Home economics

A Year Without "Made in China" -- One Family's True Life Adventure in the Global Economy

By Sara Bongiorni

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On January 1, 2005, Sara Bongiorni's family embarked on a yearlong boycott of Chinese products. They wanted to see for themselves what it would take, in will power and creativity, to live without the world's fastest growing economy—and whether it could be done at all.

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Reshaping It All: Motivation for Physical and Spiritual Fitness

By Candace Cameron Bure with Darlene Schacht

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"Millions first met Candace Cameron Bure when she costarred on the hit television series Full House. Today, she is that rare Hollywood working mom who maintains a normal life--no trainer, no nanny, no chef--and is outspoken about her Christian faith and how it has helped overcome certain obstacles...like a serious struggle with food. More than a biography, Reshaping It All is a motivational tool putting you on the right track toward a better physical and spiritual fitness regimen that really lasts."

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Miserly Moms: Living on One Income in a Two-Income Economy

By Jonni McCoy

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"This book will help you save thousands of dollars a year on everything from groceries to electricity--as well as reveal the hidden costs of holding a job and common money wasters. Practical, proven strategies, tips, and recipes will help you live frugally without feeling deprived."

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Cherries in Winter: My Family's Recipe for Hope in Hard Times

By Suzan Colón

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"What is the secret to finding hope in hard times? When Suzan Colón was laid off from her dream job at a magazine during the economic downturn of 2008, she needed to cut her budget way, way back, and that meant home cooking. Her mother suggested, 'Why don't you look in Nana's recipe folder?' In the basement, Suzan found the tattered treasure, full of handwritten and meticulously typed recipes, peppered with her grandmother Matilda's commentary in the margins. Reading it, Suzan realized she had found something more than a collection of recipes--she had found the key to her family's survival through hard times.

"Suzan began re-creating Matilda's 'sturdy food' recipes for baked pork chops and beef stew, and Aunt Nettie's clam chowder made with clams dug up by Suzan's grandfather Charlie in Long Island Sound. And she began uncovering the stories of her resilient family's past. Taking inspiration from stylish, indomitable Matilda, who was the sole support of her family as a teenager during the Great Depression (and who always answered 'How are you?' with 'Fabulous, never better!'), and from dashing, twice-widowed Charlie, Suzan starts to approach her own crisis with a sense of wonder and gratitude. It turns out that the gift to survive and thrive through hard times had been bred in her bones all along."

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A Mother's Book of Traditional Household Skills

By L.G. Abell

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In 1853, Mrs. L.G. Abell set down hundreds of domestic skills to be mastered with economy and grace by any woman wishing to run an efficient home. Light-years ahead of her time, Abell believed solidly in the virtue of the accomplished woman, one who is "skilled in the various arts of life, complete in her character, so constituted by her own industry and intelligence." While the arts of life may be defined rather differently today, the overall notion that "woman's work is never done" remains, and there is plenty of practical information here to aid any busy wife or super mom through her day including tips for marketing, cures for dozens of maladies from earaches to seasickness, how to remove stains, how to set a proper table, instilling good manners and behavior in children, and much more. Fun to browse through and an invaluable addition to any home, A Mother's Book of Traditional Household Skills will continue to please generations of mothers to come.


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Cutting Costs and Time--But Not Taste

Here’s a quick look at four cookbooks that offer very different takes on making the most of your food budget and your schedule. From true Brit to vegan to down home Southern, you’re likely to find that one of these books for cooks matches your palate and your wallet.

Ditch Your Cable

TV Is Dead. Long Live TV

In these lean times, we’re all looking for ways to cut household costs. You may be pondering whether you should ditch the cable TV or the broadband Internet to free up $50 a month. Take my advice and lose the cable. Heck, even if you aren’t in a financial pickle, go ahead and dump it. Your life will be better for it. Here’s why.

Saving Summer in a Jar: Preserving the Fruits of the Season

This is the time of year when delicious fruits and vegetables fill the homegrown gardens and bins at farmers' markets. An abundance of heirloom tomatoes, sweet corn and sweeter peaches make August the right time to practice the very rewarding work of preserving.