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Getting Ready for Spring- Yes, Spring!

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It may be cold outside and snow may still be in the forecast, but spring is just around the corner — at least that’s what the calendar says. So what better time — when you’re stuck inside the house — to think about spring activities such as gardening, getting things organized, and other household projects. What better time to get prepared, make lists, and think about what you would like to do.

The Portage County District Library is here to help you, as we have a number of titles in our collection to help you out with such tasks. Here is just a small sample:

10-Minute Kid Clutter Control: Hundreds of Proven Tips Even Kids Can Do! by Rose R. Kennedy. If you long to see the floor, bed or any other surface in your child’s room; if you live in fear of guests on Grandma breaking their necks by tripping on cars, blocks, shampoo bottles, and the like, help is at hand. Yes, you really can teach kids how to pick up after themselves. As this book will show, it can even be fun. And it only takes a few minutes, so kids won’t get grumpy or bored.

Christopher Lowell’s One-of-a-Kind Decorating Projects: Fast & Flexible Ways to Personalize Your Home by Christopher Lowell. Do you want a designer look for your home right now, for no money? Christopher Lowell hears you. The king of “let’s don’t and say we did” is at it again with more than fifty super-simple decorating tricks from the designer’s little black book. One glance and you’ll be inspired to make your home feel like you—modern, fresh, and in sync with today’s busy lifestyle.

Down & Dirty: 43 Fun & Funky First-Time Projects & Activities to Get You Gardening by Ellen Zachos; photography by Adam Mastoon. Zachos’s broad range of creative projects encourages would-be gardeners to discover the joys of getting down and dirty. There’s something for every taste, from planting a tree to designing a small stonescape to starting a strawberry bed. The projects teach fundamental skills and give beginners the confidence to keep learning. Taken together, they are the building blocks of a beginner’s course in planting, designing, and creating. Gardening is really as easy as that. Spend a few weekends on fun projects that brighten up the home and backyard and learn basic gardening skills in the process.

Easy Home Organizer: 15-Minute Step-by-Step Solutions by Vicki Payne. Are things at home out of hand? Is the thought of putting things in order just overwhelming? With these simple, quickly implemented solutions, life can become less stressful and the messy habits of a lifetime will disappear along with the chaos. The focus is on the little things that make a big difference like not having to search for the car keys at the last minute and the book is as organized as the house will be when you’re through: it begins with advice on assessing the accumulated junk and eliminating the excess, and moves on to shopping for containers, applying clutter strategies, labeling jars and boxes, and creating a proper place for everything, room by room. The ideas are smart and attractive.

Get Organized the Clear & Simple Way: Reclaim Your Home, Your Office, Your Life by Marla Dee. Thousands of professional organizers have been trained by Marla Dee, Founder of Clear & Simple. Now you can bring this seasoned expert’s skills into your home for less than the cost of a consultation. Restore freedom, order, and clarity to your home, your office, and your life. Follow the unique Clear & Simple solution and find that organizing can be fun and easy.

Powerhouse Plants: 510 Top Performers for Multi-Season Beauty by Graham Rice; photography by Judy White and Graham Rice. Gardeners, like everyone, are too short on time and money to waste either on plants that only look good for a few weeks. You want hardworking, eye-catching plants that provide beauty for multiple seasons. You want powerhouse plants — plants with colorful spring flowers and summer fruits, or summer fruits and fall foliage, or summer flowers, fall foliage and winter stems or any combination of two or more of these desirable features. Like flowering dogwood that boasts summer flowers and fall fruit and foliage. Or honeysuckle that has fragrant spring flowers, summer and fall foliage, and fall fruit. This title features multi-seasonal perennials, annuals, groundcovers, vines, shrubs, and trees. Profiles include basic plant information, including size, hardiness, and preferred growing conditions. With this indispensable guide in hand, you can leave the slacker plants behind and get the most of your money and landscape.

Rocks, Dirt, Worms & Weeds: A Fun, User-Friendly Illustrated Guide to Creating a Vegetable or Flower Garden with Your Kids by Jeff Hutton. Let writer and gardener Jeff Hutton show you and your kids how to grow your own food and your favorite flowers, attract butterflies, create crafts, and more. Teach your children how to start garden seeds indoors as well as how to prepare soil, plant seeds, and transplant seedlings. Additionally, there are over a dozen fun recipes and instructions for making stepping stones, decorating egg carton planters, planting a sunflower maze, and much more. Parents and children are sure to have a blast in the garden all year round.

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