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eReading Room, Lifelong Learning

How to Clean Things


How did you learn how to clean? I guess my parents taught me, and after a few years of chores it just became second nature. Don't mix ammonia and bleach. Sort laundry into light and dark colors. Sweep first before mopping. Make the bed!

At some point in your life it might be worth going back for a refresher course. Or just get some hot tips to strengthen those scrubbing muscles. There might be something new to learn that would save us all precious time and energy in the neverending struggle to maintain basic levels of cleanliness. I picked up My Boyfriend Barfed in My Handbag... And Other Things You Can't Ask Martha by Jolie Kerr from the library, in part because I always laugh out loud at her column "Ask A Clean Person" on the Hairpin, and in part because I always need some cleaning motivation! She makes cleaning sound almost fun; she encourages you to turn on the music first, to never panic, and to get serious about that disgusting dirt sweater on the top of your fridge.

When an errant liquid suddenly becomes a stain, you might not have time to walk down to the library to pick up a cleaning manual. But we do offer several e-books about cleaning that you can check out from home. You might be surprised how many books we have on this topic, not to mention all sorts of clutter-buster motivational tomes.

You might also be interested in the many public domain reading materials on the art of home economics available through HathiTrust.

Housekeeping books in HathiTrust

Now that you know how to clean things, no excuses! Take care of that mess!


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A favorite housekeeping manual

The National Trust Manual of Housekeeping:Care and Conservation of Collections in Historic Houses is a wonderful addition to a housekeeper's bookshelf.

Thank you Carey. This title

Thank you Carey. This title is also available to consult at the Schwarzman Building.

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