Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Home-Ec 101 by Heather Solos (Book Review)

Title: Home-Ec 101: Skills for Everyday Living
Author: Heather Solos
Publisher: Betterway Home

Home-Ec 101 by author and One2One Network Member Heather Solos shares tips and tricks for tackling the everyday challenges we find in the home.

Heather's advice is easy to apply and is written with the same witty style and attitude readers love on her blog, Home-Ec101.com. Charts, tips, sidebars and "Dear Home Ec 101" letters cover offer the tools you need to keep your home clean and in good repair.

The perfect manual for college grads to the more seasoned homemakers, this book has something to offer everyone. From the simplest how to's (ever meet a 20 year old who can't pre-heat an oven?) to how to be a fabulous host at your housewarming party, Heather's advice is relevant for homeowners and apartment dwellers of any age.

My thoughts: Let's start with the cover - who doesn't like this cover. Even though I wasn't alive in the 50's, it makes me think of an easier time, when family and home were really the center of life.  But past that, this book really would be a wonderful gift for anyone.  From the new high school or college grad getting ready to move out of the house, to the newlywed who has to start living with a spouse, or to the new parents who have the added responsibility of a baby. 

I don't fall into any of these categories and still found much in this book that I could use.  Growing up, I had 2 older sisters who did much of the cooking and cleaning.  By the time I was a teenager it was just my parents and myself and before I graduated high school my father had passed away so it was just me and my mom.  There isn't a lot of cooking and cleaning needed with just two people.  Many of the skills that I needed to run a home I had to learn after I moved out on my own.  They were learned because of necessity. 

I knew that I was going to like this book when she started out in the introduction stating "Going out is fine when it's a choice rather than an avoidance factor."  This cracked me up as I sat looking at the toys strewn so densely on the living room floor that you have to tiptoe to get through it!  She also clarifies the differences between cleaning, organizing and sanitizing.  My daughters have a hard time understanding that organizing is not cleaning!  (Yes - they are getting a copy of this book!)

As far as the cleaning goes, it is the largest section in the book.  It starts with the basics as to what the differences in cleaning supplies are to actually breaking down the chores by day, month, season - always with a sense of humor and without making you feel like a "dummy."  From there, laundry is tackled with a nice section on what to use to treat common stains.  It also gives you some quick fixes to minor garmet repairs.  And I would be remiss if I didn't add that the letters she includes from readers of her blog are hilarious! 

The last two sections cover minor home repair and cooking.  I generally leave the home repair to my spouse, but am going to keep this section handy so if (when) he gives up on something, I can come in an amaze him with my knowledge .  The cooking section I truly love.  Even after being away from my mom's house for 25 years, I still feel like a novice in the kitchen.  Now that my kids are of an age that they need to start learning, there are times I feel like I am learning right along with them.  She approaches the cooking like she has the other sections.  She breaks it down to the basics, talking about different basic things everyone should have in the kitchen, to explaining the difference between slicing and dicing and common cooking terms.   She even tells you what you should always have on hand in your pantry, and I can say mine looked pretty good!  By the way, did you know that you can tell whether your baking powder is still good by adding 1 t. to 1/2 C. of water?  If it is still active, it will bubble - otherwise, it is time to replace it.  This is the kind of neat tips that you get from Home-Ec 101. 

If you can't tell by my raving above, I really enjoyed reading this book and am going to enjoy sharing it with my daughters and their friends!

~I received a complimentary copy of this book from One 2 One Network in exchange for my review.~

Home-Ec 101: Skills for Everyday Living - Cook it, Clean it, Fix it, Wash it
Publisher/Publication Date: Betterway Home, Apr 1, 2011
ISBN: 978-1440308536

240 pages

1 comment:

bermudaonion said...

I need to get this for my son. He's living by himself for the first time.


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