In honor of an, I thought I would share a little of my overwhelming need to have a full library installed in my home. (that would be like heaven on earth for our family – haha).
I spent about two weeks ago, cleaning out our house and freecycling everything that didn’t have a home or that we didn’t want to keep. The garage got emptied out, the basement is in the transition period and my living room and bedroom look SO much better.
The first thing I realized, was that we have FAR too many books in our house. The seven of us are all avid readers, and due to the ages of our five children, we have a wide variety of material. Until last week, there were FOUR bookshelves just in my living room along and the shelves were overflowing. I am happy to say that now there is only one, and while it is a bit more overflowing than I would like, it isn’t nearly as bad as it was.
The first day I started purging the books, I wound up freecycling four medium sized moving boxes full of adult books, and then two small and three medium size boxes of children’s and chapter books. With our youngest being 11, we are almost completely finished with picture books. I did keep one whole box for ourselves, because well – someday we will have grand kids right? haha
The second day, I wound up with 2 medium boxes full of young adult books that the kids had finished with, and another two medium boxes of adult books – mostly fiction, but some non-fiction.
By day 3, I realized that it wasn’t just that we had too many books in the house, we definitely had a problem, an addiction. I freecycled two of the bookshelves because there simply isn’t anywhere else to put them. We already have one in the garage (nothing on it), and three in the basement. Plus, each of the kids has their own bookshelf in their room as well as one in our hallway. My bedroom has two, but one holds books and one holds DVDs. Houston, we have a problem. I moved the one extra bookshelf down in the basement and will use it for my craft/scrapbooking books and magazines, but other than that, we have too many bookshelves, period. We have too many books, period.
At the end of day 3, I had accumulated 8 small boxes of books, mostly kids. A few of the boxes had a few adult and YA books in there for good measure of course. I actually kept track of the books for the first three days, because I was curious how many books we had that we didn’t want/need anymore.
Day 1, we got rid of 309 picture books, 83 chapter books and 211 adult books
Day 2, we got rid of 137 young adult books and 64 adult books.
Day 3, we got rid of 149 picture books, 21 young adult books and 24 adult books.
So just in 3 days, I was able to eliminate 998 books. That’s almost 1000 books! The rest of the week brought about four more medium size moving boxes full of books. I didn’t cram them in those boxes, I just tossed them, and I quit counting. I’m sure there were at least a couple of hundred more.
The sad part? There are STILL full bookshelves in every room of the house, with a few of them overflowing. I did however find several books I had wondered if I still had, a few I hadn’t read yet but really wanted to, and the kids found some cherished books they thought were long gone. The problem has been at least tamed somewhat, I finished two books in the last two weeks and added them both to freecycle boxes and will be doing that later this week (when I finish the third one I am reading right now.)
It feels good, but I sort-of, kind-of, maybe just a little, feel like a part of me is missing. All those books that we’ve held onto all these years, gone.
It’s okay, next year I’m sure our shelves will start to look like they did a couple of weeks ago.
So, are we the only ones that have a book addiction/problem? Or are there others out there hopelessly devoted to accumulating as many books as we can possibly house?