House of Havoc: How to Make- And Keep- A Beautiful Home Despite Cheap Spouses, Messy Kids, and Other Difficult Roommates

Overview


The cupboards are overflowing, the linen closet holds towels and tools, and your once tidy family room might as well come with a ringmaster. But that?s called living, right? Wrong! Marni Jameson is here to prove that you can turn a hectic home into a haven?and do so without being voted off the island. With chapters such as ?Kids are Great?They Only Dismantle Your Home One Piece at a Time,? you?ll laugh as you learn whether to opt for solids or patterns; what constitutes ?indestructible flooring?; how to organize...
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House of Havoc: How to Make--and Keep--a Beautiful Home Despite Cheap Spouses, Messy Kids, and Other Difficult Roomm

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Overview


The cupboards are overflowing, the linen closet holds towels and tools, and your once tidy family room might as well come with a ringmaster. But that’s called living, right? Wrong! Marni Jameson is here to prove that you can turn a hectic home into a haven—and do so without being voted off the island. With chapters such as “Kids are Great—They Only Dismantle Your Home One Piece at a Time,” you’ll laugh as you learn whether to opt for solids or patterns; what constitutes “indestructible flooring”; how to organize your house from top to bottom; and how to decorate so home appeal goes up and blood pressure goes down.

House of Havoc is that indispensable guide for making the most of the house you have without driving everyone around you nuts.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Dallas Morning News, 1/31/10
“Think Erma Bombeck’s wit, Martha Stewart’s gumption and Rachael Ray’s verve in one humble yet helpful package.” 

Hartford Courant, 2/5/10
“Part memoir, part humor and part home improvement guide, House of Havoc offers practical, stress-free tips on creating great design, living green and organizing your home—all on a budget.”

BookPage, February 2010
“Jameson’s blend of humor and helpfulness can handle anything.”

Tucson Citizen, 2/11/10
“[Jameson] has the can-do spirit and simple tips necessary to get through almost any house-related crisis.”

Philadelphia Inquirer Magazine, 2/12/10
“Jameson offers advice on how to turn a havoc-filled home into a heavenly haven without losing your savings or your sanity.”

Akron Beacon Journal, 2/6/10
“[Jameson] advocates solutions that are workable rather than idealistic…and she does it with humor and the credibility of one who’s been there and survived.”

Arizona Daily Star, 2/14/10
“Hilarious…It’s sweet, and a reminder of what a home is all about.”

PublishersWeekly.com, 2/22/10
“Syndicated home columnist Jameson brings a down-to-earth, humorous approach to maintaining a household that’s based in the real world…Jameson makes home improvement advice fun as well as practical.”

Library Journal, 3/1/10
“Realistic home organization with a sense of humor…This fun book will appeal to fans of Erma Bombeck.”

Shore Magazine, March 2010
“Part memoir, part humor and part home improvement guide, House of Havoc offers practical, stress-free tips on creating great design, living green and organizing your home—all on a budget.”

Colorado Homes & Lifestyles, March 2010
“Inside, unlock a wealth of useful tips that make way for a happier dwelling…all backed up by Jameson’s front lines experiences.”

3/16/10

A #1 Denver Post nonfiction paperback bestseller.

El Dorado Home Source, 4/16/10
“Reading this book is like calling your best friend or mother for advice. It is irreverent and funny while passing along the ‘unknowable’ secrets of design…A fun read and you learn something, too.”

Publishers Weekly
While domestic gurus like Martha Stewart promote a fantasy of spotless homes and decorating genius, syndicated home columnist Jameson (The House Always Wins) brings a down-to-earth, humorous approach to maintaining a household that's based in the real world of clutter, kids, pets, crowded schedules, and limited budgets. From "Slip Covers as Divine Intervention" to "The Science of Housekeeping," Jameson makes home improvement advice fun as well as practical, stacking each chapter with tips gleaned from her own life and from experts, including interior designers and professional home organizers; Part Four, for example, details the six Secrets of Great Design (restraint is key in "Managing the Snowball Effect of Decorating"), while Part Six tackles "specialty spaces" like home offices and guest rooms. Whether considering a fresh coat of paint in the living room, purchasing new towels, or removing a stain, Jameson provides succinct trouble-shooting tips ("Buy it once, buy it right") as well as more general guidelines, found in personal mantras like "Every house needs bling," and "Every room needs some life: flowers, a goldfish, a pet."
Library Journal
Jameson (The House Always Wins: America's Most Trusted Home Columnist's Guide to Creating Your (Almost) Perfect Dream House) promotes realistic home organization with a sense of humor. There are no illustrations, but the book offers lots of great lists from professionals, covering everything from how best to organize your kitchen to easy interior design, sandwiched between Jameson's amusing personal tales of woe. This fun book will appeal to fans of Erma Bombeck; however, Regina Leeds's One Year to an Organized Life is a more helpful title.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780738213118
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press
  • Publication date: 1/26/2010
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 1,407,195
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author


