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The companion to Smart Housekeeping!

Smart Housekeeping
Around the Year
An Almanac of Cleaning, Organizing, Decluttering,
Furnishing, Maintaining, and Managing Your Home,
With Tips for Every Month and Season

By Anne L. Watson

General Info
Sample Text

In this expansive companion to Smart Housekeeping, Anne L. Watson presents tips on cleaning, organizing, decluttering, furnishing, maintaining, and managing your home, as you’d face those tasks around the year. Travel with Anne through the calendar as she deals with every aspect of keeping the things around you just the way you want them. New homemakers will gain skills and perspective, while even veterans will find unique tips and insights. All delivered with a wit and frankness not seen in housekeeping books since the days of Peg Bracken.

Anne’s almanac also features the return of her photogenic family of felted mice. After their brief introduction in Smart Housekeeping, Lady Mouse and the rest now return, joined by even more critters, to help Anne illustrate many of her tips and add a touch of whimsy for readers’ delight.

Anne L. Watson is the author of several soapmaking manuals, a cookie cookbook, a book on “living apart together,” and many literary novels. She is also retired from a long and honored career as a historic preservation architecture consultant. Anne and her husband, Aaron Shepard, live in Friday Harbor, Washington.

Shepard Publications
Ebook ~ 2017
Paperback ~ 2017

Amazon | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Amazon AU
Barnes & Noble | IndieBound | Book Depository

Book cover: Smart Housekeeping Around the Year


A New Start

First Impressions
Living Rooms
Home Systems
Thoughts about Clutter: Why Keep Things?
The Mice Step Out! January Fun

Dining Rooms
Dining Room Design and Use
Dining Room Arrangement
Dining Tables
Dining Chairs
Serving Carts
Centerpieces and Candles
Housekeeping Talk
Thoughts about Clutter: Instant Housekeeping
The Mice Step Out! Valentines and Puppets

A Place to Rest?
Shopping for Bedding
Bed Frames
Buying a New Mattress
Mattress Types
Mattress Care
Comforters and Featherbeds
Bedside Tables
Chests of Drawers
Household Management
Thoughts about Clutter: Selling and Donating
The Mice Step Out! A Visit from the Grandmice

Outdoor Housekeeping with the Seasons
Outdoor Furniture
Ladder Safety
Thoughts about Clutter: Safe and Sound Disposal
The Mice Step Out! The Children's Birthdays

Work Rooms
Craft Rooms
Home Office Furnishings and Design
Home Office Organization Books
Papers and Filing
Caring for Furniture
Thoughts about Clutter: "Pull Dates"
The Mice Step Out! The Mouse Public Library

Kids' Rooms and Playrooms
Toy Storage Solutions
Just Shut the Door?
Housekeeping with Pets
Training Pets
Pets' Belongings
Keeping Your Pet Healthy
Pet "Accidents"
Cleaning Floors
Flooring Materials
Floor Care Tools
Thoughts about Clutter: School Clutter
The Mice Step Out! A Trip to the Farmers' Market

Bathroom Design and Organization
Cleaning Bathrooms
Bathroom Ventilation
Towel Bars
Interior Painting
Thoughts about Clutter: Bathroom Clutter
The Mice Step Out! Going to the Lighthouse

Laundry Day
Collecting and Storing Laundry
Laundry Room Tips
Summer Laundry
Care of Laundry Machines
Safe and Healthy Housekeeping
Thoughts about Clutter: Why Is Clutter?
The Mice Step Out! Summer's End

Built-In Storage
Storage Furniture
Basements, Attics, and Garages
Yard Sales
Storage for Others
Storage Tools
Special Storage Problems
Special Storage Needs
Cleaning and Cleaners
Cleaners, Natural and Otherwise
Handheld Cleaning Tools
Thoughts about Clutter: Storage and Clutter
The Mice Step Out! Apple Picking

Guest Rooms
Setting Up a Guest Room
Preparing for Guests
What to Provide Guests
Information for Guests
Childproofing for Visitors
Holidays and Occasions
Storing Holiday Items
Mistakes to Avoid with Gifts to Kids
Thoughts about Clutter: Holidays and Clutter
The Mice Step out! The Mice's Halloween Celebration

Work Zones and the "Kitchen Triangle"
Countertop Housekeeping
Countertop Materials
Kitchen Tables
Garbage Disposals and Garbage Cans
Major Kitchen Appliances
Kitchen Tips
A Few Recipes
Easy Handcrafted Gifts
Thoughts about Clutter: Countertop Clutter
The Mice Step Out! Storytelling

Kitchen Storage
Kitchen Storage Units
Small Appliances
Smart Marketing
Thoughts about Clutter: Clutter in the Cabinets
The Mice Step Out! The Mice's Holiday

Sample Text

Housekeeping has gotten a bad rap. Somehow, the subject has shrunk to discussions of clutter control and cleaning, a bit like when your mom told you to pick up your room.

But that’s the dull part. Necessary, of course—I wrote a book, Smart Housekeeping, that’s mostly about getting to a state of order. But housekeeping is no more about clutter control than gardening is about weeding. Yes, you have to do some of both—but why stop short of the interesting stuff?

Housekeeping is making yourself comfortable in your home, whatever that takes. A lot of housekeeping is about what you do, and why you do it, after you’ve taken care of the obvious chores. How do you set up a guest room? Unclog a sink? Keep garbage odors out of the kitchen? Arrange toy storage so that the kids will use it on their own? What’s the best way to wash a family quilt? To be safe on a ladder? To choose appliances?

Housekeeping isn’t just housework—it’s setting the stage for your whole life at home—which includes play, enjoyment, and creativity.

This book is arranged as an almanac because the more skilled housekeeping tasks tend to follow the calendar. We do what we need to for seasonal celebrations, and we try to get the weather on our side when we paint a room, air dry a comforter or get the carpets steam cleaned. Other tasks and concerns are less linked to the seasons, but also don’t need to be revisited often, once you’ve arranged things to please yourself. So considering them on an annual basis is probably about right. You may want to use this book as much as a reference as a read-through, especially if your seasons are different from mine, or even nonexistent.

Smart Housekeeping featured felted white mice, at least on the cover. As mice will do, they have now taken over the house, and are shown throughout this book, doing their chores, handling household crises, and entertaining other small animals. And they “step out” each month, enjoying adventures together and just having fun.

I recommend that for all of us.

Anne’s Housekeeping Books

Book cover: Smart HousekeepingBook cover: Smart Housekeeping Around the Year

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