Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Can you sew a button?
Last night, I went to a book-launch party for How To Sew A Button…And Other Nifty Things Your Grandmother Knew. My friend Erin Bried wrote it after she mistakenly made a Swiss chard pie instead of a rhubarb pie and realized she’d forgotten some important things her grandma had taught her, like identifying vegetables in the produce aisle.
Her granny’s gone, so she interviewed ten others and got their tips on cooking, cleaning, saving, loving, looking good and lots more. The result: a supremely helpful, witty book packed with the kind of homespun wisdom everyone could use. I actually do know how to sew a button, but am otherwise domestically challenged. Like, this weekend, Sabrina polished an upholstered chair along with her nails. My solution: douse an old toothbrush with nailpolish remover and scrub the fabric. Dis-as-ter. My next solution was to flip the cushion over. I’m big into cheating.
Come to think of it, maybe I should start reading the book to the kids at bedtime. Curious George? Feh. They will be much better children if they’d only learn how to make the house smell great (simmer cinnamon sticks, cloves and lemon or orange peel); unclog a drain (sprinkle one-half cup baking soda down the drain, follow that with ½ cup white vinegar, let it fizz for 15 minutes, then pour in hot boiling water); de-squeak a polyurethaned wood floor (sprinkle talcum powder into the cracks); and brew their own beer. There’s also a handy guide to folding a fitted sheet, but I think I’ll be OK if the kids don’t do that though, hmmm, that would be excellent occupational therapy for Max. (You can see Erin do a video demo here).
This book would make a nice present for a friend or relative. And if you get it for yourself and make some homemade beer, or your kids do, save some for me.
Got any great tips to share that you've learned from your grannies?