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spring cleaning

We librarians here at Provo City Library have been abuzz about Marie Kondo's 2014 book, THE LIFE CHANGING MAGIC OF TIDYING UP, the #1 New York Times best seller that has been inspiring people to declutter their homes so much that thrift stores across the nation have been flooded with donations.

If you’re like us and you’ve been inspired by the Konmarie method, or you’re simply raring to tidy up, improve your home, and prepare for a busy summer ahead, check out our librarians' favorite home care books!

Breanne recommends:

100 things100 THINGS EVERY HOMEOWNER MUST KNOW
by Gary Wentz 
(2015)

This is an invaluable book for anyone who owns their own home and wants to care for it properly.  It covers all areas of your home, including things from how to keep your faucets drip-free, to growing the best lawn on the block, to preparing your home before you go on vacation.  It also includes easy repairs for appliances, plumbing, flooring, walls, furniture, driveways, and more.

 

 

Shaina recommends:

home comfortsHOME COMFORTS: THE ART AND SCIENCE OF KEEPING HOUSE
by Cheryl Mendelson
(1999)

This book is a great reference, and, because I'm kind of strange, I'll also sit down and read it for fun sometimes.  The writing is surprisingly engaging, and HOME COMFORTS includes thorough instructions for caring for just about every aspect of the home (including deciphering those little hieroglyphics on clothing tags).  Relying on thorough research, Mendelson describes not only how to keep house, but the scientific and historical reasons for why we do.  Since the author is a lawyer, she even includes a section on laws that might affect homeowners.  You'd be hard pressed to come up with a question about housekeeping that this book doesn't answer. 

 

Rikki recommends:

lawngoneLAWN GONE! LOW-MAINTENANCE, SUSTAINABLE, ATTRACTIVE ALTERNATIVES FOR YOUR YARD
by Pam Penick
(2013)

If you hate mowing the lawn as much as I do, LAWN GONE! is the book to alleviate your woes. While short, it is considerably broad in range, spanning the pros and cons as well as tips and tricks for a yard with little to no lawn. Whether you have a small or large yard, are looking to replace grass with gravel or mulch, flower beds, garden space, shrubs, or sitting areas, the ideas in this book are sure to inspire. I particularly found the numerous color photos, before and after examples, and lists of regional plant recommendations to be particularly useful for a novice landscaper like myself. 

Breanne recommends:

dinnerreadyDINNER IS READY! A COMPLETE GUIDE TO FREEZING 30 MEALS IN JUST ONE DAY!
by Deanna Buxton
(2007)

This amazing book is a quick read, as about a third of the book talks about how to actually get everything done in one day, and the rest is filled with 150 recipes. I especially liked the recipes because they are quick and easy to do - you won't find too many with more than 5 or 6 ingredients and steps. I pared it down to 10 meals for my first trial-run. I spent about $50 on the groceries, two hours in the kitchen, and packed 9 meals away in the freezer (we ate the 10th that night). I actually found the process kind of fun, and the tips and guidelines she gives in the instructional part of the book really did help a lot as I put this all together. Plus, what I've eaten so far was yummy!

 

 

Shaina recommends:

organichouseORGANIC HOUSEKEEPING: IN WHICH THE NONTOXIC AVENGER SHOWS YOU HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH AND THAT OF YOUR FAMILY, WHILE YOU SAVE TIME, MONEY, AND, PERHAPS, YOUR SANITY
by Ellen Sandbeck
(2006)

I look at this as the nontoxic equivalent of Mendelson's HOME COMFORTS book.  Sandbeck points out that we use harsh chemicals so often in our homes that they are actually more polluted than the outdoors.  In our obsessive effort to rid our homes of germs, we have actually compromised our immune systems and created "super bugs" that are resistant to disinfectants or antimicrobial medications.  Sandbeck discusses how to prevent messes as well as clean them, and she offers a few green, nontoxic formulas to replace traditional cleaners.

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