Thursday, March 09, 2017


It's not all fantastic fiction here in blogland, sometimes we like to get a little dirty out in the garden (and listen to an audiobook!), make our own clothes (while listening to an audiobook!), do some repairs around the house (while listening to get the idea), and even make our own darn shoes (audiobooooook!).

Well, have I got some DIY handbooks for YOU! Now, I know what you're thinking, internet friends, "isn't it easier to just YouTube that?" Sure, there's an instructional video online for just about anything--from A-Z (surviving an atomic apocalypse to surving a zombie apocalypse)! It's OK, I feel you. I successfully changed my own headlights last year in the Auto Zone parking lot with just my phone and a YouTube video.

But there's just something about having a handy how-to guide in your hot little hands to get you motivated to take on a project, or inspire you to create and do cool things with your wits and bare hands.You know what won't happen while you spend hours sitting on the couch, scrolling through smoothie recipes on Pinterest? You won't bump into a neighbor doing the same thing. A neighbor, IRL, you can look at and talk to about your mutual affection for smoothie making! It's a wonderful feeling. So, crawl out of your bunker and browse the many DIY offerings on hand at your neighborly neighborhood library.

Week-by-Week Vegetable Gardener's Notebook

I have never gardened before this year, and now I want to plant all of the things. The potential for failure is high!  But this book is giving me life.
The organization of the book is fantastic, and while I don't love spiral bindings on the shelf, it makes it easy to lay the book flat near your pots and dirt for hands-free planning. Frankly, the cover has so much information on it, you hardly even need to open it.

Salad Days: Recipes for delicious organic salads and dressings for every season

Now that I have my garden all planned out, I need to have a plan for all those little leafy greens I'll be harvesting. This book is basically all about tasty dressings because "salad recipe" is usually "take pile of leafy things, add dressing". But where does dressing come from if not a bottle? Fear not, this book solves that age-old mystery. These are some crazy, year-round, all season salads too. I mean, "Sauteed Fiddlehead Fern and m√Ęche salad"? STOP. Eating ferns? I thought ferns were just for looking!
Finally, an end to the tyranny of dressing in bottles!

Custom-Make Your Own Shoes and Handbags

This book is BANANAS, you guys. It shows you how to use an old pair of shoes to create a plaster last (shoemaker term for foot shaped plaster thing), and shows how cast a last from your foot. Those shoes will be custom fitted to your exact foot. Imagine! I almost can't. Then as if that isn't enough information, this book shows you how to make handbags. Of course you could do what the author does and make shoes and a bag to match every dress, or not, because that's a little insane.

If you want to brew your own beer, but you want to break all the rules in doing so, this is your guide. Beer brewing is serious business. When those things explode you'll know what I'm talking about. Your viral GIF recipes aren't going to tell you what to do if your pilsner's popping in the wrong way.
You can't spell PAIN without I.P.A

And finally, Roughing it Easy

With quite possibly the greatest title ever it isn't hard to imagine why this classic remains on the shelf. It's chock-full of the most useful tips (with illustrations!) one could ever need should they find themselves in the unfortunate situation of having to scramble eggs on a rock. You should really, really check this book out.

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