailing game night at your house, it might be time for a game closet makeover.
Here are six tips for putting some order back into your game playing fun, thanks to Alison Deyette, a lifestyle expert and author of the blog Ali on the Go.
#1. Store Games in an Easily Accessible Location
Keep all your games in one place, such as a closet or storage ottoman. If you don’t have the closet space for a designated area for family games, consider storing your games near the TV in an ottoman with a lift-off top, or in a large trunk or storage bin. That way, it’s easy to get to a game when the family is looking for something to do together, or when your favorite show is over.
#2. Assign Shelves in the Game Closet
Designate each shelf in the family game closet for a particular game category. With separate shelves for word games, party games and active games without a box, everyone knows where each game goes and clean up is quick and easy! Consider keeping games for the little ones on lower shelves so they can grab them on their own for spontaneous play at any time. (Note from Mara: I think this “grab them on their own” thing has caused our problems, unfortunately.)
#3. Store Games Side by Side
To ensure games are easy to see and grab from the shelf, store board game boxes side by side vertically, similarly to books on a bookshelf. This way, every game is easily accessible and you don’t have to worry about trying to pry one game from the middle or bottom of a stack.
#4. Find a Place for Small Game Pieces
Want to ensure you never lose those Scrabble tiles or Monopoly houses again? Use plastic tote boxes to store smaller playing items like these, as well as dice, timers and pawns. You can also use a fishing tackle box to keep all the tiny pieces separated and safe between Family Game Nights.
#5. Create a Binder to Store Game Directions
Place the directions from each game in a clear sheet protector. Alphabetize the sheets by the name of the game so directions are easy to find when you need a reminder about who goes first in The Game of Life or how much money each player starts with in Monopoly.
#6. Find Time in Your Busy Schedule for Family Game Night
Plan ahead to make sure you’re completely organized before everyone sits down at the table for Family Game Night. Determine which games you’re going to play ahead of time and set everything out in advance to increase excitement for the big night.
And don’t forget – if your lack of organization has already rendered your Monopoly set useless, you can recycle it for free right now, thanks to Hasbro’s Game Recycling Event.
Do you find your games like to play with each other, too. Or have you managed to keep them in tip-top shape? What are your best tips for keeping game-time fun and organized at your house?