Marni Jameson is an award-winning journalist, syndicated columnist, and serial home improver who writes regularly for the Los Angeles Times, Woman’s Day, and other publications. She lives with her family in Colorado.
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Table of Contents

Foreword xiii

Preface: Living with Them! xv

Part 1 At Home with Havoc

1 Havoc and I, We Have a Deal 3

2 The Nice Thing About Kids Is They Take Your Life Apart a Piece at a Time 9

3 Gender Wars: What Men Don't Get 13

4 Home Gone to the Dogs 19

5 Slipcovers as Divine Intervention 23

6 Fix-Don't Toss-Abused Furniture 29

7 Designing for the Un-Senses 32

Part 2 It's All Under Control, She Lied

8 Take Your House Back 37

9 Paper Control: File This Under File This 42

10 Organizing the Home Office: A Second Chance for Order 48

11 Clutter Busting: The Price of Consumption 51

12 Your Kitchen Is Under Arrest 56

13 Photo Management: Someone Manage These Memories-Please! 62

Part 3 The Finer Things in Life

14 Building a Better Bed 69

15 The Towel Trap 80

16 Flowers for Every Occasion Including Every Day 83

17 Is a Soap Dish Too Much to Ask? 87

18 Pillow Talk 90

19 Something's Got to Give, Just Please Not the Waterford 93

20 Marriage, Like China, Can Be Tough to Get Right the First Time 95

Part 4 Six Secrets of Great Design

21 Design Secret #1: Manage the Snowball Effect of Decorating 103

22 Design Secret #2: Apply Magic Measurements 106

23 Design Secret #3: Throw the Weight Around 109

24 Design Secret #4: Practice the Virtue of Restraint 112

25 Design Secret #5: Look to the French 115

26 Design Secret #6: Put Home Improvement in Its Place 118

Part 5 Desperate Times Call for Desperate Decorating: Ten Cheap Design Tricks

27 No-Budget Decorating 123

28 Cheap Trick #1: Find Some Direction 126

29 Cheap Trick #2: Color Your Walls 129

30 Cheap Trick #3: Become a Glue-GunDecorator 141

31 Cheap Trick #4: Bring on the Bling 147

32 Cheap Trick #5: Customize Hardware 150

33 Cheap Trick #6: Fake It 153

34 Cheap Trick #7: Change the Backsplash 157

35 Cheap Trick #8: Frame That Reflection 160

36 Cheap Trick #9: Make Something from Nothing 163

37 Cheap Trick #10: Screen It 167

Part 6 Specialty Spaces and Making Your Home Stretch

38 Homes and Jeans, They're All About Fit 171

39 So You Want to Work from Home-Ha! 174

40 Decorating with Kids: You Want to Paint Your Walls What? 177

41 When School Projects Hit Home 182

42 Dear Houseguest: Please Come and Go 187

43 Home Gym: Make Room for Fitness 192

44 Sacred Spaces: Make Room for You 195

Part 7 House Hygiene

45 At War with the Universe: The Science of Housekeeping 201

46 Housekeepers Are Cheaper Than Therapy 204

47 Flu Season and Germ Warfare 207

48 Spin Cycle: Front-Load or Top-Load? 210

49 Stain Masters: How a Crisis Line Saved a Marriage and a Carpet 214

50 Girlfriend, You Need Some Tools 219

Part 8 Taming the Wild Kingdom

51 SOS for Desperate Landscapes 225

52 Put the Wow in Your Yard 228

53 Outdoor Living: Nixing the Nuisances 233

Part 9 The Future Is Green, but What If You're Yellow?

54 Twelve-Step Program for Planet Junkies 241

55 Indoor Pollution: Is It Safe to Breathe Yet? 244

56 New Uses for Old Stuff 247

57 Biomimicry: Looking to Nature to Solve Problems at Home 250

58 Brave New House 253

Final Thought: Going Home 257

Acknowledgments 261

Index 263

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 25, 2012

    Great book!

    This was such an enjoyable read -- laugh out loud funny with lots of useful tips. I refer back to it often.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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