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Picks of the Month

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81.

PLAN B 4.0: MOBILIZING TO SAVE CIVILIZATION

Lester R. Brown
Paperback

Price: $8.80

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As we watch the earth's climate changing at a pace that outstrips worst-case scenarios from leading s…

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As we watch the earth's climate changing at a pace that outstrips worst-case scenarios from leading scientists, we find ourselves in a race between political and natural tipping points on water depletion and climate change. In an attempt to mobilize our generation, Earth Policy Institute President Lester R. Brown has released an updated version of his prescription for saving civilization.

82.

SIMPLY IMPERFECT: REVISITING THE WABI-SABI HOUSE

Robyn Griggs Lawrence
Paperback

Price: $10.15

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $22.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Wabi-sabi is about appreciating the simple and letting go of the superficial – the perfect antidote for a society in recovery from a decades-long consumerist binge. In 2004 The Wabi-Sabi House introduced this ancient Japanese philosophy to North America. Simply Imperfect is a fully revised and updated edition of The Wabi-Sabi House, aimed at moving past our belief in life, liberty and the pursuit of stuff to finding beauty in austerity, serenity and authenticity.

Far more than home décor, wabi-sabi is a state of mind: living modestly in the moment, stripping away the unnecessary, finding satisfaction in everyday things. Simply Imperfect recounts wabi-sabi's rich history, tracing it from its Zen Buddhist roots through to the present day. This beautifully illustrated book reveals ways to introduce wabi-sabi into your home such as:

  • Clearing clutter and blocking noise
  • Integrating salvaged and recycled materials
  • Making and growing things yourself (or supporting local artisans who do)
  • Taking time and space for self-reflection

Wabi-sabi is everything that today's sleek, plastic, technology-saturated culture isn't. Simply Imperfect asks readers to see that mass-produced perfection is seductive but boring. This gentle book is for anyone who is overwhelmed by consumerism or whose focus has shifted from getting more to getting by.

About the Author
Robyn Griggs Lawrence was the editor at large for MOTHER EARTH NEWS, Natural Home & Garden and The Herb Companion. She is a prolific writer and speaker on topics ranging from green building and ecological design to organic gardening. She has been instrumental in introducing the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi to a Western audience.

Recommended Product for Wiser Living: Today, more than ever before, our society is seeking ways to live more conscientiously. To help bring you the very best inspiration and information about greener, more sustainable lifestyles, MOTHER EARTH NEWS is recommending books and products to readers. For more than 40 years, MOTHER EARTH NEWS has been North America's "Original Guide to Living Wisely," creating books and magazines for people with a passion for self-reliance and a desire to live in harmony with nature.

83.

THE CREATIVE HERBAL HOME

Susan Belsinger & Tina Wilcox
Paperback

Price: $12.42

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The Creative Herbal Home is a guide for both the beginner and experienced home herbalist. It contains basic and deta…

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The Creative Herbal Home is a guide for both the beginner and experienced home herbalist. It contains basic and detailed information about using common household ingredients combined with herbs and essential oils to make an array of herbal products for the home. The book includes informative chapters on herbs, essential oils, ingredients, definitions of terms, and a chapter on plant chemicals for those who want to dive deeper into the science.

The kitchen is the authors' laboratory for herbal alchemy, where they create items for the pantry, as well as household preparations, gardening comforts, remedies, tinctures and even first aid kits. You can create sensual pleasures for soothing and renewing the body in the bath using the book's body care recipes. We hope that this book will give you the tools as well as inspire your own creative herbal home.

About the authors:
Herbal cohorts Susan Belsinger and Tina Marie Wilcox have been working together for more than 10 years on projects and presentations, from gardening to teaching and writing from their respective homes. Belsinger lives in Maryland, and Wilcox lives in Arkansas. With infectious enthusiasm, both women love sharing their knowledge of herbs, plants and gardening with like-minded people. They passionately agree that herbs are a way of life.

84.

THE CLEANER PLATE CLUB

Beth Bader, Alison Benjamin
Paperback

Price: $7.46

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $16.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Are you weary of trying to get your children to eat something —anything — other than macaroni and chee…

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Are you weary of trying to get your children to eat something —anything — other than macaroni and cheese and chicken nuggets? Tired of worrying about their nutrition and struggling with them at every meal? The Cleaner Plate Club comes to the rescue. Authors Beth Bader and Alison Benjamin offer easy recipes and expert advice to help you find ways to get your kids to eat non-processed food and — guess what? — enjoy it! Their fresh ideas will help you present foods that are appealing to kids, eliminate food waste, and finally quit worrying about what your children eat. A must-have for any mom or dad, The Cleaner Plate Club is a recipe for healthier kids and happier parents.

85.

CONVERT YOUR HOME TO SOLAR ENERGY

Everett Barber & Joseph Provey
Paperback

Price: $13.73

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $24.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

This definitive homeowner's guide to solar energy has arrived at just the right time. With the cost of heating oil a…

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This definitive homeowner's guide to solar energy has arrived at just the right time. With the cost of heating oil and electricity fluctuating wildly, consumers are clamoring for information on alternative energy. This book covers all the relevant technologies, including solar space and water heating, as well as photovoltaic electricity.

It's practical (with cost calculators, tips on taking advantage of rebates and tax incentives, and advice on finding specialized contractors). And it's authoritative, written by a recognized expert in the field, Everett Barber, Jr., who has 30 years' experience installing all kinds of solar energy systems. Co-author Joseph Provey has been writing about the topic for almost as long. Together, they cover every facet of planning, installing, operating and maintaining a residential solar energy system.

