I keep the yarn long term projects, like sweaters and afghans in plastic coffee cans with a slit cut in the lid and pull the yarn from there. Since I have dogs and cats and kids and a husband, none of whom have any respect for my yarn, it keeps out hair, sticky fingers, spilled coffee/coke/milk and is very easy to clean up when company comes over. When I am going to the doctor, I slip a can with the project into a tote bag and I have something to do while I wait... and wait... and wait.
Knitting to keep my sanity. It's working... kinda...
OTN: Dr Watson's Cable Crew Neck
OTN: Writer's Cardigan