About the Authors

Everett M. Barber, Jr. is the founder of Sunsearch, Inc., a business he ran for more than 30 years until he recently retired to speak and write about energy matters. During that time, he and his company designed and installed thousands of solar systems in the southern New England area. In addition, Barber was an adjunct professor of Environmental Technologies at Yale University, where he taught courses in thermal analysis of buildings; system design for heating, ventilating and air conditioning; plumbing systems; electrical systems; and fire-safe building design. Barber is a member of the American Solar Energy Society, International Solar Energy Society, and ASHRAE. At the latter, he served on the committee that developed the internationally accepted standard for testing of solar thermal collectors.

Joseph R. Provey wrote his first articles about solar energy, wind power, wood heat, and saving energy during the last energy crisis, in the late 1970s -- and he's still on the beat. More recently, he has written on energy-related topics for Popular Mechanics, Fine Homebuilding, Handy magazine, and in his latest book, The Little Green Book: 365 Ways to Love the Planet. Provey has also served as chief editor to several national home improvement magazines, including The Family Handyman, Home Mechanix and Practical Homeowner.

86.

GARDEN ANYWHERE: WITHOUT SPENDING A FORTUNE

Alys Fowler
Paperback

Price: $17.20

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Have a small patch of soil? Or just a window box? Not a problem. Garden Anywhere shows how anyone can…

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Have a small patch of soil? Or just a window box? Not a problem. Garden Anywhere shows how anyone can create an oasis in the smallest of spaces. We're not talking just a simple pot of marigolds here. Garden Anywhere outlines everything an aspiring gardener needs to know to sow a bounteous, thriving garden. Alys Fowler, trained at the New York Botanical Garden, guides readers through the process from the ground up — from planning the garden to composting, pruning, harvesting and propagating. Stylish photos illustrate the how-tos while Fowler shares tips on creating gorgeous container gardens, herb gardens, kitchen gardens and more, without spending a fortune.

Alys Fowler trained at the New York Botanical Garden. Currently, she serves as head gardener at Berryfields, the location for BBC's Gardener's World television program. She resides in the United Kingdom.

87.

GLORIOUS GRITS

Susan McEwen McIntosh
Hardcover

Price: $12.11

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $22.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

The South's favorite grain is gaining popularity throughout the country as today's top chefs and home…

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The South's favorite grain is gaining popularity throughout the country as today's top chefs and home cooks reinvent this simple, satisfying grain into Glorious Grits. Inspired by an Alabama family whose gristmill supplies organic grains to top chefs across the country, Glorious Grits will appeal to both beginning and expert cooks wanting to tease the palate as well as add healthy whole grains to their diets. Enjoy a taste of the South with more than 100 fresh, flavorful recipes for stone-ground grits, cornmeal and polenta.

From breakfast to lunch to dinnertime and dessert, Glorious Grits offers spectacular possibilities for putting whole-grain goodness on the table.

About the author:

Susan McEwen McIntosh knows her grits! Born and raised in the South, McIntosh worked for several years with the food staff of Southern Living magazine. She's watched as her brother produced grits, cornmeal and polenta from organic corn in his busy gristmill. After talking with notable chefs from coast to coast, she knows the secrets of transforming old-fashioned grits into new and sophisticated dishes. Now this registered dietitian and author of the first Cooking Light® Cookbook combines her knowledge of nutrition with a passion for cooking to present creative grits, cornmeal and polenta recipes for Southern food enthusiasts across the country.

88.

NEW CHAINSAW GUIDE

Walter Hall
Paperback

Price: $7.00

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Who needs a chainsaw? Anyone who cuts or uses wood! Learn simple saw maintenance, sharpening secrets and the best wa…

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Who needs a chainsaw? Anyone who cuts or uses wood! Learn simple saw maintenance, sharpening secrets and the best ways to use this handy homesteading tool. Regular Price $12.95.

89.

SHADE: IDEAS AND INSPIRATION FOR SHADY GARDENS

Keith Wiley
Paperback

Price: $9.06

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $19.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Shade is a reality in nearly every garden, and this guide will help any gardener, experienced or inexpe…

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Shade is a reality in nearly every garden, and this guide will help any gardener, experienced or inexperienced, take full advantage of those sometimes tricky shaded areas. After looking at shade in different situations — in different sizes and types of gardens, in specific areas within the garden such as hedges and other barriers, and in vertical elements such as pergolas and arches — the book then considers the characteristics of shade-loving plants, looking at brightly colored flowers as well as at plants with distinct types of foliage. Readers will also learn how to use plant companions to create striking designs in addition to the practicalities of preparing, planting and maintaining a shade garden.

90.

TRANSFORMING YOUR KITCHEN WITH STOCK CABINETRY

Jonathan and Sherry Benson
Paperback

Price: $13.72

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $24.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

With so many attractive stock cabinetry designs available, creating the kitchen of your dreams no longer involves th…

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With so many attractive stock cabinetry designs available, creating the kitchen of your dreams no longer involves the budget-busting price tag of custom-made cabinets. In fact, you'll be amazed as cabinetmaker Jonathan Benson shows you how to beautifully — and affordably — transform your kitchen by using money-saving stock cabinetry and a well-thought-out plan.

From having a solid design that meets the needs of everyone using the space, to advice and lessons on what to know before going cabinet shopping, or how to live in a construction zone, Benson and his wife, Sherry, a former chef and restaurant owner, show you how a little teamwork can make a kitchen remodel go more smoothly.

Transforming Your Kitchen with Stock Cabinetry will put you right in the heart of a remodeling project, which happens to be the Bensons' own kitchen, and guide you through the complete process. The inspirational gallery at the end of the book is filled with beautiful photos and gives true meaning to the term "dream kitchen."

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